Every bride I have ever worked with has encountered some sort of sticky situation during the course of planning her wedding. Brides want to please everyone, and it is not always possible. While you may not be able to please all of the people all of the time, there are usually gracious ways to resolve many of the issues that crop up with a minimum of drama. These are the answers to many of the most common wedding dilemmas.
“My Guests All Want to Bring a Plus One” It is not necessary to allow all of your guests to bring along a date, especially in this economy. It is reasonable that couples would rather spend more money entertaining their close friends and family than paying for dinners for strangers. The way to handle this dilemma is to be fair in how you handle plus ones – if you pick and choose about who can bring a date and who cannot, then you are in for trouble. You should always invite married or engaged couples as a pair, and if you know that someone is in a long term relationship, it is appropriate to invite their partner as well. It is absolutely acceptable not to send out invitations that state “and guest”, as long as it is uniform.
“My Mother Wants Me to Wear Her Wedding Gown” Most moms have dreamed about their daughter’s wedding day since they were little girls. It is only natural that when mothers picture that special day it might include seeing their daughters in the same bridal gown that they wore. However, it is just as natural that a bride wants to pick her own unique wedding dress that reflects her personal style. To solve this dilemma without a lot of hurt feelings, it is important to respect your mother’s sentimental feelings. Many brides can find a compromise by agreeing to wear their mother’s veil with a new wedding dress. Another option is to see if a seamstress can recreate your mother’s gown into an updated style. Add your own fabulous necklace and earrings and make it your own – everyone will be happy.
“I Don’t Want to Have Children at My Wedding” Much like the plus one situation, it is fine not to invite children at your wedding as long as you apply the rule evenly. Pick a cut off age, like no kids under 16 or no children under 10. Then you have to apply it across the board with no exceptions. People might not like it, but at least it will be even. Another option is to have a night wedding that starts so late that nobody will want to bring their kids anyway. Simply put the parents’ names only on the invitation, and if they ask you if they can bring their children, explain that it is an adults only reception.
“My Bridesmaids Can’t Agree on a Dress” Frankly, it would be amazing if your bridesmaids could agree on a dress. If there is no agreement on the horizon, you have two options: either make a unilateral decision taking your bridesmaids’ preferences into account as much as possible or allow each woman to choose her own dress. Search pictures of bridesmaids in different dresses to see if you like the look, because it can be really pretty or quite disorganized depending on how it is done. Ultimately, though, remember that it is the bride’s right to choose the bridesmaid dresses for her own wedding as long as she does it graciously.