Etiquette

Want to make sure we greet everyone

Ok, so we had a plan and when we met with our DOC at the venue, she really discouraged what we had thought of.  You ladies know pretty much everything I feel so I want to know what you think.

We are doing a first look and all of our pictures before the ceremony so that it's all done and we are free to party/mingle once the ceremony is done.  We are expecting about 185-190 guests (maybe less depending on RSVPs but I'm not holding my breath).

We wanted to do a quick receiving line.  There is one path from the ceremony site to the patio where cocktail hour will be.  We figured we can stand on that path and greet guests as they move from one place to another.

Our DOC said she thought that would take too long and recommended table visits.  I personally hate table visits.  I feel like they take a long time and as a guest I feel they are awkward. You can see the bride and groom going so you aren't comfortable getting up to get a drink or start dancing because you don't want to miss them coming by.  It's not my favorite thing as a guest and I feel like I've been missed, or other people who left early were missed when table visits were done.

So now we need to decide.  What do you all think?

Re: Want to make sure we greet everyone

  • climbingwifeclimbingwife NYC 'burbs
    10000 Comments 500 Love Its Fourth Anniversary 5 Answers
    member
    We had about 150 people and we did a receiving line. I personally hate table visits too. I think it maybe took 20 minutes? We still had time to head back to the bridal suite to freshen up, and were able to hang out for most of the cocktail hour. We also did pre-ceremony pictures. 

    InLoveInQueensMRDCleahoyweddingPrettyGirlLost
  • holyguacamole79holyguacamole79 a taco truck in Houston
    5000 Comments 500 Love Its Third Anniversary 5 Answers
    member
    We did table visits (similar # of guests) and our DOC was an incredible help,  She escorted us to each table and kept an eye on her watch.  After the allotted time (2 minutes, I think?) had passed, she'd gently say, "Thanks - guac & her husband need to move on to the next table."  It was nice bc it guaranteed that we didn't spend more time at one table than another and also didn't make us the "bad guy" for excusing ourselves.



    Anniversary
    short+sassy
  • ILoveBeachMusicILoveBeachMusic Indiana
    2500 Comments 500 Love Its Third Anniversary 5 Answers
    member
    If you are more comfortable doing a receiving line do it. As others have said it is possible to do with that number of guests, and I really like the idea of champagne and passed apps being served to the line. The DOC is working for you. She gave you an alternative to a receiving line but it doesn't mean you have to do it. 
    short+sassyPrettyGirlLost
  • This is really helpful - thank you.  I like the idea of the passed apps in line.  I don't know if the venue would do champagne, but at least people could start snacking.  It's also helpful to hear how long it took.  She made it sound like it would take an hour which seemed like way too long.  
  • This is really helpful - thank you.  I like the idea of the passed apps in line.  I don't know if the venue would do champagne, but at least people could start snacking.  It's also helpful to hear how long it took.  She made it sound like it would take an hour which seemed like way too long.  

    I think a receiving line is fine, provided you are mindful and only spend a moment or two with each guest. I went to a wedding with a similar count and the receiving line took well over an hour because the B+G had long conversations with everyone. This is not unique to receiving lines but can be an issue with table visits too.
    PrettyGirlLost
  • ernursej said:
    This is really helpful - thank you.  I like the idea of the passed apps in line.  I don't know if the venue would do champagne, but at least people could start snacking.  It's also helpful to hear how long it took.  She made it sound like it would take an hour which seemed like way too long.  

    I think a receiving line is fine, provided you are mindful and only spend a moment or two with each guest. I went to a wedding with a similar count and the receiving line took well over an hour because the B+G had long conversations with everyone. This is not unique to receiving lines but can be an issue with table visits too.
    Yup, a simple "Hi aunt so-so and Uncle So-so, so glad you could come! You both look so lovely, I can't wait to see you on the dance floor! We will see you inside" Gesture to continue moving...
    image
    ernursejPrettyGirlLostInLoveInQueenslevioosa
  • ernursej said:
    This is really helpful - thank you.  I like the idea of the passed apps in line.  I don't know if the venue would do champagne, but at least people could start snacking.  It's also helpful to hear how long it took.  She made it sound like it would take an hour which seemed like way too long.  

    I think a receiving line is fine, provided you are mindful and only spend a moment or two with each guest. I went to a wedding with a similar count and the receiving line took well over an hour because the B+G had long conversations with everyone. This is not unique to receiving lines but can be an issue with table visits too.
    Yes, this is what she said happens.  So this is a silly question but is an appropriate move along gesture to kind of turn to the next guest? Just point them on to cocktail hour?  That would be my biggest worry.  I don't want to miss enjoying cocktail hour and I really don't want any guests to miss it!
  • Jen4948Jen4948 Houston
    10000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    member
    ernursej said:
    This is really helpful - thank you.  I like the idea of the passed apps in line.  I don't know if the venue would do champagne, but at least people could start snacking.  It's also helpful to hear how long it took.  She made it sound like it would take an hour which seemed like way too long.  

    I think a receiving line is fine, provided you are mindful and only spend a moment or two with each guest. I went to a wedding with a similar count and the receiving line took well over an hour because the B+G had long conversations with everyone. This is not unique to receiving lines but can be an issue with table visits too.
    Yes, this is what she said happens.  So this is a silly question but is an appropriate move along gesture to kind of turn to the next guest? Just point them on to cocktail hour?  That would be my biggest worry.  I don't want to miss enjoying cocktail hour and I really don't want any guests to miss it!
    Unfortunately, most couples have to miss cocktail hour because they're taking photos during that time.

    I think that if you need to get someone to move on, you need to say so. If someone starts getting long-winded, you need to break in and say, "It's so great to see you-please enjoy the cocktails! I'll see you later, but I need to greet the people behind you in the line."
    ernursej
  • We had about that many people and did a receiving line as well because I also hate table visits for the same reasons you do - it did not take long (maybe 20 minutes) and then I felt so much more able to enjoy mingling at cocktail hour and after dinner.


  • Receiving line. I don't understand how she thinks a receiving line takes longer than table visits. My inclination would be the exact opposite. 
    Table visits don't take longer if you are careful about time. 

    I personally prefer table table visits but we had a small wedding and made 2+ visits to each wedding. Our priority was hanging out with our guests.

    a receiving line is probably easiest. 
  • So we had about 135ish guests. There was a short walk between the ceremony site and the reception area. (Ceremony outside, reception inside the museum). Our venue drove H & I on a golf cart that distance, and we waited in the lobby of the reception building and greeted everyone as they came in. This allowed the line to spread out a little, so it wasn't like bam, constant people. We didn't do a cocktail hour, but dinner was ready when everyone got to the reception. We hugged everyone, chatted for a bit, and then told them to go grab a drink & get in line for the buffet. (Venue staff was directing the buffet line)

    After all of the guests had entered, the venue staff led us into the venue through a different door. Since we didn't have as much time eating with our guests, table visits would have been a logistical nightmare & we never would have had a chance to eat!
  • So we had about 135ish guests. There was a short walk between the ceremony site and the reception area. (Ceremony outside, reception inside the museum). Our venue drove H & I on a golf cart that distance, and we waited in the lobby of the reception building and greeted everyone as they came in. This allowed the line to spread out a little, so it wasn't like bam, constant people. We didn't do a cocktail hour, but dinner was ready when everyone got to the reception. We hugged everyone, chatted for a bit, and then told them to go grab a drink & get in line for the buffet. (Venue staff was directing the buffet line)

    After all of the guests had entered, the venue staff led us into the venue through a different door. Since we didn't have as much time eating with our guests, table visits would have been a logistical nightmare & we never would have had a chance to eat

    *Box*
    YES!  I don't want to spend all of dinner walking around either.  I'm so glad I asked this here.
    ahoywedding
  • PrettyGirlLostPrettyGirlLost A Land Filled with Unicorns and Cat Hair
    5000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its First Answer
    member
    ernursej said:
    This is really helpful - thank you.  I like the idea of the passed apps in line.  I don't know if the venue would do champagne, but at least people could start snacking.  It's also helpful to hear how long it took.  She made it sound like it would take an hour which seemed like way too long.  

    I think a receiving line is fine, provided you are mindful and only spend a moment or two with each guest. I went to a wedding with a similar count and the receiving line took well over an hour because the B+G had long conversations with everyone. This is not unique to receiving lines but can be an issue with table visits too.
    Yes, this is what she said happens.  So this is a silly question but is an appropriate move along gesture to kind of turn to the next guest? Just point them on to cocktail hour?  That would be my biggest worry.  I don't want to miss enjoying cocktail hour and I really don't want any guests to miss it!
    Your DOC should be helping to move chatty guests along.

    I had about 150 guests and I think our receiving line took 20-30mins. . . I'd expect yours to take 30mins+

    Most couples do miss cocktail hour, so I wouldn't get stressed out about making sure you get to participate.  Have your DOC set aside a platter for you of all the apps that are going to be served during cocktail hour.

    "Love is the one thing we're capable of perceiving that transcends time and space."


    ILoveBeachMusicshort+sassyahoyweddingMandTFebruary62011
  • SubwaylovesSubwayloves
    100 Comments 100 Love Its Second Anniversary First Answer
    member
    edited August 2017
    I also hated the idea of table visits. We chose an awesome menu, and I wanted to be able to enjoy it! We did a receiving line going into the reception door (ceremony was at same location outside), and I thought it was great. We had about 150 people, and I don't think it took more than 15-20 minutes. I think most people realize you have a lot of people to get through, and basically just say hi and congratulations. You say thanks for coming, and the whole exchange is over in maybe 20-30 seconds. Most couples/families come up together, and this cuts down on the time even more. Very easy and quick way to make sure you at least get a bit of interaction with every guest. 

    ETA: Pictures from the receiving line were also some of my favorites. They're not posed, everyone looks super happy, and we there were some good pics of us hugging or talking to people we may otherwise have not gotten a picture with. There's a great one we got of my grandmother (who passed away a few months later) and H, with H leaning down to hug her and her smiling up at him with her hand on his cheek. One of my favorite pics from the day!
    MandTFebruary62011ahoyweddingshort+sassycharlotte989875
  • We did a receiving line with the same number of guests. I'm with you, I don't like table visits.

    We greeted everyone as they left the church and then any guests who weren't needed for photos were able to immediately head to the cocktail hour. The receiving line did take quite a while with that number of guests, though. At least half an hour I'm sure. 

    The downside of that was that our photos were a bit rushed, since we didn't do them before the ceremony. I didn't get quite as many with just DH and myself as I would have liked because by that time we had to get going, but our photog pulled us aside toward the end of the reception for some evening photos. If you do them before the ceremony you can probably avoid that problem.

    The benefit was that once we did get to the reception we were able to enjoy it and not have to worry about getting to every table. We were also able to sit and enjoy every course which was nice
  • Receiving line.  Yes!
    httpiimgurcomTCCjW0wjpg
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