(Closed) Much smaller wedding than I envisoned..mixed feelings

posted 6 years ago in Reception
Post # 3
265 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

We budgeted for about 85 once our invites went out. Day of, we had 62. That includes six day-of no-shows, and DOESN’T include 12 in the bridal party. Total, 74. It’s hard for me to understand where you’re coming from because I always wanted a smaller wedding. Part of me felt like ours ended up being too small, but in the end we were able to talk to everyone, for more than two seconds, and most people more than once. It was more personal, tons of food for everyone, and everyone had a great time.

I think the special touches you provide to make things personal, and if you set up the day with the mindset of wanting your guests to have a blast, then it’ll be a great day no matter what the size. There’s something to be said for being in a room where you truly know and love everyone. : )

Post # 4
3697 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

We had less than 40 people at our wedding and it was awesome!  The small guest list allowed us a cooler venue, and allowed us to splurge a little on our closest friends and family.  I had no desire to invite people I wasn’t really close with.  We did immediate family and 3 each of our best friends (and honestly I was stretching on 3!). 

Seriously, IMO, smaller is great.  You won’t have to worry about saying hi to everyone, or have a huge seating chart to make, or worry about paying $90/head for 200 people.  My bar tab was $1,000 and our friends can really drink! 

Post # 5
1094 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2013

I want to keep it super small as well.  I have a very small family and only a few good friends.  (By choice! Honestly, i’m too tired to keep up with a big social scene). We’re also looking at about 55 people though 33 of those are FI’s family. We’re also paying for the whole thing just ourselves, so i’m happy to keep it small and affordable.  I know that it’ll be amazing no matter what! 🙂

Post # 6
2692 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: November 2012

Well, I am like you.  I always envisioned a huge wedding.  And with our families, it would be almost impossible to have a guest list less than 40 (we have that many people all the time at our kids b-day parties and Thanksgiving). 

I had to set a limit on how many we could invite though as fi’s local family is just too large for us to accomodate financially.  We are trying to cap it at 150, which to me is a medium sized wedding but my family thinks it’sa pretty bi wedding.  We’re happy with that total.  That does not include any college friends either.  I don’t have any friends from college that I kept intouch with so that has no factor… it’s mostly family and afew of our friends (old friends from way back and new friends we’ve made since living here.)

Post # 7
5958 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: April 2018

Because of my parents, everyone expected Mr. 99 and I to blow the doors off on a HUGE wedding and I guess I never really thought about it one way or the other since it was just a concept until I was actually engaged…and once we got there, took a look at the 300 person guest list, I literally broke out in a cold sweat…I could not, in good conscience ask my father to pay for something like that, I was sick at the thought of having such a special and private moment put on display for so many people, a large number of which I hadn’t seen in over a decade and I was totally disinterested in waiting to be Mrs. 99.

I rounded up my golden cows, things I would die if I didn’t have, I wanted a pretty dress, a nice dinner and the people closest to me there, and that was all….I was so happy with our itsy bitsy 25 guest wedding!  It’s my favorite day, 5 years later!

Post # 8
2103 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: February 2013

No offense, I promise…but you’ll get over it. Your wedding is not for two years. I’ve been engaged since 2010 and getting married in 2013. I wanted to have a big wedding. At least 150-200 people. And we both went to college and graduate school…so we have additional connections based on that. The time will make things better.

You can still keep your theme. You can still have a worthwhile celebration. It may be more intimate, but that doesn’t make it less fun or interesting.

Post # 9
1292 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: January 2013

Don’t feel bad! I’m in the same boat. My problem is that it’s a destination for me (as well as all of my friends that I’ve made in the city I moved to 5 years ago) but it’s in the town where I grew up (so not a destination for my family..) HOWEVER, ONLY my immediate family lives there (so about 15 people total).. and literally none of my friends live there anymore from highschool sooooo, in short, it’s just going to be a small wedding! It was a little embarassing at first because I think people here in my current city (who are making the trip) assumed it would be big because that’s where I’m from but I had to explain only my immediate family lives there and they were like.. “um, then why aren’t you having it here then?” Sigh!

This made me really sad at first. I ended up splurging on my reception site (and I love it) but then I found out I couldn’t have a DJ for sound issues.  This upset me because I love dancing, drinking, partying ….. But..I’ve decided to embrace it. Now I’m going for fancy dinner party theme with yum food and delish cocktails which will be just as fun as a big 200+  dance party wedding.

You just have to sit down and decide what you want. With a smaller wedding your options are honestly, endless! You can do a fancy restaurant dinner or a casual backyard bbq (or even a fancy one!) You can still have a hotel ballroom reception, too. Some of the most gorgeous venues are actually the smallest ones! Also, don’t pay attention to max number. My reception room lists 120 max but when I did a walk-through I inquired about it (because it looked more like 80 people) and she said…yeah…120 is actually not good, we try to keep it less than 100.

Do you want dancing? You can definitely have dancing/DJ for ANY size wedding, inlcuding one your size. At long as 10 or so people are dancing at any given time, the dance floor won’t look empty. Just make sure you get a venue that allows dancing.

Embrace your small wedding! It’ll be the best. Just really sit down and decide what elements are important to you BEFORE you put down any deposits anywhere.
Don’t be like me and get your heart stuck on something that ultimately, is not what I *really* wanted.
Good luck!!

Post # 10
3421 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: September 2014 - Manhattan Church Rec Center

But wouldnt you want to see only the people who love you and mean something to you on your wedding. rather then a mass of people.

Post # 11
650 posts
Busy bee

I think I’m the opposite as well. My list is about 75 and I really would love to chop it to 50. It sounds fab to say you had a 200 people wedding but do you really get to interact with all of those people take pics etc.

I guess its still up to the individual and even though our parents would help so that I could indeed have the 75, I am really hoping to get the number down to  50. 

Post # 12
6359 posts
Bee Keeper

I like small weddings. I used to envision a huge one… that was my wedding stereotype I guess…and I dreaded it. I’ve also found them (large ones) dull to attend.

Post # 14
1399 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: July 2013

We’ve got a guest list of 25-30, and I’m like “…is it too late to univite your brother?” haha. :oP

Anyway, I think smaller weddings allow for more intimacy and meaningful interactions, as well as spending money on good food, good booze & other things that are important to you. Try to stay positive and focus on all the cool things you can do with your smaller guest list!

Post # 15
55 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

My wedding’s going to be almost exactly the same size as yours!  We’re looking at a guest list of about 70, and we figure that at least 20-30 of those people won’t be able to come.  Mind you, this is AFTER a combined total of nearly 25 years of post-secondary education for us….wow, that’s a scary thought!Tongue Out You might have thought that we’d have more close friends to invite.  As things worked out, though, we’ve got a really limited budget, and we’re getting married in the city where my grandfather lives (as opposed to one of our home or school towns) to make sure that he’ll be able to attend.  Me, I’m fine with it; I’m not big on crowds anyway, and I’d always pictured a small wedding.  My Fiance was a bit disappointed at first–I think he was picturing a huge party. When it came down to making the list, though, he realized that everybody we really cared about was already on it.  And we have friends flying all the way from England to be with us, so that makes us feel pretty special!!

Hope this helps–best of luck!

Post # 16
503 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 2013

I’m feeling similar things!  Except I go back and forth between fearing that the wedding will be huge, impossible to keep small (like 130 people) and thinking that no one will want to come and we’ll only get 40 people.  The goal?  Around 75-80.  I want to make sure that I know and care about everyone there, but I also want to have enough people for it to be fun.  I’m scared people will be surprised when they get invitations from me and feel bad for me that I had to scrape the bottom of the barrell.  I’m also worried that I won’t be able to have a bridal shower because I don’t have enough girl friends.

No solution – I just, you know, feel ya.

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