First off, make a list of the people who are so important to you that you can’t imagine getting married without them there. Decide what your budget is and what a realistic figure will be. Then, ask both your parents and his parents to compile a list of people they would like to invite. (Don’t worry – yet– this is just to get a general idea.) Now, add both friends and family. Then, add people who are fun, funny, special or just generally pleasant. Hmmm. List too long? Relax, here’s where the culling begins…
If you haven't seen a particular friend or family member for more than five years, it's absurd to invite them to your wedding. It doesn't matter how close you were when you were toddlers. And while we're on the topic, don't invite so and so "with partner". Especially not if so and so would then have to go and find a partner for the event. Basic rule of thumb: don't invite people you've never met before.
But: if your best friend has found a new boyfriend (at last!) and you haven't had time to meet him yet, obviously this rule doesn’t count. Use your discretion, ladies.
Whoop-whoop, it’s the sound of the police…
There are always a few people who are in our lives, but wouldn’t be if we could help it. Sit down with your fiancé and decide who is not allowed to come. Both of you should have veto rights.
So if you think there's a chance that unstable Billy will set the table decorations alight, or if your kleptomaniac auntie might pinch a few wedding gifts, you can scrap them off the list.
But: remember – no one's family and friends are perfect. And isn't that exactly why we love them?
If your parents are paying for the wedding it's only fair to allow them to invite a few of their close friends. Your mother did put up with you during your teenage years after all.
But: by the same token – moms, remember that your daughter is not a prize mare to be showcased and paraded in front of all your friends.
His and hers
If you’re an only child with just one living grandparent and he’s part of an enormous thriving dynasty, it’s okay if he invites more people than you. Or if you have a whole bunch of friends and he only has one or two squash buddies, same goes.
But: it can be very uncomfortable for everyone involved if a wedding is too one-sided. Both of you are special. So both of you should feel it.
Nice to meet you, would you like to come to my wedding?
Don’t invite people whom you’ve only just met. It’s weird. Unless you really, really, really like them.
But: don’t be surprised if you look at your pictures ten years from now and wonder who the guy is standing next to granny?
How many people came to your wedding? Or are you having trouble finalizing your guest list? Tell us in the box below…