I am asked all the time about guest lists. Usually along the lines of- ‘we wanted 50 people tops but it’s blown out to 92 already’
This happens when partners have to come, whether you like them or not and particularly when you start grudgingly adding people you feel like you should. Parents are great for driving this. ‘Oh, you have to invite your grandma’s neighbour- we’ve known her for years’ or ‘you can’t not invite Uncle Joe etc.
What if Uncle Joe is a creep and you haven’t seen him for ten years? What if the neighbour is just someone you say hello to when you visit your Nan once a quarter?
If you want a small guest list I say stand your ground. Cut the chaff.
What makes this difficult is if the parents are paying for your wedding. They then feel they have some say into your guest list. I’ll leave that to you to figure out but I will say this- there’s two good reasons why small guest lists are awesome:
1. They create a warm and intimate vibe
2. You have less people to ‘get around to’ at your wedding- and this is a stress. Actually a pain in the ass and I see so many brides rolling their eyes and over it by the time they’re halfway through the group photos. They just want to get a drink and have fun. Instead they then spend the evening ensuring they speak to everyone and getting pulled this way and that, which is not fun at all.
Think about who’s on your list- you want people you genuinely want to jump on and hug as you’re so damn happy they’re there- your inner sanctum. You need to be on that d floor, not looking guiltily at old Mavis in the corner thinking you should go and thank her for coming and get stuck in another 20 minute convo. Or hiding from Uncle Joe’s sweaty embrace.
Keep it tight peeps. Do what is going to make you happy and your day awesome.
Who says you have to invite your entire extended family? Just be clear- it’s a small wedding of close family and friends. The end.
They’ll get over it. And if they don’t well… too bad.
Divide your list into people you are genuinely thrilled to be there and the rest- those you’re kinda ambivalent about, those you feel obligated to invite plus all the random people from the gym, work etc. Do you really want to pay $150+ a head for all these extras?
Be brutal. The other upside is you can have a much better quality wedding with a smaller crew.
And that shit is golden.