Post # 1
I want to keep my number of guests around 100, as my venue isn’t gigantic… And honestly, I’d rather it were even smaller because more people = more money to spend! My fiance has a giant family, and his mother recently gave me the list of their side of the family and it’s currently at 79 people…
So that leaves me with 21 guests? I realize not everyone I invite will attend, but as he is the eldest male in his family, (huge Italian Catholic family) it’s a big deal to them.
I’m basically putting all of the family friends she expects me to invite on the back burner until I find out how many immediate family members will attend. Do you think this is an acceptable plan, Bees? Any advice?
Post # 3
@Minae: A couple of questions: (1) who’s paying for the wedding?, (2) How does you FI feel about inviting all these relatives?
I suggest shortening the list my trimming the family tree evenly at some point. e.g. invite aunts and uncles but not cousins. Or invite cousins but not second cousins, something like that. (This worked well for managing my DH’s large family, maybe less well for an Italian-descent family, I’m not sure). But a lot depends on the answers to my questions.
Post # 4
@aussiemum1248: She gave us $1000, and my Dad also contributed a few thousand, but most of it will come from us. And my Dad doesn’t care at all what I do with the wedding, haha. My fiance I’m sure would also rather have less people there if possible. It seems to me his mom only wants to show off in front of the family, which is odd because I’m not really the type to show off to people 😀
Post # 5
Give her money back. Her 1,000 will cost you at least 10,000. Do the wedding you want.
Post # 6
@Minae: are they helping you pay for these guests? If not, I really don’t think it’s fair for them to monopolize the guest list. he needs to tell his mom that they can’t invite all of their friends because there’s not enough room in the menu.
Post # 7
We sort of did it this way.
My stepdad has a ridiculous family (their guest list was like, 60-odd people? Not counting my actual, non-step family or my dad’s side, which is big but I’m close with all of them). DH’s family’s guest list was originally like 400, which I’m not even sure could’ve fit in any venue locally, let alone the cost.
So we sat our parents down with the guest list we’d originally come up with, which did include a lot of the people on their lists of course, because they were family lists, and told our parents look, this is the guest list we came up with, and the one we can afford by ourselves, at the $x per head price we negotiated with the venue (our venue costs included food, booze, and cake). If you want to invite people who are not on this list, we’re going to ask you to pay for their per-head cost. If you can’t or won’t do that, unfortunately, there’s no wiggle room on our list; we are tapped out.
My mom decided my stepdad’s creepy cousins weren’t worth it, and MIL ponied up for about 75 extra people, although about 75 of the people on her list were already on ours.
To us, this felt like a fair way to handle it; it didn’t give preference to any one family over another, or to any one branch of family over another, it didn’t alienate our parents too much (my mom was a little pissed for a while), and it didn’t cost us thousands of dollars we didn’t have.
Post # 8
FMIL are often in the mix on invite lists because their son’s turn to them on advice about who should be invited from the family. (Side note, I didn’t have this problem as my husband didn’t rely on his parents for wedding related assistance of any kind-ie invite brainstorming- thank goodnes). So think of her list as a first draft. Your budget and venue holds 100. Between you and your FI only decide how many people from each side you plan to invite. Have your FI take a stab at narrowing down his mom’s list. Or if need be go back to her with your budge-free max and ask her to make cuts. “You must narrow this down.” Some things to consider- last time since your husband has seen a relative/ truly a courtesy-mercy invite (send a wedding announcement post to these post wedding/ specific classes of fam- parents siblings& cousins, yiur husbands’s first cousins etc. These conversations about guests must be said in a united front way using we and our, and should include the two of you present as much as possible.
Post # 9
@riley23: why did your MIL pay for her the 75 she wanted if they were already on your list (and you budgeted to pay for them? So you didn’t mind not charging the extra costs also incirred when yiu have more guests-invites, centerpieces, more servers to tip etc? Were those costs really mot that much or something?
Post # 10
- Wedding: July 2012 - Baltimore Museum of Industry
If you want 100 guests, split it in fourths- 25 invites for FI’s family, 25 for yours, 25 for your friends, 25 for FI’s friends. Have your FMIL do an A/B list- if you get regrets for their As, then you’ll invite Bs.
The list I originally received from my MIL had 60 people, and we gave them 25. Have FI tell his Mom about the guest cap- a LOT better if it comes from him than you!
Post # 11
@riley23: I am having the exact opposite problem. I know that my side of the family (Irish descent, oldest of eight, dad is one of seven, just oodles and oodles of people) is going to dominate the guest list – that’s just a given – but from the start I have actively tried to make sure that the groom’s side knows that they can give me a more “expanded” list. Many of FMIL family reside 5+ hours away and may not be able to make it – so, I’m being liberal with the strict first-cousin rule I imposed on my own side. My FFIL’s family is local but he likes to think of himself as a “black sheep” and doesn’t talk to many of them. I think his side of the family are lovely people and want them included, and am not really interested in inheriting petty arguments from years ago. Because they aren’t close, the FI doesn’t know who these people are, and when we handed them a list months ago and asked them to fill out the missing people, it was the most monumental task ever and they never did it. I finally dished out an ultimatum this week, but I’m so puzzled by this avoidance to have people celebrate the marriage of your oldest child and only son…