Post # 1
Hi everyone. FI and I got engaged less than 2 weeks ago and we are in the process of coming up with a guest list and a solid number we want to shoot for. I think that a max of 150 is a reasonable number of guests and should allow us to have both friends and family and not cut out too many people. However, this isn’t a set number yet.
I was looking at the list his mom gave him of people she would want to invite and she put “no” next to a lot of them because she assumes they won’t come but wants to invite them anyway. This makes me nervous because what if some of them actually do come and we haven’t factored them in? A lot of the people are her family members, both distant and immediate family, who live hours away and in the 5 years FI and I have been together, I’ve never met them or even heard about them. If FI hasn’t seen or spoken with them in years and doesn’t really know them, do they really need to be invited? I know there’s no clear cut answer for this, but I’m curious what others did when it came time to decide who gets an invite.
I don’t even have a count on how many people are on our lists combined, but we’ll be talking about it tonight when we have dinner with both sets of parents, so I want to be prepared. Thanks!
Post # 3
a lot of this will depend on financial contributions. if your parents are paying for the majority of the wedding, you may have to give in to some of their guest list requests.
Post # 4
Guests lists are so difficult! I wish there was an easy button for them.
My mom and I have battled over the guest list for about 7 months. My mom is similar in thinking that many people won’t come. I’m also worried that everyone will show up.
In the end, the person (or persons) who are paying get to have a bit more say in the guest list. If you’re paying, go with your gut. If your parents are paying, listen to them.
Post # 5
Depends on what type of event you want. 150 people will feel lively, but really runs a good chance of it feeling impersonal for you and your guests. I’d say absoutely not invite anyone you haven’t met in the years since you met your FI. Some books say if you haven’t had a significant conversation/interaction with someone in the past year then don’t invite them. I had 100 people and I regret it was that big. Felt too impersonal as a lot of guests didnt’ stay long after the cake. All that planning and you don’t get to spend that much time with them. Plus many who I hadn’t seen in years who came I’ve heard little/nothing from since. But I’m more introvert, so I’d rather go small than big. 50-60 would have felt right to me.
Also, we had some people we invited as a courtesy thinking they wouldn’t come and they did. Stick with your gut feeling, it’s your day. If your parents help pay, try to have them respect you by letting you make your own wedding decisions with your fiance.
Post # 6
One thing you might consider is sending a formal announcement after the wedding to extended family members. If your future MIL is so certain they won’t come, then maybe she won’t be opposed to this approach??
Post # 7
I appreciate the additional input. After talking, my FI and I have decided we are going to cap it at 150. I hate the idea of not knowing a bunch of people at my own wedding. I feel like if they are really that important they I would have met in them in 5 years we’ve been together!
Thank you for suggesting the idea of a formal announcement after the wedding. Is that ok etiquette-wise? I wouldn’t want it to come off as us asking for gifts even though they weren’t invited to the wedding, ya know?
Post # 8
For our guestlist, my hubby and I decided who we wanted to invite and then split the rest in half for our parents. They got to invite that number of people, no more. My mom didn’t like that and tried to do what your fmil did, tell me they wouldn’t come. I wasn’t having that b/c it made me too nervous (and weddings are stressful enough without that!) so we finally came to the decision to send out announcements to those people. It worked out great.