Contrary to popular opinion your wedding day is not just about you. You and your other half are of course at the centre but how you treat your guests will mark a successful or unsuccessful event.
You won’t go far wrong if you put yourself in your guests' shoes. Think about the guest journey from the moment they receive their invitation to the moment they get home after your wedding; every element should be well thought out.
Lets start from the top, an invitation sets the tone of your wedding. Are you having quite a traditional or informal wedding, modern or rustic? The invitation should embody the type of wedding you are going to have. Help guests get excited about your day. Don’t forget to make it easy for the guests to get to your wedding, and put all relevant information clearly on the invitation.
The Wedding Day
Now for the magical day itself. Think about guests from the moment they leave their door. Is there ample spaces for guests to park at your venue? Have you sourced alternatives? Nothing sets a wedding day off on a more sour note than if you have a group of sweaty and irritable guests entering your ceremony. Think about how to welcome guests, you could do this with creative signage, perhaps a glass of champagne, even giving guests some water once they arrive shows thought. Guests almost always arrive early, if the location where the ceremony is taking place isn’t ready for them, make sure there is a comfortable area for guests to wait.
The most anticipated part of your day, the ceremony. A lot of focus should go on this part of the day. The most important thing here is that guests should be able to see the ceremony taking place. Circular seating around the wedding couple goes down a treat, as does an elevated stage so that people can see the action. Length also plays a massive role here, although a long ceremony may be really important to you and your other half, remember there are also many people watching you so it’s important to strike a balance. It is so important to involve guests as much as possible on your day, why not put a ceremony explainer on peoples seats so they can follow the ceremony easily? This will keep people really engaged.
Frequently after a ceremony there is some sort of drinks reception. What is the guests greatest pet peeve of any wedding guest? A long drinks reception. If you do need to have a long reception because the main room is being dressed for the party, then make sure to keep guests fed and watered and to provide generous seating.
Seating is crucial. It’s important that you and your partner don't try and please everyone, but bear in mind that putting people on tables they will enjoy will truly help create a good atmosphere. Don’t put 60 year old recently divorced Sandra with your 7 year old cousin, often single people feel particularly vulnerable at weddings so make sure to sit them on a table they feel comfortable. The tables are a great opportunity to make guests feel special. Why don’t you write guests a handwritten note? You could write a lovely memory you and your guest have shared. Interactive activities also are great ice breakers at a wedding. Why don’t you ask guests to write a ‘wish for the future couple’ and place it in a bowl in the middle.
Food, drink & dancing
Food, drink & dancing is such a key part of a wedding . Make all these three things easily accessible to guests. Make sure your guests aren't queuing at the bar, invest in good quality bar staff so guests aren’t waiting for a drink. Make sure people are well fed and those with special dietary requirements are catered for.
As for the dancing, investing in the right DJ or band will be the single biggest thing that will contribute to your atmosphere, so make sure to think long and hard about this decision. Think about the type of atmosphere you want to create and hire entertainment to reflect this.
It is also important to think about guests getting home. Have you got a list of local taxi numbers readily available? Is there a cloak room assistant readily on hand to give guests their coats?These are all important elements not to overlook.
If you put yourself in your guests' shoes from start to finish you won’t go far wrong.
We would love to use our expertise to help enhance yours and your wedding guests' experience on your wedding day. Feel free to give us a call to discuss ways we can assist.