Wedding Etiquette- The Do’s & Don’ts

May 18, 2018

I recently attended the wedding of my best friend of 14 years and was lucky enough to be a part of her special day as a bridesmaid. This was my first time not only being included in a wedding party, but attending a wedding in general. Needless to say- I cried the whole time.

I was worried, when my friend asked me to be a part of the day. Having heard horror stories of usual calm and nice people turning into Bridezillas, a part of me couldn’t help but worry about what was to come. My friend of course though, was a straight out legend and handled the whole process in the most fantastic way, and had the perfect wedding to show for it.

I guess being wrapped up in the wedding air, made me start to think (and overthink) about simple wedding etiquette. No one ever gives you a crash course on weddings, and I was left with a lot of questions in the lead up to the wedding and even after, as to what is expected of you as a guest.

With my brain going into overdrive, I compiled up a bit of research and might as well pass it on to those in the same boat as me.

Plus Ones

Never just assume you have a plus one. Mainly being because those getting married pay for your meals, so understandably, not allowing plus ones is a great way to easily manage the guest list and remain within budget.

If you are a guest and your invitation is unclear as to whether you can bring a plus one, my first pointer would be to consider if your plus one would get value from the day. If you have recently started seeing someone and your friends have not even met them- maybe it is best to leave them at home.

One rule I kept coming across through research and which is becoming increasingly popular, is the ‘no ring-no bring’ theory. This simply means, if you aren’t engaged to your plus one- don’t bring them along. This theory, although blunt and harsh, is (in my opinion) a fair enough call.

Obviously this all depends on the situation and if you have been dating someone for years who is well known to your friends- they will be more inclined to allow your plus one.

The important thing to remember is that this is a day which is really special to those getting married, and usually invitees are those who are closest to them.

Gifting

I don’t know about you but I hate getting people gifts- simply because of the stress it gives me. Getting people things that they need/want/will use is my main goal when purchasing a gift, which is why the concept of a gift registry is the most exciting thing I have ever heard of. If people ask you for something- listen to their request- they will use it more than a random gift you get them.

Another question often asked is how much money to give if that is what is desired. Mystery solved- the appropriate amount to gift should cover the cost of your dinner at their wedding. Meaning if they paid $150 per person, that is how much you should gift- at least.

Wedding Party Etiquette

If you are a part of the wedding party there are certain etiquettes specific to you. First rule- the wedding isn’t about you. You have been chosen to be a part of an incredibly special day to someone and if you are going to complain every step of the way, maybe you need to re-evaluate what friendship means to you.

As a part of the wedding party you will be expected to spend money on the wedding. Whether is be for your hair/makeup or your clothing for the day, you should factor that in before saying yes.

Obvious Don’ts

Don’t wear white, cream or anything else similar to white unless instructed otherwise. Don’t rock up drunk- respect the ceremony and leave the partying until later. Lastly, don’t do drama- It’s not about you princess xx

Understandably, there are different rules depending on the people getting married. So at the end of the day all it really comes down to is the union of two people, and celebrating their love and that is all that should really matter.

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She Society is a site for the women of Australia to share our stories, our experiences, shared learnings and opportunities to connect.