• Images
  • Text
  • Find a Couple + Registry
GO
Customs and Traditions

Receiving Line

I am debating the receiving line vs. table visits. If I do a receiving line I am thinking about not having the parents or bridal party do it as I have always found that awkward when leaving a wedding and I do not know the friends of one of the parties. I figure the parents can mingle at the cocktail hour after the pictures with them are finished. 1. Is it ok to do a receiving line of just the bride and groom? 2. How do you make sure you hit all of the tables if we do table visits instead? My wedding is outside on the water and the reception is right there. People will literally walk 100 feet to the reception.

Re: Receiving Line

  • JCbride2015JCbride2015 Dirty Jerz member
    5000 Comments 500 Love Its Second Anniversary First Answer
    1. Yes and I would prefer just the B&G for the reasons you mentioned.*
    2. Not sure what you mean-- just go to every table?  You and your new H can also split up the tables if there are a lot.

    *If someone else is hosting your wedding, they should be involved in receiving line or table visits.  But nowadays the couple is usually the host, so it's okay for it just to be you guys.
    Wedding Countdown Ticker
    image

    "I'm not a rude bitch.  I'm ten rude bitches in a large coat."

  • Maggie0829Maggie0829 Ravens & Bohs & Crabs & O's member
    Eighth Anniversary 10000 Comments 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    I agree that the receiving line should just be the bride and groom and possibly whoever else is the host of the wedding.  Anyone else is completely awkward.  Guests don't care about your wedding party members, they only care about you and your FI.

    As for how you can make sure you hit all the tables, unless you have 400 tables hitting each one is not that difficult.

  • It is considered rude to start a conversation in a receiving line.  You simply grasp the extended hand and say,"I'm so happy we could be here today!  See you at the reception!" and move on.  The hostess says "Thank you for being here today.  See you at the reception."

    I only personally knew about a dozen of the 135 guests at my daughter's wedding, which we hosted.  The reception line was the perfect way I could fulfill my duty as hostess and greet all the guests in a short time.  I made table visits later, but I liked knowing that I had spoken to everyone as soon as possible.
    httpiimgurcomTCCjW0wjpg
  • We are doing a receiving line so we know that every person got a "thank you" from us. We plan on hitting the tables between dancing for real conversations with the people we actually want to spend time with. 
    My brother did the table thing only. It seemed like it took forever to get through the tables and I think the bride felt a lot of pressure to keep everything on time. 
    We aren't planning on having anyone other than us (bride and groom) for the receiving line. If parents (or anyone else) are helping pay for the wedding/hosting then you might want to ask them if they would like to receive with you or would rather not. My future in laws aren't paying/hosting and my parents don't want the attention. 
  • Our receiving line was me and DH, my parents (the hosts), and DH's BSC grandmother (who just randomly stood there because she felt like she deserved to be there even though, no, you don't. And then she complained later that she didn't know anyone and that was a long time to stand and she didn't like that. Well, there was a reason you weren't asked to do it...)

    I didn't have the WP in it for time and efficiency reasons, like you mentioned.

    We did also do table visits at the reception, but mostly just each to our friends/family -- I chatted with my friends, he chatted with his.
    Anniversary

    image
    I'm gonna go with 'not my circus, not my monkeys.'
  • climbingwifeclimbingwife NYC 'burbs member
    10000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    We're doing a receiving line with just me and FI. 

  • Jen4948Jen4948 Houston member
    10000 Comments Seventh Anniversary 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    Our receiving line was me and DH, my parents (the hosts), and DH's BSC grandmother (who just randomly stood there because she felt like she deserved to be there even though, no, you don't. And then she complained later that she didn't know anyone and that was a long time to stand and she didn't like that. Well, there was a reason you weren't asked to do it...) I didn't have the WP in it for time and efficiency reasons, like you mentioned. We did also do table visits at the reception, but mostly just each to our friends/family -- I chatted with my friends, he chatted with his.
    Your DH's BSC grandmother sounds like my BSC mother who would do exactly the same thing.
    HisGirlFriday13
  • Jen4948 said:
    Our receiving line was me and DH, my parents (the hosts), and DH's BSC grandmother (who just randomly stood there because she felt like she deserved to be there even though, no, you don't. And then she complained later that she didn't know anyone and that was a long time to stand and she didn't like that. Well, there was a reason you weren't asked to do it...) I didn't have the WP in it for time and efficiency reasons, like you mentioned. We did also do table visits at the reception, but mostly just each to our friends/family -- I chatted with my friends, he chatted with his.
    Your DH's BSC grandmother sounds like my BSC mother who would do exactly the same thing.
    I just don't get it. My grandmothers were sweet little old ladies. (OK, no, they were feisty, strong-willed women), but they were POLITE and NICE and WELL-MANNERED and they didn't butt into things!!

    His grandmother is STILL annoyed by the receiving line, and I just want to say, 'You're not allowed to be upset about something you weren't invited to that you butted into anyway.'
    Anniversary

    image
    I'm gonna go with 'not my circus, not my monkeys.'
  • We're doing a receiving line because it's traditional in his family. I am really looking forward to it!
    Daisypath Wedding tickers
  • We did a receiving line (no bridal party but  parents wanted to be included). This allowed us to say hi & thank you for coming to everyone who came to the ceremony. Then at the reception we went around and hit people that didn't make it to the cermony at the tables and then took more time to talk to people. But if we didn't get a chace to talk to everyone at the reception we weren't too worried since we said hi to everyone the ceremony. Between dancing, people going to the bar or the bathroom or outside to smoke, it was hard to make sure you caught everyone at the reception once dinner was over.
  • Great advice, thank you all!
  • Jen4948Jen4948 Houston member
    10000 Comments Seventh Anniversary 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    CMGragain said:
    It is considered rude to start a conversation in a receiving line.  You simply grasp the extended hand and say,"I'm so happy we could be here today!  See you at the reception!" and move on.  The hostess says "Thank you for being here today.  See you at the reception."

    I only personally knew about a dozen of the 135 guests at my daughter's wedding, which we hosted.  The reception line was the perfect way I could fulfill my duty as hostess and greet all the guests in a short time.  I made table visits later, but I liked knowing that I had spoken to everyone as soon as possible.
    Curious about this...if you're doing a receiving line, how do you discourage those who do try to start extended conversations?  Like you say, it's bad etiquette, but there are people who don't know this or who will go on and on and hold everything up because either they're just too excited or too effusive naturally, or they haven't seen you in a long time and forget that this is not the time to do extended catch-up.
  • I just had my final appointment at the venue and found out that a receiving line doesn't fit into the timeline of how things are going to work.  The wedding gazebo is about 100 feet from the building where the cocktail party and reception are.  So the bridal party walks back out the aisle and goes through the building and out the other side for pictures. The guests just follow and go into the building to get the party started. I guess it will be table visits for me.

    CM- I hate situations like that, I would probably say "can we catch up later" or something like that but it is hard to do when you don't know the person!
  • You move people along by saying "thanks so much for coming" or "can't wait to see you at the reception" and then physically turning away from that person to great the next one in line. This is a pretty good signal to move on.
  • edited June 2014
    I actually think table visits are the way to go. as long as you time it right you should be able to hit everyone.

    The last wedding I went to with a receiving line took FOREVER. Literally...forever....not kidding. Everything with the wedding was pushed back an hour and a half because of it. we didn't get to the venue to start cocktail hour until the reception was supposed to start. Then we had to wait over an hour for dinner still because that obviously pushed back the bridal party's photo timeline. They also had no food at their cocktail hour....so I had to beg the caterer for a roll because I was dying of hunger. But that's another story.

    Either way unless there is a way to be super quick about it I don't see why guests should have to wait around and suffer through that.
This discussion has been closed.
Choose Another Board
Search Boards