Wedding Planning Tips | Creating Your Guest List.

It is very easy to start writing out your guest list only to realize a couple hours later that you have WAY TOO MANY  people on it! Although deciding who to invite and who not to invite can be a pretty difficult task.We would like to provide you with a few tips to consider before you even begin.

Set Some Guidelines

•    What is your budget? Keep in mind that each additional guest will require you to provide another meal, stationary, equipment which can include chairs, china, silverware and glassware. Additions of about 8 or more guests will require a whole new table, linen, and centerpiece (just to name a few things). These items can add up quickly and depending on the vendors you are working with, this can mean that you are looking at an addition of several hundred dollars per guest. You can read more on how we suggest to allocate your budget here.

    •    Who is paying for the wedding? This can be a sensitive subject in itself, but keep in mind that if you are receiving contributions from parents, grandparents, aunts/uncles or in-laws, it is not uncommon to be asked to add a few of their friends to the list. We recommend that before you receive any contributions from others, that you and your fiancé have come up with a clear vision of who you would like to be in attendance. Having clear expectations going in will only help make everything else run smoother.

    •    Where are you getting married? If you have your eyes set on a rustic and vintage farmhouse that hold up to 150 guests, do not over invite. We typically see about 15%-20% of invited guests unable to attend.

    •    Put a limit on extended family. This one, my friends, can make or break your desired count. Whether you make your decisions based on how long it’s been since you have seen a certain cousin, or you put a limit on 2nd cousins in general. Make sure that it is consistent across the board. You do not want to have any hurt feelings and making an allowance for one could cause you to make another and another.

    •    Children and “Plus Ones”. If you would like your wedding to be a completely “adult-only” affair or look to have an intimate wedding with only your closest friends and family, this is a decision that will align back to the vision you have for your day and we think that there is absolutely no right or wrong answer

Create a Spreadsheet

    •    I can’t tell you how important it is to start and keep your guest list all in one place with a solid format. A Google Drive file is a great option. It will make life so much easier. Here is a free link to our Elleson Events guest list template. Make sure to add your guest’s full name, spouse name, full address, phone number, email address and children’s name (if you are inviting them)

    •    Make columns for all of your important events that these guests may or may not be invited to. (Ex. Engagement Party, Rehersal Dinner, Welcome Party, Brunch etc) Utilize the column to make note that you have sent out their invitations and also when you have received their RSVP. Keep track of your “yes’” and “no’s”

    •    If you need to keep track of meal choices, add a column to account for what meal your guest’s have selected. It will make life easier when sending over the counts to your caterer.

    •    PS. If you hire Elleson Events we keep all of this guest list information on our custom client planning site. So we both have access to up to date info at all times.