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HELP. I need advice on bridesmaids and groomsmen!!

My fiancé and I are getting married next August.
I wouldn't say there is A TON of drama in each of our families, but there is enough that we have came to the conclusion we don't want to have bridesmaids or groomsmen. We just want a simple, intimate, HAPPY, positive wedding with NO drama or problems. (We have had 3 family weddings in the past year, and that was enough drama for us) Plus, we have a small budget and I figured this will help cut costs tremendously! We want to do a small ceremony with family, and then have a huge reception with friends and everyone else invited.
Anyways, has anyone else done the before? Here is what I am most worried about- that the ceremony will be way too short. Could anyone give me advice about how to go about doing the ceremony? And also anything else that could be helpful to us.
Thanks a ton:)
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Re: HELP. I need advice on bridesmaids and groomsmen!!

  • Unless it is SUPER small, this isn't usually looked upon too favorably by the folks here.  It is a bit tough to be told you're worthy of one part of the event but not the other.  I think it might create MORE drama, not less!

    I'm a bit confused on the tie b/w that and the BM/GM issue.  I don't think that having more guests means you need to have a wedding party..

    I'm also not sure how much you'll save since, in my experience, the reception is the pricier part.  Similarly, the ceremony length is a matter of choice but the only part I see impacted by size is the processional (the walking in part) and that doesn't take all that much time up.  

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    melbelleupPrettyGirlLosttabathafaye
  • bethsmilesbethsmiles Denver, CO member
    10000 Comments Sixth Anniversary 500 Love Its First Answer
    The reception is usually a lot more expensive than the ceremony so I really don't think you will save money with this plan.

    Also, it's pretty rude to just invite people to the reception (unless there is a religious reason most people can't come to the ceremony such as with LDS weddings). It looks gift-grabby - like "hey we don't really care enough about you to have you witness our wedding but you can give us gifts at our party". Even if you aren't intending it to come off that way, it does.


    Blue_BirdPrettyGirlLost
  • Here's what you'll save by not having BM/GMs - money for their gift, whatever flowers you'd buy them, and hosting them at the reception (my guess is that they'll be there anyway so this isn't really a realized cost). You won't really save that much money unless you were planning on really expensive gifts/flowers.

    If hassle/drama is what you want to prevent, then by all means, don't have a WP - there's no issue with not wanting a WP. 

    The ceremony is the cheap part of your wedding. The reception is where you're going to spend all your money. 
    *********************************************************************************

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    melbelleupPrettyGirlLost
  • My fiancé and I are getting married next August.
    I wouldn't say there is A TON of drama in each of our families, but there is enough that we have came to the conclusion we don't want to have bridesmaids or groomsmen. We just want a simple, intimate, HAPPY, positive wedding with NO drama or problems. (We have had 3 family weddings in the past year, and that was enough drama for us) Plus, we have a small budget and I figured this will help cut costs tremendously! We want to do a small ceremony with family, and then have a huge reception with friends and everyone else invited.
    Anyways, has anyone else done the before? Here is what I am most worried about- that the ceremony will be way too short. Could anyone give me advice about how to go about doing the ceremony? And also anything else that could be helpful to us.
    Thanks a ton:)
    <?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />


    You do know that it's not required to have family members in your wedding party, right?

    DH has four siblings, and none of them were in our WP.

    Like others have said, the "huge reception" is where your cost will be, and most guests actually want to witness your ceremony.

  • Everyone we've talked to say your suppose to pay for the GM tux rentals. I'm guessing that's not the norm by this post? If we didn't have BM and GM we'd save a few hundred dollars.
  • 1. BMs and GM are responsible for their own attire. You are responsible for asking each BM -- PRIVATELY -- what her budget is (as your FI is of his GM), and then picking something at or below the lowest price.

    2. You should buy the BM/GM thank-you gifts for being in the wedding.

    3. Anything you demand they wear beyond just the dress/suit (i.e., ties, specific shoes -- a general "any black shoe" is fine -- jewellery, etc.) you must buy for them. 

    4. The only way to appropriately do what you're talking about doing is to have a truly private reception -- parents, siblings, grandparents ONLY -- and then have a reception. If the drama centres around your family, that might not be a good idea.

    5. You do not have to have family as your WP. Your WP can be anyone you want -- or no one, if you want that!
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    I'm gonna go with 'not my circus, not my monkeys.'
    southernbelle0915melbelleupWedReMix13
  • NYCMercedesNYCMercedes BOS, NYC, DC. Forever a city girl member
    Sixth Anniversary 2500 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    There are three unrelated issues in your post. 1. Having no wedding party will cut drama tremendously but will not affect your budget very much at all. 2. You can have a very small private wedding, no more than 10 or 12 people, and invite a crowd to the reception. The private wedding will not affect your budget at all. The crowd at the reception will be expensive. 3. Ceremony length of time is not affected by the number of people in attendance nor is it affected by the budget. ... Could you please expand upon your three questions?
    PrettyGirlLost
  • MyNameIsNotMyNameIsNot Atlanta member
    Ninth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer
    No WP is fine, and it might save you some drama.  It will save you a little money on flowers, rehearsal dinner and gifts, but not a ton.

    If you are worried about drama, the small ceremony with large reception is probably not a great plan.  As long as the ceremony is very small (under 20), it isn't rude, but that isn't going to stop your drama cousin from starting something because she wasn't important enough to be invited to the actual wedding.  Believe it or not, some people really care about watching the couple take their vows, and they will get upset to be excluded from that part.  
    PrettyGirlLost
  • My fiancé and I are getting married next August.
    I wouldn't say there is A TON of drama in each of our families, but there is enough that we have came to the conclusion we don't want to have bridesmaids or groomsmen. We just want a simple, intimate, HAPPY, positive wedding with NO drama or problems. (We have had 3 family weddings in the past year, and that was enough drama for us) Plus, we have a small budget and I figured this will help cut costs tremendously! We want to do a small ceremony with family, and then have a huge reception with friends and everyone else invited.
    Anyways, has anyone else done the before? Here is what I am most worried about- that the ceremony will be way too short. Could anyone give me advice about how to go about doing the ceremony? And also anything else that could be helpful to us.
    Thanks a ton:)

    You don't have to have a WP, but not having one won't save you too much. Having a small ceremony is fine, but remember, you'll pay regardless of how many people are there. My ceremony is $500.. it doesn't matter if there's 10 of us there or 300. No matter what, it's $500.  The reception is really only where head count counts as the price tag.
    Daisypath Wedding tickers
  • ItjustgotrealItjustgotreal member
    First Comment
    edited September 2013
    So, while I agree with the above, some posters seem a little harsh.

    OP, what is your prerogative? Do you want less drama or a cheaper event?

    If you want less drama, I'm sorry to say but you may be on a fool's errand.  Unless both sets of parents, friends, and family are completely loving and understanding and willing to abide by all of your decisions, excluding members of family or beloved friends from the ceremony may garner more drama than just inviting everyone.  Eliminating BM/GM would certainly eliminate all the dress-tux wearing, gift buying, shower-craziness, and pre-wedding-planning drama that almost always ensues, but that's not going to be the only source of drama for you.

    If you want a cheaper event overall, you may want to just chop the reception guest list.  This always stirs the pot, but if you're spending 30-50 bucks a head or more, cutting just 4 people will save a hundred, more could save thousands.

    As for the ceremony-reception guest list, I personally have been invited to a reception and not a ceremony, and I did not take offense.  The bride and groom did a destination ceremony with like, 11 other people, and had the whole thing taped by the groom's brother.  They stayed for a week, the others a weekend or so, and had a reception when they came back to town.  Brother played the recording at the reception and everyone was merry!  I imagine that feelings would be different if the ceremony had occurred in town, but I think as long as there's a reason behind cutting the ceremony (i.e. courthouse ceremony, ridiculously small location) people are reasonable.
  • MyNameIsNotMyNameIsNot Atlanta member
    Ninth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer
    edited September 2013
    So, while I agree with the above, some posters seem a little harsh.

    OP, what is your prerogative? Do you want less drama or a cheaper event?

    If you want less drama, I'm sorry to say but you may be on a fool's errand.  Unless both sets of parents, friends, and family are completely loving and understanding and willing to abide by all of your decisions, excluding members of family or beloved friends from the ceremony may garner more drama than just inviting everyone.  Eliminating BM/GM would certainly eliminate all the dress-tux wearing, gift buying, shower-craziness, and pre-wedding-planning drama that almost always ensues, but that's not going to be the only source of drama for you.

    If you want a cheaper event overall, you may want to just chop the reception guest list.  This always stirs the pot, but if you're spending 30-50 bucks a head or more, cutting just 4 people will save a hundred, more could save thousands.

    As for the ceremony-reception guest list, I personally have been invited to a reception and not a ceremony, and I did not take offense.  The bride and groom did a destination ceremony with like, 11 other people, and had the whole thing taped by the groom's brother.  They stayed for a week, the others a weekend or so, and had a reception when they came back to town.  Brother played the recording at the reception and everyone was merry!  I imagine that feelings would be different if the ceremony had occurred in town, but I think as long as there's a reason behind cutting the ceremony (i.e. courthouse ceremony, ridiculously small location) people are reasonable.
    WTF?  Where?
  • Dreamergirl8812Dreamergirl8812 your closet member
    1000 Comments 500 Love Its Second Anniversary First Answer
    So, while I agree with the above, some posters seem a little harsh.

    OP, what is your prerogative? Do you want less drama or a cheaper event?

    If you want less drama, I'm sorry to say but you may be on a fool's errand.  Unless both sets of parents, friends, and family are completely loving and understanding and willing to abide by all of your decisions, excluding members of family or beloved friends from the ceremony may garner more drama than just inviting everyone.  Eliminating BM/GM would certainly eliminate all the dress-tux wearing, gift buying, shower-craziness, and pre-wedding-planning drama that almost always ensues, but that's not going to be the only source of drama for you.

    If you want a cheaper event overall, you may want to just chop the reception guest list.  This always stirs the pot, but if you're spending 30-50 bucks a head or more, cutting just 4 people will save a hundred, more could save thousands.

    As for the ceremony-reception guest list, I personally have been invited to a reception and not a ceremony, and I did not take offense.  The bride and groom did a destination ceremony with like, 11 other people, and had the whole thing taped by the groom's brother.  They stayed for a week, the others a weekend or so, and had a reception when they came back to town.  Brother played the recording at the reception and everyone was merry!  I imagine that feelings would be different if the ceremony had occurred in town, but I think as long as there's a reason behind cutting the ceremony (i.e. courthouse ceremony, ridiculously small location) people are reasonable.
    FFS.



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  • alimiller09alimiller09 member
    Name Dropper First Comment
    edited September 2013

    Some people get really serious in these posts! Guess I must have not worded things right? Goodness it was my first post here on the knot.

    Thanks for the advice ladies. and the warm welcoming ;)

  • Like another poster said, not inviting people to the ceremony won't save you money, unless the venue you want to have the ceremony at will only accomodate a small amount of people and inviting everyone to the ceremony would require moving the ceremony to a large venue which would cost you more money. You don't have to do programs, which is the only thing that would increase the cost of having more guests at the same venue.

    Not having a wedding party will help reduce drama and costs because those will be fewer people to feed at rehersal dinner, buy gifts for and provide flowers for.

    On that note, I have known of people who did a small family only (parents, siblings, grandparents & best friends) ceremony due to the size of the location the couple had their hearts set on getting married at. They had their reception later in the day with the rest of their extended family & friends at reception location that could accomodate everyone. I didn't hear anyone complain.

    Good luck!!

  • @Erikan73 Thank you very much!! We have decided to have a small family ceremony and have a reception to follow with other family and friends. That is what we want, it is what's going to make us the happiest and it will be great! I am glad you have know people who had great experiences doing it this way. That makes me feel great.
  • Wow!
    Ok, sounds like several different questions all rolled in here.
    I know several couples who have had small, very private ceremonies and then large, but much less formal, "receptions" days or weeks later. Those are more like hosted barbecues or family reunions. Usually this is done when the wedding is in another state or several hours away from most family/friends. I'm not sure if there's an etiquette concern there.
    I agree that you won't save much money by skipping a wedding party, although you might lose some drama.
    If you want a traditional reception, it'll cost you. If you are looking to cut costs, scaling back the reception will make the most difference.
  • You could just have 1 BM and 1 MOH if you wanted the look and feeling but not add to anything cost wise (although it doesnt add that much to the cost?)
    Married 11/12/05 ~ Renewed Our Vows 11/9/13. 

    "The LORD will fight for you, you need only be still."


  • We just had a wedding that was like this! My best friend actually, they each had a witness (MOH and BM) I was the MOH. But not too many people wee invited to the ceremony and it was beautiful! They played a video of it at the reception and not one person was offended they weren't invited to the "wedding". My FI wants to do our wedding the same way it went so well
    alimiller09
  • I really like the idea of playing a video of the ceremony at the reception!! That would be perfect... Thank so much:)

  • I made the decision to not have a wedding party just a MOH and BM. I did this mostly because there is tension between my future sister in laws and me. My FI wanted me to have them in the WP as opposed to my best girlfriends. Instead I chose neither. My FI is walking down the aisle with his sisters and taking them to their seats and my girlfriends who would have been in the WP planned my bachelorette party while my MOH planned my Bridal shower. This way everyone was involved and got to play apart in our special day like they wanted to. Also, I bought special gifts for my girls.
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