Now that all the tree trimming is done. Let’s talk about another kind of trimming, trimming your guest list. This is a question that comes up with just about every one of the brides I meet with. You can’t afford to invite everyone to your wedding so just where do you make the cut?
Two things you need to do right away, decide on your budget and find out just how many people your site can hold. Both of these determine the number of people you can invite. Try to figure out your cost per head. Remember to include not only food cost, but the cost of alcohol, invitations, and cake. More people means more tables, more linens and more centerpieces.
Once you have an idea of cost, decide how many total guests you can invite. Next compile a master list of the people you and your fiancé want to invite. Add to this list those people your parents want to come and the ones his parents want to invite. Organize your list by categories: family, work friends, school friends, wedding party, etc. This way if you decide to cut all work friends from your list, you can easily do it across the board.
You can also cut your list down by asking a few questions. Have we seen this person in the last year? Is this a relative that would be deeply offended? Are we inviting dates? How about children? The best rule of thumb is either all or none. If you invite one person’s children and not someone else’s you are asking for trouble. Same applies with relatives. If you invite one aunt you better invite them all. You don’t have to invite dates, only the people that are in long term relationships. But if you don’t invite dates, make sure there will be lots of singles there. You don’t want you best dateless friend leaving early because she has no one to dance with.
Want a secret to cutting down on your list? Don’t have the wedding on Saturday, have it on a Friday afternoon and I can almost assure you that your “will not attend” count will increase.