Wedding season is upon us. So here are my do’s and don’ts for wedding guests so you don’t end up being the guest that doesn’t get invited back!
Do RSVP in good time
Manners are everything. Once you’ve received that formal invitation, make sure you respond by the required date. If it gets to the point when the wedding planner or the bride and groom are chasing you to check if you are attending, that’s never a good sign. It’s very common nowadays to be given a phone number or email address to respond to. But if there’s an address instead, then get a nice card and formally accept (or decline) the invitation.
Do turn up
If you say you’re going to attend, then make sure you turn up! Numbers for catering and seating will need confirming at least two weeks in advance. At this point all guest places will need to be paid for. So if you say you’re going to attend, don’t change your mind at the last minute – this a biggie on the list of do’s and don’ts for wedding guests. This will cost the person paying for the wedding and that’s not right. Another, more appealing, engagement is not an excuse for withdrawing an acceptance to any occasion.
Don’t wear black or white
Wearing white is a total no-no; that’s for the bride who will need to stand out and not be confused with guests. The same applies for cream and other nude shades. Black is traditionally reserved for funerals. Whilst it’s a wardrobe staple nowadays; embrace the celebration and opt for a colour instead.
Other wardrobe considerations for ladies include block heels for outdoor weddings (think practical and not sticking in the grass); and the tradition of a hat which can elevate any outfit from garden party to wedding. Men need to consider their suit choice and colour too – never out-do the groom either! The tradition for morning dress is not so prevalent and lounge suits are usually acceptable.
Do respect the formalities
Most wedding days include some more formal elements. If the bride and groom choose a church wedding, there’s a need to respect this environment. Be prepared to entertain your children quietly, especially during the vows or prayers.
Speeches will feature regardless of the venue, but think about your behaviour here too. A very nervous groom won’t appreciate being heckled. But everyone likes quiet so they can be listened to respectfully.
Do embrace the quirks
Every couple wants a wedding day that features there style and taste. That might not be your idea of a great day, but remember it’s their day, not yours. Keep an open mind as to whatever the bride and groom have planned and embrace each and every element. This might not be what you would do; but the couple will appreciate it if you go with the flow. A more modern addition to the list of do’s and don’ts for wedding guests. Plus, you never know what they could have planned!
Don’t take excessive advantage of the hospitality
Being a wedding guest means you are usually treated to fine food and drinks. This includes canapés and champagne or arrival; the wedding breakfast; and then evening food. Make sure you enjoy what’s on offer – but in moderation. If the ceremony is early on, don’t scoff all the canapés – caterers usually allow 5 -7 per person so keep this in mind. Some couple will also provide drinks with the wedding breakfast, and even a free bar. Appreciate the generosity of the couple, but don’t overstep a sensible level. Just imagine if you were paying the bill and how you might feel…
Don’t overstay your welcome
Gone are the days when it was tradition to see the couple off on their honeymoon and leave guests to party on. Usually the couple are last to leave, saying goodbye to all their guests and taking items from the venue with them as they go. Whilst having a merry time is good; make sure you have pre-arranged your transport home or to your nearby accommodation and keep to this departure time. Venue staff have enough to do in the early hours without having to forcibly eject straggling, drunk guests.
The wedding ‘rules’ have changed over the years and the do’s and don’ts for wedding guests can be unique to each occasion. So it’s important to fully read any instructions shared with you by the bride and groom so you help the day happen as they would want it to. Without specific instructions, common sense always prevails – just give yours a bit of a check, will you!
Don’t forget, I’m always on hand for advice and ideas for your big day. From the formal to the wonderfully informal, I can guide you to make choices that mean your special day will be spectacular – and perfectly you! Get in touch for your free consultation.
You can also follow me on Pinterest for more wedding day inspiration.