Having your friends and family at your wedding is one of the main reasons you put so much time, effort, and money into your day. What would a celebration of love be without your favourite people in the world gathered around you?
It may seem obvious that you will spend time with your friends and family on your wedding day, but you need to make sure there is plenty of time to be together. When you are designing your timeline for the day, schedule time with your parents, siblings, bridal party and friends and other family members.
The day needs to be planned well. Let's do the math. If you have 40 guests and spend ten quality minutes with each of them, that adds up to over six hours. But with the ceremony, photos and video, speeches, cake cutting, dining and dancing, you don't get a spare six hours on this busy and exciting day. So you need to carefully consider who will be by your side for each part of the day so it's balanced and your time is maximised.
Getting ready is a time of the day when you are enjoying yourself and the excitement is building. Having your bridal party with you to do hair and make-up and get dressed is a wonderful way to spend quality time together. Include your parents and closest family members if possible. A favourite aunt would be thrilled to join her sister to help the bride get ready, for example. Start early so you can be dressed and prepared to go to the ceremony with an hour to spare for photos and to relax.
Carefully consider your seating plan for the evening. Will you keep it very formal with family and friends together in the groups they usually socialise with? Or will you take a more contemporary approach and mix them up? Your friends and family are coming together as one unit from today and forevermore. Having a table with some of the bride's side and some of the groom's side can be a great way to help everyone mingle.
One great part of getting married is having everyone meet each other. There are not many times in life that you have all the most important people in your life in one room. Seeing them all be introduced to each other and witnessing new friendships unfold is a blessing many couples treasure from their wedding day.
After the formalities are over, going around the tables to talk to guests before the dancing starts is a tradition that we find is sweet and appreciated by guests of all generations. It's also an excellent way to make sure you haven't missed spending at least a little time with every single guest.
Finally, take some moments to sit back with the love of your life and watch all your loved ones having fun. Enjoy seeing them having a lovely time, and remember they are there to celebrate your love story. Then join them and have a laugh, talk and be happy together. Enjoying your friends and family at the wedding is a highlight of the day and you have to make every moment count!