One of the first things to do when planning your wedding is to prepare a guest list. Make sure you and your fiance are on the same page. Which one of you has always dreamed of a small intimate wedding, or a serious owambe? if there is a conflict of interest, the next thing is to compromise. What kind of attendance do you envision? A guest list of 40 or 400? Before you announce that you’re having 400 people, getting excited and using your phone and Facebook to invite everyone, only to discover that you simply can’t invite all of them. it’s a good idea to sit down with your fiance and draw up a plan for your maximum guest size. Here are a few pointers;
- CREATE A FIRST DRAFT OF YOUR LIST AND CATEGORIZE: In this list, write down the names of everybody you can think of who you might want to invite, make a list of all the categories of people who you have written down. You should each have a family category, including distant relatives. Also, include a category for family friends, who are basically friends of your parents. create a friends category for you and your fiance; from childhood friends to secondary school friends, university friends, colleagues, friends you have made through different stages of your life, etc. Next, think of all the other things you are involved in: church, sports, clubs, volunteer work and neighborhood activities and create a category for that too. You are obviously on Facebook, so go through your friends list, because you are probably going to have all your friends there, that way you know who has been invited and who hasn’t.
- ASK YOUR FOLKS FOR HELP: Get your folks help, they are a great resource when it comes to making a guest list. Let them help make a list of all the relatives, family friends, neighbors, and anybody else they would like you to invite to the wedding, in addition to people they can think of from your childhood that you may have forgotten. In asking for help, also put your foot down if a parent is pushing for extra guests. You have to stand your ground and explain that there is simply no room in the budget or the venue for more people. When it’s your future mother-in-law, get your fiance and create a united front, and talk with her together about why she can’t invite a dozen of her friends to the wedding when your plans require you leave out even some of your own friends.
- PUT YOUR BUDGET IN MIND: The essence of writing down everyone and categorizing, is to be able to have an over view of all the people you know and cut them down according to how much you have (yes, you love everyone but they can’t all be there). Set a realistic budget, because these days weddings are so expensive in naija. How many people can you afford to invite? Ask yourself if it’s more important to have lots of people who might not see food to eat, or to pamper a smaller amount of people with sumptuous meal(which for me is key, because food is badly managed in most weddings) and all the works? Remember that no matter what your style, each extra person will add to your pocket, so if you’re on a tight budget, a smaller wedding is probably the way to go.
- SLEEP ON IT: Your guest list does not need to be completed in one sitting. After you make the first attempt at your wedding guest list, take at least a few days, to take a break from the list. When you return to it, you will probably be able to brainstorm at least a few more people who did not make the initial list, or people you want to take out.In the end it’s your day, “Etiquette and tradition are great, but you have to decide what you really want”
If your married, how did you plan your guest list and if your planning your wedding, how is the guest list coming? Share your thoughts.