Setting your wedding guest list

When setting your guest list, be prepared for a few hours (days… weeks…) work!


All about the priorities


You need to decide on your biggest priorities first, as in who NEEDS to be at the wedding. Some people want to invite everyone in their family, their friendship groups & their work colleagues too. Others want to just share the day with their nearest & dearest. This is something only you & your other half can decide – no one can tell you who HAS to be there, remember that!


The number of people you can invite may be decided by where you have your wedding. If you have your heart set on a particular venue, ask them how many people they can hold. Makes sense right? If it HAS to be at this venue, but they can only accommodate 100 guests & you have 150+ on your list? Well you have some hard decisions to make!


Budgeting, baby


Set a budget for your day (It doesn’t have to be exact) This will help you get quotes from venues while allowing you to figure out the specific number later. Now with this in mind, if your budget is pretty tight BUT you have a long “wish list” of guests… well, some plans may need to be adjusted.

Similarly if your budget is more generous, but your guest list is small but perfectly formed, well you could have a more lavish affair.


So you have a rough number, & it’s a mix of your family & friends. Have you remembered to account for kids & the plus ones? Go back through each one & double check. (Obviously if you don’t want young ones at your wedding then ignore that part! You’re entitled to have a child-free day if you want. Unless it’s YOUR kids, in which case it may be frowned upon 😉  )


If you’re looking at this list & it’s still too long, a couple of ideas come to mind.


One of the most popular options is to invite people JUST to the reception. This keeps the cost down – as they won’t be eating with you at the main meal – but they still get to celebrate with you.

Another way is to just go back to basics, write down everyone who HAS to be there – the wedding just wouldn’t be the same without them – & see how many spaces you have left after this. Create a “back up” list & once your must-haves have replied, then move to the second list. it may seem a less diplomatic approach, but it does work well.


I hope this has been useful? Basically, setting a guest list is highly personal to YOU, and also a highly contentious issue once other people get their opinions in! I’d love to help you get your guest list set, so please do email so we can have a chat.


Let me know in the comments what you think & if you’ve any other helpful hints you’d like to share.