(Closed) How do I break a small wedding to my large extended family?

posted 9 years ago in Etiquette
Post # 3
139 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: July 2008

First off, congratulations on your engagement!  While we didn’t have the exact same situation, my husband and I also wanted a relatively small wedding, and we both have large extended families.  I think that you are in a good position to establish the precedent for the wedding now as it’s early on in your engagement and your parents haven’t "spread the word."  If you think that this extended family will just "presume" a large wedding (because your sister had one, etc), then maybe it’s best to start intentionally spreading the word that you are going to have a very intimate wedding with immediate family only.  If it’s early in your engagement, folks will be bound to ask "Have you set a date?" etc, and instead of saying "Not yet," you can take that as the opportunity to say "We are planning a very small wedding with immediate family only."


How big are you thinking it will be?  Are we talking 20 people, 50 people, 75 people?  Small means different things to different people.  If it’s TRULY small (20 people or less), it should be easier to explain, but when it gets up in numbers, it’s harder.


Good luck, and enjoy your engagement! 

Post # 4
1573 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2009

yeah we’re having a small one too first because his family is all in england and all my extended family is in the Philippines plus we want to buy a house and save money, so 50 – 60 for us is  a perfect number only our immediate family who we care about, my 1 st cousins since they’re all here and our closest friends we keep in touch with and actually see ona  regular basis


I don’t think a wedding is a good time to catch up with old friends you haven’t seen in ages because you don’t spend quality time, they are no longer in your lives, you have both moved on, I think it should be with your closest friends and family and when I say friends,  friends you actually interact with on a regular basis


if you have talked to them in 1 year, hmm, ya think they’re really going to travel 5000 miles?

Post # 6
7052 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: July 2010

Congratulations to you both!

I’m with you.  This time I am NOT inviting the people I haven’t seen since the last family reunion..which is over 10 years ago.  Nope.  There is no reason to.

How about a small destination wedding?  That’s a great alternative!  You could say "It’s going to be immediately family only and we’re going away for it". 

Post # 7
4 posts
  • Wedding: September 2009

First off– Congrats!  

 I feel your pain.  I come from a very large Italian family (my grandmother had 9 siblings!) and it is just impossible to invite them all.  Coupled with the fact I want a small, intimate wedding where I can enjoy myself and my guests.  I ended up having to compromise with my grandmother– I had to at least invite family members I interact with regularly (even if it’s only twice a month).  The rest (aka the ones I haven’t seen except once every 5 years) would not be invited– not that I don’t like them but there just simply isn’t enough money.  Plus, I HARDLY know them!


In any case, you can always cite your wedding budget as a reason why you simply can’t invite EVERYONE.  Or, you could do the destination wedding as mentioned above.  It’s YOUR day, it should be at least CLOSE to what you want if not exactly! 

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