Post # 1
Fiance and I are planning a small destination wedding for about 30 people (mostly immediate family and some close friends). It’s truly the wedding of my dreams and I’m so excited.
There are A LOT of people who are disappointed that they won’t be able to attend and so we’re hosting a casual at-home reception when we get back. We’re going to rent a hall on a Saturday afternoon, put out some food, run the wedding slideshow and just generally mingle with our guests. I’m hoping it’ll be more of a drop-in type thing, so people won’t feel obligated to stay for the whole time.
Who exactly should we be inviting to the at-home reception? Fiance has a lot of work contacts that he wouldn’t have necessarily invited to the wedding if it were at home, but he wants to carry some extra invitations in his bag in case he runs across anyone who expresses an interest in our wedding. Personally, I think it’s tacky and looks like a gift grab.
Post # 3
I see where you’re coming from, but I also get his point – Fiance & I have added a handful of people since we finalized our list that we realized we wanted there. It wasn’t whipping out the invite out of the bag, but we did quietly request their mailing address. In cases like that, maybe you all could do the same.
Post # 4
I think it depends on how the invitation is set up.
If its set up to be a “drop in and say hello” reception and the invitation is super casual, he could just give them word of mouth invites (like a regular old BBQ) and give the invites to people you would have normally invited to a wedding. I would make sure the invites are super casual and tell them to drop in so that it is more casual like you want.
Otherwise the fact that it is a wedding reception people will assume more formal.
Post # 5
I would only invite people who you otherwise would have invited.
I also don’t think that handing out invites to those that express interest in your wedding is a good strategy. There are lots of people who don’t say anything for fear of “fishing for an invite”.
I also dislike just handing them out willy nilly. Make a guest list and invite those people.
Post # 6
Hi. I’m kinda in the same boat. We are having the ceremony and main reception where I’m from and where we will be living which is 8 hours away from all of his family (I would have rather had a wedding in the middle but I got convinced it was not a big deal to his family or him and out voted). Since the wedding is 8 hours away from 90% of his guests we are having a reception in his hometown. Kind of the same thing you are doing; we will play our wedding video, have a BBQ, and mingle (although ours isn’t going to be come and go it will end a lot earlier (around 10:30) then a normal wedding reception). We plan on inviting pretty much everyone. All of his family, his moms friends, his friends, maybe a few of my immediate family just so the two families can meet, etc.
I understand why it may seem tacky to just pass out invitations to the at home and I don’t know if I would recommend it. I would sit down and create a guest list of who you want invites to go to and order a few extras for those who you might not have thought of.
Thats just what we are going to do. Hopefully it helps a little.
Post # 7
We had an at-home reception and used the same guest list we would have had if we had a local wedding.
If people express interest in attending (and you wouldn’t mind them there), I say you should invite them. However I wouldn’t hand out invitations on the spot (that seems weird). Maybe mail them one.
Post # 8
What about out of towners? Should they still be invited to such a casual at-home reception? Do we need to ‘warn’ them it will be so casual, so they don’t plan on travelling for a formal wedding reception? I have friends from my hometown (4 hours away) who I would be inviting and Fiance has family across the country who we will likely invite to this, but I’m not really expecting anyone to make much of an effort to travel for something so simple.