Post # 1
I don’t think we’re going to have a formal receiving line, but I would like to be by the door greeting guests informally as they walk in. If my reception starts at 6pm, what time should i have the limo drop us off? 5:30? 5:45? Right at 6:00pm? Do brides usually like to see the setup before all the guests arrive?
ETA: My shuttle will start picking up guests at 5:45pm. The ride from the hotel to the reception is around 5 minutes.
Post # 3
We are not attending our cocktail hour. I have been to 3 weddings and have never had the bride enter during cocktail. Our coordinator will be arranging small plates of the cocktail hour food, but we will be spending cocktail hour taking our wedding party pictures, family portraits, and our first photos as a husband and wife.
A receiving line is typically exiting the ceremony, not entering cocktail. It might be odd to do it entering the cocktail room because people won’t expect you to be there and will wonder what the hold up is entering the room.
Post # 4
@MrsBroccoli: People do receiving lines at the end of the ceremony OR at the beginning of reception. I’ve been through both kinds of receiving lines. I have a big catholic gap, which will be utilized for taking pictures.
Post # 5
The wedding “cocktail hour” was developed to give guests something to do while the bride and groom were taking pictures, and typically, the bride and groom do not make an appearance at the cocktail hour. However, just like other wedding practices, many brides are choosing to throw this practice out and join their guests at cocktail hour. For us, we don’t want to appear until the grand entrance/introduction into the reception, so that is when we will show our faces.
However, if you definitely want to go to the cocktail hour and greet your guests, then I’d say get there a bit earlier than it starts so you’re able to do that. Give yourself enough time to beat the early birds, too.
@MrsBroccoli: I’ve been to dozens of weddings and also never seen the bride and groom attend cocktail hour. Not to say that there’s anything wrong with doing that or that people don’t ever do it – it’s maybe another one of those things that varies by location.
Post # 6
I would plan on getting there about 15 minutes before it is scheduled to start, quickly saying hi to any early birds, and then standing at the entrance to the cocktail hour.
We plan on doing an informal “receiving line” into the cocktail hour area too. I think it is a great way to make sure that we greet and thank all of our guests, without having to spend our entire reception jumping from table to table trying not to miss anyone before they hit the dance floor/head home. Doing it as people enter the cocktail hour will also help eliminate the annoying standing in line that happens when the receiving line is done at the end of the ceremony, since everyone won’t arrive at the cocktail hour at the exact same time.
Although this works for us because we have a fairly long gap between our ceremony and reception so there will be plenty of time for photos, so if your ceremony is immediately before your reception, this wouldn’t allow much time for photos.
Post # 7
We are starting cocktail hour at 5:30 and it’s only going to last about a half hour. We will arrive at 6 with the bridal party. Everyone will be asked to find their seats so we can be annouced while entering the grand ballroom.