Have you noticed? Love is in the air- it’s wedding season!
We live next door to a lovely little church.
From my living room windows I get a sneak peek at the excitement of brides and grooms and their guests coming and going during wedding season. I’ve always loved weddings- the flowers, the music, the romance!
Before you and your family attend a wedding, it’s smart to brush up on wedding guest manners. Here’s 11 helpful “must knows” for you and your family.
- Respond promptly to a wedding invitation. The golden rule is to RSVP within 7 days of receipt of the invitation. It’s an honor and compliment to be invited, so show your appreciation with a prompt RSVP.
- Uninvited guests are a definite NO. Only the guests specifically designated on the invitation are to attend. If an invitation is marked “& Guest”, you may invite a guest of your choosing.
- Dress appropriately. The location, time of day, and overall level of formality of the event are your guide. This post at The Knot is a good resource about what to wear to weddings.
- Arrive early. Research where to park and get thorough directions beforehand. You do not want to be walking down the aisle with the mother of the bride!
- Show respect during the ceremony. No talking, chewing gum, checking your cell phone, or taking pictures. Read that one more time- do not take pictures during the ceremony unless you are the appointed photographer!
- Do not post pictures to social media of the bride and groom unless you have permission. The bride often puts a lot of planning into getting the “perfect” photos of her dress, the handsome groom, etc. so do be respectful. If a hashtag is posted at the reception for guests to use, than post away!
- If you are invited to the wedding ceremony, send a gift even if you cannot attend. Gifts should be sent before the wedding or very soon after unless the local custom is to bring gifts to the reception.
- Parents, if your children are invited and are attending be prepared to leave the ceremony if your baby starts to cry or little ones get antsy. Sit at the end of the aisle towards the back if possible for an easy exit.
- Find the hosts at the reception (usually the bride’s parents) to give your best wishes and to say “thank you”. If there’s a receiving line at the reception, be patient and do participate. Introduce yourself to those you don’t know in the line and keep your conversation brief so you don’t cause a slow down.
- Mix and mingle at the reception making an effort to meet and chat with many guests. Speak with the bride and groom but don’t monopolize their time.
- It’s polite to stay at the reception until the bride and groom leave if that’s doable for you and your family. Never be the very last guests to leave!
Cheers to gracious wedding guests!
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