In today's wedding things post, I want to discuss being a good guest. Yep, nothing about being the one planning today. We are talking about attending a wedding. If you're like most people, it isn't everyday that you have the pleasure of attending a wedding. Far too often, I witness girls( and guys) poorly dressed with even poorer behavior at weddings! Weddings are a very special occassion, and should be treated as such. So here's How to be a Good Wedding Guest 101:
Being a good wedding guest begins from the moment you recieve your invitation. It is important that you respond promptly, as it is essential for the wedding party to get a headcount for food, etc. Furthermore, upon recieving an invitation, you can clear up anything necessary ahead of time. For example: have you been seeing someone new (or your current boyfriend didn't recieve an invite?), and thinking about bringing him to the wedding? You need to call the bride and ask permission first. Do this upon responding, and take a "no" with grace. A wedding is not cheap, and the more guests, the pricier the event. More and more couples are adopting "no random dates" and "no kids" rules for their weddings. This is their perogative, and needs to be respected. So you better ask about your kiddos, too. More than likely, the bride will have the common grace to know that she must invite live-in partners, fiances' and husbands/wives to accompany her guests. But when it comes to Bobby you have been seeing for 3 months, that might not fly. A gracious guest is understanding of these situations and doesn't take it too personally. If the bride doesn't want kids/ random dates present, don't ask to be an exception. The couple has this in place for a reason, and if they allow one exception, they will either have to allow more or hear from some very angry and offended guests. Find arrangements for your children, and if you can't bring a date, hang with friends at the wedding! The bride probably won't forbid you a date if you don't know anyone at the wedding.
Probably one of the biggest aspects of good guest ettiquete is what you wear to a wedding. You should pull out all the stops on this one- a wedding is a formal event for which you should look classy. Unless of course, it is a specific theme or a redneck wedding. But in general, you should look classy and well groomed. Ladies- probably the biggest and most offensive thing you could wear to a wedding is white. There should only be one woman in white that day- the bride! It is considered highly offensive to wear white to a wedding (unless the couple is hosting an all white wedding of course). Hints of white are ok- i.e. a white pair of shoes, a small little jacket for over your dress, just make sure the white doesn't stand out too much! Another color to avoid? Black. You are at a wedding, not a funeral. I would say some black is okay, but I don't reccommend showing up head to toe in black. Other things to keep in mind? Keep it appropriate. No extreme plunging necklines, extremely high dress slits, fishnets, exposed private parts, or dirty articles. You are at a nice event, not a strip club. Plus, the brides grannies and other elderly relatives will probably be there. No need to scandalize the bride's grandmother. As for grooming, do something with yourself. Not a girl who wears makeup? Fine. But you better make sure your face is clean, brows groomed, etc. Wash your hair every other day? I would avoid second-day hair here. Wearing shoes that expose your feet? Those feet better be well groomed. I personally like to go all-out for weddings, they are a chance to get done up!
So you've been a proper guest and responded in a timely fashion, found arrangements for your children, and gotten ready. You look nice, and are ready to head to that wedding. It goes without saying, but leave in plenty of time. Plan to arrive 30 minutes prior to the bride walking down the isle. Be sure to come bearing gifts- a card/ gift card will do if you are in a tight pinch, but you need something to recognize the couple and their special day.
Take this advice to heart when it comes to good guest behavior- today is not about you. Today is about a couple who is beginning the rest of their lives together, and thinks enough of you to want you present for their big day. Many guests (primarily women), get it in their minds that they need to look and act so impressive at weddings. Some people dress in a way t otry to steal the attention from the wedding party. Today is not your day, so don't try to make it such. Don't excessively bother the bride with silly questions like "where should I put this?" The bride spent so much time and effort planning, and it was probably stressful. After all the stress, she deserves to relax and enjoy the day. Never, under any circumstances ask how much the wedding costs. Because frankly, it's none of your business. Have a complaint about the venue, etc? Hold your tounge. Nothing but gushing about how awesome the wedding is when the bride asks you. Do not gossip with other guests. Know your alcohol limits, and stick to them. Don't embarrass yourself or the wedding party by getting totally hammered. It's not attractive, and is extremely poor guest behavior. Also, a wedding is not a club. It is not a place to try and find someone drunk enough to have a one night stand with. It is not cute to throw yourself all over other guests. I know far too many people who use weddings as places to hook up. I think it's gross. Save that for Friday night at the bar.
Those are the main points I wanted to touch on. Keep it classy, people! What poor behavior have YOU seen at weddings?
X's and O's,