Three Tips To Successfully Creating Your Guest List

Posted by: Alisha Rouland, Event Coordinator Creating a guest list can be a daunting and confusing task! Should you invite all 500 of your facebook friends, your parent's college friend whom you've never met, or your favorite middle school teacher? Usually the size of the guest list is determined on your wedding budget. It is also helpful to consider the size of your wedding venue - a backyard wedding may not accommodate your 400 person guest list. Below are three tips to assist you in creating your wedding guest list.

1. Compile an initial guest list

Traditionally, half of the guest list goes to the bride's family, and half to the groom's family. Ask that each family create their own list of guests. Think of groups of friends or clubs of which you belong (example: church, co-workers, recreation leagues, etc.) Finally, go through your address books to make sure you did not forget anyone. Once you have your initial list compiled, the hard part begins...

2. Separate names into categories

With the help of your groom and family, begin to place people into three categories. Placing guests into categories, as terrible as it sounds, will be very helpful in getting your guest list count to an acceptable budget-friendly number. Let's say your wedding budget allows for 200 guests, and in your Group A and Group B you have 200 guests to invite, and 50 in your Group C. Typically 70-80% of guests invited attend, so as you receive a "No" RSVP from someone on the A or B list, you can send someone from your Group C an invitation.

1. Group A (Definite Invites): Examples of guests on this list would be those involved in the wedding (parents and bridal party for example) or immediate family members (grandparents and siblings.)

2. Group B (Probable Invites): Examples of guests on this list would be other family members and close friends.

3. Group C (Optional Invites): Examples of guests on this list might include friends you haven't seen in years, work acquaintances, distant relatives or children. While it is appreciated by single guests, if your guest list is overflowing, it is not necessary to invite all single guests to have a plus one.

3. Check your list for any duplications

Double check your list to eliminate any overlap that may have been caused during the formation of your guest list. It would be unfortunate to invite the same person twice and eliminate another potential guest.

Special Note: If you haven't already, consider sending RSVP Cards along with your invitations. Caterers and bakers require an accurate head count to make sure there is sufficient food for your guests. It would be a shame to run out of food before all guests are served or be costly if you have an overabundance of food. In addition, having an accurate list of guests helps when creating the seating arrangements. If this sounds overwhelming, remember that the Event Coordinators at The 530 Bride can help!

Happy Planning!