Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Creating a Wedding Guest List

Before you choose a wedding dress or decide on a venue for your big day, there is one very important task that you must get started on as soon as possible.

Creating a wedding guest list can save you a LOT of time and money as you plan your wedding.

A lot of the wedding planning cannot be started until you've decided on a wedding guest list. For example - a decision on your ceremony and reception venue, catering, ordering of invitations, table decorations and more are dependent on the length of your guest list.

You should try to get started on that wedding guest list as soon as the diamond goes on your finger, and refer to it often during your wedding planning over the following months.

Start with a mini file box full of index cards or create a spreadsheet. Either way, you’ll be set to stay organized as you receive RSVPs and gifts. You can keep track of the guests' names, address, phone number, email address, and number of guests for that address. As they RSVP, everything you need to know will be at your fingertips.

Ready to begin your guest list? It's easy as A-B-C! An A-B-C list, that is.

The A list is family, the B list is long-term friends of five years or more, and the C list is people you'd like to invite if your budget allows.

As you get along in the planning and it looks like you can only afford 75, cut it at the B list and leave it at that. Move on. Or, as you receive regrets from people on your A and B lists, begin sending invitations to those at the top of your C list. If you've planned ahead and mailed your A and B invitations early enough, your C list invitations will arrive in mailboxes with time to spare - and your C list people won't even realize they were on the C list at all.

How many guests do you anticipate from your side of the family vs. your fiance and his family? Start out on your road toward marital bliss by deciding early on how you'll divide the invitations. Should your family send out half and his family the other half? Or maybe you'll divide the stack of invitations into fourths, keeping a portion for yourself and giving the rest to your fiance, your parents, and his parents.

How many guests should you expect? Each invitation usually represents two people. However, that doesn't mean 200 invitations will yield a crowd of 400. Most brides end up with fewer guests than originally expected. There will always be a few guests who send an RSVP but don't attend for whatever reason.

Will children be welcome at your wedding, or had you hoped for an adults-only affair? The best time to make this decision is while honing your guest list - not when your distant cousin with screaming triplets shows up at the ceremony.

The best way to let guests know whether kids are invited is by writing on the invitation's inner envelope only the names of those who are invited. Instead of "John, Mary and family," write "John and Mary." Whatever you do, don't state, "No children, please" on the invitation or the envelope.

Feeling pressured to invite your entire company? Invite immediate co-workers and those you interact with each day. Others will understand.

So get started on that wedding guest list now and remember to invite those who will be honoured to attend your wedding and will consider it a compliment to be part of your day.

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