Wait! Hear me out.
Recently, I’ve been putting a lot of thought toward misconceptions people can have about weddings. Not only because I have been a bride myself, but I’ve been a photographer for a handful, a guest, a maid of honor, a matron of honor, and most recently, as a wedding emcee, over the last 3 years, I’ve helped over 60 brides plan their order of events. The nitty gritty of wedding planning is something I’ve grown to know and love.
So, one misconception I have noticed is the idea that the guests get the easy part on the wedding day—show up and get a free meal!
The truth is, your guests, the wedding party, the caterer, your creative team—basically everyone there except you two—aren’t necessarily looking at your wedding day through rose-colored glasses, so making sure they’re enjoying themselves takes some conscious effort. Your guests make up the majority of the people at your wedding. They are the ones potentially taking time off work, maybe even paying to travel from a different state, to come to your wedding and give you money and gifts. I know it can feel like you are running around like a headless chicken for 6 to 18 months, but in all honesty, your guests are the ones making sacrifices on your wedding day. I’m not suggesting that there isn’t a lot of hard work involved in planning a wedding—you’re hustling to plan one of the most involved events of your life! That’s no small thing—but I’m merely advising that you step into your guests shoes with each decision you make, in order to keep perspective.
On the day of your wedding there’s so much that you don’t see as the bride and groom—usually the worst parts. You’re the celebrities, walking from place to place, table to table, followed by your wedding party and photographer entourage, handing out smiles and hugs like nobody’s business. The party is wherever you are—and this is not a bad thing! It’s how it should be! But making sure they have an enjoyable experience during your wedding day should be a high priority for you. If your guests are happy, you’ll be happy.
A couple points to keep in mind in order to ensure satisfied guests:
—On the invitation, tell your guests what kind of food to expect (ie: a sit-down dinner, lunch spread, cake and punch reception, etc.) so they know if they should eat a meal on their own beforehand or not.
—When making concessions becomes necessary, don’t sacrifice anything that will negatively impact your guests (ie: if you need to take pictures between ceremony and reception, don’t skip out on having some light food—and even some entertainment—for your guests while they wait for you.)
And remember, through all this wedding planning madness, to keep your chin up! Once that day is over a new adventure is just beginning.
All The Best To You & Yours,
Hannah (& Ben)