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Wedding Etiquette - What You May Not Know

fancy small bird cage with roses inside with a heart box and two champagne glasses on a tray

There are many to-dos before the big “I do.” Many details both big and small that are both exciting and overwhelming. With so much to do, it is important to also remember what not to do.

Wedding etiquette should be taken seriously and it is not just who pays for what when it comes to the big day.

Here are 10 etiquette tips you should keep in mind preparing for, during and after your big day.

1. Don’t post too soon

You just got engaged! You are riding high on love and adrenaline. The only thing weighing you down is that gorgeous ring he just put on your finger. You are in love! You are getting married! You want to share it with the world! WAIT! Before posting #heputaringonit, #gettinghitched or starting your Instagram photo shoot, stop and put your phone to another use. Call your close family and friends and let them know your exciting news before posting it on social media. The excitement and joy in their voices will make the moment even more special.

2. Wedding invitation etiquette

Speaking of social media, do not invite people to your wedding via social media or text. Although it may save time (and postage), it is not how your guests want to be invited to your big day. All #Invitations should include RSVP cards with postage attached - do not give your guests an extra job.

wedding invitation with a fern and wedding rings laying over it
Make sure to include a RSVP card with your invitation!

3. Who is invited

You’ve picked the day! You want everyone to know! You want everyone to come! Just remember this - anyone who gets a Save the Date should also be sent an invitation, so make those lists carefully. Also, if there is someone you would like to invite to the wedding, but you know they will not be able to come, send them an invitation anyway. It will make them feel loved and included in your day even if you both know they won’t be able to attend.

4. Wedding shower etiquette and bachelor parties

#WeddingShowers are a fun way to celebrate your engagement and start preparing for your new life with your spouse. It is not customary for the mother of the bride to throw a shower for their daughter, it is usually done by siblings or other family members. Just like Save the Dates, anyone invited to a wedding shower or bachelorette party should also be invited to the wedding.

several girls drinking wine
Don't forget to celebrate with friends and family!

5. Rules for the registry

Of course everyone wants to get your spouse a gift to help celebrate your big day! But refrain from including where you are registered in your wedding announcement. Let your family and bridal party know where you are registered so they can help spread the word. If you have a wedding website it is appropriate to include registry information on it.

6. Don’t make them wait - Wedding guest etiquette

You just tied the knot! Congratulations! But don’t let too much time pass between the “I dos” and the party that follows. If the ceremony and reception are in the same location, have a cocktail hour where guests can mingle before dinner and dancing. If there is a location change, minimize the time between to an hour or less.

7. Greet your guests

Receiving lines have fallen out of popularity, but that doesn’t mean your guests don’t want to see you. There are special ways you can honor loved ones at your wedding. Take some time during the reception to stop by tables and visit with all your guests and thank them for coming to your big day.

guests walking up to be greeted
Be sure to happily greet your guests!

8. Singling out the singles

Seating arrangements can be difficult, but don’t put all your single guests at the same table. It can easily make them feel uncomfortable. Instead try to seat your guests by how you know them such as high school friends, work friends and family members.

9. Gifts for bridal party

Your #BridalParty is spreading a lot of time (and money) to help you celebrate your big day. So thank them for all they are doing for you for you by giving them a small token of your appreciation. Gifts like jewelry for the wedding, personalized mugs, glasses or flasks, pens, or cufflinks are all great ways to say thank you.

10. Thank yous

Planning a wedding is a lot of work, but you are not done when the reception ends. Sending thank yous is a very important way to let your guests know you appreciate them coming to your wedding and the gift they picked out for you and your spouse. Contrary to what most people say, you do not have one year to send your thank yous. Thank yous should be sent as quickly as possible. Also, emailing or texting thank yous are a no-no. Always send your thank yous in the mail.

thank you note with a marker
Don't forget about the thank yous!

** Bonus Feed your vendors

Your vendors work hard for you so be sure to remember them. Allow for enough catering to feed all your vendors who will be at your reception including the DJ or band, photographer, videographer, caterers and wedding event planner.



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