Listen ladies, I’m not sure if you’ve heard yet, but having a huge wedding is BACK for 2022! As we’re slowly moving away from the global pandemic and heading back into the world (we’ll miss you, dalgona coffee), it’s so exciting to start reuniting with friends and family! If you’ve been holding off on planning your wedding because you know you want a huge wedding, it’s finally your time to shine! Get it, girl! We know it’s been a while since anyone has hosted a HUGE wedding, so if you need a reminder or some advice, here’s how to host a huge wedding successfully while having an absolute blast celebrating with everyone!
Check with Your Venue
First things first, make sure your venue can accommodate a large number of guests! We’re not looking for any fire code violations, so double check with your venue before signing the contract to make sure they have the proper capacity for your group size. Don’t forget– if your wedding will be at several venues, check with each one individually! Be open to being creative – if your dream ceremony is an intimate setting that can only host a fraction of your potential invitees, don’t be afraid to invite some people to the ceremony and reception while inviting others to just the reception.
Get That Seating Chart Done, Now
The best gift you can give your future self while wedding planning is a head start. Even though it might feel early to start planning your seating chart, it’s not! Once your RSVPs roll in, sit down with your partner, open a bottle of wine (or several) and work on the seating chart. We promise you that there will be last-minute changes, but you will be thanking yourself for the extra time to plan! Bonus tip: Make sure you note what your reasons are for seating people where they are so you can be reminded if you have to make a change months later.
Request RSVP’s Sooner
Remember when you received your high school friend’s wedding invite and totally forgot to RSVP until like, 2 weeks before the wedding? First of all, never do that again! And second of all, don’t even give your friends and family the chance to RSVP late to your big day. With a huge wedding, you’ll have WAY more RSVP’s to keep track of and organize. So, our big tip is to send out your invites early, and request RSVP’s sooner than you think you’ll need them! That way, you’ll have time to finalize the count for caterers, florists, and your wedding planner. Digitally accepting RSVPs will make your lives a lot easier vs waiting for RSVPs in the mail. You will also be able to blast out a reminder as the RSVP deadline approaches to those who are taking their sweet time.
One of the best reasons to request RSVPs sooner is so you can get the party started with Guestie. Guestie connects your guests ahead of time so the celebration can start weeks before the wedding! Build out your event to show guests how they are connected to you and each other. Especially with a large wedding, your Guestie event sets the tone for your celebration and creates an intimate (and supportive!) community.
Splurge on an Open Bar
Can we get a “Hell yes!” on this one? We’re not going to sugarcoat it– hosting an open bar at a big wedding can get pricey fast. However, if you have the budget for it, or you can move some things around to make it doable, then go for it. The more bar locations set up around your venue, the less time guests are waiting in lines and the more time they will be having fun on the dance floor! Even a beer and wine only open bar will keep the party going!
Pro tip: Arrange to have the bar near to the dance floor so guests are more likely to dance than if the bar is in the back.
Plated Meals = Less Chaos
You know how crazy buffet lines get, like on a cruise or at a conference? Yeah, that’s because sending a massive group of people through one line to get food is just chaotic. Avoid the stress and mess of a buffet line and work with your caterer on a plated meal instead. Not only will this option allow your guests to relax and enjoy their meals during the reception, but it’ll also mean that everyone gets their food piping hot!
Be Intentional with Your Guest List
Just because you want to have a huge wedding doesn’t mean you should invite every person on your contact list. We like to remember the 5 year/5 minute rule: if you haven’t seen them in 5 years or wouldn’t want to spend more than 5 minutes speaking to them, take them off the list! Obviously it can be tricky to decide who to invite, but this rule has helped us narrow down our guest lists throughout the years and that’s why we love it!!
And About the Registry…
I’m sure this comes as no surprise to you, but 400 wedding guests means hundreds of wedding gifts. So ask yourself: do I have space for 400 wedding gifts? If the answer is yes, then great (and maybe include a visit from the Home Edit team on your registry), but if not, consider some wedding gift alternatives. One of our favorites is Honeyfund, where your guests can contribute to your honeymoon experience by buying you your flights, hotel, dining, etc. Want to go the charitable route? The Good Beginning is an amazing option that makes it easy for your guests to send a donation on your behalf!
With these tips, we know you’re going to pull off a huge top-tier wedding! Plus, if you’re feeling stressed we want to help however we can! Guestie is designed to help handle everything guest-related for your big wedding. Want to try it out? Click here to view the demo!