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Author Topic: Evening only - save the date  (Read 13275 times)

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LifeOnPluto

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Re: Evening only - save the date
« Reply #30 on: July 01, 2015, 10:26:30 PM »
In Australia, having two tiers of wedding reception - the sit-down dinner for a subset of guests, followed by additional guests invited for dessert and dancing only would be considered rude. But I understand this is common in the UK.

No, that is not how it works. It's not as though there is a continuous event, where some people have a meal and then more people turn up halfway through.

It would be (1) ceremony with a limited number of people -- eg very close family and friends, followed by (2) a meal ("wedding breakfast") with those who attended. In the evening, or even the day after, there would be (3) a party for more people. Not all of those who attended the ceremony + meal would necessarily want to attend the "bash".

Ah, that is interesting additional information! I had just assumed that the "wedding breakfast" and "dessert/dancing" all took place in the same venue, within the same timeframe. I had visions of the "dessert only" guests turning up whilst the plates of the "dinner guests" were still being cleared away!

Having the two events at different locations, and at different times does make it sound less rude (to my Australian perspective)!

However, a wedding with a 4 hour break between ceremony and reception would have been considered extremely inconsiderate and rude.

See, having a four hour break between the ceremony and reception is very common in Australia, and is not considered rude at all. :-)


sammycat

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Re: Evening only - save the date
« Reply #31 on: July 01, 2015, 10:57:56 PM »
See, having a four hour break between the ceremony and reception is very common in Australia, and is not considered rude at all. :-)

As another Australian, I have to disagree that it's not rude. I think it's very rude and inconsiderate towards your guests. Thankfully I haven't been invited to a wedding with such a gap (yet), but I doubt I could be bothered attending if that was the case. Depending on the location and distance between the venues, I might go to one part but not the other.

lowspark

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Re: Evening only - save the date
« Reply #32 on: July 02, 2015, 09:25:06 AM »
In Australia, having two tiers of wedding reception - the sit-down dinner for a subset of guests, followed by additional guests invited for dessert and dancing only would be considered rude. But I understand this is common in the UK.

It's incredibly rude here in the US as well. You have the wedding and reception you can afford; you don't divide up your guests into A list and B list, which is exactly what this is. If you can't afford to have everyone at the reception, then you either cut your guest list or you cut your expenses somehow.
No. It isn't. It's an older tradition than one reception lumping everything together and more importantly it's culturally about sharing your hospitality with as many friends and family as you can.

You don't have to agree with it, but please accept that there are cultural differences we all find odd. I could wax lyrical about bridal showers, but I won't because just because it's different to the way my country does it, doesn't mean I get to decide it's wrong.

Burping after a meal is rude in some countries and polite in others. We don't argue about who is right or wrong on that, we say to adjust your expectations to the country you're in, rather than impose your personal system on others. This is exactly the same.

As I stated in my post, I was only speaking about the US.  I am well aware that other countries may view things differently. In the US, however, it is rude to have "A" list guests who get the nicer reception and "B" list guests who don't. Here the HC is expected to treat all guests equally.
I was referring to your line about splitting your guests up into A and B list and having two tiers of hospitality - this is the reason this custom gets slated so much and as I said in my other post, it's a faulty assumption because you're looking at it from a single event perspective.
It's not splitting your guests. It's not deciding that Susie only rates a third class ticket while Bob gets the red carpet treatment.
 It's two separate events, both with the same level of hospitality, only one is small and reserved and one is big and partylike. It's the difference between having a formal dinner party with your family on the afternoon of your birthday and an outdoor BBQ with all your friends that night.

ETA: One is not "nicer" than the other. They are just two different styles of event.

This is really interesting and I've never seen it described that way before but it makes sense the way you've laid it out.
So now I'm wondering, is it totally uncommon to invite more than the select few to the ceremony itself? In other words, is it always just understood that the ceremony will include family & close friends only? Or do people ever invite the wider list to the ceremony itself?

I could see this playing out somewhat similarly in the US and not being seen as rude. But it would almost have to be that the large party would be on a different day than the ceremony. And it does happen. For some reason or another, the couple decides to have a smaller, private ceremony and then do a large reception a couple of weeks later where they invite everyone who was not invited to the wedding itself.
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JeanFromBNA

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Re: Evening only - save the date
« Reply #33 on: July 02, 2015, 02:58:56 PM »
The wedding is taking place during an afternoon with a sit down reception for invited guests and then more people (including me) are invited for the evening party . That basically means I have to arrive at an event that will already be in full swing, on my own, where I won't know anyone really and I just don't feel comfortable doing that.

In my experience, the evening receptions are dancing, buffet, no tables, and the party is in full swing.  I don't want to go and be a wallflower and I find it terrifying to just walk up to strangers, who will no doubt have already had several drinks.

If the evening reception is really a separate event as described, why does the OP describe it as a party "in full swing," with guests who have "already had several drinks?"

veryfluffy

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Re: Evening only - save the date
« Reply #34 on: July 02, 2015, 04:43:11 PM »
That may be what is planned. The discussion of there being separate events was in relation to what is common practice in the UK. It is not common practice in the UK to have a single event, with more people simply coming along at different points in the party.
   

LifeOnPluto

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Re: Evening only - save the date
« Reply #35 on: July 02, 2015, 10:19:35 PM »
See, having a four hour break between the ceremony and reception is very common in Australia, and is not considered rude at all. :-)

As another Australian, I have to disagree that it's not rude. I think it's very rude and inconsiderate towards your guests. Thankfully I haven't been invited to a wedding with such a gap (yet), but I doubt I could be bothered attending if that was the case. Depending on the location and distance between the venues, I might go to one part but not the other.

Fair enough. I will caveat my previous comment by saying that the weddings I've attended with 3-4 hour gaps have been in large cities, with the ceremony venue and reception venue fairly close together. The understanding is, that guests will go home to freshen up, or visit a pub or café to kill the time.

For weddings I've attended in smaller cities / towns / areas, where there aren't those options, the gap is much smaller (eg 1 hour) and the HC have put on pre-reception drinks, so the guests aren't stuck with nothing to do.

I do agree that if you're having your wedding in an area where there aren't cafes/pubs/shops, and it's not feasible for guests to pop home, it would definitely be rude to have such a long gap.

lovestoread

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Re: Evening only - save the date
« Reply #36 on: July 13, 2016, 11:27:56 AM »
In Australia, having two tiers of wedding reception - the sit-down dinner for a subset of guests, followed by additional guests invited for dessert and dancing only would be considered rude. But I understand this is common in the UK.

It's incredibly rude here in the US as well. You have the wedding and reception you can afford; you don't divide up your guests into A list and B list, which is exactly what this is. If you can't afford to have everyone at the reception, then you either cut your guest list or you cut your expenses somehow.
No. It isn't. It's an older tradition than one reception lumping everything together and more importantly it's culturally about sharing your hospitality with as many friends and family as you can.

You don't have to agree with it, but please accept that there are cultural differences we all find odd. I could wax lyrical about bridal showers, but I won't because just because it's different to the way my country does it, doesn't mean I get to decide it's wrong.

Burping after a meal is rude in some countries and polite in others. We don't argue about who is right or wrong on that, we say to adjust your expectations to the country you're in, rather than impose your personal system on others. This is exactly the same.

As I stated in my post, I was only speaking about the US.  I am well aware that other countries may view things differently. In the US, however, it is rude to have "A" list guests who get the nicer reception and "B" list guests who don't. Here the HC is expected to treat all guests equally.
I was referring to your line about splitting your guests up into A and B list and having two tiers of hospitality - this is the reason this custom gets slated so much and as I said in my other post, it's a faulty assumption because you're looking at it from a single event perspective.
It's not splitting your guests. It's not deciding that Susie only rates a third class ticket while Bob gets the red carpet treatment.
 It's two separate events, both with the same level of hospitality, only one is small and reserved and one is big and partylike. It's the difference between having a formal dinner party with your family on the afternoon of your birthday and an outdoor BBQ with all your friends that night.

ETA: One is not "nicer" than the other. They are just two different styles of event.

This is really interesting and I've never seen it described that way before but it makes sense the way you've laid it out.
So now I'm wondering, is it totally uncommon to invite more than the select few to the ceremony itself? In other words, is it always just understood that the ceremony will include family & close friends only? Or do people ever invite the wider list to the ceremony itself?

I could see this playing out somewhat similarly in the US and not being seen as rude. But it would almost have to be that the large party would be on a different day than the ceremony. And it does happen. For some reason or another, the couple decides to have a smaller, private ceremony and then do a large reception a couple of weeks later where they invite everyone who was not invited to the wedding itself.

It's not totally uncommon, it tends to go couple by couple depending on what they prefer.  But being in the UK, I find the description by Another Sarah to be very accurate.  Out of all the weddings I've been to (12 off the top of my head), discounting one destination wedding, every single one has had a number of guests during the day with more joining during the evening.   For the weddings where i've attended during the day, the number of guests for the day part has ranged from 20 guests to 80 guests.  It seems to work pretty well and is the norm to be honest. 

Generally people would have close friends / relatives during the day, with more distant branches joining later in the evening along with work colleagues etc. So during the day will encompass the ceremony and the wedding meal with speeches, with evening guests joining for the married couples first dance, cake cutting, dancing, buffet, and drinks.

OP, I wouldn't see any reason that you couldn't attend the hen do without attending the wedding or vice versa.  It can be a nice way to meet people before the actual wedding, and who knows?  you might meet someone in the exact same position as yourself who would be willing to meet!

I don't see having the two different options (day guest / night guest) as rude, but I do accept that its prevalant in my country (UK).  What would happen in the USA if the venue they wanted to get married in only had limited numbers?  Would they just not be able to invite any further people at night?

It can certainly raise plenty of discussion anyway. Some interesting situations I've been in / heard about are:

- A couple had 25 guests to the day part of their wedding.  The bride is the oldest of six siblings, none of whom were invited during the day.  They also had no children during the day, which meant that most of the siblings and all nieces / nephews only attended at night.

- A couple chose a lovely venue, but their day numbers were limited to 60 guests.  They invited their cousins who they were close to, but all aunts and uncles were unhappy at this.

My own fiance and i were trying to organise a small wedding from the beginning (approx 30 guests), but were 'encouraged' at several venues to increase our number to at least 50, in order to have the room set up / arrangements as we'd prefer to have them.  It can all snowball really easily!!!




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Sara Crewe

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Re: Evening only - save the date
« Reply #37 on: July 23, 2016, 09:13:31 AM »
The background to the UK 'adding guests' thing is that up to about 15/20 years ago, there were strict rules as to where you could get married (without a special licence that was financially impossible for most people).  If the only place you could get married could only hold 40 people (small but not impossible for a UK church or registry office) and you wanted to invite 200, it was going to be necessary for etiquette to work around the problem.


Tini

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Re: Evening only - save the date
« Reply #38 on: July 23, 2016, 09:32:22 AM »
The background to the UK 'adding guests' thing is that up to about 15/20 years ago, there were strict rules as to where you could get married (without a special licence that was financially impossible for most people).  If the only place you could get married could only hold 40 people (small but not impossible for a UK church or registry office) and you wanted to invite 200, it was going to be necessary for etiquette to work around the problem.

Yeah, my wedding was in Newport Register Office twenty years ago (no choice as we are not religious), and on top of everything else they were renovating, so we had a maximum of something like thirty people that could come to the ceremony. We had the wedding breakfast in the hotel everyone was staying in so people could have a break before the evening do, which was about sixty people. All this was on a Friday, so the people coming in the evening didn't have to take the day off if they didn't want to. Worked out quite nicely.
My sister-in-law who got married a couple of years later could have everyone there for the ceremony as the registrar came to Tredegar House, a big manor with oodles of space. The law had changed just in time for them.

Zizi-K

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Re: Evening only - save the date
« Reply #39 on: July 23, 2016, 12:20:25 PM »
OP, I agree with the PPs who have suggested that you simply do nothing now. A lot can change in a year. You may, for instance, be reassigned to work very closely with the bride, you might start socializing more, and by the time the wedding rolls around you'd know plenty of people. Or not. Things may stay exactly as they are, and you can simply decline the invitation when it arrives.

As for the hen party, I would approach that as a separate thing. If you know you're going to decline the wedding reception, it might be nice to go to the hen night as a way to celebrate with the bride in a way that doesn't have all of the disadvantages you listed for the wedding. I have gone to bachelorette parties (our American name for them) for women whose weddings I wasn't invited to, and it didn't bother me in the least (though some people don't consider it good etiquette to invite people you're not inviting to the wedding). With some people you just have that kind of relationship in which going out and partying is great fun, so why not enjoy that if you are inclined? I don't think your decision for one has to affect your decision for the other.


Mary Lennox

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Re: Evening only - save the date
« Reply #40 on: July 23, 2016, 02:31:24 PM »
Just FYI, this thread was started in January 2015 and the OP hasn't posted in over a year. I don't think any advice is probably needed anymore.

Zizi-K

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Re: Evening only - save the date
« Reply #41 on: July 23, 2016, 02:33:42 PM »
Thanks for pointing that out!

Any updates, OP?