Comprehensive Wedding Checklists

5
Determining Formality for Your Wedding
Writt en by Kas Winters, Bride's Do-I t-Yourself Wedding P lanner
Very Fo rmal
A very formal wedding would be more likely to t ake place in a churc h, sy nagogue or pr est igious hotel than in a
garden. T his is usually f or t wo hundred or more guests and c an take place at noon, in the af ternoon or af ter six
o'c loc k p.m. for an evening wedding. Some c har ac terist ic s of a ver y formal wedding would include: engraved
invitations; semi-formal dr ess for guests wi th formal attire for the wedding par ty (i nc luding a l ong train and veil and
full bouquet for t he bri de) ; a si t-down dinner or festive buf fet ; dancing to an or c hestr a; elaborate decorati ons
including f lor al centerpiec es; a large wedding party (four to twelve bridesmaids); and formal photography wit h set-
up shots as well as candids. A v ery formal wedding is generally t he most expensive opti on available to y ou.
Formal
T he c er emony c ould be held in a c hur c h, synagogue, hotel, a home, garden, or one of the many sites suggested
under si te selection such as a hi stor ic building or cl ubhouse. Traditionally, a f ormal wedding is for one hundr ed
guests or more. A formal wedding would inc lude: formal invit ations; a bridal gown but less formal atti r e for
at tendant s; a meal ( but perhaps a l unc heon or simple buff et); dancing t o a band; f loral ar r angement s i n a c hurch or
at the head t able; a medium - si z ed wedding party ( two to six bridesmaids) ; and professional phot ogr aphy .
Semi-Formal
Locations for semi-formal wedding c an be more varied and a single location for c eremony and r ec eption is more
com mon for a semi0formal wedding. T hi s st y le of wedding would incl ude one hundr ed or fewer guests. Invitations
can be simple, wit hout inserts and return c ar ds; dr ess is less formal, wi th t he bri de per haps wearing a less
elaborate dress ( floor length or shorter) ; f ood may be in t he form of a simple buffet; dancing t o a DJ, simple
decor ations, a smaller wedding par ty ( one or two br idesmaids) and mostly candid phot ogr aphy wit h a few setup
s hots.
Casu al o r Informal
Locations are unlimited. Guests can be limited t o family members and very cl ose friends. Invit ations c ould be as
simple as a phone call or personal invitati on; dress is casual with t he br ide wear ing a street length dress or sui t;
food might be lim ited t o cak e wit h punc h or champagne or per haps cock tails and hors d'oeuvres; entertainment is
opt ional; decor ations are opt ional; t he wedding party may consist of a m aid or matron of honor and best man only ;
and a personal fri end may be responsible for c apturi ng the event wit h a camer a. An informal or c asual wedding is
probably the least expensive weddi ng option.
Ch eck out th e p ossibil iti es!
Mak e y our wedding uniquely fit the two of you. If none of t he above are just ri ght, consi der these ideas and keep
on imagining until you are bot h happy wit h the plan. I t's YO UR wedding, make it as special as the two of you.
G uidelines to f ormality ar e not wr itt en in st one, and many wedding t r aditions are challenged r egular ly. On the ot her
hand, if a stri c tly formal by -t he- r ules weddi ng is to your li k ing, t he following c har t will be a handy guide to k eeping
within t he standar d r ules for eti quett e.
Very Fo rmal Formal Semi-Formal
Casu al o r
Information
Locati on
Church, Synagogue,
Temple or presti gious h otel
Church, hotel, hom e,
gar den or other possi bilities
Church, hom e, many
possibilities
Open
# G uests
200 or m or e 100 or m or e 100 or l es s Fam ily an d cl ose fri ends
Page 5/33
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