Author Topic: Family photos in the middle of a wedding reception?  (Read 4855 times)

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CakeEater

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Family photos in the middle of a wedding reception?
« on: January 01, 2014, 08:40:37 PM »
DH and I went to a wedding on Sunday. The groom is a work colleague of DH's, and neither of us had met the bride before. We're any of these violations of etiquette?

The bride's sister MC-ed the reception, and performed a rap to 'Ice, ice, baby' that went for at least 4 minutes. Mercifully, the sound wasn't good and we couldn't hear much of the words, but I gathered that it was mostly about the bride's wedding ring. It was really cringe-worthy. How polite is it to subject a captive audience to this kind of thing? It seemed rude to make wedding guests who can't really get up and walk out, listen to your badly rehearsed, badly performed 'item' during the speeches.

The reception seemed to be a bit unorganised. As in, sister MC seemed not to know when things were happening, tried to 'fill' with off the cuff remarks, and kept interrupting conversation to give 5 minute warnings before things would happen. Then things happened at odd times - the bridal waltz came between main course and dessert, toasting wine was served, then no toasts were actually made.

Then, having tossed the bouquet and thrown the garter at about 8.15pm, the DJ announced that the photographer would be taking group photographs now, and despite an almost 3 hour gap between ceremony and reception, the photographer proceeded to set up an area on the dance floor and started calling family groups over to have portraits taken.

I'm not sure whether there was dancing planned for after this activity, because we left at close to 9pm after half an hour of family photos: 'Let's have the B&G and his parents, now Aunty Ethel can join, now all the cousins, now one with grandma,' etc etc. I thought it was really rude of the couple to plan an activity during the reception that effectively interrupted all conversations, background music was turned off, food was finished etc, and excluded all non-family guests, which lasted for over half an hour. They were still in full swing when we went home.

I'm not personally offended by this, and it was actually good to get home early- we had a big day on Monday, but is this a bad idea?


MOM21SON

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Re: Family photos in the middle of a wedding reception?
« Reply #1 on: January 01, 2014, 09:14:27 PM »
Sorry you had such a bad time.  What a shame. :o

There where things that could have been done better, but it was how they wanted it.

The more I read your post, the more amazed I am.  Not doing things to your liking are not Etiquette Violations.  IMO, your post is rude and reeks of, "I am better than this."
« Last Edit: January 01, 2014, 09:45:54 PM by MOM21SON »

Ceallach

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Re: Family photos in the middle of a wedding reception?
« Reply #2 on: January 01, 2014, 09:21:24 PM »
It sounds very poorly organised and ill-conceived but not really rude.    I don't think it's an etiquette violation, but they certainly didn't create the best party possible for their guests!
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Outdoor Girl

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Re: Family photos in the middle of a wedding reception?
« Reply #3 on: January 01, 2014, 09:25:47 PM »
What a bizarre wedding reception!  You'd think they'd do all those photos between the wedding and the reception with that gap.

I don't blame you at all for leaving early; I'm sure you weren't the only ones.
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Ontario

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Re: Family photos in the middle of a wedding reception?
« Reply #4 on: January 01, 2014, 09:57:39 PM »
I don't believe any were violations of etiquette.

I listened to some horrible wedding bands all night so one four minute song would be annoying but I figure I'll be subject to something that doesn't delight me during a wedding.

Using the dance floor  for a half hour after dinner for photos is unusual, but again a planning issue.

miranova

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Re: Family photos in the middle of a wedding reception?
« Reply #5 on: January 01, 2014, 10:02:38 PM »
I don't see anything rude here, just a bit of disorganization and less-than-ideal logistic decisions.   And a song choice you didn't care for, that lasted about the average length for any song. 

jmarvellous

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Re: Family photos in the middle of a wedding reception?
« Reply #6 on: January 01, 2014, 10:10:53 PM »
A four-minute crummy song is no worse than a four-minute crummy speech, and you clearly expected some kind of speeches/toasts.

"Toasting wine" doesn't taste different from other wine, does it? Drink, and be merry.

I don't think it's especially polite to the other guests to ask them to put their celebration on hold while groups of family members are photographed, but it's also not so far beyond the expected as to be egregiously rude. I have been to weddings where there were photos taken during the reception that weren't exactly conducive to fun, but this seems even more extreme. Despite the gap, perhaps that was the only time that worked for the whole family.

I'm sorry you didn't have a great time, but aside from a half-hour of photos being excessive, I don't think they were in the wrong.

m2kbug

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Re: Family photos in the middle of a wedding reception?
« Reply #7 on: January 01, 2014, 11:58:00 PM »
I've been to plenty of wedding receptions where there was no dancing at all.  Some, no band/DJ or music.  A few with no food besides cake and punch.  Some with no alcohol.  I would agree that having to listen to 4 minutes to something like "Ice, Ice Baby" would be pretty annoying.  It sounds a little sloppy and poorly planned, but nothing really rude occurred.  I wouldn't want to sit around for an exceptionally long time if I was expected to be in these family photos.  I think it would have been better to start this pictures process earlier so that people wouldn't have to stay late if they were expected to be in some of these formal pictures.  A wedding on a Sunday means a lot of people probably had to work on Monday, so it was kind of poor planning, in my mind, to expect people to stay late for something like this but not rude. 

TeamBhakta

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Re: Family photos in the middle of a wedding reception?
« Reply #8 on: January 02, 2014, 12:08:33 AM »
I'm reminded of a popular deity awful wedding trend two or three years ago. It usually involved "Hey, wedding guests, we've got a surprise for you! You won't believe what we and the wedding party are going to do! *breaks into choreographed Thriller dance*"  The only thing worse is the bride and groom singing to each other at the altar. Or those viral engagement videos where people break into dance and song  :-X
« Last Edit: January 02, 2014, 12:10:46 AM by TeamBhakta »

EllenS

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Re: Family photos in the middle of a wedding reception?
« Reply #9 on: January 02, 2014, 12:09:03 AM »
Throwing a party that is not fun is not rude.
Prioritizing family photographs over dancing, is not rude.
The whole thing does not sound at all to my taste, but it could be that the bride and groom thought the MOH's antics were hilarious.

It does sound a bit haphazard, but there's no rule against being disorganized.

I'd also advise you and DH, when talking to people from work or who may otherwise know the HC, to stick to the polite fiction that all weddings are lovely, just as all babies are adorable, and everyone's grandkids are brilliant.

Possum

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Re: Family photos in the middle of a wedding reception?
« Reply #10 on: January 02, 2014, 01:01:59 AM »
Perhaps the photographer had a technical difficulty, or an unavoidable delay, that made it impossible to take the photos before the reception?  During would seem a better option then, so Great Aunt Edna wouldn't have to be there until 1 am to have her photo taken--nevermind a very tired bride and groom. 

CakeEater

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Re: Family photos in the middle of a wedding reception?
« Reply #11 on: January 02, 2014, 01:25:09 AM »
Throwing a party that is not fun is not rude.
Prioritizing family photographs over dancing, is not rude.
The whole thing does not sound at all to my taste, but it could be that the bride and groom thought the MOH's antics were hilarious.

It does sound a bit haphazard, but there's no rule against being disorganized.

I'd also advise you and DH, when talking to people from work or who may otherwise know the HC, to stick to the polite fiction that all weddings are lovely, just as all babies are adorable, and everyone's grandkids are brilliant.

Oh, yes, we haven't been complaining to all and sundry.

The whole event wasn't to my taste at all, except for the food, which was delicious and plentiful. Five stars there!

But I would actually argue that it *is* rude to be disorganised when hosting. I think it's bad hosting to invite 60ish people to an event and run the thing off the cuff.

And I'd argue that the bride and groom finding something hilarious doesn't mean that it's good manners to 'force' it on their guests. I think there's a bit too much focus on the couple's wants at many weddings these days, and not enough on the comfort and enjoyment of their guests. Again, though, I wasn't particularly worried by any of this. I find it interesting to hear what others think.

guihong

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Re: Family photos in the middle of a wedding reception?
« Reply #12 on: January 02, 2014, 01:48:29 AM »
I attended a wedding in which we (the guests) sat through a slideshow of the couple's long history together, and of their families.  The only way that could be more excruciating was if it had been accompanied by "Ice, Ice Baby".  The quickest way to kill a party is to bring out slides.

At my own wedding, I thought I was organized and had things down to a T (and we didn't have music, except for a quintet of friends of mine, nor dancing, nor a DJ).  Well, the first thing goes wrong, which tipped off the next in an avalanche of wrong that made it seem I whipped that wedding together in 15 minutes for 80 people.  Sometimes you do the best you can and it's still a big can of fail.

Disorganized and off the cuff is one thing; planned without consideration for the guests' comfort (no or too few chairs, etc.) is rude.




CakeEater

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Re: Family photos in the middle of a wedding reception?
« Reply #13 on: January 02, 2014, 02:32:53 AM »
Oh no, I wouldn't suggest that it was rude to have mishaps.

There actually were too few chairs at this wedding also, but it was good, because they were black chairs for an outdoor ceremony in almost 40 degree heat, and we were able to hang back, miss out on a chair and stand in some shade near the back, so I didn't count that as rude.

Bijou

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Re: Family photos in the middle of a wedding reception?
« Reply #14 on: January 02, 2014, 07:52:43 AM »
Maybe I'm out of touch with how things should be done, but I don't think I would have paid any attention to the things you mentioned.  I would just figure it was what they wanted for their wedding and go with the flow, even with the family photo time in the midst of other things.
When you go to a wedding you are participating in something very special for the bride and groom and their families so I think you might expect things will be different than you would have done them.  It's all a matter of taste. 
Now, I do draw the line at creating physical discomfort (or lack of safety) for the guests, like having them outside in blistering heat or freezing cold.
« Last Edit: January 02, 2014, 07:56:48 AM by Bijou »
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