Coast Bridal asked expert Connie Dryden, owner of Island Flowers and Nefertiti Bridal, and a member of Galveston Bridal Group, in downtown Galveston, to answer some of the most common wedding etiquette questions.
What is appropriate wedding guest attire?
Women should wear dresses. Men should wear suits. The invitation may read “Black Tie Optional” or “Cocktail Attire.” Women should avoid wearing white and men should avoid wearing black.
Tip: Consider venue, time of day, church ceremony. Dress accordingly.
How should gifts be chosen?
Cash is a welcome gift but should never be stated on the invitation. Gift cards are appropriate and easy to bring to the wedding. Gift items can be mailed to the bride’s home before the wedding or taken to the wedding.
Tip: Designate gift tables at venues.
How should RSVP’s be handled?
The deadline for guests to respond should be 20-30 days prior to wedding date. This gives the bride time to make follow-up phone calls.
Tip: Vendors need that time for preparation. It’s a challenge to add a table or take a table away at the last minute.
Are cash bars appropriate at weddings?
No. Guests should not pay for their own drinks. The better solution is to plan for alcoholic beverages according to your budget. If you can afford an open bar, do it. Beer and wine only also is appropriate.
Tip: Signature cocktails are chic and affordable.
Do we have to provide meals for vendors?
Meals should be provided for those who work through your wedding timeline.
Tip: If space permits, it’s great to provide a table for vendors.
What are bridesmaid duties?
Be available in planning stages to accompany the bride to meetings, gown selection, etc. Attend pre-wedding parties and participate in activities on the wedding weekend.
Tip: Brides need trusted friends to help in all the little details of her wedding day.
Is it appropriate to take your own photos of the ceremony?
It is very tempting to do so, but ask permission of the bride and groom first. A professional photographer has been paid to take photos as directed by the wedding couple.
Tip: Silence phones during the ceremony.
When can I post photos of the reception on social media?
Get permission before posting photos.
Tip: The bride and groom have the privilege of posting “first peak” of their wedding.
Do I need to follow traditions when planning my wedding?
You can and should customize your wedding to make it uniquely yours. Forgo the toss bouquet, garter toss, etc. if you wish. Write your own inspired nuptials.
Tip: Include special touches that tell your own love story.
Do I need a wedding planner?
Yes. Even if you love planning and organizing your life, your wedding is another category. The right professional will guide, console, refer the best vendors, help you budget and treat your guests like royalty.
Tip: You deserve a stress-free wedding day. Your planner will make that happen.