Etiquette

Is this okay?

I know this topic can go one way or the other depending on your opinion so I just want to get some feedback.

My FI and I are getting married August 2018. My FI stated to me last night that he thinks we should have a private ceremony at the courthouse with just our parents, siblings, grandparents, and his last living uncle. This all comes out to exactly 20 people, I am on board with this and we would take them out to a nice restaurant as our reception. The thing is he wants to have a party the next day with the rest of our families, aunts cousins godmothers ect. This sounds okay to me but I'm not sure if it's rude or not since it would literally be the next day. I don't want it to come off gift grabby or anything so I would call it a celebration of marriage. I would host it as a party and have good catering and drinks. Would you feel slighted if you were invited to this? I'm at a standstill and he thinks it should be fine, but he also comes from a family where cash bars are totally cool. I would love everyone's thoughts and inputs please!

Re: Is this okay?

  • Thank you! I just don't want to come off rude to people lol

  • I'm with ILoveBeachMusic…while etiquette wise you are in the clear, I would still side-eye this. It's one thing to have a destination wedding, and have an at home celebration, or even celebrate a while after if you couldn't afford to have the big wedding when you got married, but if I was invited to a celebration the next day, it would come off gift grabby to me, because I would feel special enough to come to the party and bring a card, but not special enough to witness your marriage, which is really what it's all about.
    This is exactly what I was worried about! I definitely don't want people to feel that way. We are still in the discussing area and nothing is in motion yet, so I thought it would be good to ask you guys here. I will talk to FI tonight and keep on going with brainstorming what we want to do (backyard wedding, or country club ect). I really appreciate your honest feedback!

  • I would be fine with what you have planned. It wouldn’t bother me at all to just be invited to the party and I would not assume you are doing it for a gift, especially if you don’t register. 
  • banana468 said:
    All in the same weekend?  This is majorly side-eye worthy from me.   

    I think you two need to figure out what you want.   Make it small or make it big.   

    IMO, make the intimate event the RD and the big party your wedding day.   
    Thank you, I'll run that by him and hopefully that sticks! I was thinking its too much for all one weekend. I don't even know how we would tell people about the party the next day lol

  • Lala9414 said:
    banana468 said:
    All in the same weekend?  This is majorly side-eye worthy from me.   

    I think you two need to figure out what you want.   Make it small or make it big.   

    IMO, make the intimate event the RD and the big party your wedding day.   
    Thank you, I'll run that by him and hopefully that sticks! I was thinking its too much for all one weekend. I don't even know how we would tell people about the party the next day lol
    And PPs are right - what he proposes is OK on paper....but what would you two do for a RD?    SOmething even smaller?? 
    charlotte989875
  • I was thinking this whole thing was a bad idea when he said party the next day. I don't even know his reasoning, since we talked right before I went to bed. I've always thought we would have the big wedding and that was that, since both of our families are big. But in all honesty I'd be okay with just eloping or doing the big party, I just want to be married. I'll definitely let him know that feelings will be hurt if we do this and to keep continuing our brainstorm for a wedding where everyone is there to witness it 

    charlotte989875thisismynickname2eileenrobOliveOilsMom
  • lovesclimbinglovesclimbing Alaska
    2500 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its First Answer
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    While I agree with @thisismynickname2, you are fine etiquette wise, I would be annoyed as hell to not be invited to the ceremony but invited to the party. I really don't understand the having a party and not connecting it with the ceremony. It doesn't save any money because the party is the expensive part. But as I said, etiquette wise you are fine if it is truly a private ceremony. 
    This is where I'm at. I'm not a big fan of parties after. I prefer and make it more of a priority if, say, they're like my cousin who got married on the other side of the country in his wife's hometown and then had a party in his hometown and they invited everyone to both. 

    You might find you have an issue with people not putting a huge priority on a party. Personally, an after party doesn't rank as high for me. With the cousin above, we had a vacation at the same time in their town and so we went to it. But if it had been at a different time, we wouldn't have tried as hard to go as we would if it had been a wedding. 

    charlotte989875ahoyweddingshort+sassy
  • Jen4948Jen4948 Houston
    10000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its 5 Answers
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    edited October 31
    I agree with PPs in that while your plan passes etiquette muster, it has the potential to hurt feelings. People are not going to understand why you want to invite them to a party to celebrate an underlying event, but not the underlying event itself. And while people are willing to make arrangements to attend a wedding ceremony and reception, they are less likely to do so to attend a party alone.
    charlotte989875ahoywedding
  • Agree with PPs. I would find out why your FI wants a private ceremony and big party. Perhaps the overall wedding is getting too big and just needs to be pulled in. 
  • I agree with PPs that it's technically okay, but a little weird. If I had to travel, I probably wouldn't travel for a "celebration of marriage" party the day after your legal wedding, but I maybe would for one a little further out. It probably wouldn't be a priority though.
    short+sassyInLoveInQueens
  • I agree with others that you should be able to answer the "Why?" if you're going to do this.

    Sometimes people try to cram a whole bunch of different event visions into one occasion (getting married). Take a breath and realize that you can throw as many parties as you want for any reason (or no reason at all) throughout your life, they don't all have to be crammed in now. If you want a nice formal dinner with 20 people, you can do that for any reason. If you want a big rager of a party with 200 people, you can do that for any reason too. Sit down and figure out what you want for your wedding, and if there are other events you want to (even very tentatively) plan to throw at some point, then plan those, too. 

    For instance, if you're planning on buying a house in the next 5 years maybe you could have a huge housewarming party instead of having a huge wedding, or if you have a huge wedding you could have an intimate dinner party at your new house. Or maybe you can plan your intimate wedding for 20, and next year throw a big "family reunion" type of party for both sides of your family. The options are endless. 
    thisismynickname2short+sassycharlotte989875ernursej
  • short+sassyshort+sassy
    2500 Comments 500 Love Its Fourth Anniversary First Answer
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    edited October 31
    MandyMost said:
    I agree with others that you should be able to answer the "Why?" if you're going to do this.

    Sometimes people try to cram a whole bunch of different event visions into one occasion (getting married). Take a breath and realize that you can throw as many parties as you want for any reason (or no reason at all) throughout your life, they don't all have to be crammed in now. If you want a nice formal dinner with 20 people, you can do that for any reason. If you want a big rager of a party with 200 people, you can do that for any reason too. Sit down and figure out what you want for your wedding, and if there are other events you want to (even very tentatively) plan to throw at some point, then plan those, too. 

    For instance, if you're planning on buying a house in the next 5 years maybe you could have a huge housewarming party instead of having a huge wedding, or if you have a huge wedding you could have an intimate dinner party at your new house. Or maybe you can plan your intimate wedding for 20, and next year throw a big "family reunion" type of party for both sides of your family. The options are endless. 

    I'm not sure I've ever seen a poster quite put it like this, but what a GREAT explanation!

    (Not referring to @Lala9414) ; It does seem like posts about PPDs, AHRs, and that ilk are often couples trying to fit a square peg in a round hole.  An awesome party is an awesome party, all by itself.  It doesn't need what is sometimes an ill-fitting label.

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    ernursej
  • FFIL's probably right about vendors upping the prices for weddings but I doubt that calling it a "celebration of marriage" would make a difference to them anyway.

    The caterer at your reception doesn't care if you got married 1hr ago or 24hrs ago. They know you still want the day to go perfectly and that they can charge you for it!

    Glad that talking through the root of things helped you guys come to a better understanding, it almost always does :)

    short+sassyLala9414ILoveBeachMusicernursej
  • edited October 31
    Agree that most caterers have posted pricing so I don't think that's an issue. The vendors that usually up prices because of the W word are ones you will want whether you have 10 people or 300, such as photography, hair and makeup and DJ. Keep in mind that in a lot of cases they aren't doing this just because they know you will pay more, but because it is such an important, high stress day that they really need to put in their all to do it right.

    ETA: If FFIL is the cost cutting type I would steer him away from a backyard wedding. A lot of people think they are cheaper because 'hey free venue!' but once you add in the rentals for all that furniture, all the dishes and cutlery and usually extra bathrooms it really really adds up. This was our first plan and when we saw the enourmous cost associated we dropped it real quick.
    ahoyweddingshort+sassyInLoveInQueens
  • So if you were to call a catering company and say "I'm hosting a big retirement party, I'd like to look at your pricing list" and then have your FI call the same company and say "We're hosting a wedding, I'd like to look at your pricing list"...you can probably de-bunk the "say wedding and add 20%" myth pretty quickly. 

    So if your FIL doesn't like being with more than 5 people at a time, I would not take them up on hosting 100 people at their house for a reception (omg just no). And FIL is welcome to excuse himself from the reception at any time - your FI can talk to him about this beforehand and assure him it's nbd. I would also consider not making him part of the processional, intros, receiving line, toasts, or other focal aspects of the wedding unless he wants to be.
    Literally this, I told my FI to go over this weekend and talk it out with his dad and tell him we won't be taking the offer. I know his mom might have jumped the gun when she offered it to us, I don't think she ran it by future FIL at all. I told my FI that I am perfectly fine if we have it elsewhere, I don't want to be responsible for anything going wrong in their house (not that I think there would be, I just don't want to take that chance). So I told him we will start looking at venues and getting quotes, within the next few weeks. It just seemed like a potential for a hot mess express happening lol

    short+sassyredwoodoriginal
  • Lala9414 said:
    So if you were to call a catering company and say "I'm hosting a big retirement party, I'd like to look at your pricing list" and then have your FI call the same company and say "We're hosting a wedding, I'd like to look at your pricing list"...you can probably de-bunk the "say wedding and add 20%" myth pretty quickly. 

    So if your FIL doesn't like being with more than 5 people at a time, I would not take them up on hosting 100 people at their house for a reception (omg just no). And FIL is welcome to excuse himself from the reception at any time - your FI can talk to him about this beforehand and assure him it's nbd. I would also consider not making him part of the processional, intros, receiving line, toasts, or other focal aspects of the wedding unless he wants to be.
    Literally this, I told my FI to go over this weekend and talk it out with his dad and tell him we won't be taking the offer. I know his mom might have jumped the gun when she offered it to us, I don't think she ran it by future FIL at all. I told my FI that I am perfectly fine if we have it elsewhere, I don't want to be responsible for anything going wrong in their house (not that I think there would be, I just don't want to take that chance). So I told him we will start looking at venues and getting quotes, within the next few weeks. It just seemed like a potential for a hot mess express happening lol

    Oh my goodness, I missed this part!

    As mentioned, my mother and stepfather threw a wedding and reception for me at their home.  But for 2/3rds less people than that!  Most of the food was even brought in and set up from a restaurant.  However, it was still a lot of work and worry for my parents, even for a small crowd.  We didn't have to rent anything, but I think they borrowed extra chairs and tables from their church.  Though, knowing them, I'm sure there was a thank-you donation made ;).

    Even with enough room, 100 people can feel overwhelming at a private home!  Especially for someone who is uncomfortable in big groups anyway.

    You all made a good call, lol.  Good luck on the venue search! 

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  • OliveOilsMomOliveOilsMom South Jersey
    5000 Comments Sixth Anniversary 500 Love Its 5 Answers
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    A suggestion for the type of wedding you have could be very much like a regular party, so it is not as formal.  You could do a first look and get all pictures done before the start of the party.  You and FI would be at the party to help welcome guests.  Guests mingle and eat apps. An announcement could be made that the ceremony would start and all the guests take a seat at their tables.  You and FI, with the officiant would go to the front of the room and get married there.  Then you could immediately have your first dance while everyone is at their table still.  Then go sit down to start dinner.  It would have a more casual vibe to start with, if that is something FI wants/likes.  Then people could go dance when they wished, since you would have already opened the dance floor.
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