Post # 1
I just got engaged and am trying to figure out where I will have my wedding. We really want a very small ceremony followed by a reception of all our family and friends.
We were considering doing a private ceremony with just immediate family. I do have one Cousin who is very close and we are closer then some sisters. I can’t imagine getting married without her or my Aunt (her Mom) there. This means it’s no longer immediate family though and I feel like I can’t invite one Aunt without inviting another and another, then the Aunts and Uncles from FI family. I don’t know where to draw the line! I don’t want to offend people but I also want my wedding day to go the way me and my FI want it to. He would like to elope but we decided a small ceremony here would be a good compromise. If we start adding in all of our Aunts and Uncles our guest list gets so much bigger.
With immediate family and my one cousin and Aunt our guest list is exactly 20 which seems perfect to me. It’s not like we are inviting 100 people and leaving a few people, in which case I would understand those people being upset.
What should I do? Is it right to not invite all of our family or should we suck it up and have them there?
The one little place I found that I like would not hold all of our families so I’d have to pick somewhere else too.
Post # 3
We are having a very small wedding and reception too; 50 at the most.
The only advice that I have for you is to invite the same people to both the ceremony and the reception. If I were a guest, I would not be happy to only be invited to the reception. I would like to see from start to finish. I don’t know, I just think that if you don’t invite everyone to the ceremony, they will be less likely to go to the reception.
Other than that, your other option would be to just elope, like your FI wants. That way no one would be offended.
I know you want it the way you want it, but weddings seem to bring out the worst and best in families.
Post # 4
I have a friend who did this a few years ago. She and her fiance got married in their parents back yard and could only accommodate a small number of guests. A couple hours later they had a reception with several other guests who were not invited to the ceremony. I can tell you that throughout the reception I heard several people say that they were hurt they were not invited to the ceremony. One of our friends STILL talks about how hurt she was that she couldn’t see them exchange vows. I don’t like the idea of excluding certain people from one part of a wedding day but not another. To me it’s kind of like when people invite guests to the ceremony but not the reception. It automatically creates a hierarchy of “more important” and “less important” guests…. If you want an intimate ceremony have an intimate reception too.
Post # 5
I think it is okay to have a small ceremony and a large reception, but the ceremony needs to be on a different day, or like PP said… there will be hard feelings.
Also, if you are worried about what people will think, make your cousin a bridesmaid so that she is IN the wedding. Then they have no reason to complain.
Post # 6
I can’t imagine someone years later saying that they were still hurt. I wasn’t planning to invite any friends so as to avoid some friends feeling better then others. As a guest I would be offended if I was of a small group that was not invited but not if such a small amount was and it was all family.
Would it be different if we ONLY had our parents there? I’ve thought about it as an option but I really would like our sisters and grandparents there.
We are planning a very short ceremony so it seemed silly to have 150 guests sit down for 10 minutes. My FI has fainted at a wedding before when he was a groomsman and is very worried it would happen again…he has fainted several other times too. This is why we wanted the short casual small ceremony.
I want the big reception and he is fine with that part but I’d prefer it on the same day as our ceremony. Maybe we should just go to the court house with our parents and then go to a reception after, not my perfect wedding idea but gotta do what works. I don’t want bitter guests but I also don’t want a bitter bride and groom.
Post # 7
We are having a VERY small ceremony and decided to have it away so we wont have any one complaining that they didnt get invited. We are having a reception with most of our friends & family after.
Post # 8
@mishelleez- How far away are you doing it? We were going to go to Vegas but I’m worried our sisters will not be able to make it, one is having a baby in the spring when we wanted to get married and the other might not be able to do it financially. How far apart is your ceremony and reception?