How to Avoid the 10 Most Common Bridal Blunders
Many brides-to-be are confused about wedding protocol. And the often contradictory advice from family members and friends can lead to more frustration.
Cele Lalli, editor-in-chief of Modern Bride Magazine, has compiled the 10 most common bridal blunders and ways to avoid them:
- Don’t indicate “Cash preferred” on the wedding invitation. If you have sufficient household items, those invited to the wedding should know you well enough to realize money would be the most appreciated gift.
- Don’t enclose anything about gift registries with a wedding invitation. This is appropriate only for shower invitations.
- Don’t send formal invitations for the ceremony to everyone, but limit the reception to close family and friends. In such cases, invitations to the ceremony should be extended only personally and verbally. Simply inform people that you hope they can come to see the ceremony, if it’s convenient. This indicates your desire to have them witness your wedding, but makes it clear that it doesn’t include the reception. This also should keep them from feeling obligated to send a gift.
- Don’t expect the bride’s parents to pay for everything or assume the bridegroom’s family pay half. Neither is a given. Everything concerning the wedding budget should be discussed.
- Don’t wait too long to acknowledge gifts. All gifts should be acknowledged with a handwritten note within three months of the wedding.
- Don’t ignore the need to plan for air conditioning of tents at outdoor weddings during the summer and early fall. Tents need to be equipped with cooling facilities in hot weather, and heating in the winter.
- Don’t forget that wedding reception music should represent a range of eras. Music should appeal to guests of all ages.
- Don’t invite friends to be bridal attendants without discussing the costs they must incur. Friendships have been destroyed by assuming attendants will pay for anything the bride wants.
- Don’t ask near strangers to be attendants. Someone you hardly know shouldn’t be a bridesmaid or usher just to even the number in the bridal party. Also, casting a flower girl or ring bearer because they are cute is inappropriate.
- Don’t have a cash bar at the reception. It’s tacky to invite people to celebrate with you and then expect them to buy their drinks.
For those on a tight budget, there are options:
Limit the open bar to one hour of cocktails, then serve champagne or wine for toasting. Serve beer and wine throughout the reception and champagne just to toast the couple. Serve only champagne punch.