Nothing makes you realise how many friends and acquaintances you have accrued over the years quite like a wedding. While it might seem obvious that you don’t need to invite your future mother-in-law’s former coworker’s therapist’s uncle to your nuptials, there are probably a couple of people lingering on your guest list that also don’t need to be there.
Keeping the headcount short and sweet dramatically lowers the overall cost of your wedding (which according to the latest figures is approx AU$53,168, RIP) and it prevents you, the bride, from introducing yourself to people on the day. So, if these people have crept their way onto your list, it’s time to cut them now.
Family you haven’t seen in forever
If Meghan Markle doesn’t have to invite estranged family to her wedding, then neither do you. There is no rule that says just because someone is family means you have to invite them to the wedding. This is especially true for your snotty little cousins who are likely to ruin your dress with their sticky hands. Side note, why do toddlers always have sticky hands? Regardless, your wedding is a celebration of you and your spouse-to-be and not a family reunion. If you really want to spare some feelings, invite them along to the engagement party and not the wedding.
Speaking of tiny humans, the fastest way to minimise your guest list is to have a non-negotiable adults-only guest list (unless you have kids of your own, they can come I guess). Sure, it might be a little awkward to tell people that little Jonothan isn’t invited, but you never know, they might see it as a nice night away from parenting duties. Just be aware you’ll probably have a couple of people drop off because they can’t bring their offspring.
Friends you haven’t spoken to in years
People grow apart, it’s a fact of life, but a wedding is not the time to patch things up. You might want to invite your old highschool pals but it’s super unlikely you’ll actually have time at your wedding to sit down and reminisce on old times. This same rule applies to anyone who invited you to their own wedding years ago. Unless you’re still good friends, you literally have no obligation to extend an invite.
Your parents’ and in-laws’ friends
It’s your wedding, not theirs. Sure if they are footing the bill, you might get some push back but you can draw the line if you a) don’t know them or b) don’t really like them.
Not all neighbours become good friends so unless you’re super buddy-buddy with yours, don’t worry about inviting them. There’s a difference between watering their plants and spending upwards of $150 head for them have a free meal.
Not everyone you invite needs to have a plus-one to accompany them to your big day. If you’ve never met the person they intend on bringing, that’s probably a sign they don’t need to be there. Of course, there are exceptions to this rule but don’t be afraid to be firm with unknown guests.
Your wild friends
You know the ones. The friends that are always getting kicked out of other weddings or thrown out of clubs because they’re the type to cause a scene. If these friends are your non-negotiables, assign another friend to keep an eye on them and swoop in on the day so you don’t have to.
Sure, the easiest way to spare feelings is to not invite any coworkers at all. However, don’t be shy about making the distinction between work-wives and coworkers. Just don’t hand them their invites at work, that’s a touch too harsh.
Words by Emma Roffey who should definitely be invited to your wedding.