Help! How Can I Cut My Guest List?

Invitations | Kacy Jahanbini Photography | Kacy Jahanbini Photography

Maybe your ceremony site can only fit 150 guests, but your current list is much higher than that. Or maybe you’re already over budget and know that the easiest way to save money on your wedding is to start making cuts to your guest list. Don’t worry. A bulging-at-the-seams guest list is a common wedding planning problem, and it has a pretty easy fix.

The first thing you should do is sit down with your fiance and go over your list. Start putting your guests into two categories (an A list and a B list). The A-list includes absolute must-invites, like your family and close friends. The B-list is everyone else.

The next step is to start weeding out your B-list. To do that, ask yourself: How close are you with this person? When was the last time you saw or spoke to this person? Would having him or her there on your wedding day really make or break your enjoyment? Your answers should help you narrow your list down even further.

Other helpful tricks? Leave off old high school or college friends whom you’re pretty sure you’ll never see again; second and third cousins whose names you can barely remember; and your parents’ extras (unless, of course, your parents are footing the bill). Or make your wedding adults-only (skip anyone under 18). And don’t feel obligated to invite coworkers or business associates.

We know cutting all of these people might make you feel bad, but it’s the easiest way to save money and make sure everyone fits comfortably at your ceremony and reception.

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Escort cards are extremely easy to personalize and an excellent way to bring in your wedding day colors -- from calligraphed seating cards set atop a textured linen to apples tagged with each guest's name or small personalized bundles of lavender tied off with string. Other ways to display escort cards: Pin them to a clothesline, post them on a board covered in color-coordinated ribbon, or incorporate them into your cocktail hour using personalized stirrers tagged with guests' names.
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