The best way to start to get control on your budgtet is to get control of the guest list. Sorry to say, unless you have unlimited funds, you cannot invite everyone to this wedding, plain and simple! You need a plan, and, yes, you do have control. You may not like it but you have a choice! The list of guests is up to you. Here are some tips for organizing and reducing your wedding guest list.
Let’s get started.
1. You and your fiance make a list.
2. Bride’s parents make a list.
3. Groom’s parents make a list.
Now you have three lists. Is this final? No. By the way, NO is a sentence! A sentence that you WILL be using a lot in this planning process.�
Now devise a system. I don’t care what letters you use, but I use A, B, AND C. A = Absolute, should be important and close family members and close friends of the bride and groom; B=Possible but not necessary, extended family, colleagues and other friends; C=nice person but they really don’t have to be there. Everyone, I said, everyone has to do this! This is where it gets sticky, downright ugly. How are you going to avoid the arguments? Simply put, it comes down to money. Who is contributing what? Your future in-laws want to invite 125 people, well you have to ask the big bad question, “Are you going to help pay for them?” You are going to need a spreadsheet, TA DA I have one for you. You can use this link to download these handy tools. Life is so much easier with spreadsheets! Thank goodness for Excel!
This link is the coolest. vIt gives you everything you need. You have to check this out.
Or, if you just want a a guest list, use this: http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/templates/wedding-guest-list-TC010130853.aspx
Once you have your designations, put all the A people on one sheet, B on one and C on one. This information will help with your invitation response cards. You will send your invitations out early enough that you will have two response cards with two different dates. When ordering your response cards, get an extra 25 with a second date.
Things to remember
Your single guests will want to bring a guest, so count two for every one single guest on your list. I personally think it is rude not to allow an adult single person not to bring a guest, and I say adult, not your 16 year old cousin who has been dating this guy her whole freshman and sophmore year. Just say NO. See, No is a sentence.
Now if you’re inside your wedding budget range, you’re good to go. You don’t need to do anything else except send them an invitation and wait for the replies to come back.
If you’re exceeding what you’ve allowed for in your wedding budget, then it’s time to cut the list back. ADVICE: EVERYONE, Moms, Dads, Bride, and Groom do not take it personally when you have to cut people. You have to be realistic about what you are willing to spend and this is the easiest way to keep costs to what you CAN AFFORD!
As you start receiving the RSVPs back from the A list, if any of them have gracefully declined, you can promptly send out invitations to the people on your B list.
Another way to keep your guest list controllable is to give some thought to not inviting those extended family members you’re not really close with, that maybe you only see once a year at a family reunion but no other time. You can further minimize the size of the guest list by cutting out those friends who have become more of occasional associates over the last year. Instead of putting these people on the guest list, simply send them a special announcement card after the wedding announcing your marriage.
Ok, this is tough but doable!
2012 Margaret Moore, www.simpleeleganceeventsandweddings.com
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Event Planning entrepreneur Margaret Moore with Simple Elegance Events and Wedding Designs publishes this weekly e-zine. Get your FREE “My Dream Wedding without the Nightmare” at www.simpleeleganceventsandweddings.com