Post # 1
My fiancé and I both come from large families and we also have a lot of friends who live out of town. Unfortunately we underestimated the number of family and friends we wanted to invite to our wedding and have far surpassed the max number of people allowed in our reception hall.
So we were thinking of doing this: invite everyone to the church for the ceremony but only have our family and close out-of-town guests for the reception in the evening.
The next day we have a more casual reception at a resto-bar/lounge with just our friends and coworkers who live in the same city. A more laid-back atmosphere with finger foods, cash bar and no wedding gift is required.
What do you all think? Do you foresee anyone getting offended by perhaps getting invited to a “lesser” reception?
Post # 3
I think it’s a good idea.
However out of curiosity, how are you going to word the no wedding gift required? I think people will still bring a gift even if it isn’t required as it is basic etiquette.
Post # 4
Sounds like a very nice way to handle the situation. I wouldn’t mind attending a different reception if my friends needed me to!
Post # 5
I have certainly heard of this kind of thing being done before… so if it works for you and your situation (Fiance, Family, etc) I say run with it.
And it sounds like a good compromise… lol, I’m betting both events will be fabulous !!
Just to follow up on what sruan: has posted above… you cannot really put that statement “No Gifts Required” into your Invites for the Second Reception *… as it really is an Etiquette Faux Pas (Gifts should never be mentioned)
* You will need to have Invites Printed for BOTH Events, and sent out in the usual way beforehand with RSVP deadlines etc… so that your Guests will know when they come to the actual Wedding that there is a Reception they’ll be attending (altho I’d downplay / not talk about the fact that there are 2 Receptions and 2 Guest Lists to anyone). If anyone asks WHY the Reception isn’t the same day, I’d just make a point of saying “it was a matter of logistics” (which it clearly is)
PS… Likewise, I do hope your Wedding Party and immediate family is invited to both events… as no doubt your Friends deserve to feel they are part of the entire package… and not some after thought.
Hope this helps,
Post # 6
@VintageMichelle: Great idea! Would you put your dress on again for the second reception or wear something different? I bet some of your friends would actually PREFER just being invited to the less casual event (thinking of my SO here who hates formal things).
Post # 7
We’re doing something similar: a very intimate, small ceremony and reception for only closest friends and family. Later in the summer, we’re having a barbecue at our home to celebrate with the remainder of our friends who didn’t make the “A” list for the actual wedding. We’ve made it clear to them that we don’t want presents, but just for them to come and have a good time, and will indicate the same on the invite.
Post # 8
Wow thanks everyone for your help! I feel more assured in going through with this decision. Thank youf or the other advice as well, I will definitely invite our immediate family and bridal party to both receptions and as for gifts/no gifts I just won’t say anything. Though if people come up and ask me I will let them know that their presence is the only gift I need. 🙂
Post # 9
@This Time Round: That makes a lot of sense, thank you. I will definitely invite our immediate family and bridal party to both receptions and as for gifts/no gifts I just won’t say anything. Though if people come up and ask me I will let them know that their presence is the only gift I need. 🙂
Post # 10
We’re doing two receptions for logistics reasons: one in the US, and one in Finland! Most of my family can’t fly to the US for the wedding, and likewise his family and friends couldn’t possibly all fly here. So, we’re throwing two parties, essentially, to be able to include everyone, because that was important to us. Obviously we’re only getting married in one place, so the Finland reception will really be only a reception with no ceremony prior to it. That could make it seem like a “lesser” reception, arguably, but I think people understand why we have to do it that way. I’m sure everyone will understand if you let them know it’s basically because of practical and logistical problems 🙂