- 8 years ago
- Wedding: July 2010
So I am delighted to be marrying my amazing fiance, who is from Eritrea (small country, north of Ethiopia in East Africa). I have been learning so much about him and his culture through wedding planning… often it has been frustrating and confusing (as when it took us 3 months to set a wedding date–but that’s also just our personalities!) But more so, it has been a great opportunity to learn and be creative! I love it!
Details about our wedding day: we are having one ceremony and two receptions. Ceremony at 1 pm, dessert reception immediately following (2:30-5:30 pm), and Eritrean dinner & reception following that around 6:30 pm. Most guests are being invited to only one reception–but there is a core group of about 40-50 people (wedding party of a dozen, our parents, my grandparents, some other close friends, etc.) that will be invited to both receptions.
Right now, I feel very bemused when it comes to deciding what to order for reception cards. FI and I have finally (FINALLY! *cheers*) settled on a guest list (and determined who will be invited to which reception). Now I’m trying to find the least expensive but also least confusing way to send our invitations.
As my fiance has explained it, it is custom to invite the entire church to the wedding and reception, and to invite everyone by word of mouth. Well, me being 100% WASPy American, that is not at all the cultural norm for my extended family, nor most of our mutual friends. Paper invites indicate you are formally invited, and specifically note *who* is invited. Given that the location of the dessert reception is going to be at capacity with guests, we can’t invite whoever wants to come to the dessert reception.
So, we’re planning on sending paper invitations to pretty much every American person we’re inviting, and sending paper invitations to the 20 Eritreans who are invited to the dessert reception. But–there are 30-40 American people who are being invited to the evening Eritrean reception. Do I follow the Eritrean custom and also invite Americans by verbal invitation to the reception, and just send a ceremony invite? I expect Americans would be looking for a paper invitation–and it feels inconsiderate just to send a ceremony invite.
My question–should I go ahead and print another reception card for the evening Eritrean reception, even though not all the guests would receive it? (Since Eritreans generally don’t distribute paper invitations, so there’s no need to print enough for everyone?)
Another topic entirely–RSVPs! How do I do this? For the Eritrean reception, do I just state there is no need to RSVP? Or gather RSVPs anyway, since most guests are conditioned to RSVP to a wedding invite? I’m just trying to cover all my bases… even if it seems like a bit much. I really just need your balanced perspectives, as you all are in the midst of all these wedding questions too!
Also, just fyi–I have set up two wedding websites (identical except for their reception info).