Wedding Etiquette: Answers to 5 Uncomfortable Questions Most Brides Don’t Want to Ask

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If you’ve started planning your wedding, there’s no doubt you’ve had a few questions. And fortunately, with so many helpful family members, coworkers, and friends, it’s usually not hard to get an answer! But what about those topics related to wedding etiquette that you may feel a bit uncomfortable asking? Here are a few questions that fall into that category:

1) Can I “un-invite” a guest?

Certainly, under ideal conditions, un-inviting a guest is considered a last-resort decision for any couple (whether they are overly concerned about wedding etiquette or not!). This is why it’s so important to get organized about the big day well in advance, whether you do so yourself or hire a wedding planner to help you scope out costs, guest limits, etc. You’ll need to know that the venue can host the number of guests you’re inviting, that your budget can cover all the costs, and other important factors before sending out save the dates. If it becomes necessary to un-invite guests for some critical reason, be honest about the reason(s), and, assuming you’re on good terms, find a way to share your marriage with them in another way, such as having a get together at your home at a later date.

2) Do I have to send an invitation to someone I know can’t attend?

In almost all cases, it’s best not to send an invite if someone has told you personally that they cannot attend your wedding. Receiving an invitation may make them feel pressured to send a gift. As an exception to the rule, though, you may want to send an invitation to someone very close to you who cannot attend if they’ve expressed an interested in receiving one for sentimental reasons.

Wedding etiquette guidelines for invitations
What do wedding etiquette rules say about inviting a “+1”?

3) Can I ask single guests to come without a “+1”?

Wedding etiquette experts generally say that those who are married, in a long-term relationship, or live with their partner, should be invited to bring their partner with them as a guest. Single friends and those who are casually dating someone shouldn’t expect that they may bring a guest. Select the wording on invitations carefully so it’s clear whether or not they’re encouraged to bring someone with them, and make sure you set up the seating so that single guests will be near friends or others you think they’ll get along with at the reception.

4) Does my father have to walk me down the aisle?

You should choose who walks you down the aisle, whether it’s your father, step-father, a sibling, or someone else. Many brides today are putting a more modern spin on this tradition by asking both their mother and father to walk them down the aisle. Choose what feels right to you, but, regardless of what you decide, be sure to tell your father in advance so he’s not shocked the day of the ceremony. And for more tips on including one or both of your parents in your wedding day, take a look at this post on our blog.

5) To which events are guests expected to bring gifts…the engagement party, bridal shower, rehearsal dinner?

Traditionally, gifts are not to be expected at an engagement party. Some guests may choose to bring a casual gift, such as a bottle of wine, much like they might do when attending a dinner party. Gifts are often a big part of a bridal shower, with the bride opening everything there in front of her guests. Most couples hand out “thank you” gifts to the members of their wedding party at the rehearsal dinner.

There are many rules that couples follow when planning their wedding. And while you and your fiancé may choose to bend, or even break, some of them, there’s no doubt you’ll want to follow the basics of wedding etiquette. If you’re in the planning stage of your wedding, we invite you to contact us at Bella’s Brides. We are passionate about helping our brides not only find their dream wedding gown, but also serve as a resource of wedding knowledge based on our years of experience.

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