Invites and Paper

Reception-Only Save the Dates?

Hello!!

My fiance and I are having a private ceremony (family only plus wedding party), and then doing a reception/celebration about 6 to 8 weeks later for all the extended family and friends.  My plan was to have wedding announcements be a combination of being both an announcement and an invitation. Basically it will be "Hey we're married! We would love to celebrate with you, so we are having a reception on this day and this time" except all in that polite, politically-correct wording so as to not hurt anyone's feelings. Long story short, I am planning to have the wedding announcement/reception invitations ready to send out immediately (like the next day) after the ceremony. 
While we have not yet pinned down the date for the reception, we know it will be in the heart of wedding season (aka June or July). I don't want to just spring a reception on my extended family and friends last minute....So is it okay to send out Save the Dates that specify a reception-only celebration before the ceremony takes place?  Or do I just spring it on them at the last minute and hope for the best?

Thanks!! :)

Re: Reception-Only Save the Dates?

  • Hello!!

    My fiance and I are having a private ceremony (family only plus wedding party), and then doing a reception/celebration about 6 to 8 weeks later for all the extended family and friends.  My plan was to have wedding announcements be a combination of being both an announcement and an invitation. Basically it will be "Hey we're married! We would love to celebrate with you, so we are having a reception on this day and this time" except all in that polite, politically-correct wording so as to not hurt anyone's feelings. Long story short, I am planning to have the wedding announcement/reception invitations ready to send out immediately (like the next day) after the ceremony. 
    While we have not yet pinned down the date for the reception, we know it will be in the heart of wedding season (aka June or July). I don't want to just spring a reception on my extended family and friends last minute....So is it okay to send out Save the Dates that specify a reception-only celebration before the ceremony takes place?  Or do I just spring it on them at the last minute and hope for the best?

    Thanks!! :)
    "Come party with us to celebrate an occasion you weren't invited to" doesn't sound so hot to me.
    image
    MairePoppyKnottie80779227adk19
  • Jen4948Jen4948 Houston
    10000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    member
    Hello!!

    My fiance and I are having a private ceremony (family only plus wedding party), and then doing a reception/celebration about 6 to 8 weeks later for all the extended family and friends.  My plan was to have wedding announcements be a combination of being both an announcement and an invitation. Basically it will be "Hey we're married! We would love to celebrate with you, so we are having a reception on this day and this time" except all in that polite, politically-correct wording so as to not hurt anyone's feelings. Long story short, I am planning to have the wedding announcement/reception invitations ready to send out immediately (like the next day) after the ceremony. 
    While we have not yet pinned down the date for the reception, we know it will be in the heart of wedding season (aka June or July). I don't want to just spring a reception on my extended family and friends last minute....So is it okay to send out Save the Dates that specify a reception-only celebration before the ceremony takes place?  Or do I just spring it on them at the last minute and hope for the best?

    Thanks!! :)
    Sorry, but "receptions" are thank-yous to guests for attending the actual weddings, not celebrations later on, so you are not having a "reception-only celebration."  You are merely having a party to celebrate your marriage later, and I don't think that requires save-the-dates at all.  So just send the invitations to this party without save-the-dates.
    CMGragainadk19
  • edited October 2015
    So no save-the-dates.  Thanks, condescending helpers. 
    JediElizabethmonniiauddii
  • OP, you ARE taking your wedding guests out to eat after your small ceremony, aren't you?  That will be your wedding reception.  It is a "thank you for coming" for your guests.  You only get one wedding reception.  You can have as many parties later as you wish.  No STDs for parties.
    httpiimgurcomTCCjW0wjpg
    adk19
  • MairePoppyMairePoppy Connecticut
    Moderator Eighth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its
    mod
    edited October 2015
    PPs have made valid points. You should provide some sort of reception for your ceremony guests to thank them for attending. It can be as simple as beer and pizza. 

    The party weeks later isn't a reception. It's a celebration of your marriage. 


    This is not traditonal territory, but I'll give it a shot:


    Mr. and Mrs. Knottie#s
    are happy to announce their recent  marriage 
    which took place on Date

    Please join them for a celebration 
    on Date Time
    at Place

    Since this is a marriage announcement - it shouldn't be sent out until after the marriage takes place - no STDs. 



                
    Maggie0829adk19
  • MairePoppyMairePoppy Connecticut
    Moderator Eighth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its
    mod
    I agree 100 percent with Maggie.

    Those people who don't make the cut for your ceremony may wonder why you're invitng them to a less important party. They may think your fishing for gifts. 

    Sending STDs well before the event only highlights that you planned to exclude them from the ceremony. That would be adding insult to injury.

                
    charlotte989875CMGragainadk19
  • CMGragainCMGragain
    10000 Comments 500 Love Its Fourth Anniversary 25 Answers
    member
    edited October 2015
    Let me give it a try.

    Brides Full Name
    and
    Groom's Full Name
    announce their marriage
    Date of marriage
    City, State

    The pleasure of your company is requested
    to celebrate their recent marriage
    Date
    Venue
    Address
    City, State

    No wedding gown.  No wedding traditions.  Do not register for gifts.  This is a party, and it is not a part of your wedding.

    httpiimgurcomTCCjW0wjpg
    JediElizabethadk19MairePoppyonefootinthebayou
  • marie2785marie2785
    100 Love Its 100 Comments First Anniversary Name Dropper
    member
    edited October 2015
    Although people may find it odd, and some may not attend because they are offended that you didn't invite them to the ceremony, etiquette wise it is perfectly acceptable to have a party later. In your case, since it's not a wedding, it's just a party, you'll have to accept that people might put it on a lower tier in their social calendar than other actual  weddings they get invited to that day. And save the dates would only serve to highlight that you are not inviting people to the ceremony, which may lead to some awkward phone calls from people wondering what is up. So I'd strongly recommend avoiding those. Let people you're close to know verbally ahead of the invite going out, but be aware the "oh when/where is the ceremony" questions may follow.

    MairePoppy provided a good format, so I recommend using hers. I've seen it done a few times using her format, and most guests are happy. I mean, free food and alcohol tends to attract a good crowd! As long as you don't try to act like its your actual reception (so no first dances or wedding dresses, but cake is ALWAYS ok), then you're in the clear! 
    adk19
  • MairePoppyMairePoppy Connecticut
    Moderator Eighth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its
    mod
    I know I'm in the minority, but I'm going to disagree about the wedding dress thing. I don't see anything wrong with wearing the wedding dress to this party, as long as it fits with formality of the party. If you plan on wearing it twice, keep in mind it's intended use when shopping for it. A ballgown is going to look silly at a backyard BBQ. 

    And cake? Yes, please. 




                
    simcal18[Deleted User]
  • I know I'm in the minority, but I'm going to disagree about the wedding dress thing. I don't see anything wrong with wearing the wedding dress to this party, as long as it fits with formality of the party. If you plan on wearing it twice, keep in mind it's intended use when shopping for it. A ballgown is going to look silly at a backyard BBQ. 

    And cake? Yes, please. 




    I agree if you had a small wedding and just wore a white cocktail dress then a party that you can wear that to would be fine.. It would be awkward to be in a large ballgown dress in your backyard when everyone else is in shorts and tank tops..
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    MairePoppy
  • I know that I'm late but DEF SEND SAVE THE DATES!!!!! A lot of the people here are really caught up in their own cultures and traditions. Not blaming them because we all get caught up in our own traditions. But in the end, this is you and your partners wedding.

    That being said, you always need to send some form of invitation or save the date for any major event so that people can save it in their calendar.

    And weddings can span anywhere from 1 day to several weeks and can be broken up over time.That is something that will be up to you and your family though. Our ceremony is only for close family as well, but our 2 day celebration is for the rest of our 300 guest. If someone declines to celebrate with you and partner because they couldn't attend a portion of your wedding, then thats their loss and not yours dear =] 
    Wedding Countdown Ticker
    abbeyjenkins
  • I know that I'm late but DEF SEND SAVE THE DATES!!!!! A lot of the people here are really caught up in their own cultures and traditions. Not blaming them because we all get caught up in our own traditions. But in the end, this is you and your partners wedding.

    That being said, you always need to send some form of invitation or save the date for any major event so that people can save it in their calendar.

    And weddings can span anywhere from 1 day to several weeks and can be broken up over time.That is something that will be up to you and your family though. Our ceremony is only for close family as well, but our 2 day celebration is for the rest of our 300 guest. If someone declines to celebrate with you and partner because they couldn't attend a portion of your wedding, then thats their loss and not yours dear =] 
    This is just so wrong.
    httpiimgurcomTCCjW0wjpg
    adk19MGP
  • ILoveBeachMusicILoveBeachMusic Indiana
    2500 Comments 500 Love Its Third Anniversary 5 Answers
    member
    CMGragain said:
    I know that I'm late but DEF SEND SAVE THE DATES!!!!! A lot of the people here are really caught up in their own cultures and traditions. Not blaming them because we all get caught up in our own traditions. But in the end, this is you and your partners wedding.

    That being said, you always need to send some form of invitation or save the date for any major event so that people can save it in their calendar.

    And weddings can span anywhere from 1 day to several weeks and can be broken up over time.That is something that will be up to you and your family though. Our ceremony is only for close family as well, but our 2 day celebration is for the rest of our 300 guest. If someone declines to celebrate with you and partner because they couldn't attend a portion of your wedding, then thats their loss and not yours dear =] 
    This is just so wrong.
    Remember this is an international board and to have a wedding spanning several days is not wrong in all cultures and traditions.

  • CMGragain said:
    I know that I'm late but DEF SEND SAVE THE DATES!!!!! A lot of the people here are really caught up in their own cultures and traditions. Not blaming them because we all get caught up in our own traditions. But in the end, this is you and your partners wedding.

    That being said, you always need to send some form of invitation or save the date for any major event so that people can save it in their calendar.

    And weddings can span anywhere from 1 day to several weeks and can be broken up over time.That is something that will be up to you and your family though. Our ceremony is only for close family as well, but our 2 day celebration is for the rest of our 300 guest. If someone declines to celebrate with you and partner because they couldn't attend a portion of your wedding, then thats their loss and not yours dear =] 
    This is just so wrong.
    Remember this is an international board and to have a wedding spanning several days is not wrong in all cultures and traditions.

    There are special boards on The Knot to discuss traditions that differ from western wedding traditions.  Please discuss them there - not here.
    httpiimgurcomTCCjW0wjpg
  • Maggie0829Maggie0829 Ravens & Bohs & Crabs & O's
    Eighth Anniversary 10000 Comments 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    member
    CMGragain said:
    CMGragain said:
    I know that I'm late but DEF SEND SAVE THE DATES!!!!! A lot of the people here are really caught up in their own cultures and traditions. Not blaming them because we all get caught up in our own traditions. But in the end, this is you and your partners wedding.

    That being said, you always need to send some form of invitation or save the date for any major event so that people can save it in their calendar.

    And weddings can span anywhere from 1 day to several weeks and can be broken up over time.That is something that will be up to you and your family though. Our ceremony is only for close family as well, but our 2 day celebration is for the rest of our 300 guest. If someone declines to celebrate with you and partner because they couldn't attend a portion of your wedding, then thats their loss and not yours dear =] 
    This is just so wrong.
    Remember this is an international board and to have a wedding spanning several days is not wrong in all cultures and traditions.

    There are special boards on The Knot to discuss traditions that differ from western wedding traditions.  Please discuss them there - not here.
    You can't tell people where to post.  And I think you missed where ILoveBeachMusic said that this is an international board, meaning not just Americans can post here.

    And as with all things, just because it may be tradition to one person in a particular culture doesn't mean that everyone in that culture agrees (ie dollar dances, cash bars, tiered receptions, etc, etc).  So to say that having a several week wedding celebration isn't wrong in some cultures is like saying that toonie bars in Canada are super okay.  General statements like that are never correct.

    redoryx
  • I know that I'm late but DEF SEND SAVE THE DATES!!!!! A lot of the people here are really caught up in their own cultures and traditions. Not blaming them because we all get caught up in our own traditions. But in the end, this is you and your partners wedding.

    That being said, you always need to send some form of invitation or save the date for any major event so that people can save it in their calendar.

    And weddings can span anywhere from 1 day to several weeks and can be broken up over time.That is something that will be up to you and your family though. Our ceremony is only for close family as well, but our 2 day celebration is for the rest of our 300 guest. If someone declines to celebrate with you and partner because they couldn't attend a portion of your wedding, then thats their loss and not yours dear =] 
    Be VERY careful with this mentality.  While it is your wedding, keep in mind that you are still hosting guests and you'll need to be aware of etiquette.
    image
    adk19
  • I know that I'm late but DEF SEND SAVE THE DATES!!!!! A lot of the people here are really caught up in their own cultures and traditions. Not blaming them because we all get caught up in our own traditions. But in the end, this is you and your partners wedding.

    That being said, you always need to send some form of invitation or save the date for any major event so that people can save it in their calendar.

    And weddings can span anywhere from 1 day to several weeks and can be broken up over time.That is something that will be up to you and your family though. Our ceremony is only for close family as well, but our 2 day celebration is for the rest of our 300 guest. If someone declines to celebrate with you and partner because they couldn't attend a portion of your wedding, then thats their loss and not yours dear =] 
    Be VERY careful with this mentality.  While it is your wedding, keep in mind that you are still hosting guests and you'll need to be aware of etiquette.
    Miley, I don't know how I feel about you being all grown up and giving good advice.  It's very strange for me.
    pinupbride6189mileybangerzMairePoppyHeffalump
  • CMGragain said:
    CMGragain said:
    I know that I'm late but DEF SEND SAVE THE DATES!!!!! A lot of the people here are really caught up in their own cultures and traditions. Not blaming them because we all get caught up in our own traditions. But in the end, this is you and your partners wedding.

    That being said, you always need to send some form of invitation or save the date for any major event so that people can save it in their calendar.

    And weddings can span anywhere from 1 day to several weeks and can be broken up over time.That is something that will be up to you and your family though. Our ceremony is only for close family as well, but our 2 day celebration is for the rest of our 300 guest. If someone declines to celebrate with you and partner because they couldn't attend a portion of your wedding, then thats their loss and not yours dear =] 
    This is just so wrong.
    Remember this is an international board and to have a wedding spanning several days is not wrong in all cultures and traditions.

    There are special boards on The Knot to discuss traditions that differ from western wedding traditions.  Please discuss them there - not here.
    You can't tell people where to post.  And I think you missed where ILoveBeachMusic said that this is an international board, meaning not just Americans can post here.

    And as with all things, just because it may be tradition to one person in a particular culture doesn't mean that everyone in that culture agrees (ie dollar dances, cash bars, tiered receptions, etc, etc).  So to say that having a several week wedding celebration isn't wrong in some cultures is like saying that toonie bars in Canada are super okay.  General statements like that are never correct.

    Yeah, I'm really really uncomfortable with the idea that western/American ideas are the only ones acceptable at the main boards and all the other people have to go to the "cultural" boards.
    image
    Sherbie25
  • CMGragainCMGragain
    10000 Comments 500 Love Its Fourth Anniversary 25 Answers
    member
    edited October 2015
    My concern is that many new posters may see the international etiquette that is contrary to western etiquette, and assume that it is OK to do it.  I remember several years ago, there was a bride who wanted to have an Indian (Asian) wedding, but no one in her wedding was from that culture.  She thought it would be "unique" (Ick!).
    Wedding etiquette varies around the world.  On The Knot, I would guess that 99% of posters are from USA/Canada.  The advice given here usually conforms to that etiquette.  BECAUSE etiquette can be different in different cultures, we have special boards for those brides to use.   Not to have them would be really rude and western-centric.   If a Chinese bride asks a question about Chinese wedding etiquette, it only makes sense to ask that question on the board where it can be best answered.
    If my son were to marry someone from a different culture (as my daughter did), then I would expect to make some variances to accommodate that culture.  I would not post rules from another culture on the main board here because it could be misunderstood by other posters.
    @ILoveBeachMusic posted that having a wedding extending over several days is not wrong in all cultures.  However, it IS wrong in western culture, which is the most represented on the main board.  If you are going to post an exception to standard etiquette, then you need to qualify it.
    httpiimgurcomTCCjW0wjpg
  • ILoveBeachMusicILoveBeachMusic Indiana
    2500 Comments 500 Love Its Third Anniversary 5 Answers
    member
    edited October 2015
    CMGragain said:
    My concern is that many new posters may see the international etiquette that is contrary to western etiquette, and assume that it is OK to do it.  I remember several years ago, there was a bride who wanted to have an Indian (Asian) wedding, but no one in her wedding was from that culture.  She thought it would be "unique" (Ick!).
    Wedding etiquette varies around the world.  On The Knot, I would guess that 99% of posters are from USA/Canada.  The advice given here usually conforms to that etiquette.  BECAUSE etiquette can be different in different cultures, we have special boards for those brides to use.   Not to have them would be really rude and western-centric.   If a Chinese bride asks a question about Chinese wedding etiquette, it only makes sense to ask that question on the board where it can be best answered.
    If my son were to marry someone from a different culture (as my daughter did), then I would expect to make some variances to accommodate that culture.  I would not post rules from another culture on the main board here because it could be misunderstood by other posters.
    @ILoveBeachMusic posted that having a wedding extending over several days is not wrong in all cultures.  However, it IS wrong in western culture, which is the most represented on the main board.  If you are going to post an exception to standard etiquette, then you need to qualify it.
    I totally see your point @CMGrain. The reason I made my comment was that all you said was that the poster was "so wrong" with out telling her why. I know I can't tell you how or what to post on an internet forum but perhaps it might have been more useful to explain to someone from another culture that/why a wedding over several days is wrong in western culture. I would even qualify that to say a tiered wedding because western weddings are extending several days now if you count welcome parties the day before and farewell brunches/bar-b-qs the day after! BTW I totally agree that tiered events are against western etiquette and would never defend them.
    CMGragainspockforprez
  • CMGragain said:
    My concern is that many new posters may see the international etiquette that is contrary to western etiquette, and assume that it is OK to do it.  I remember several years ago, there was a bride who wanted to have an Indian (Asian) wedding, but no one in her wedding was from that culture.  She thought it would be "unique" (Ick!).
    Wedding etiquette varies around the world.  On The Knot, I would guess that 99% of posters are from USA/Canada.  The advice given here usually conforms to that etiquette.  BECAUSE etiquette can be different in different cultures, we have special boards for those brides to use.   Not to have them would be really rude and western-centric.   If a Chinese bride asks a question about Chinese wedding etiquette, it only makes sense to ask that question on the board where it can be best answered.
    If my son were to marry someone from a different culture (as my daughter did), then I would expect to make some variances to accommodate that culture.  I would not post rules from another culture on the main board here because it could be misunderstood by other posters.
    @ILoveBeachMusic posted that having a wedding extending over several days is not wrong in all cultures.  However, it IS wrong in western culture, which is the most represented on the main board.  If you are going to post an exception to standard etiquette, then you need to qualify it.
    I totally see your point @CMGrain. The reason I made my comment was that all you said was that the poster was "so wrong" with out telling her why. I know I can't tell you how or what to post on an internet forum but perhaps it might have been more useful to explain to someone from another culture that/why a wedding over several days is wrong in western culture. I would even qualify that to say a tiered wedding because western weddings are extending several days now if you count welcome parties the day before and farewell brunches/bar-b-qs the day after! BTW I totally agree that tiered events are against western etiquette and would never defend them.

    Yup, this. I totally get where you were coming from CMG, but I just don't think it was articulated in a way that makes it feel that all views are allowed here, that's all! 
    image
    CMGragain
  • @adk19 said:
    I know that I'm late but DEF SEND SAVE THE DATES!!!!! A lot of the people here are really caught up in their own cultures and traditions. Not blaming them because we all get caught up in our own traditions. But in the end, this is you and your partners wedding.

    That being said, you always need to send some form of invitation or save the date for any major event so that people can save it in their calendar.

    And weddings can span anywhere from 1 day to several weeks and can be broken up over time.That is something that will be up to you and your family though. Our ceremony is only for close family as well, but our 2 day celebration is for the rest of our 300 guest. If someone declines to celebrate with you and partner because they couldn't attend a portion of your wedding, then thats their loss and not yours dear =] 
    Be VERY careful with this mentality.  While it is your wedding, keep in mind that you are still hosting guests and you'll need to be aware of etiquette.
    Miley, I don't know how I feel about you being all grown up and giving good advice.  It's very strange for me.
    hahahaha, I just saw this ;)  Thanks!
    image
    kimmiinthemittenadk19
  • redoryx said:
    CMGragain said:
    CMGragain said:
    I know that I'm late but DEF SEND SAVE THE DATES!!!!! A lot of the people here are really caught up in their own cultures and traditions. Not blaming them because we all get caught up in our own traditions. But in the end, this is you and your partners wedding.

    That being said, you always need to send some form of invitation or save the date for any major event so that people can save it in their calendar.

    And weddings can span anywhere from 1 day to several weeks and can be broken up over time.That is something that will be up to you and your family though. Our ceremony is only for close family as well, but our 2 day celebration is for the rest of our 300 guest. If someone declines to celebrate with you and partner because they couldn't attend a portion of your wedding, then thats their loss and not yours dear =] 
    This is just so wrong.
    Remember this is an international board and to have a wedding spanning several days is not wrong in all cultures and traditions.

    There are special boards on The Knot to discuss traditions that differ from western wedding traditions.  Please discuss them there - not here.
    You can't tell people where to post.  And I think you missed where ILoveBeachMusic said that this is an international board, meaning not just Americans can post here.

    And as with all things, just because it may be tradition to one person in a particular culture doesn't mean that everyone in that culture agrees (ie dollar dances, cash bars, tiered receptions, etc, etc).  So to say that having a several week wedding celebration isn't wrong in some cultures is like saying that toonie bars in Canada are super okay.  General statements like that are never correct.

    Yeah, I'm really really uncomfortable with the idea that western/American ideas are the only ones acceptable at the main boards and all the other people have to go to the "cultural" boards.
    Some people obviously haven't learnt their lesson...
    Wedding Countdown Ticker





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