I saw a great Facebook post the other day from The Tailrace Centre, covering their commandments for wedding guests, which got me thinking about guestzilla stories I have seen and heard through my time as a celebrant. So here are my 10 commandments for wedding guests:
- Thou shalt not wear white – ever.
Unless specifically requested by the bride, I think it is still poor form to wear white to a wedding – same goes for cream, off-white, beige, ivory, bone…
- Thou shalt not wear anything that would be appropriate in a nightclub.
Weddings are generally at least semi-formal affairs, so leave your fluoro, neon or super short dress for the after party.
- Thou shalt not be late to the ceremony.
If the invite say 3pm be there by 2:59pm at the latest…
- Thou shalt RSVP on time.
I think this is one of the biggest bugbears of happy couples, not knowing exactly who is and isn’t coming until the 11th hour.
- Thou shalt think before you bug the happy couple with questions.
Is it essential for them to know that you don’t drink chardonnay, you only drink pinot gris? No. On this day you just get to smile and drink whatever you are given
- Thou shalt not presume you are part of the bridal party until you are officially asked.
This one is often fraught with danger. Sadly I have heard of lots of friendships that have died because of this. People choose their bridal party using lots of different criteria, and even if you have been friends forever that might not be the most important factor for the couple.
- Thou shalt always check before assuming your children are invited.
Some people, myself included, prefer a childfree wedding so they can spend time with you, without you having to worry about little Johnny and Sally.
- Thou shalt feel free to leave the ceremony or speeches if your child is upset, throwing a tantrum or generally being a normal noisy tiny human.
Yes this may be noticed, but as a celebrant, I can assure that their crying/tantrum/desire for mummy is potentially more disruptive than your exit would be.
- Thou shalt not stand in front of the photographer at any time and thou shalt keep thy elbows, arms, hand and devices out of the aisle.
- And finally, for those at my wedding ceremonies, thou shalt feel free to laugh, cry, cheer, heckle the best man while getting the rings, and generally be present and have a great time in the ceremony!!!!
At the end of the day, there is a good chance that you are either going to get married or already be married, so please just behave like you would like your guests to!
Okay soapbox rant over!