It’s finally happened. You are old enough to have close friends that are getting married. When did we become so grown up?!
In your 20’s, you are new to the wedding world. Most brides, grooms, or wedding attendees seek wedding advice, tips, and formalities from their elders: whom to invite, what to say, what to wear, what to give… the list of questions is, in all honesty, endless! If you are a bride or groom that is working with a wedding planner, this inquisitive list can be checked off quite easily. For guests, or those without a planner, we have a woman named Emily Post.
Emily Post was an American author, renowned for her books on proper etiquette. Though the guru of civility has past, she is still the go-to for brides, grooms, and wedding planners across the country. Her manners and spirit are still alive with the help of the authors in her family.
Though she is known for her traditional thinking, Ms. Post has certainly evolved over the years. Her most recent book includes modern day circumstances such as same sex marriage, budgeting for the bridal party, and today’s music selections. Emily Post’s Wedding Etiquette, 6th Edition, is said to be the end-all, be-all to proper wedding and event formalities.
So don’t worry friends – Ms. Post has you covered. Here are your top questions, answered. Thank you Post family!
As a member of the bridal party:
What are the expectations of being a bridesmaid?
Generally, bridesmaids should purchase their own wedding-day attire (dress/shoes/jewelry, as directed by the bride). Bridesmaids should also give a wedding gift, though many couples consider the attendants’ participation as their gift.
Are the bridesmaids/maid of honor expected to host a shower?
The answer is no. Contrary to popular belief, bridesmaids are not required to host a shower and the bride should not insist that they do. If the bridesmaids would like to plan a shower, it is pertinent that they are all in agreement. The maid of honor or a single bridesmaid should never organize a party an expect others to help pay for it.
More common hosts for showers are close friends of the couple or the couple’s parents. If there are multiple showers thrown, the host should be considerate when inviting guests and should not invite guests to more than one shower (exceptions might be close family members).
Can more than the bridal party be invited to showers/bachelorette?
Of course. There are few rules when it comes to a tasteful bachelorette party. Invited guests usually include the bridal party, close friends or relatives, and possibly the mothers of the bride and groom.
Who pays for the bachelorette party?
Guests should pay their own way, as well has help cover the cost of the bride. Just be sure that it’s clear before the celebration begins. No gifts should be expected but if gifts are given, they are usually inexpensive or humorous.
As a guest:
If you cannot attend a shower, are you obligated to send a gift?
No, though sometimes close friends or relatives do.
How much should you spend on a shower gift?
Shower gifts should be less expensive than the wedding gift and are usually centered around a theme.
How much should you spend on a wedding gift?
There are many theories on how to calculate the perfectly budgeted wedding gift. Emily tells us that the gift should be based on the giver’s affection for and relationship to the couple and their families and on their personal budget.
I’m inviting to the wedding but can’t come. Do I have to give a gift?
Yes, it is proper to mail one to the couple.
I am invited to the reception only. Do I have to give a gift?
Whether it is the same day or a belated reception, you are not required to give a gift, though you may do so if you wish.
I received an “and guest.” How do I handle the gift giving?
The person invited should is responsible for purchasing the gift.
What questions do you have for the Post family? Comment below and I will do my best to answer! Looking for the entire guide to wedding etiquette? Emily Post’s Wedding Etiquette, 6th Edition is available on Amazon. You can find daily tips at http://www.emilypost.com.
Happy wedding season!