Wedding Party

How to include nieces and nephews in wedding

This has been a ongoing issue I'm trying to resolve. My fiance and I don't want to have a big wedding party standing up there with us. We're only having 50-60 guests total so there's no need for many attendants. 
We need to figure out how to include 4 nieces (will be ages 14, 12, 7, and 3) and 2 nephews (will be 11 and 3).
My original plan was to have the 14 and 12 yr old nieces as Jr.BM (with my sister being the MOH), and his 2 brothers as the groomsmen (one brother walking both nieces down together) and the 7 yr old and 3 yr old walk together as flower girls and the 11 yr old and 3 yr old nephews as ring bearers.
But I feel like I have to include my sister in law as a brides maid since we hang out all the time. So it's looking to be sister and SIL on my side and 2 brothers on his side. But I don't know how to include the 2 older nieces then. I've tried googling and it seems like the best idea is to have them as ushers to help seat people in the beginning (no programs to be handed out though) but this seems like such a silly job for them. I also read a lot about how ring bearers shouldn't be older than 8 -- so how should I use the 11 yr old nephew?
My fiance and I aren't very traditional people but we also don't want to offend anyone by not including them or by giving them roles designed for younger people or even roles of non-importance. I think I'm about ready to say no nieces and nephews in the wedding party at all but it would mean a lot to us if we can figure it out.

Re: How to include nieces and nephews in wedding

  • You are way over thinking this. You don't need to include any nieces or nephews at all. Big wedding party problem = solved. All of these people can attend as guests - that's definitely an honor in itself at a small wedding.

    You also don't need even sides. If you don't want to ask your FSIL, don't. Don't ask her bc you feel obligated.
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    PrettyGirlLost[Deleted User]
  • MobKazMobKaz Chicago suburbs member
    Knottie Warrior 5000 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    It is an honor to be a guest.  Don't feel pressured to assign roles to friends and family just to make a point as to how you feel about them.  If you and your FI are not traditional, no one will expect you to change your perspective simply because it is your wedding day. 

    It is natural to select younger children for the roles of flower girl and ring bearer.  No one should take offense by that because it is expected.  Some ages just "rule out" traditional roles.  If it simplifies your life, and helps you to maintain that nontraditional perspective, leave the nieces and nephews out of the wedding party. 

    If you are desperate to include the two older nieces, are you including readings in your ceremony that they could read?
    PrettyGirlLost
  • holyguacamole79holyguacamole79 a taco truck in Houston member
    5000 Comments Sixth Anniversary 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    This has been a ongoing issue I'm trying to resolve. My fiance and I don't want to have a big wedding party standing up there with us. We're only having 50-60 guests total so there's no need for many attendants. 
    We need to figure out how to include 4 nieces (will be ages 14, 12, 7, and 3) and 2 nephews (will be 11 and 3).
    My original plan was to have the 14 and 12 yr old nieces as Jr.BM (with my sister being the MOH), and his 2 brothers as the groomsmen (one brother walking both nieces down together) and the 7 yr old and 3 yr old walk together as flower girls and the 11 yr old and 3 yr old nephews as ring bearers.
    But I feel like I have to include my sister in law as a brides maid since we hang out all the time. So it's looking to be sister and SIL on my side and 2 brothers on his side. But I don't know how to include the 2 older nieces then. I've tried googling and it seems like the best idea is to have them as ushers to help seat people in the beginning (no programs to be handed out though) but this seems like such a silly job for them. I also read a lot about how ring bearers shouldn't be older than 8 -- so how should I use the 11 yr old nephew?
    My fiance and I aren't very traditional people but we also don't want to offend anyone by not including them or by giving them roles designed for younger people or even roles of non-importance. I think I'm about ready to say no nieces and nephews in the wedding party at all but it would mean a lot to us if we can figure it out.
    A few comments:
    1). If you ask them to be bridesmaids, eliminate the "junior".  No need for their title to indicate that they are younger.
    2).  Are you close to these nieces & nephews?  Don't include them just for the sake of including them.  
    3).  You don't have to include your SIL just because she is your SIL.  Include her because you can't imagine getting married without her by your side.
    4).  How would the 11 y/o feel as a ring bearer?  That is a tricky age because he may feel like he should not be treated as a "little boy".

    Bottom line - how close are you to the nieces / nephews?  Don't include them just to avoid upsetting people.  Include them because they are important to you.
  • No one should be offended because they are not WP. It is nice to just kick back and enjoy being a guest. Lots less stress.
    [Deleted User]
  • AddieCakeAddieCake Beyond the Wall member
    10000 Comments 500 Love Its Fourth Anniversary 25 Answers
    If this is causing you this much stress, I suggest not including any of them.
    What did you think would happen if you walked up to a group of internet strangers and told them to get shoehorned by their lady doc?~StageManager14
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    [Deleted User]
  • MairePoppyMairePoppy Connecticut mod
    Moderator Knottie Warrior 5000 Comments 500 Love Its

    In my family, my two cousins, brother and I were usually invited to family weddings. My youngest cousin was often asked to be ring bearer because he was cute. We didn't think anything of it, other than our little cousin looked adorable in his suit. The brides usually invited all the kids to the dance floor for a group dance with the bride and groom - the Hokey Pokey or the dreaded Chicken Dance.

    If you don't want children in the wedding party, don't ask them. If you do want a flower girl and ring bearer, ask the two youngest.

                       
  • Jen4948Jen4948 Houston member
    Ninth Anniversary 10000 Comments 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    There is no requirement that you have anyone at all in your wedding party.  If you don't want these children in it, just don't ask them.  If they're still being invited, then you're requesting the pleasure of their company as guests, and that's still an honor.
    [Deleted User]
  • Just invite them as guests.  That is a great way to include them.
    httpiimgurcomTCCjW0wjpg
    [Deleted User]
  • IrishPirate60IrishPirate60 Clare Island member
    Sixth Anniversary 250 Love Its 100 Comments Name Dropper
    Gather up all those wonderful kids and get a picture with them at the reception.
    atlastmrsg[Deleted User]
  • jenna8984jenna8984 clam bakes & patriots member
    5000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its First Answer
     I also read a lot about how ring bearers shouldn't be older than 8 -- so how should I use the 11 yr old nephew?
     

    Poor choice of words- he's a human, not a tissue- you don't use him.

    But seriously, none of them need to be included or have a role. It just causes nonsense and extra expenses for the parents who then need to buy special outfits for the kids. My neice and nephew are just guests and my brother is thrilled about it.

                                                                     

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    [Deleted User]
  • princessleia22princessleia22 Oceanfront Property in Arizona member
    Sixth Anniversary 500 Love Its 1000 Comments First Answer
    With that many of them, my first instinct is to not use them and just let them be guests. There is no need to include all nieces & nephews in the wedding. And especially if it's a small wedding I doubt anyone will mind. But, if you are struggling to find "jobs" or "positions" for each of them, you have too many and should just have them as guests. That being said, my wedding party consisted of my 2 adult sisters (both as MOH), my 6-year old niece was a bridesmaid (no need to call them junior BM), DH's best man, his 11-year old nephew as groomsman, and his 3-year old niece as flower girl. We adore our nieces & nephew and spend time with them as much as possible, so we wanted them included. But, if we had more than those 3, we would have just stuck with the adults. Another thing to keep in mind, how do their parents feel about including them? If you include them, the parents have to foot the bill to buy their clothes, do hair, etc. That can add up quickly, especially if they have multiple kids in one family. And even more if you include the parents in the wedding party. If you have both parents in wedding party, they'd have to pay for tux/suit rental ($200), BM dress for mom ($200), BM dress for niece ($200), tux/suit rental for nephew ($200), hair for both mom & niece ($100)... that's just example of costs, but it could be a lot of money that they may not be able to afford. So, definitely talk to the kids parents before giving them any role in the wedding. Also, another thing to keep in mind, any person included in the wedding party needs to be included in ALL wedding party activities. If you have older nieces as bridesmaids, they should be invited to bachelorette party or other BM events. That may mean doing a spa day or something like that instead of going out drinking. And even if you choose to keep the "junior" in the title, they are still bridesmaids. They should still have same status, responsibilities, and be included in the same events. That's why designating them as "junior" BM's is pointless. My 6-year old niece loved being a bridesmaid and being included in getting nails & hair done with the girls and we skipped doing any bachelorette parties that she couldn't attend.

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