While some couples go all out and invite everyone they know to their wedding, others opt for a smaller, more intimate affair. Although they can be less costly, small weddings are not always easy to pull off. Whittling the guest list to a select few can be difficult and cause conflict among family members. If you would like to keep your wedding small, you need to be aware of the pitfalls and approach the initial planning with tact.
You must decide first just how small you want your wedding to beâ€”10 people, 20 to 40 people, 100 people? The smaller your guest list, the more lightly you will have to tread. There will be people who expect to be invited to your wedding and they will be hurt and angry when they do not receive an invitation. You can accommodate for this by having a large bridal shower or post-wedding party and inviting everyone not invited to your wedding to that.
With number in hand, you can turn your focus to whom to invite. Depending upon how small your target number is, you may have to make some hard decisions like excluding extended family or children from your guest list. Whatever your decision, be prepared for conflict. No doubt there will be some hurt feelings. There might also be pressure to change your mind and have a larger wedding. Don’t give in. It is your wedding. If you want it to be small, you should have it that way.
After you have completed your guest list, make a list of everyone you couldn’t invite and find a way to let them know why they weren’t invited. Send them a note, shoot them an e-mail or give them a call. If you intend to have a large bridal shower, you may be able to wait until then to let everyone know that you will be having a small wedding.
When letting others know of your decision, be tactful. Let them know that while you would have liked to invite everyone, you chose not to for personal, financial or other reasons. Reassure them that they are still very much a part of your life and thank them for everything they have done for you.
In spite of your best efforts, some people will not understand why they were not invited. They will be hurt, angry and disappointed, so much so that they may refuse to attend your bridal shower or post-wedding party. Try not to let it get to you. Give them time to cool off and focus on making your wedding the best that it can be.
Choosing to have a small wedding is easy; implementing the idea, on the other hand, takes work. Be prepared and forge ahead with a smile on your face.