Post # 1
FH and I are in a rough financial spot right now, and are trying to keep our guest list as small as possible. We’re shooting for 60, but it’s tough. Has anyone done a wedding/reception where ONLY immediate family (well, plus close aunts, uncles, and cousins) were invited? If we do it this way, the only non-family members there will be the girls in the bridal party. I don’t know…the thought of only having family there bums me out, but I don’t want to blow our budget. Thoughts?
Post # 3
If that’s what your budget allows I would go with it. I’ve been planning for over a year and some of the people I first thought would be invited have changed… some friends can come and go but your family will always be with you. Also you can always have an after wedding celebration (if you’re not too tired) gathering all the friends you couldn’t invite at a bar/restaurant and then the stress of paying for them wouldn’t be on you.
Post # 4
That’s a good idea…we’re only going from about 7-11, so we could do family only for that and then meet friends later. It might end up being a LONG day, though…
Post # 5
We’re having family and a couple very close friends, and we still have 100 people on the guest list. J has too many cousins!!!
It’s actually a good excuse for when people you don’t like assume they’re invited to the wedding and then you say “Oh sorry, we’re only inviting family!” No lies here!
Post # 6
This is EXACTLY what we’re doing. Having a close family only ceremony and reception then having a HUGE open-party after the honeymoon. This way no one feels left out.
Post # 7
We seriously considered an ‘immediate family only’ wedding for the exact same reason: budget. But we were really bummed about not having our close friends too. We decided to instead have a lunch wedding because the lunch price at the venue we really loved was less than half of the dinner price. That made it so we could invite double the people for the same money.
So there might be other ways for you to cut the budget, but immediate family only is definitely an option and it’s not that uncommon either. Good luck!
Post # 8
That’s what we’re doing – immediate family (including aunts/uncles/cousins) and our very best friends (about 3 each) and we’re STILL at 100 people – ouch. Mr JBelle has too many cousins!
Post # 9
I will have a total of 8 people at my ceremony: my parents, FI’s mother, father, and stepmom, my sister, my grandmother, and FI’s best friend who is like a brother to him. My sister and FI’s best friend are Maid/Matron of Honor and Bridesmaid or Best Man. Personally, I like it, even though some of my friends keep saying they would really like to be there–it’s just never been my dream to be stared at while wearing white!
We’re doing a big bash later that’s more casual and calling it our “anniversary party”–but that’s something to think about if it’s really bumming you out: have your small wedding now but have a huge 1st-year anniversary party.
Post # 10
Fiance & I are both from huge families so we are having parents, siblings, aunts & uncles & 1st cousins only and 2 friends each in the bridal party. We are shooting for 110 people, but currently, that leaves us at 131 people. The great thing about that for us, though, is that our families like to party & have a good time! One friend actually came to a repass after a funeral and remarked, “Your family is totally self-contained. You don’t need to invite anyone else and it s a party!”
Post # 11
We’re doing this same type of thing, because my fiance really feels uncomfortable in front of a huge group. Depending on how much you’re worried about finances, you could have a separate party at a later date. We talked about having a cocktail party type event later for all of our friends who we’re not inviting to the wedding. We hope that it will be cheaper this way, as we’ll only have appetizers and drinks (versus the full meal of a wedding…).
Post # 12
Is there a way you could cut some of the family? I know that sounds bad, but it’s what my FH and I had to do – we were shooting for a guest list of 40; it ended up being about 55 (invited), which I’m ok with. On my side of the family, I’m only inviting my immediate family, grandparents, aunts, uncles, and first cousins. My mom has a huge extended family, and I’m not inviting them. Part of me feels bad about it – they’re all great people, we see each other at holidays, etc, but there just wasn’t room in the budget. I made a list of everyone I “had” to invite, and it was over 130 people, just with family/extended cousins! That wasn’t going to work for us. Oh FH’s side, he’s only inviting immediate family, of course, and aunts/uncles he’s close to (and who are in town), and he’s inviting some great uncles that he’s also close to. That way, we had room to invite friends who are close to us. Would something like that work for you?
Small budgets are hard sometimes…