Tell us about your worst wedding experiences?

(490 Posts)
ENormaSnob Tue 08-May-12 13:49:48

Inspired by diamondsonthesoleofhershoes thread in aibu.

The worst wedding I have ever attended was an attempt at a big traditional wedding done on a tiny budget. Freezing cold room, luke warm daytime buffet with 2 choices served on paper plates that bent when the food hit them, no drinks at all, not even a toast after the speeches. There was a pay bar which is fine with me but not even one glass of wine with the meal seems mean. The night buffet was worse than the daytime one, a few plates of dry sarnies and 2 plates of mummified chicken. No pudding of any description throughout the whole day sad I was cold and hungry all day. The bride had told me before hand that most of their budget had gone on outfits for the wedding party and the cars. Cars which no one saw anyway confused On a positive note, the drinks weren't extortionate like they are in some places.

I am not a fussy cow btw, my ideal wedding as a guest would be a village hall type of affair with everyone bringing a plate and a bottle.

Weezie85 Tue 08-May-12 13:58:45

The worst one we went to was a wedding at 11am, which was about 90 minutes away from where everyone lived. No idea why they choose that venue as all the family and friends and the couple themselves lived within the same 10 mile radius of where we were coming from. The bride was late, the venue was very fancy so when we finally got out of the church at 12.30pm and went to the venue they served shots of green wheatgrass, tiny little appertifs and that was it until 4pm when the dinner was served. Thought I would die of starvation.
It was just such bad timing. Also the fact that it was literally in the middle of nowhere meant that you couldn't even just nip off to grab a packet of crisps. The venue was a stately home so didn't have snacks either.

Oscalito Tue 08-May-12 14:02:59

A wedding reception held by my cousin... in an office conference room in the city confused. Bright lights, no seats, lots of awkward standing around.... one plate of prawns appeared and then not much else, apart from bucketloads of very good wine. I was utterly smashed as the wedding was at five so no one ate.

Really strange as he is very wealthy.

Lottapianos Tue 08-May-12 14:04:18

My parents went to a black tie wedding in a castle on 28 December one year. There was no heating - absolutely none whatsoever. There were beautiful big stone fireplaces everywhere but they only had a few lit candles in shock The wedding was in Ireland where they really take the pee with making everyone wait hours for dinner so they will spend loads of dosh att the bar. The bar was a tiny area with a door that didn't close properly, and people were tramping in and out constantly for a fag so there was a gale blowing through the bar area. I remember it was a properly icy cold day too. My mum was wearing a sleeveless dress and a wool wrap - it took her days to warm up afterwards!

mistlethrush Tue 08-May-12 14:04:49

Bride was 45 mins late. Turns out that the photographer made her get back in the car, drive round the block and 'arrive' again from another angle for the film. Then everything in the service was repeated in about 10 min chunks - because they weren't allowed to film the 'actual' ceremony, but the priest would allow it to be filmed again immediately afterwards. Arrived at reception, half a glass of warm fizz whilst we waited for about 90mins (more photos) for the bridge and groom to arrive so that we could be greeted by the 'proper' line up going into the main room. 'Vegetarian' option at the buffet-style food (don't have any issue with a buffet) being fish which of course is not suitable for vegetarians - took sometime to get some microwaved bhajis as an alternative!

blackteaplease Tue 08-May-12 14:05:41

We went to one as evening guests and arrived at 7pm to be told that the speeches had just started so we could sneak into the room and wait for them to finish.

The father of the bride gave a complete run down of all of the brides life acheivements for about 45 minutes, it was so painful. The bride was just drinking random alcohol from the top table to alleviate boredom!

gomowthelawn Tue 08-May-12 14:06:04

You lot are mean. That's someone else's special day you are slagging off. I guess they did their best, and it isn't always easy to organise a successful party when you've never done it before. Most brides get pretty stressed about the whole thing anyway, and would be mortified if they thought the guests hated it.

blackteaplease Tue 08-May-12 14:07:21

Oh, and I forgot. They served bacon butties in the evening (which is fine) but we had travelled up straight from work and I was 6 months pregnant. I had had no dinner as I thought that there would be a buffet for some reason.

I have no idea why I made this assumption as we only served cheese and bicuits blush

ripsisherethecheekycunt Tue 08-May-12 14:09:48

The one where the grooms mum went in mourning, stood up when the register was being signed and told the congregation that the bride was a slag.
The one where the RC priest told the congregation that birth control was a sin against the church, mother Mary weeps and something about nuclear weapons.
The one where the brides' brothers ate the entire buffet. Me, DH and several others ordered pizza to be delivered.

Shazjack1 Tue 08-May-12 14:10:04

Went to a wedding in the Caribbean a couple of years ago. Everyone got food poisoning within a couple of days of arrival and the poor bride inadvertently shat herself after the meal and ruined her dress. We laugh about it now but not funny at the time!

Oscalito Tue 08-May-12 14:12:00

I know it's someone's special day but if you've got a limited budget then for god's sake prioritise. Vintage cars aren't important. Feeding people and keeping them comfortable are.

blackteaplease Tue 08-May-12 14:15:48

I agree Oscalito, your guests enjoyment needs to be considered as part of your day.

DH was an usher at a wedding once where the ceremony was at 12 so we had to be there at 11. There was an hour of photos at the church then a drive to the reception, then another hour of photos before food was finally served at 5pm. I was so hungry. Apart from that it was a fab wedding.

diamondsonthesolesofhershoes Tue 08-May-12 14:20:01

gomowthelawn I don't think we were intending to slag people's special days off. Obviously the most important thing is that the bride and groom are happy but on the other thread I was deliberating over whether keeping everyone else happy was too much bother to get married in the UK.

I guess I wanted an idea of what NOT to do if I do have a family wedding blush

Shakey1500 Tue 08-May-12 14:22:34

Dh and I, along with about 20 other friends were to attend a wedding some distance away. We'd all booked to stay at the same hotel. We all had a drink in the hotel bar before setting off for the ceremony. The hotel owner overheard me saying (quietly) to DH that the tonic in my drink was flat and he went ballistic! Totally overreacted. He told dh and I that we'd have to leave NOW and that we wouldn't be welcome back to stay there later. We were all a bit confused but had to leave for the ceremony.

Wedding goes ahead. Reception in full swing. Unbeknownst to us, another of our friends (also a guest at the mad hotel) decides to TELL the bride and groom that we have nowhere to stay that night (didn't bother dh and I we'd have either slept in the car or found another hotel) and that it was up to THEM to find us alternative accomodation shock Cue the bride asking her friends and family to put us up for the night. We were told ths at the end of the evening blush and consequently found ourselves in a taxi headed to goodness knows where to stay with goodness knows who! Ended up at this house and we vaguely remember the couple from the wedding and they were very nice and understanding. Not a problem they said, plenty of room.

Walked into their living room to find several other couples from the wedding with a party in full swing. That was fine until they all started swapping partners. No wonder they didn't bloody mind. We politely declined and cuddled (read-clinged to) each other on the couch until we fell asleep. It gets worse...

At around 2am, the bride and groom turn up having also been thrown out of the hotel on the back of me complaining about flat fucking soda. The bride and groom spent the wedding night on the sofa (we moved to the floor, least we could do) of their friends house. They completely blamed DH and I for their ruined wedding and we spent the following morning listening to the bride crying down the phone to her family.

Truly truly awful.

ProfYaffle Tue 08-May-12 14:24:49

Oh I hate the ones where you have to wait hours for food.

My worst was in an unheated marquee on a farm in a chilly April. Guests ended up going to their cars and bringing in spare coats, blankets and the like for those of us in sleeveless dresses etc.

The top table were allowed into the Farmhouse to use the loo, everyone else had to use the farmworkers toilet which consisted of a hole in the ground surrounded by 4 sheets of corrugated iron and was about 30 meters away from the marquee down a muddy track with no lighting whatsoever - miles away from street lighting so pitch black. That was fun in strappy heels.

piprabbit Tue 08-May-12 14:29:50

I went to one in Wales (cost me a bomb to travel and have two nights in a hotel, but I thought our friendship was worth it).

The bride was horrifically late to the ceremony.
After the ceremony, everybody heads off to the reception venue. The directions were a load of bollox and most non-local guests got very lost, some were over an hour late and arrived quite upset at the thought of messing up the wedding for the couple. Local guests were sending out search parties to look for confused looking cars and lead them back to the hotel.
Not that the guests being late mattered as the entire wedding party had disappeared. We sat around waiting for 2.5 hours at the reception venue waiting for them to turn up. We thought there must have been an accident. When they eventually turned up, it seems they had gone to a local landmark for their photos. Not sure what took so long as it was only immediate family - the rest of the guests were at the reception venue and not included in any photos.
By this time the hotel staff were getting a bit frantic, but to give them credit the meal was lovely and the reception progressed well. Until the evening do kicked off with an extremely blue/rude comedian - think Jim Davidson with a welsh accent.

All topped off by the couple failing to send a thank you letter for their gift, and to have subsequently ignored all attempts at contact.

What a fantastic celebration hmm.

DontmindifIdo Tue 08-May-12 14:38:20

As I said on the other thread - your guests are just that, your guests, not your extras for "the perfect day" - so look after them! You wouldn't invite someone to your home from 11am and not feed them until 5pm, if it was a cold and rainy day, you'd make sure people were warm and comfortable...

Worst weddings, went to one in Sweden (bride was Swedish, not a destination wedding really), it was hight of summer and she's obviously planned for sunshine and warmth - it was at her local church and then back to a barn owned by her uncle that had been decorated, lovely. However, it was cold, seriously freezing. It rained so hard during the drinks reception there was rivers running through the field - the caterers were setting up in the barn so we weren't allowed in. There were two small gazebos set up (the bride thought we might need shelter from the sunshine grin ) the wine was in the other gazebo. We took to bribing small children to go get us bottles of wine.

The meal was lovely, it involved us eating horse. It was so cold (and remember, everyone has wet feet/mud coated legs by this point) the woman across the table from me got her DH to take his socks off (the only person with dry socks - he'd staked a claim near the booze early and not moved) for her to wear with her cocktail dress and strappy sandals. DH took to holding napkins over the candles to warm them so I could wrap them round my ankles. One of the bridesmaids had blue lips and looked ill.

The (English) best man felt the need to talk about the groom's entire sexual history, names, dates, details.... this might not have been so bad, if he hadnt got someone in his office to translate the whole speach and copies were being handed out to the bride's family. The best man even handed over the groom's porn collection to the now miserable looking bride...

At the end of the evening, we had all been told that transport had been laid on to get us back to the nearby town (everyone was staying in one of the 3 hotels there), they had arranged a coach for the way from the church to the barn so we assumed that would be the transport back, but no, they had lined up the brides cousins to drive us back in relays - very kind, but we'd been watching the down neat vodka for the last couple of hours, one could barely stand.

We're in the middle of a foreign country, not even knowing the name of the farm we're on and the only way back to the hotel is a hammered bloke driving a suped up car with bluelights underneath. We braved it in one of the first cars with one of the more sober looking blokes, having taken the mobile number of the couple with small children - the mum was holding a sleeping toddler refusing (rightly) to get in the car, we got to the hotel, got the reception (who knew the address of this farm) to send them a taxi. Apparently the taxi driver was asked to do about 10 trips, the bride said the next day that they were "so silly to pay for a taxi when someone will drive, people don't crash on country roads" confused

Longdistance Tue 08-May-12 14:39:34

The one I didn't like was in a fancy hotel. They served Pimms instead of champers/cava. We were made to wait 2hrs for the photographer in the freezing rain, and I was near 8 months pg. There was no food tila t least 5pm for a 12pm wedding, no nibbles. I though I was gonna faint. Got dh to go get sarnies as could feel my blood sugars dying couldn't not eat pg Then when the food came out, speeches ran over, and then the buffet came out straight away, which only had 6 choices. You'd walk around the table and it was like deja vu.

DontmindifIdo Tue 08-May-12 14:44:41

Basically Diamonds - even if is a summer wedding, assume it will rain, assume it will be cold, if you want the wedding to be in the middle of nowhere, provide taxi numbers with your invites - if it's hot and sunny, it's a bonus.

Lottapianos Tue 08-May-12 14:51:21

'It was so cold (and remember, everyone has wet feet/mud coated legs by this point) the woman across the table from me got her DH to take his socks off (the only person with dry socks - he'd staked a claim near the booze early and not moved) for her to wear with her cocktail dress and strappy sandals. DH took to holding napkins over the candles to warm them so I could wrap them round my ankles'

Bloody Nora! This sounds like the 7th circle of hell shock I can't imagine being so cold that DP would hold napkins over the candles to then wrap around my ankles grin

DontmindifIdo Tue 08-May-12 14:55:20

Lotta - I've been on snow and ice camps with the scouts and I can safely say I've never been so cold as I was at that wedding. (I was rather impressed with DH's "problem solving abilities after lots of wine" with his heated napkin ankle warmers.)

loopydoo Tue 08-May-12 14:56:37

The top tier of my wedding cake fell off when the waitress bashed into the table it was sitting on with her thigh.

She was only very young and felt awful so she rang her dad after she went back into the kitchen to take her home. She apparently told the manager she wasn't coming abck as she felt so bad but DH spoke to the manager and got her to call the dad and tell her we didn't mind.

I actually burst out laughing - the whole room was staring at me thinking I was going to cry but luckily, I laughed.

We put it back on and picked up the sugar craft flowers and all was fine.

I also made DH take out all of my hair grips before we went to sleep on the wedding night too - there were 84 of them!

Lottapianos Tue 08-May-12 14:56:46

Soooo miserable - and it's not like you can make your excuses and sod off, you're stuck with it! How awful. You're not married to Bear Grylls are you? wink

CeliaFate Tue 08-May-12 14:57:58

This wasn't a bad wedding, but it serves as a reminder of how to plan things a bit more carefully...
Wedding at 12 on the Saturday, 80 miles away, meaning a 2 night stay at 2 different hotels (bride's parents found the hotels and did a group booking, we paid). That's £180 straight away.
Wedding at 12, ended at 1pm, got to reception. It's freezing cold. There are no canapes, no welcome drink, there's a bar open so we buy wine.
Photographs took 3 hours by which time I'd accidentally got hammered (wine and empty stomach do not mix).
Meal arrived at 4.30.
Speeches at 6
Band at 7 - we were near the top table, which was cleared to make way for the band. Who were so loud my ears hurt and both dc cried their eyes out.
Ds felt tired at 8 so I took him to bed and stayed there, missing the hog roast and disco.
We only knew a few people at the wedding and were in one photo - we are the bride's family.

Bucharest Tue 08-May-12 15:01:27

The one where we were promised all manner of loveliness, spent a fucking fortune schlepping to London from ooop north in fancy frockage...checked into hotels and headed to church......(eager to catch a glimpse of the groom's mother's latest lover-a transvestite...we had been primed beforehand that if said lover was in frockage we were to address him as Paula but in a shirt and tie then Paul was OK....After ceremony we were herded over to tin hut of a church hall where a couple of family members pulled a couple (and I mean a couple) of bottles of supermarket beer and wine out of a couple of bags and then the respective families got tupperware countainers out. After about an hour of sitting there like, well, spare guests at a wedding, the groom came over and said "we are all heading off to the hotel now,byeeeeee"

We wnt to Cafe Rouge then bought bottles of plonk and drank it with the down and outs on Blackheath. We even checked our (beautifully embossed) invites later to make sure we hadn't missed something. Oh no..."pleasure of your company bla bla and afterwards a reception to be held in......children welcome"

We were all about £400 out of pocket. They divorced and we laughed.

Ragwort Tue 08-May-12 15:08:41

The one where we were asked not to bring our DS (fair enough, happy to go to an 'all adult' occasion) and then were sat with the bride's neices and nephews for a very long, boring tasteless meal .......... couldn't chat/mix with any of our old friends as they were all on different tables. Don't know who was more bored - us or the kids grin.

TalHotBlond Tue 08-May-12 15:15:52

Boring weddings where nobody dances. Or smiles. As long as there is a bit of both I'm generally happy.

Lawrene8 Tue 08-May-12 15:22:09

My cousin's wedding was my worst. Wedding at 11am and no food til 4 when we received 3 tiny pieces of lamb and two individual mange tout. That was itgrin there was no evening do and we all sat around with adults getting gradually more pissed. I was 16 and sat on table with the other kids- they were 3&4. Dad was so hungry we stopped at mcdonzlda drive thru. Totally unknown experience for us as dad had a thing about Macdonslds.

TheHouseOnTheCorner Tue 08-May-12 15:22:30

I went to a very posh one held in the bride's was a massive garden and they had a marquee and a hog rroast.

We all got nothing to eat after the cermony and had to wait about 6 hours for any food...we were all about to eat one another when they announced the food was ready but could we all wait for the tables at the front to get served first....there were LOADS of people and one hog!

I had a few bits of fat and some salad. They ran out of booze by about 9 and then buggered off to their honymoon. We legged it to the pub and feasted on seafood! I was cold and starving. People want food, warmth and drink....not fancy flowers and posh live music.

Lottapianos Tue 08-May-12 15:23:07

My worst was probably when my BF married a total tosser. I felt gutted throughout the ceremony but of course did best-foot-forward and happy-smiles all day for her sake. It was quite a nice day actually but in my head I was yelling 'what the hell are you DOING girl????' all day. They're still together, she's pg and he's even more of a tosser now sad

fluffiphlox Tue 08-May-12 15:24:04

When I was single I went to a wedding where my friend was marrying a 'foreigner' (don't want to say what nationality as it may out me/them) where the ceremony was run in two languages (fair enough), but of course it wa twice as long as normal. We all went to the hall where the 'do' was. No sign of the wedding party for between two and three hours. Nothing to drink. (Couldn't even buy a drink, let alone sip free fizz/sherry/Pimms). Eventually the wedding party turns up, having had their photos done. Followed by meagre meal, not much to drink. I didn't hang around for the barn dance.
Moral: don't keep your guests hanging around and make sure they have access to a drink (doesn't have to be free or alcoholic but nice if it is).

I went to one where the celebrant hadn't got a clue what she was doing, kept mumbling, repeating herself and saying random phrases like "by the power vested in me" whilst waving a knife around in random patterns in the air. She charged £150 for herself and £100 for the 'privilege' of her daughter attending with her and standing around looking miserable and not saying a word. The guests were all completely confused as to what was happening, and then it rained so we had to huddle under a small gazebo and eat dried out sandwiches.

I could have cried for the bride who had been really looking forward to a very special occasion.

Want2bSupermum Tue 08-May-12 15:26:00

I just attended my sisters wedding. I was the chief bridesmaid..... This isn't something I will ever be able to tell her but I hated her wedding. My BIL is lebanese and very showy. This is the opposite to me and my family. His father died when he was young and he has supported his family for the past 20 years. This is admirable and it was obvious that my sister wanted the wedding to be about him.

My Dad paid for the wedding and was happy to do so and also gave them money to help with the purchase of their first home. I don't know exactly how much he gave them but it was in the range of $100K or so. Regardless of the amount it was shocking to DH and I that he wasn't thanked. Worse was the next morning when the sister of my BIL told my Dad that there were more Lebanese in attendance compared to my sisters family.

I found it shocking that they spent $1000 on a cake yet they didn't have transportation from the church (sorry cathedral) to the venue. Before the wedding my sister told me that she had organized a babysitter for the children. It didn't happen because my sister forgot to confirm with the girl! The music was lebanese music for most of the night (reception was from 5-10pm which meant they started kicking us out at 9pm) which I have no desire to listen to. I was able to get one glass of wine with dinner which consisted of a bowl of lettuce with coutons and salmon with two carrots and a potato. I never got a slice of wedding cake which was served as desert. I am fine with in principle but it was a joke that I didn't get a slice as they went home with two tiers of sponge cake that was thrown out by BIL the next morning. WHO THROWS OUT GOOD CAKE!

HateBeingCantDoUpMyJeans Tue 08-May-12 15:28:47

The worst wedding was one where the vicar got the grooms name wrong, everytime he said it

redrubyshoes Tue 08-May-12 15:34:30

I once went to a work colleague's wedding that still makes me cringe. There were about 150 people invited to the reception and about enough food for 12 people.

The bride and groom sang 'Like a Bat Outta Hell' by Meatloaf on the karoke.

Bride tried to force cajole guests into dancing the conga.

Bride burst into tears and got as mad as a cut snake when a colleague who had been on mat leave turned up with new baby. We all popped over to say hello and greet little one. It ruined her (the bride's) day and colleague was 'being a bitch and just wanted all the attention' ...... erm you invited her!

I went home at 9.30pm and stopped off for a Chinese as I was so hungry.

Want2bSupermum Tue 08-May-12 15:34:31

Oh and I forgot to mention that the priest who married my sister gave a sermon telling my sister that she must always respect her DH's wishes.... I was ready to throw up. My brother said I was twitching a lot during the sermon and he was worried that I was going to stand up and give the guy a piece of my mind! There was nothing about him respecting or supporting her. There was also the kicker that my sister converted to catholicism. I could tell my parents were dissappointed that she didn't tell them before the wedding day and passed it off as nothing.

Nancy66 Tue 08-May-12 15:40:20

Went to a wedding where the bride's father was dead so the groom's father made a speech instead.

He got a little carried away in saying how good looking and sexy the bride was and ended up raising a glass to his new daughter-in-law and saying 'and if you fancy making an old man very happy I'm in room 318.' could hear a pin drop.

CuppaTeaAndAJammieDodger Tue 08-May-12 15:44:00

Was invited to an evening do in the middle of nowhere, forked out for a room at the pricey hotel it was being held at (nowhere else local), there was not one morsel of food on offer, and the music, including the first dance, was on a stereo on the minuscule dancefloor - it was just terrible.

FrillyMilly Tue 08-May-12 15:47:17

I dont think I've been to a bad wedding but I've been to some that are soulless and boring. They occur in a stately home or really expensive hotel. No one can afford to have a good drink because it costs £15 a drink and the buffet is always so sparse and mainly salad. Oh and you wait 3 hours after the ceremony whilst they get an array of posed but trying not to look posed photos.

All the great weddings I've been to have been at 'cheap' venues but everyone has had a brilliant time. Ones where the bride and groom have what they want rather than a bog standard wedding. I went to one with a fish and chip van instead of a Buffett. And one that had a lovely dessert table at the end of the meal that you could help yourself to.

whackamole Tue 08-May-12 15:53:17

I am really worried now!

I get married in June, our ceremony is at 1.45pm and we have arranged for dinner to start at about 4pm, to allow for photos and getting to and from the registry office to the hotel. We are providing dinner and drinks for all, so hopefully they won't be too miffed at having to stand around for photos!

(I also have cake grin which will be thrown out over my dead body)

Ragwort Tue 08-May-12 15:54:15

I agree that the more 'expensive' and 'exclusive' the venue is (or trying to be) the less 'fun' the wedding is.

I really wish people would spend less time/effort/money on their wedding day and focus on their marriage instead smile.

blackteaplease Tue 08-May-12 15:56:36

Whackamole, you will be fine. People will most likely grab some food before a 1.45 wedding.

I have learnt my lesson now and usualy take a cereal bar/ banana for emergency eating!

piprabbit Tue 08-May-12 15:57:53

A 1:45pm ceremony and 4pm meal is fine, especially if you are having drinks on arrival at the reception and have mentioned timings on the invites so people can grab a light lunch before the ceremony if they want.

I hope you have a wonderful day whackamole.

leguminous Tue 08-May-12 15:57:55

Well, the one I've enjoyed least was the one I attended just after finding out a friend had passed away, but that wasn't exactly the bride and groom's fault!

I haven't got any really awful stories, just lots of memories of tottering round in smart shoes for a bit too long before the food was ready, with nowhere to sit other than on damp grass. I'd always rather be comfortable than be impressed by a super fancy venue! Ours was very small, registry office then reception in a nearby relative's (very nice!) garden, with all the chairs we could muster for those who wanted them. My mum made tons of yummy food, my dad made the beer, and the other drinks were provided by Majestic. Then we went off to a local pub in the evening and ordered loads of bowls of chips for everyone. Some friends of ours had a hog roast, which was spectacular and so totally them - and everyone got plenty to eat. I want a celebration to be a celebration for everyone there, not some kind of ordeal, or what's the point of spending all that blimming money?

ENormaSnob Tue 08-May-12 15:58:35

whackamole, as long as guests are warm and fed and there are drinks and cake then you should be ok grin

leguminous Tue 08-May-12 15:59:40

Whackamole, you'll be grand, there's plenty of time before the wedding starts for people to grab a bite if they want to. It's just weddings that start at 12 on the dot and then want you to hang around for six more hours before getting anything to eat.

localcrackpot Tue 08-May-12 15:59:50

I've never been to a bad wedding. Once went to one in an incredible venue where only canapés were served, as the meal. No chairs apart from a few arranged with their backs to a table. In fairness there were plenty of canapés and I doubt anyone was hungry but it was a weird combination, especially as there'd been a long wait in a corridor while they had photos taken. Mind you, I bet that bit was boring at our wedding, but as the reception was in a massive hotel you could find a random chair or pootle of for a brew or a glass of something if the welcome drinks didn't float your boat.

I'm not calling that other wedding btw- I heard some sniffy comments but I understand they had good reasons which were based on kindness to family rather than financial prioritising.

whackamole Tue 08-May-12 16:02:08

Phew, thanks all for the reassurance!

They're all going to be pissed by the time we show up for the dinner aren't they? grin

piprabbit Tue 08-May-12 16:03:37

Probably grin, especially if they grab lunched in a pub!

kdiddy Tue 08-May-12 16:06:50

I have 2, although both were funny in their own way. The first was a reception after the couple had got married abroad - fair enough. Looked like a really lovely buffet until we realised that it was the same 4 dishes repeated all down the table. Fine if you like chicken nuggets and chips - DH got food poisoning. The bride quite clearly disliked the groom's friends - which was us - and very pointedly walked straight past our table when doing the rounds thanking everyone for coming. In fact she didn't say a word to us all night. The kicker was when my friend overheard her father, in the toilets, saying "how much longer do I have to talk to these fucking people?" never felt so unwelcome - we felt like gatecrashers not invited guests. However we were in a group, found it funny, and had a right laugh. Nobody has heard from bride or groom again!

Second was an ok wedding but hideous best man speech which basically gave a day by day rundown of the stag, therefore being of interest to about ten people. Worst bit was when the best man essentially revealed that the groom's 16 year old brother had slept with a prostitute on the stag weekend. I don't know who looked more embarrassed, the brother or his mum (who he was sat next to). Stags found it hilarious. Nobody else did.

DontmindifIdo Tue 08-May-12 16:09:37

whackamole do you have any canapes or at least nibbles? Is your venue the middle of nowhere? (meaning that it will take more than an hour to get to for the majority of guests, people might not be able to eat before hand if so) Are you expecting people to spend from 2:15-2:30ish until 4pm outside?

Food, warmth, booze.

ShatnersBassoon Tue 08-May-12 16:12:14

An almost hour-long best man's speech, during which the best man swung from tearful to angry to tearful to angry...

He rounded it off with a video montage. It was very embarrassing.

lisaro Tue 08-May-12 16:13:14

I went to a wedding once, had to wear a ridiculous outfit, sit with someone I really don't like, couldn't cop off and to top the whole fiasco off they expected me to cut the bloody cake! I don't even like fruit cake.

grin Lisaro!

JobCarHouseNoBaby Tue 08-May-12 16:17:45

<edges in slightly concerned>

My wedding is later this year, invites have already been posted... Church starts at 1pm, sit down for 3 course meal circa 4.30pm, cake at 8pm, evening buffet at 9.30pm.

I have put these rough timings in the wedding info sheet with the invites with the hope people will think 'ah, better have a late breakfast/light lunch before the church'

Now I'm nervous confused

DilysPrice Tue 08-May-12 16:17:50

Worst was an Evangelical Christian wedding (and by Evangelical I really mean it - I went to their church once and they had maps explaining their campaign to convert, amongst other places, the entire Middle East and India). All the other guests had short neat haircuts (male) or long hair and Laura Ashley frocks (female).
DH, a male friend and I (all atheists) turned up with two foot pony tails (them) and crew cut and emerald silk trouser suit (me) (it was the late 80s and we were students blush). We sat near the front and an empty cordon sanitaire was left on the aisles in front and behind us.

During the signing of the register the brides brother came out with a guitar to play 99 favourite evangelical tunes, none of which we knew. At first we were reassured that it was fine just to listen if we didn't know the songs, but eventually they insisted that we should "sing the next verse to Laaa". The reading was from the book of Revelations, and the priest made no pretence that his sermon had any connection with the bride and groom's happy day - it was entirely focussed on his golden opportunity to convert a captive audience. Sitting completely isolated front centre in our conspicuously non-conformist clothes we just had to sit there and take it. We staggered to the church hall for the reception to be greeted, inevitably, with the words "Would you like orange juice or grape juice?"

I am not ashamed to say that we made a detour via Oddbins on the way to catch the train home.

DontmindifIdo Tue 08-May-12 16:19:03

JobCar - empty tummies, but drinks before the meal - you'll have the speeched heckled. At very least, put out bowls of crisps.

Isaidhangonamin Tue 08-May-12 16:20:09

I went to an awesome wedding, fab venue, food and drink amazing, guests pampered and cared for and the bride and groom so obviously in love....

However, the Bestman's speech was truly grim angry. He kept referring back to the time he was Bestman the 1st time round for the groom and THEN asked the guests to raise their glasses to toast the bride and groom but used groom's first wife's name instead of the actual bride!! The guests gasped in horror, there was a stoney silence and then the gorgeous and very composed bride just laughed and said "Cheers!!" as she raised her champers!

What a dick-head that man was!

howhardcanthisbe Tue 08-May-12 16:21:34

I went to a 'dry' wedding once. We got tea when we arrived at the reception. Dh was in the wedding party so I had to sit without him. Was awful!! Couldn't even buy a drink, the hotel had taken down all the optics behind the bar. There was no atmosphere, the brides family and friends ignored the grooms guests. It was without doubt the worst wedding I've ever been to. (I don't even drink much!)

Weezie85 Tue 08-May-12 16:25:08

I think it is all about making sure the guests have at least something to nibble on when they get there. At our wedding we had lots of nibbles for people in the hotel as well as a welcome drink. People had two bar areas and a lounge to hang around in, massive rooms. So while we did pics people could still have something to eat. Our wedding was at 1pm, only a few miles out of where we live and where most guests where. I think if you give people rough timings as well so they know when they can eat. I mean for us 11am service should of had either an earlier sit down time for meal or at least food you would eat, not weird wheatgrass shots. That isn't even food. Also if you know the venue is so far away from everyone then nibbles are even more important. I mean 90 minutes away, you want to get to service before it kicks off, which meant we had to leave the house by 9am. So 9am until 4pm for all the guests not to eat. The venue wasn't a hotel so no chance of staying overnight the night before.

Sassybeast Tue 08-May-12 16:35:06

Worst one ever was a friend of exs who was marrying the rudest woman on the planet. The reception was at her parents house. They live in Cornwall and have a swimming pool. The reception was in July. Except it was freezing. There was no marquee - they'd pinned up some sheets of plastic to make a kind of lean to against the house. The food consisted of iceberg lettuce, half a tomato and 2 slices of ham. The drinks consisted of beer. Or beer. It started to rain. The contempt that the father of the bride had for his daughter was palpable - she cried during the speech because he repeatedly said that he coudn't believe she'd ever get married - and not in a nice, gentle mickey taking kind of way hmm (that probably goes a long way to explaining her personality)
Then the grooms army mates decided that it would be fun to throw everyone into the pool. Fully clothed. I was 6 months pregnant and got thrown into the pool by 2 burly squaddies.
Nightmare sad
And they're divorced now as well.

Technoviking Tue 08-May-12 16:36:08

My worst wedding experience? Going through with wedding number 1. grin

I've only ever been to one "bad" wedding!

The bride and grooms family hated each other and the bride's brother gave a speech in the ceremony (was meant to be a reading and turned into a speech!) And called the bride 'gollum' and 'animal from the muppets' due to her 'screaming hissy fits when she doesn't get her own way' (very true!)

Then there came the reception (which I have mentioned here previously) when the brides father said nothing nice about his DD, instead, focusing on her Dsis achievements! He said nothing about her until the end when he just said "oh and congrats to X and X on today" and sat down!

Then there was the meal when they made it plainly clear they didn't really want me there as they just served my other half!! I realised the bride didn't like me and had invited me because she had to as I was the grooms best mates girlfriend but still!! (Me and my OH shared!)

At least we were warm at least...!

goingtoofast Tue 08-May-12 16:39:31

I once went to a wedding totally lacking in atmosphere.
We were friends of the bride and sat on a table with some of her other friends. Her friends were very suprised to be invited as hey hadn't seen her for 8 years or so since they had been at school together (probably not since!). They were invited insead of he grooms cousins, he was upse there wasn't space for them.
The best man speech was really depressing. He said the groom would have killed himself had he not met his wife, then described how depressed he was and how hard he groom found life. Felt so uncomforable.
the party then fizzled out by about 7.30. We helped clear the tables of snacks they had put out and took them to a friends house which had much more of a party atmosphere.
I put me and off having our own wedding and was part of the reason we eloped!

CeliaFate Tue 08-May-12 16:42:54

Sassybeast THEY THREW YOU INTO THE POOL WHEN YOU WERE SIX MONTHS PREGNANT???? Jesus Christ, they would have had to restrain me dh.

piprabbit Tue 08-May-12 16:57:40

DilysPrice - your story reminds me of when I went to a 'naming/christening/accepting into our church' service for the DS of some very old friends of ours. Possibly Baptist or Methodist - can't quite remember.
The celebrant took the opportunity of having a church half full of non-church members and small children as a chance to tell us very graphically that when the world ends we will be damned to hell fires unless we convert immediately.
Scared all but the smallest children witless and took all the joy out of our friends' DSs important day.

Babylon1 Tue 08-May-12 17:12:43

I can't think that we've ever been to a bad wedding per se, they've all been lovely and had their own special moments.

That said, I do prefer the ones that aren't in stately homes/posh hotels/ hotels who think they're posh and charge extortionate prices for flat drinks sad

Some of the best weddings we've been to have been in fields/marquees/village halls where all guests have been asked to bring a bottle and/or plate. There's always been tons of food of a massive variety and plenty of booze too, working on the assumption that you take what you want to drink and a little extra and everyone else does similar!!

I don't like bring ripped off for drinks, but find it equally distasteful to stash a bottle of vodka/rum/gin etc in handbag and buy only mixers hmm

Someone did hit the nail on the head tho when they said the focus should be on the marriage and not on the wedding day smile

moogster1a Tue 08-May-12 17:30:29

jobcar it does sound like the guests are going to have about 3 hours of hanging around between ceremony and food. I presume you have something planned for them to do??!

diamondsonthesolesofhershoes Tue 08-May-12 17:49:49

I had the most awkward moment at my DB's wedding last week.

Earlier in the day the bride had gone spare at me because we'd not brought out invite with is to 'grant entry' into the reception (hadnt realised i needed to), after being sworn at for about 5 mins I told her it had gone in the recycling.
The speeches were about to start so I legged it to go to the loo first. On the way back past the top table my new SIL grabbed my hand and started making a tearful plea to me to forgive her, how grateful she was to have me as a 'new sister' etc etc, cue my other brother (best man) tapping a glass for attention for the speeches. Room of about 150 people turn round and see the bride crying clearly sad tears and me looking a bit hmm
Nearly got a skelping off my mum for that one.

iwantbrie Tue 08-May-12 18:27:51

This was actually one of the nicest wedding I had been to, very good friends, lovely service. Meal etc.
They got married 5 days after I had DD but I went to the wedding but decided to go home after the meal. We were sat having a lovely chat with people we didn't really know when I started to feel a bit funny... Glanced down to see 2huge dark spots appear on my dress which were getting bigger by the second. Of course my milk had come in blush I ended up grabbing DS (who was 7 at the time) picking him up, running to the loos and sent him back to the table with a message for DH. poor kid didn't know what the hell was going on! I spent most of the main course limboing under the hand dryer in the ladies & stuffing tissues in my bra..

Fluffycloudland77 Tue 08-May-12 18:36:04

I went to one that nearly didnt happen because the brides father decided to shag around after 30 years of marriage and everything was a bit up in the air for a while.

His wife took him back.

I hadnt met either parent before the wedding so that played on my mind in the line up.

DilysPrice Tue 08-May-12 18:42:12

Ooh, were the bride and groom Grace Kelly and Bing Crosby fluffy?
(it's the plot of my favourite film)

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

monkeymoma Tue 08-May-12 18:46:29

no matter how much thought has gone into venue/decorations/dress, the ones where everyone has been standing around starving hungary for hours are always remembered for only that!

otherwise: FOG speach turned into opportunity so schmooze buisness associates who he had invited, we were told how lucky we were that they were with us that night hmm, and then he told us why (their CVs basically) bride and groom not mentioned - strange!

angry bride SCREEETCHING at everyone to come and have their photographs taken, she has a formal photograph list a MILE long (her and the girls from work, her and each girl from work by themselves, her and her DH with her work friends, her and her DH with each work friend by themselves.......) was screamed at in the face by the bride to find someone called Marrion, my "protests" that I didn't know who Marrion was just angered the beast grin, eventually found someone who knew a Marrion - phew!
I wonder how she can possibly look fondly back at those twenty thousand wedding photos when there were no happy memories behind the smiles of fear LOL!

Badvoc Tue 08-May-12 18:47:18

Hmmm...2 stick in my mind...

1. Military wedding. Big church service, guard of honour etc. Then back to a working mans club and a warm ham salad on paper plates. A best man so drunk he could barely stand, let alone speak. No evening reception. We all went to a nightclub!!

2. Very large, very expensive wedding (350 guests) in a castle in Ireland. It cost us a, hotel room, car hire etc The church (sorry, catherdral) was in a city MILES away from the castle...we were nearly late but that was ok as the bride was nearly an hour late. After the service, photos took HOURS and then the B&G went off to the caste in a HELICOPTER whilst we all had to shlep back in our cars. After what seemed like an eternity the food was lamb was raw in the middle and I got food ds was so hungry the waitress took pity on us and gave him bread rolls to eat.

It is the B&Gs day, obv, but if you are inviting people to your wedding then they by definition are your guests. So treat them as such. You know...decent food, a drink, not too much standing around, dont choose venues miles from anywhere that people will struggle to get to and at least acknowledge the bloody gift!!!!

MarysBeard Tue 08-May-12 18:47:25

Had very good wedding experiences, couple of negatives I learned from so as to not repeat at ours:

- Buffet running out. Was meant to be mainly for evening reception guests, but everyone troughed in including those who had recently eaten a four course meal and there was literally not so much as a sandwich left for those last in the queue. Hotel had to be persuaded fairly forcefully to make a few sandwiches for those left without anything.

- Having loooong speeches, & before the meal. The groom's went on for an hour on its own. I was 30 weeks pregnant and starving. As were lots of other non-pregnant people.

Badvoc Tue 08-May-12 18:48:16

oh yes! I went to one where the buffet food ran out...very embarrassing! blush

AKMD Tue 08-May-12 18:48:26

The wedding I travelled 4 hours to get to, only to look at the seating plan and realise that I wasn't actually invited blush Luckily for me, but very sad for the bride and groom, only half the guests turned up so there were lots of empty spaces and food sad

JobCarHouseNoBaby Tue 08-May-12 18:53:03

Well the ceremony starts at 1pm, so people will be leaving about 2pm to drive to the reception, which is a good 20min drive, so really people will be mingling and enjoying some live music whilst also getting involved with the group photos. People will be seated for the 3 course meal at about 4.30pm. so only 2-2.5hrs of drinking and chatting.

Perhaps I need to get some nibbles, but I refuse to pay another £10 per head for canapes that the venue provide. I'll ask if breadsticks, crisps and nuts will be allowed confused

As for 'things to do' do I really need to worry about keeping adults entertained for 2 hours? There will be live music...

monkeymoma Tue 08-May-12 18:56:49

think is, to get to a 1pm reception (you arrive at least 20 mins early right?) most people will be in transit there over lunch time, so it is quite a long time to wait till their lunch TBH (I lot of people WONT fit lunch in before with getting their families ready and getting there) and once you're hungry that's all you notice and remember!

the canapes are more valuable than the decorations or favours etc, cause without something to take the edge off all people will notice anything else and will be miserable!

monkeymoma Tue 08-May-12 18:57:53

live music is nice
but only if there's food too
if the budget doesn't allow both, ditch the music for some snacks, your guests will be MUCH happier!

Badvoc Tue 08-May-12 18:59:55

I got married at 1.30pm and I assumed people would eat/have a snack before they came tbh.

Food - 4 course meal - was served at 4.30 ish and then hot and cold buffet at 9pm.

There were nibbles, drinks and entertainment for guests at the venue whilst we were off having a few photos done.

No complaints.....AFAIK smile

On the day of our wedding it snowed so lots of our guests couldn't make it. Plus the venue was cold...we were all drinking tea to warm up. But it was still a fantastic day grin

MarysBeard Tue 08-May-12 19:12:20

We got married at 3pm and after group photos near the church had canapes & drinks for guests while our b&g photos were being done & some informal shots of guests before going to reception at 6pm. People ate LOADS of canapes - some had clearly not had lunch in spite of the mid-afternoon start! I'd even said MIL had made enough for 10 each & they all went! They didn't run out early or anything but she was shocked that there were not some left as she thought there were plenty. And I think I'd even made it clear in the information that we weren't eating until the evening.

Another thing was I had made it also clear on the info sheet that if you weren't getting a train, a lift or driving home from reception you would need to PRE-BOOK a taxi and gave names of several firms so that people could do so. And yet one or two people had not and were a bit miffed at having to wait an hour for a taxi...

Also even before that one person went to completely the wrong village and was an hour late...

So you can do what you can to make it lovely for people but some guests will still be disorganised and make it hard for themselves...

TidyDancer Tue 08-May-12 19:13:28

At the wedding I went to, the ceremony itself was fine (bride was late, but hey ho), it was the reception that was a problem. It was at a massive country house and well out of the way of any towns or villages. I know the local area, so it was fine for DP and I to get to, but others had problems. With the hour after hour of photographs (which no one was allowed to leave during, in case you were needed for a shot), what was sold to the guests as an early afternoon sit down meal, became very firmly a dinner. Hot Summer day, alcohol, no food, and guests in high heels doesn't make a very good set up. Several people passed out.

cherrypieplum Tue 08-May-12 19:15:26

I attended a very big, overblown affair. The sort where the women hold their bags awkwardly to display the logo to maximum effect.

The minister began by reading a list of rules and sending a collection plate around immediately, every speech mentioned a family member a few years back who had been a professional sports person (I'd never heard of him! Nor had my sports-mad husband). The speeches also mentioned how often they ate at the hotel, trying to impress- I wasn't. It's a bog standard hotel.

There were no favours as the money was given to charity (fair enough) but it was done very ostentatiously. The bride and groom bought each other ridiculously expensive gifts (fair enough) and made sure everyone knew how much they cost-tacky.

We were sat right at the back, the last numbered cards (must've just made the cut) seated with the groom's much younger, idiotic friends who snuck booze in(!) then left it under our table when they were nearly chucked out.

cherrypieplum Tue 08-May-12 19:20:34

A friend was getting married about the same time as me.

Knowing full well she was better off at the time and I was on several precarious part time contracts she belittled every choice I made: "Oh you're having chicken? Everyone has chicken. We're having #picks the most expensive item on the menu#".

Not to mention the seven, eight? hen dos. And her being a proper bridezilla, taking pride in treating the hotel staff like dirt until...her husband to be confessed that she was going nuts with the whole thing, could I have a word and turns out that half the plans never materialised.

My brother's first wedding.

Had to wear bridesmaids which where badly fitted and cut into our underarms, but we were not allowed to change out of. Veg had only been shown the boiling water so carrot balls and potatoes where flying all over the dinning room in posh stately home. The live band couldn't play in tune or sing. My brother only went through with it because it had all been paid for hmm.

Hanleyhigh Tue 08-May-12 19:24:19

We went to a wedding last year where we were freeeeeeeezing! It was a 12:00 ceremony but an hour away so we'd left home at 10:30 just to make sure. Big house, middle of no where, draughty.

We were all taken outside for photos after the ceremony at about 12:30 and no one allowed back in in case we were needed (one photo for us); this lasted two hours! All the women were in little dresses, the odd one with a wrap and people were turning blue - given it was a ceremony and meal in one building I think most people had thought they wouldn't need particularly warm clothing. There were a few canapes and the waitress warned us the food wasn't until 4pm and to have as much to eat now as possible! We froze a bit more inside as the place wasn't well heated (it was April but not warm).

Some of the rest of the wedding was lovely but all I can remember is being cold and hungry.

IllegitimateGruffal0Child Tue 08-May-12 19:26:07

I have been to so many weddings

The ones I remember are the ones where the guests were hungry or cold.

why is this so hard to sort out?

I'm not a cold/hungry person usually but seriously this does seem to happen a lot!

IllegitimateGruffal0Child Tue 08-May-12 19:28:02

x-posts with Hanley!

MarysBeard Tue 08-May-12 19:33:48

I think the cold/hungry thing happens because some people don't plan anything while photos are being taken, or don't imagine photos will take so long while the photographer goes a bit mad...Guests HATE the photo stage, they just want a chinwag, a drink and a snack, also somewhere to sit, preferably. Somewhere warm if its cold & somewhere shady if its hot. You have to make that bit as painless as possible. It doesn't have to be grand - one of the best organised ones had bowls of Maltesers & sweets in the bar while photos were being done.

BikeRunSki Tue 08-May-12 19:35:07

Register office at noon.
Then family only lunch.
Evening do at 7.30.
Lurk around small village 200 miles away from home for seven hours.
One singles tray of food for Mother of Bride who is diabetic. Then nothing.
By 9pm all the guests were in the chippy.

There was not a single crumb of food planned for guests, only drink was fizz fir toasting.

CeliaFate Tue 08-May-12 19:42:57

It amazes me that people invite you to their wedding as a guest but don't pay you the courtesy of ensuring that the basic amenities - heat, food, drink will be sufficient.
I'd rather fish and chips in the centrally heated village hall to freezing my arse off in a strappy dress on the lawn of a manor house.

Where's the fun in that?

The answer is to get married in the winter, somewhere that has a real open fire, serve mulled wine and snacks while you're having your photos done then have a big huge meal with dancing afterwards.

WkdSM Tue 08-May-12 19:43:13

DH's niece getting married 'up north' where most of the family are from so we travelled and stayed at a hotel - Brides Dad (BIL) had been through messy divorce a few years before and his new wife and SDDs not allowed to attend - although he and his new wife had paid for most of the wedding.

We were 'guilty by association' and spent most of the meal dodging bread rolls and food being thrown at us - even when the bride (who adores my DH) came and sat with us.

One of the brides aunts tried to get me outside for a fight (because BIL would not admit that his 'new' family were nothing and did not matter and I'm a second wife like she is)

Finally - everyone else left and bride and groom asked us to stay up (we were in same hotel) so we could have a chat and a few drinks - when we heard a noise and looked in the car park and found the 3 bridesmaids fighting with another girl (she had told the bridesmaids the bride had said they were not very supportive while she was organising the wedding!!) The two best men (!!) refused to go out and sort it out as the girls were better at fighting than they were.

To top it all - I found a woman crying in the loos during the evening - tried to comfort her and she poured out the story that the groom and her son had been best mates and her son had died a few years earlier and so she would never attend his wedding / be a grandmother etc etc................

pinkappleby Tue 08-May-12 19:43:34

One of the best I went to had large slices of gorgeous home made cakes with cups of tea served at the back of the church whilst the photos were taken.

Like everyone else I hate weddings at 12.00 or 1.00 as there is not time to eat lunch. We had ours at 3 because of this and I put the time of the meal and evening buffet on the invites so people could plan. I have taken tupperwares of cold pizza and fruit in my handbag for the kids to eat during the service for lunchtime weddings blush.

IllegitimateGruffal0Child Tue 08-May-12 19:45:43

Oh god yes - comforting crying women in the toilet. Joyful day!

BramblyHedge Tue 08-May-12 19:51:26

I went to one evening reception where the venue was invaded by a travelling community who were attempting to drink in every establishment in town as part of a wake. they ate the food, drank the wine, danced etc. There was a lockdown. the police were called to evict and the bride stood up and very calmly told them to f off and stop ruining her day. we got extra free champagne and food from the venue as an apology.

WineOhWhy Tue 08-May-12 20:07:37

I did not really enjoy my cousin's (groom) wedding last year. DH and I were invited without kids, which is fine in principle. Unfortunately our childcare arrangements (PILs) fell through at the last minute (Friday afternoon) due to illness and it was too late to line up anyone else (we had a 7am flight on Saturday morning to get there, so we essnetially needed someone to stay at ours (or have the kids) from Friday evening until Sunday afternoon). I had been very busy at work and was tired anyway, so we thought we would just cancel but my mum got a bit upset as neither of my siblings were going, so I ended up going on my own without DH. Given work and early flight (and general worry about missing flight so not sleeping well), I had about 4 hours sleep. When I looked at the seating plan, there was no-one else I knew at my table (and an empty seat for DH given last minute cancellation). Turns out the other people at my table were all friends of the bride's parents, about 20 years older than me and not particularly inclusive (although I did try). To make matters worse, they served fruit juice rather than wine with the meal. No idea if it was a religious reason or financial (there was a pay bar but none of the others at my table ordered any wine so I did not like to in case it was some kind of religious reason). Luckily one of my other cousins came and sat with me for a while so that helped at least.

I also found the wedding really quite formulaic (apart from the lack of wine!) and a bit lacking in any particular "stamp" of the personality of the couple. But I suspect that is being a bit harsh, as a lot of weddings are quite formulaic and I have really enjoyed most of the others I have been to.

joanofarchitrave Tue 08-May-12 20:09:20

I think my weddings are usually pretty grim tbh - I have had two in register offices, and certainly in those days the latest possible appointment I could get was 11.45 in both cases, so everyone had to get up at crack of dawn to get there, using my possibly not ideal directions. I always put some witty crack on the invitation about dress code so nobody knows how to dress. I insist on getting married on a Saturday as I don't feel posh enough to marry during the week, thereby insulting my partially Jewish new family. I arrange so much food and drink that the waste causes my cheeseparing blood family to have a collective conniption about it and start stashing leftovers in their emergency tupperware before the speeches even get going. And I have had two wedding lists blush. I do look back and get pretty shock at myself. What is it about weddings? What was I thinking?

Our own! It was a litany of crapness.

During the meal, a waitress was flirting with my sister's DP. When the waitress was serving her main course, she poured a half full gravy boat down her dress. Which, thankfully, wasn't very hot.

Also during the meal, it came out that my Dad had lied to his fiancée about when and why he left my accident, she mentioned something, my Gran corrected her, she asked my Dad to confirm...Dad's fiancée storms out, he yells at my Gran and storms out.

In the evening a very-nearly-fist-fight breaks out between DH's Dad and Uncles. DP spends so long breaking up/sorting out that I don't see him all evening.

My Mum's DP falls over on the dance floor and has to go to A&E.

Ahhhh...we sound so classy. We are much less chavvy than this all makes us sound!

Three bad weddings.

First one was where the groom, during his speech made jokes about the maid of honour's virtue "she's a complete slag who's fucked every bloke in the place". She had, but it really wasn't the time smile
Maid of honour ran out crying and to this day (20 years later) she and bride have never made up.

Second was when I was a LP of a five year old DS. My close friend who also had a five year old DS invited me to her 'child free' wedding. She said she didn't want any kids but hers. Fine, her choice. Struggled to get a babysitter but tough on me. When I got there EVERY other person in the venue had their kids except me. Literally everyone. People she worked with and hardly knew. By 4pm I was crying in the toilet and left soon after. She was my confidante and knew I was struggling with depression. Cow. We 'lost touch' soon after smile.

Third was my best friend who unbeknown to everyone charged everyone for their 'meal'. She had her wedding service in the registry office and then on to a restaurant. At then end of the meal each person got a bill for £27.99 plus drinks. Every single person paid without comment, they were completely in shock. This was about 10 years ago and people still talk about it. Her rationale - they were saving for a deposit and couldn't afford the reception shock.

piratecat Tue 08-May-12 20:18:02

prob my own when a close relly told me to fuck off, and well, she ruined my day.


bigTillyMint Tue 08-May-12 20:20:32

Only one, when the Best Man's speech was so bad that my friend and I literally had to stuff napkins in our mouths. It was one of those ones where they just do totally unrelated jokes.

CeliaFate Tue 08-May-12 20:23:42

piratecat OMG! Why did she say that to you on your own wedding day?!

BupcakesandCunting Tue 08-May-12 20:25:39

I will out myself here but anyway...

The wedding of my former best friend. Did not get on well with her pompous arse of a husband. This is relevant. First off, all of the electrics went when it was time for the bride to walk down the "aisle" (aisle being an expanse between two groups of conference-style chairs) so she could not have her music played. One of the groom's friends lived round the corner from the hotel so he hotfooted it home and got his battry-operated cassette player. He neglected to put the bride's tape in though and she walked down the aisle to some shitty R n B song (bride was a rock chick).

A few more hiccups along the way, we get to the speeches. The groom decided that his speech would be the perfect moment to take swipes at me "I love X because she isn't a silly girl who gets distracted by sparkly things" "People take advantage of X and I DON'T LIKE IT" (you'd have more chance of taking advantage of Genghis Khan than her) "So proud of my WIFE for finishing her degree" (I didn't finish mine first time) He was a prize cunt and still is. Never seen them since.

DilysPrice Tue 08-May-12 20:27:43

One thing which was shock but not enough to ruin the wedding happened to my cousin who was marrying a man whose family owned a baker's shop. Naturally enough they said to my aunt "we'll do the cake" and she said thank you.

The week after the wedding they sent in their bill - they'd given her a ten percent "family discount" which made it even worse somehow.

DamselInDisgrace Tue 08-May-12 20:31:54

At my sister's wedding, the registrar was over 2 hours late. My sister started having a total meltdown and my mum had to work hard to stop her screaming and throwing things.

When he eventually turned up, he was absolutely crap. BIL kept trying to hurry him along.

There was no alcohol and no music, which made the whole thing very weird. My sister had decided they'd have boardgames instead. Would have been fine, but all the guests were glaswegians used to proper weddings with lots of wine and ceilidh dancing.

BIL had one single guest and none of his family came.

The food was lovely, but I got none because DS2 got sick and I had to comfort him. We left immediately after the meal, along with most of the guests.

Limejelly Tue 08-May-12 20:32:42

I went to one wedding where the ceremony was at 12 followed by a reception after at a restaurant, but there was NO food confused. In the evening there was the odd plate of pizza going round (the kind of thing you expect to have while waiting for your main meal)but no where near enough. In the end guests where going to Big M's across the road, it was ridiculous!

Another wedding was in a really posh location about and 1 1/2 hours away from where most guests lived. It was on a Sunday, which meant work the next day (but was obviously cheaper to book). Me and DP were evening guests. Now I don't except free drinks all night when I go to a wedding, but not even a welcome drink was provided or food for evening guests. The bar was also really over priced so no one drank much. The party was dead with tired guests sitting around and the best man on the mic begging for people to dance. I did feel a bit sorry for them, but they had obviously spent all their budget on an expensive venue, rather than thinking about their guests.

DamselInDisgrace Tue 08-May-12 20:34:47

Was made worse by my sister insisting that I have make up applied by her make up artist. It took about an hour to apply and looked dreadful. I felt horrible under it all day. Took about an hour to bloody remove too.

rhondajean Tue 08-May-12 20:35:55

I HATE weddings and this thread has reminded me of every reason why.

urbanturban Tue 08-May-12 20:45:27

The wedding where the brides fathers speech ended with 'some say that I am not losing a daughter but gaining a lovely son, but no, I am definitely losing a daughter'!! confused

And the one last week where the bride and groom did an astonishingly bad choreographed first dance........they WALKED round the floor rather than dancing, he stepped on her dress a million times and when he 'dipped' her backwards at the end I thought he was going to drop her!
It was excruciating but I had to plaster a smile on my face as the mother of the bride was beaming at us all, looking to see what thd guests reaction would be!!

Oh and the one where the bands electrical equipment blew the one (overloaded) power socket and there was no music or lighting for fifteen mins while it was sorted! grin

cece Tue 08-May-12 20:49:18

I went to one wedding where the bestman (who had also been bestman at the grooms first wedding) made the toast to the bride and grom. Unfortunatly he said the name of the first wife. shock sad for the second wife.

JustFab Tue 08-May-12 20:50:38


Our wedding was 12, we sat down to eat at 2.15 so the 4pm might be a bit too generous unless you have 100's of guests to photograph.

JustFab Tue 08-May-12 20:59:50

2-2 1/2 hours of hanging around drinking before eating is too long imo.

CelticPromise Tue 08-May-12 21:48:36

We had a similar gap Jobs and it was fine, we put the timing on the orders of service so people knew, and our venue was right in the middle of town so people took the chance to check into hotels/get a snack/ditch cars.
Celia what you describe sounds a lot like ours. smile

I have never been to a really dreadful one, but I have been totally smashed on fizz before dinner at a wedding where the photos were very long. I fell over into the stage on the dancefloor. blush

Sorry to ruin a light hearted thread, but there was another wedding in our town in the same day as mine, where the bride's mother choked and died right at the top table. Puts everything else into perspective... I can't imagine how awful that must have been sad

frumpet Tue 08-May-12 22:16:09

Im always astounded at the time it takes to have a few photos done , how many are actually displayed post wedding ? Even if there arnt many people it seems you need to have several of the bride and her bouquet on her dress or peeking round corners or being picked up .............aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaargh. And no-one else other than possibly the mother of the bride ever wants to look at the ruddy things .

Thankyou so much for listening grin

ancienthistrionics Tue 08-May-12 22:20:01

I went to one where the best man was a woman who was incredibly self-obsessed. She started her speech, when x called me to ask me to be his best man, I was buying shoes as I had just been told I had won young lawyer of the year...and then went on about herself for ages. So embarrassing.

I was best man/bird or whatever at a friends wedding and they asked me to give some of the speech in French for their relatives. I did, and one of the twits called out to correct my grammar.

frumpet Tue 08-May-12 22:24:28

But the worst photo is the arty farty shot of the back of the bride's dress and the hand of someone else doing it up , that particular one brings me out in hives .

Right i have finished now

I was at a wedding once where one of the brides uncles got completely pissed, started hurling abuse at his ex wife and daughter and then ended up pushing his siter out of the way as he stormed out of the room. She fell over, smashed her head open on the doorframe and we ended up calling the paramedics and police shock

mrspepperpotty Tue 08-May-12 22:30:11

DH and I were invited to a wedding the day before DS1's due date. We declined the meal as we didn't want to mess up the seating plan if we had to cancel at the last minute, but said yes to the evening reception. DS1 hadn't arrived, so we went along. The invite specifically said there would be evening food so we didn't eat beforehand. There were some tiny canapes in very short supply but I was 40 weeks FGS! I was starving!! Also the first dance was the most wooden piece of dancing I have ever seen.

Or the one when the best man (groom's brother) accidentally toasted the groom and his ex... now that was cringeworthy...!

Earthymama Tue 08-May-12 22:39:36

I once went to 3 weddings in 3 days! One was evening invite but still!!
We didn't go on holiday that year as it cost us so much.
Best one of the 3 was in a Marquee in the grounds of a castle, the local WI catered and we had the best meringues ever with local strawberries. The flowers were lavender from bride's grandads garden. it was lovely.
Worst wedding i ever attended was held in very lovely Parish Church where my then SiL had recently married. My family, well ex's family, all wore our finery from that wedding. The other guests were wearing shell suits, all of them.
The reception was in a Leisure Centre, the brides father didn't take off the duffle coat he wore with his Shell Suit.
I won't recount the full horror of it all!! I think I have erased it. smile

BalloonSlayer Tue 08-May-12 22:47:55

Not a wedding but I went to a renewal of vows once where one of the woman's vows was to "support her husband more and not to listen when her friends criticise him." hmm IIRC she had a fantastic well paid job and he dabbled in this and that.

She had organised a wonderful spread with the most fantabulosa puddings, but I did not see her eat any of them, although she talked about them, and how lovely they were. She also talked about how she had been so busy that morning but had still made time to go for a swim. She weighed about 6 stone. I felt so sorry for her. sad

ImperialBlether Tue 08-May-12 23:15:55

Am I the only one who sympathises with the woman in the toilets who was crying because her son had died and she wouldn't see him get married?

Hate to bring the mood down, but my daughter's friend died a couple of nights ago. I hate to think of his poor devastated mother being mocked for crying at one of his friends' weddings.

TeWiDoesTheHulaInHawaii Tue 08-May-12 23:45:52

You're right Imperial, it's incredibly sad. I think that's why the poster picked it out as being a worst wedding, not because they thought it was funny/to mock the woman.

I have not been to many weddings, but I did feel rather sorry for the bride whose priest went on and on about the high divorce rate now, and then later had her maid of honour do a speech all about... the maid of honour.

However, said bride thinks her wedding was the best ever and exactly what she wanted, so there we go.

No Imperial you're not and I don't think previous poster was mocking, just using it as an example of a bad experience at a wedding. It's not the sort of thing anyone expects to have to deal with at a wedding, we all trot along pretty much hoping it will all be jolly and happy but of course it doesn't always work out like that.

However, the poor woman must have been heartbroken and it must have taken a great deal of strength to muster up the courage and go and watch her DS's friend get married. I'm sure that the previous poster did her absolute best to comfort her, as any of us would do.

Imperial, I thought the same thing about the woman crying in the toilets. I can't begin to imagine how bad she was feeling, and of course she didn't plan or want to make a scene.

Linnet Tue 08-May-12 23:58:38

I apologise in advance for the length of this. Dh and I went to a wedding in France. Everyone at the wedding was staying in the hotel where the reception was to be held.

The wedding was at 3pm with champagne and nibbles at 5pm. We left the hotel in a friends car at 2pm still not quite sure where the wedding was going to be as it was a big surprise for the guests? luckily the driver knew where it was to be. We arrived at the wedding venue and it was freezing cold and starting to rain, we all had to wait outside for ages before we were let inside for the wedding.
After the wedding we came outside for the photos and the heavens opened, I felt so sorry for the bride and groom it was pouring with rain and blowing a gale and it was so cold and everyone was in little summer frocks for a wedding in France. After hanging about for ages getting colder and hungrier by the minute the person we were in the car with decided they weren't waiting any longer and we all went back to the hotel.

We then waited ages for everyone else to come back to the hotel. Once they did we got to have our nibbles,most of which were fish which I don't eat but I managed to snaffle a few vegetarian options. We were then left to our own devices for the next 3 hours. We had been put into a lovely room but there were no chairs so everyone was standing around then the room got really hot with everyone in it so everyone spilled out into the hallway where there were still no seats and it was pouring with rain outside so you couldn't go out there. Nobody knew when dinner was going to be served and everytime we asked all we were told was it would be soon.

At 8.30pm we were taken to the room where the meal was to be then had to sit through the speeches, then the food started to arrive. There were 5 courses, the first 3 courses were fish. I spent the whole meal with a french lady next to me saying "just try the fish you may like it, go on you'd make your children eat it" The wedding cake was eventually served at 11.30pm after that all the French people went off to bed and all the British people got drunk.

It was the oddest wedding I've been to. Everyone was cold, which the bride and groom couldn't control of course and everyone was hungry and there was this huge secrecy about where the wedding was going to be and when the meal would be served,all a bit odd.

And almost all of the weddings I've been to have been fab. We were fed, watered, wined, entertained and warm!

However, I did go to one wedding where mine and several other friends invitations said 'Church and Evening Reception Only'. It didn't even occur to us that we had been relegated to the night do even though they expected us to fill up the pews at the church! We had no idea there was a daytime reception until we got to the night do and heard her DH's friends talking about it. Which pretty much set the scene for their marriage and is why none of us are in contact with her any more.

Her DH cast us out one by one and she went along with it. I'd be there for her in a hearbeat 15 years on though and have let her know it but I won't hold my breath.

Iamnotamindreader Wed 09-May-12 00:37:27

Worst wedding I attended was my own.
Had the right idea and planned it all in 3 weeks for less than £500. Guests thought it was great.

I however got a migraine on the way to the reception and disappeared into the ladies once my prawns started to macarena across the table and was in there for the duration.

MrsLetch Wed 09-May-12 02:07:33

I think the worst wedding for me was the one where it was a disaster from beginning to end. I don't think that it helped that the guests were crammed in, and it was the hottest day of the year.

The wedding was held in a very small village, with limited parking in the village. Needless to say, I couldn't get a parking space and then was running late and had to frogmarch my 3 year old and 6 month old to the church. Both my girls had recently been ill, and DD2 was recovering from the chicken pox, so she was particularly hot, tired, and grumpy. I should have known from that, it wasn't going to be a good day.

Firstly, they had a lot of people in a very small church, on a very hot day - so we were all cramped in. During the service, my DD1 decided she absolutely needed the loo, but it was an outside loo and was absolutely disgusting. The loo had excrement smeared over the seat and there was urine on the floor, so I wouldn't let my DD sit on the loo. Instead, I held her over the seat and she proceeded to piss all over my leg.

Then, after the church service, we then had to do the obligatory march up to somewhere pretty to have the photos taken. As my DH was involved in the wedding, I had to look after the girls by myself and so had to push the pram and ensure my eldest didn't go running off (narrow pavement, lots of people and a busy main A road with lots of lorries). Then when we got to the park, there was no way I could get the pram in, so I had to collapse the pram all by myself, whilst holding the baby, to get it through the gate and then put the pram back up the other side, simultaneously ensuring that my over excited 3 year old didn't go running off. Not one person offered any help during this process. We then had to hang around for ages in the blazing sun, little shade and no refreshments for the photos to be taken. At one point, my FIL took it upon himself to take my eldest DD off to feed the ducks (out of sight and away from where we were standing, and certainly beyond the area that I had said she was allowed to play in), but didn't have the decency to let either me or my DH know... so I was running around (carrying the baby) looking for my eldest DD, thinking she might have drowned in the lake. Neither I nor my DH knew where she was and I was panicking like mad - to which MIL just said, she had told FIL to take DD1 to the lakes, but neither thought to tell DH or myself. I was fuming at this point. How I bit my tongue I do not know. After that we moved on to the reception.

The reception was just a village hall, but it was a really hot day and it had no windows at all and there was no real outdoor space to speak of (well, a patch of unkept grass with broken glass in it at the back of the venue - so not at all suitable for the dozens of children that were there). Furthermore, the venue was blatantly too small for the number of people they had invited and so we were packed into the hall like sardines.

At the reception they didn't provide any drinks, just a voucher - but again I was sat on my own with my children (pretty much on the opposite side of the hall from my DH) and because there were too many people for the venue, I was pretty much 'locked' in to my seat, There was a drinks bar, but as there was only one bar for over 100 guests, it pretty much had a queue of at least 20 people the whole time, so I couldn't just leave my baby and child to go and get a drink... but as I had been sat a couple of tables in from the side, I couldn't take them with me without getting everyone else up. I didn't really know the people I was sat with and as no-one offered to get me a drink, I sat there sweltering on a really hot day, in a stuffy room without a drink for over 5 hours by the time I got one. (and I was still breastfeeding at this point in time).

The food was then a buffet, and tables were called up one at a time. By the time it came to our table, there was hardly any food left apart from two giant fish and very ornate rice all nice foods for adults, but nothing really child friendly, so all of which my very hot, tired and hungry 3 year old refused to eat. At this point, I did seriously consider running away to McDonalds to feed her, but it was a bit too far away to get away with it. Thankfully, I managed to go through my change bag and managed to round up enough snacks to keep her going. But because it was a buffet, it was a very long drawn out process and a lot of children there (but no room) and so the children got steadily more bored and grumpy as the day progressed. Eventually, the formal bit was over and I was rejoined by my DH so it got easier, except then the band started and it was really noisy. There was nowhere for the children to play, except for one small room with a few toys in. So I took my DD in there to breastfeed and put down her for a sleep, but there were some nightmarish little children (well hot, bored, over tired with nowhere for them to run around) and with no parents nearby, one of them threw a car at my baby daughter's head.

In the evening, the band was good, but it was just too hot and so no-one danced. And because of noise issues, they insisted the ceiling windows were shut, so everyone just sweltered in the heat. My DD1 who by now was very hot, tired and hungry really started playing up and I stripped DD2 down to her nappy, but she was really over heating and was really screaming. I took her out to calm her down, and when I returned, I found the evening buffet had opened and my SIL had taken it upon herself to give my DD1 a plate of food - but she gave my vegetarian daughter non vegetarian food. It was full of foods she was not allowed to have. Normally, I might have turned a blind eye (except for the gelatine, and rennet etc which I never let her have) but as the only food she had she had eaten since mid morning was crappy snacks, I took it away and tried to replace it with something a bit more substantial, at which point DD1 proceeded to throw a tantrum.

Eventually, we had stayed long enough to be able to escape - but at this point, my DH couldn't find a carrier bag that had his spare clothes, car keys / wallet / phone etc. MIL said she had put it in the kitchen somewhere (but couldn't remember where). So we pulled the kitchen apart, trying to find it. By this time the caterers had long since left and we couldn't contact them so we then had to go through all the bins and all the leftover food to see if the bag had been accidentally thrown away. Being a very hot day, all the fish from the food was now stinking to high heaven and we had to go through every single bin bag and through all the wet, left over food. I honestly thought I was going to throw up with the smell. It was horrendous. I don't think I have ever been so glad to leave a wedding before in my life. Surely I must win with this one?? grin.

MrsLetch Wed 09-May-12 02:07:59

Sorry, that was very long blush.

TobyLerone Wed 09-May-12 06:02:40

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MrsLetch Wed 09-May-12 07:25:28

Oh yes, but it is cathartic grin.

I'm sure you, on the other hand, have never moaned about an unpleasant or unenjoyable experience wink?

Tee2072 Wed 09-May-12 08:04:32

Toby, I actually think it's the brides and grooms who are nasty caaahs if they don't provide the basics of comfort to their guests.

I was on a very tight budget but managed to have a welcome drink and nibbles waiting for my guests while we had our pictures done. Then we had quick speeches and a lovely sit down meal. No evening do as I couldn't afford it.

Everyone said it was the loveliest wedding they'd ever been to because I put my guests needs first.

As any good, proper hostess would.

FedUpOfDuckEggBlue Wed 09-May-12 08:11:18

Worst one cost us about £550 in hotel, travel and present, the bride was miserable all day and looked like she wanted to be anywhere else.

Turns out the bride had good reason to look miserable, she was already having an affair and didn't really want to be getting married at all. Christ knows why she even turned up. Three months later they split up when groom found bride shagging someone else in their living room shock

Wish I could get a refund on my £550!

TobyLerone Wed 09-May-12 09:37:31

I tend to think that the wedding is about the people getting married, not the guests. Nobody has to go to someone's wedding if they don't want to.

All this moaning about being hungry and cold is a bit lame, really.

LadyWithEDS Wed 09-May-12 09:45:32

I haven't read the thread yet.

The worst wedding I went to that always sticks out in my mind, was in a beautiful 5 * hotel, lovely food etc.

The reason that wedding stuck out was the Father of the Bride speach. I can't quite explain how bonkers it was, I never heard anything like it.

It felt like it went on for an hour, it was probably not that long in reality. The man is paying for the do, so you smile and do all the right things normally, well by the end of his speech I never saw a room full of more relieved people. Every Father of the Bride is proud of his daughter, this was something else.

He went on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on about how great his daughter was. FFS!

I saw her twitter account a few years ago, she married ex's mate and she was the same bleeting about how great her dc were going on and on and on and on...

These people think they and their children are the bee's knee's and make you feel a bit sick in the mouth with their world of their own love in!

They were also quite oddly behaved in other ways, that is another thread!

LadyWithEDS Wed 09-May-12 09:48:30

I just want to add, I was more touched by a Father's genuine love for his DD the Bridge when he said a few words and started to fight back tears of his pride and love for his beautiful dd, than I was for the hour long lecture on how great she was!

nancerama Wed 09-May-12 09:49:07

A beautiful wedding in a fabulous historic building. The ceremony was held in a room up several flights of stairs. The bride's elderly relatives were forced to wait outside in the rain because they couldn't manage the stairs sad

NotVictoriaBeckham Wed 09-May-12 09:59:38

This was a fantastic wedding in every other respect but...

It was civil partnership between two of my gay male friends. Naturally, they each gave a groom's speech as they were both grooms. Then, instead of father of bride speech, both fathers gave separate father of the groom speeches. Then, obviously both grooms had a best man, fair enough. Two more speeches. But it then transpired that both grooms had two 'best men' each (!) so another two speeches. Eight in total, I would say about 90 mins. I happen to love speeches so would say I have a pretty high tolerance level for them, but by the end I was seriously flagging. Although by the sounds of other tales on this thread I shouldn't complain as I was warm, well fed and was kept in drink throughout! However we did have to stand for the speeches as they were converting the dinner table area into the dance floor, so my feet were rather painful, although fair to say that was self inflicted.

However... the moral of the story is that you must exercise discipline when planning speeches. I didn't mind 2xgroom, 2x dads and 2x best men, but the extra two best men was pushing it. I know sometimes you have more than one 'best mate' but come on, just suck it up and choose ONE. Surely the other can be involved in a different way!

Badvoc Wed 09-May-12 10:00:37

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TeWiDoesTheHulaInHawaii Wed 09-May-12 10:05:48

The analogy with guests at your home is perfectly true.

On a normal day if you invited a friend round for dinner/afternoon tea/watch a movie the minimum standard for hospitality is that they should be warm and not hungry (particularly if invited over a meal time)/thirsty.

I have no idea why this basic idea of hosting goes out the window at some weddings.

TobyLerone Wed 09-May-12 10:08:10

I am absolutely not a bridezilla. You know nothing about me, nor about what my wedding plans are. As it happens, my wedding reception will not even be on the same day as the wedding, so as not to have dull speeches, photos etc for everyone to sit through. It will basically be a big party with the guests' enjoyment being paramount for me.

But some people like the whole manor house/posh hotel thing, where there is a lot of standing around for the guests. Everyone knows weddings are dull. Most people go to them out of obligation, and not because they can't think of a nicer way to spend their Saturdays. They should suck it up, be as prepared as possible for inclement weather/a bit of a wait for dinner and try to remember that they are adults and are capable of amusing themselves for a while.

I don't recall saying anywhere that anyone should be 'grateful' for being invited to a wedding. In fact, I feel almost the opposite. For me, the majority of weddings are something to be endured. I do endure them, and don't moan behind the bride and groom's backs, because this is their wedding.

DamselInDisgrace Wed 09-May-12 10:08:10

I think the idea that a wedding is all about the bride and groom is a huge problem. Why invite masses of people if it's all about you and you don't give a shit about anyone else?

Waiting around during the photographs is utterly tedious. It's completely intolerable if you are too cold/too hot, starving and you can't sit down anywhere. It's unacceptable to expect people to put up with that, and it's not at all unreasonable of them to moan about it.

VivianDarkbloom Wed 09-May-12 10:17:33

Isn't it funny how the main theme here is hunger. I am exactly the same and always try to remember a cereal bar. I think the problem is that people forget that most guests will be eating breakfast early, then be travellng, arriving at accommodation, getting ready, and will be unlikely to have time for food. On the one hand you don't want people to gorge and not have an appetite for dinner and you want them to get pissed quicker on the free booze but it does seem to be woeth remembering how quickly people starve...

VivianDarkbloom Wed 09-May-12 10:18:12

Incidentally am howling at worldgonecrazy's confused knife-wielding registrar grin grin

ripsishere Wed 09-May-12 10:39:21

I'd forgotten about the civil partnership one we went to.
J's mum was not at all accepting of her sons homosexuality. Ps mum was fine.
DD was the bridesmaid. J's mum cornered me and, rather menacingl,y told me that P would probably kidnap DD since he wasn't a proper man who could make babies with ladies. Rathe,r a deviant who had led her son astray.
I can't think of a more committed couple TBH.
Ps mum found out about this and a proper screaming fight started. A proper fist fight was in the offing, but DH managed to talk sense into them.

TobyLerone Wed 09-May-12 10:40:34

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BupcakesandCunting Wed 09-May-12 10:56:39

Tobes are you getting married?! SQUEEEEEEEEEEEEEE! <digs out shit fascinator>

TobyLerone Wed 09-May-12 10:58:53

Eventually, Buppers -- I will keep you posted grin

Pandemoniaa Wed 09-May-12 11:05:37

I do wedding photography by invitation only - in other words, for good friends who can mainly be relied upon to plan great weddings for them and their guests. So I do get to go to a few weddings and find them quite diverting when behind a lens! I've been to a couple of fairly disastrous weddings as a guest and without exception, one of the outstanding features in my catalogue of rather crap days has been the hanging around for hours without anything to do or eat.

Two and a half hours will pass in no time for a bride and groom. Especially if they have the sort of photographer who thinks 2,000 pictures that mainly feature the label in the bride's shoes or a winsome vignette peeking around a tree actually makes for a decent record of the day. However, that same time period for a guest is pretty well interminable. Because there rarely is anything to do at a wedding - the do is the wedding - and you are often surrounded by people who you don't know well. No matter how nice they might be. Time passes a great deal quicker if you can at least eat something.

BupcakesandCunting Wed 09-May-12 11:17:31

You'd better had! I am going to come in an Isabella Blow-esque headpiece.

AngryFeet Wed 09-May-12 11:22:36

This is why DH and travelled to the venue together and had our poncy photos done before anyone got there for the ceremony. It meant we had some nice time together before the madness commenced and there was no worry or pressure about people waiting for us. Also we got married at 4pm in winter and wanted some outside pictures so it all fell into place smile

TobyLerone Wed 09-May-12 11:23:49

Dude, if you don't wear purple glittery penis-boppers, you're not coming in.

Lottapianos Wed 09-May-12 11:31:05

This one didn't actually happen but was a theory being floated around during wedding planning stage of a friend's wedding:
Bride and groom to invite only 2 friends each, dictated by groom as was a handy number for him. hmm Bride on the other hand, had loads of friends and would have wanted to invite more than this. Groom does have a large family but still

Partners of friends' only allowed to be invited if they are actually married to the friend - no boyfriends, girlfriends, partners whatever. I have heard this referred to as 'no ring, no bring'. Is this the very definition of 'smug married??? hmm Would have been hideous for me as DP and I are very much not married and I would have had to choose between DP or friend. Thankfully it never came to that

Luckily the bride or someone managed to put their foot down and these theories were scratched and replaced with something a bit more normal.

2shoes Wed 09-May-12 11:32:09

is it me or are the wedding photos ott now.
they seem to go on for hours

sashh Wed 09-May-12 11:36:53

I was 10, I was a bridesmaid in a cotton short sleeved dress - it was freezing and I was cold. A relative lent me her shawl to stop me shivering.

We hadn't had breakfast before we lft, a 1 hour drive, another 1.5 hours for RC mass and wedding then outside for photos.

By the time the buffet was served (about 3pm) I was famished and the bitch serving wouldn't let me have two slices of ham.

I wasn't allowed to change out of my bridesmaid's dress for the evening do.

When the party finished my parents tried to get a taxi. Have you ever tried to get a taxi from, what was then, a large mental hospital, in the middle of nowhere, and still had 'asylum' written in the stone work at 2am? The taxi promisses to collect you and then just doesn't turn up.

You might at this point be wondering why the reception was at a mental hospital, it was actually the social club for staff and one of the bridal party worked there.

So we started to walk, down a country lane, me still in the bridesmaid dress and the silver sandles worn in the 70s / 80s.

Eventually a taxi did arrive, we flagged it down and told the driver, yes there was a social club, no it wasn't a joke and no, people were not trying to escape a locked ward.

We spent the night at my grandparents. In the morning I found out I had no 'normal' shoes just the sandles that had torn my feet to shreds.

MooBaaWoofCheep Wed 09-May-12 11:41:39

not bad persay.. but disappointing.

it was the first time dh & i were out as a couple after the birth of our dd 12wks earlier and we'd been told there was food on.

wedding reception started at 6.30, we arrived at 7 and all the food was gone, we hung around for about an hour then went to chippy and went home.

DreamingofSummer Wed 09-May-12 11:43:56

Went to a wedding years ago where both of the bride's parents and both of the groom's parents were divorced and re-married. All 8 sat on the top table glaring at each other.

Both fathers of the bride insisted on speaking at the reception and saying how much they'd done for the newly weds. It ended up with one father presenting his new son-in-law with a match and getting him to burn the IOU for £8,000 he'd given them for a house deposit.

Lottapianos Wed 09-May-12 11:48:42

sashh - you poor thing! That sounds just awful but your story did make me laugh, sorry sad grin

I bloody hate weddings - this thread reminds me to be glad that I hardly ever get invitations grin

CeliaFate Wed 09-May-12 11:50:13

My dn's wedding had no evening buffet at all. The theory was that as the wedding breakfast was at 5pm, people wouldn't be hungry shock.
Goodness knows how the evening guests felt, be we'd had the wedding meal and still were scoffing packets of crips from the bar by 9pm, we were ravenous!

ScrambledSmegs Wed 09-May-12 12:06:28

TBH this wasn't a bad experience, as I had lots of fun and I think it was a lovely day overall. The worst wedding I've been to was probably the one where people were placing bets on how long the marriage was going to last, in weeks/months sad I didn't join in.

Went to a wedding in the Lake District. Beautiful warm day, amazing location, loads of good friends - lovely. Ceremony was at 10am, reception at a country house nearby started at 11:30am- had the grand total of 1 canape each and half a glass of fizz, then hung around in the lovely grounds waiting for the photos to be over. And waited. And waited. We found the cash bar and got hideously drunk.

Eventually, at 4pm we sat down. Most of the young children had got very hungry and upset long before this point, and we'd managed to get the kitchen staff to provide some sandwiches for them, but nothing for us as we were promised the food was 'just coming'. I'd eaten breakfast at about 7:30am, same as the rest of my friends, so was starving. The fact that the food was almost inedible was not great, but I was so hungry I ate more than I would normally have done. Not since my uni days have I seen a roast potato that was both burnt to a cinder and raw inside! I didn't touch the chicken as it was very undercooked. Luckily we were all drunk enough to find it hilarious, although I don't think the bride was too amused. I don't think she ate any of her main course at all.

Thank god for the evening buffet. Bride and groom were first in line grin

I got a migraine after that and spent the rest of the evening in a quiet room off the bar. Apart from that, had a really good time!

sashh Wed 09-May-12 12:16:08


You couldn't make this stuff up could you? - glad you had a laugh. There were some high points, the daytime reception was in the town hall, downstairs there was a flower show so I (and the other naughty bridesmaid) went down to try to enter our flowers.

I was quite disapointed at one wedding I wwent to, the bride was RC from Irish stock, the groom's father was in the Orange Order - and not a fight or wrong word said.

DeWe Wed 09-May-12 12:20:59

BIL's wedding the food was served with a loving.... splat.

Pudding was meant to be trifle. It looked like they had put the trifle in the bowl and stirred vigorously before serving. Everyone's faces were like hmm Dh's aunt said it was a perfect example of how not to serve... once she'd finished laughing.

crapartist Wed 09-May-12 12:38:35

DP and I (along with about 10 other guests, all friends of the groom, funnily enough) were invited to a wedding and evening disco but not to the meal itself. "It''s fine!" says DP. "We'll get our own lunch at the bar there, no problem!" while I silently seethed at the cheek of it.

The wedding was at a country church, after which pictures were taken and we were involved in them. After this we found that no transportation had been arranged to take all those who arrived by train to the village where the church was, over to the venue which was several miles away, so we had to beg a lift off another guest to the venue. Several others who had arrived by train had the same problem. When we got there we had one lousy drink before the 100+ other guests sat down for dinner and the 12 of us went off to find the bar/restaurant to order and pay for our own drinks and food. Except there was no bar/restaurant. So we had to pay to get taxis to the nearest town and find a place to buy our own dinner. Then pay for more taxis back. Not surprisingly some of the 12 decided not to return for the evening party.

I am still upset about it!

DilysPrice Wed 09-May-12 12:51:00

Disability is a constant source of good wedding fails.
Brides and grooms please note that a stately home with a quarter mile gravel driveway looks great in the pictures but is not ideal for pushing your grandfather in his wheelchair, especially if it's on a slope. If you do wish to use it anyway then please delegate a strapping usher to push the wheelchair rather than leaving it to your septuagenarian aunt in her best heels.

Likewise, basement nightclubs reached by precipitous spiral staircase and ladder may be excellent for your university mates, but less good for your great aunt who's waiting for a hip replacement (bride's father had to hoist her up the ladder with a shoulder under her bum when she needed the loo).

MrGin Wed 09-May-12 13:08:45
Badvoc Wed 09-May-12 13:14:01

toby the "bridezilla" remark was tongue in cheek but it hit a nerve, obv. Sorry.

I just cant get over the amount of weddings on this thread where the bare minumum of civility/thought for guests was made. As another poster so rightly said, you would not treat guests at your house like this, so why is it ok at a wedding???

I had 3 physically handicapped people at my wedding - and I was thrilled they made what was for them a big effort and came - but I made sure that the church had the ramps over the steps (its a medieval church so not disbaled friendly!!) and that the photos didnt take HOURS and that the venue was easy to get to via car and no stairs to get the reception room(s). I also made sure that the vegetarians and diabetic guests were catered for. I thought that was just being, you know, normal hmm

I went to another wedding where they crammed so many to a table (venue far too small really) and so the poor harrassed waitress got a bit of each course I had on the shoulder of my jacket grin

TobyLerone Wed 09-May-12 13:24:08

Don't panic. No nerves were hit. I just assumed you were attempting to be insulting, but failing.

Badvoc Wed 09-May-12 13:29:04

I hope your wedding day(s) go well.

I always kept in my mind that as nice as gorgeous flowers, lovely food, good booze and pretty dresses etc are its all just "garnish". The important bit of the day - getting married - only takes about 2 mins!!! smile

exexe Wed 09-May-12 13:41:45

The worst wedding ever was an evening reception in the middle of nowhere.
It was over one and half hrs away. We arrived starving as had been rushing around all day.
The only food available were bowls of crsps and nuts. there wasn't anywhere nearby to even get a kebab. Lots of people had amde an effort, bought a present and travelled far to get to there and I think it was very poor to not at least have some buffet food for the evening guests.

trixie123 Wed 09-May-12 13:48:08

the one where the (female) best man (one of three) made her speech all about when her and the groom were going out together and the groom, sitting next to his FIL going on about how great his new wife's tits were (in not very subtle euphemisms) grin

gramercy Wed 09-May-12 13:53:32

Dh and I were invited to the evening reception of the wedding of an old school friend of dh's.

We travelled for two hours and arrived at the appointed time. We went in and everyone was still sitting at formal tables. We hovered in the doorway for a while and then the groom came over and said to dh that they were still in the midst of the afternoon reception and could we wait at the bar outside. We were joined by another old school friend. After a bit it dawned on us that the only guests for the "evening" were... us three! And there was no food.

How could someone actually invite only three people to an evening reception?! And then not give them so much as a crisp or a drink?

We all agreed to leave and dh never spoke to the groom again. Plus we took the present home with us.

ripsishere Wed 09-May-12 14:03:22

Of course I'd forgotten about the Thai wedding we went to where the brother of the groom was insinuating that his new SiL was a prostitute.
Or the one me and DH went to in the wilds of Yorkshire. We'd mislaid the map and decided to follow another set of guests to the reception.
Tragially one navy metro looks very much like another and we followed a random couple to their house. They were a bit startled TBH.

DontmindifIdo Wed 09-May-12 14:03:23

For those who have a "Church and evening invite" what you've actually got is "evening only" however, the couple aren't allowed to stop people from going to the church, so you get this invite too, the assumption is you won't bother going to the church, unless you live close by (it's from the days when say, all the village would just go to see the wedding but not be invited to the reception - you'll still find randoms from the church family who do just turn up to any wedding in their church).

chipmonkey Wed 09-May-12 14:04:35

Our friends' wedding really was lovely but the priest went on about my friend's granny, saying she had been a bit of a fascist!shock

And the dessert was burnt. But other than that it was lovely!grin

LieInsAreRarerThanTigers Wed 09-May-12 14:05:19

I've never been to a really bad wedding. Bad marriages, though, that's a different story!

The worst thing that happened at my wedding (apart from the choice of groom) was forgetting to bring corkscrews, the white wine being not cold enough, (especially by the time we managed to open it!) and my MIL standing in front of the band (our biggest splurge and the bit we were really looking forward to) with her fingers in her ears!

DamselInDisgrace Wed 09-May-12 14:19:05

One of my friends and her partner flew in from very far away indeed (a country in south America) to attend the wedding of one of the partner's university friends. It was at a hotel in the middle of nowhere. They only gave my friend an evening invite, while her partner was invited to the whole day. She had to sit alone in the bar all day because she was the only person with an evening invite to the whole wedding. I have no idea why she bothered going. I certainly wouldn't have.

Annunziata Wed 09-May-12 14:25:53

DH and I went to a wedding when I was about 35 weeks pregnant with DC5. The best man's speech contained a lovely segment where he used us as an example for the happy couple- on how to effectively use contraception, because 'obviously no one has told them! Number five, ladies and gents! Are we putting bets on double figures? Don't blame you, though X (DH), she's a stunner!' I have never felt so humiliated in my life,and you cannot flounce out in anger if you're 35 weeks pg!

LadyWord Wed 09-May-12 14:26:21

I actually lurve weddings but I've seen a few horrors (though far outnumbered by the lovely ones)

The one held in a freezing cold, wet, drizzly garden covered in goose poo, trying to entertain a cold, wet toddler and stop him from running off/falling in pond/getting covered in goose poo/screaming through the ceremony.

The civil partnership that ended up with a screaming fight between one of the brides and her sister, who was pissed out of her skull and basically jealous of the big do. (Rest of it was fab though)

The posho rural one where the vicar basically told us we were all going to hell if we didn't believe, and the dinner was course after course of identical plates of salad leaves.

I also don't really enjoy the ones where I can't get behind the marriage itself. I actually said no to one invite recently because I couldn't in all honesty congratulate the bride on marrying a controlling tosspot.

hackmum Wed 09-May-12 14:26:23

I haven't been to any really terrible weddings. There were a couple that stick out as examples of "things you shouldn't do". One was when I was single (newly divorced in fact), and at the reception, I was put at a table with a whole load of other single people who I didn't know. It was particularly upsetting as my best friend was also at the wedding, and she and her husband were put on a separate table, even though the bride was friends with both of us and would have known we'd have wanted to sit together. I felt like a real pariah.

The other was one where there was a church wedding at 12 noon followed by a reception in a nice hotel several miles away (quite a long drive), and they simply served sandwiches, tea and scones. The bride said that she and her husband both worked in jobs where they were always attending formal dinners, therefore thought it would be much nicer just to have afternoon tea. It didn't seem to occur to her that what would be nice for her and her husband was not so nice for people who had travelled miles to be there, and in some cases from abroad. And who didn't have to attend formal dinners for their jobs.

Mrsjay Wed 09-May-12 14:27:30

i think it was my friends which i was bridesmaid for blush ive never said anything to her obvioulsy,
but she seemed to think her guest would fil a huge ballroom at a fancy hotel it is HUGE
, she had very little evening guests some of the grooms friends were in a downstairs bar watching Rugby and some older guests went away for a lie down in rooms didnt return , It was so awkward had to sink a few vodkas and get on with it , i think the people in the bar thought i was nuts as i was trying to usher the supporters back up stairs ,

hackmum Wed 09-May-12 14:31:19

Reading through these, there seem to be two key messages:

1. Always provide lots of delicious food and free drink.

2. Make sure your best man isn't a tw*t.

Lozario Wed 09-May-12 14:32:07

I went to one once when DS was 8 weeks old and was told that the designated breastfeeding area was... the smoking tent??!! hmm Decided that our car would have to do!

I can only think of two truly bad weddings - I've been to a few where the venue/food/etc hasn't been great, but other things (seeing how happy the married couple are, having a laugh with friends, etc) have more than made up for it.

The first bad one I went to was in a lovely manor house with great food, entertainment, etc. But the couple had met online and the woman had made it pretty obvious (by telling people and by the way she acted) she was marrying him because he was loaded. He was loved up with her though. And before you flame me for being friends with such a cow, she wasn't a friend; she was a work 'friend'. Anyway the whole day seemed a bit 'flat' because there was no spark between the couple and it all just seemed a bit sad and pointless (they're now divorced).

The other one was similar in that the bride was loved up and mad-happy - but most of the 'congregation' were in the secret that her new H had shagged someone else on his stag do sad.

nannyl Wed 09-May-12 14:33:59

love reading these posts

i have to say i have never been to a disaster wedding

though i have 7 weddings to attend in the near future so who knows what might happen then (though knowing the people getting married, i expect they will all be lovey)

Not really a disaster but at a family wedding 3 hours from home my aunt (37 weeks pg) went into labour at the reception and had her baby by 11pm, so they were stuck up there for a few nights longer than planned

CelticPromise Wed 09-May-12 14:34:11

I am blush about the people who are offended to be invited to church and evening. Evening invites are ok yes? We couldn't have everyone at the meal but we wanted them all at the church, not to 'swell the pews' just so all our friends could see us married. We put a lot of effort into the ceremony and had really good music etc. We put suggestions of things to do in the afternoon. A bunch of my friends that had met at the hen do spent the afternoon in the pub and had a good time, I hope everyone else was not silently cursing us.

There were also random people from the parish at the church, which was nice. smile

VivianDarkbloom Wed 09-May-12 14:34:42

Actually, I've just remembered at one wedding I went to, the Priest made the most inappropriate disclaimer at the beginning along the lines of

"Photography is NOT ALLOWED. NO. You'll RUIN it for me, you'll RUIN it for the Bride and Groom and you'll RUIN it for yourselves. There will be an opportunity to take photographs at the end. AT THE END."

He sounded like he was addressing a rowdy Year 8 class, not a group of adults at a wedding. "We'd like to ask you to not use your cameras during the service" would have been fine confused

In short - I personally don't really care how posh/good everything is or isn't, it could be in a stinky pub or on a tropical island, I just love a wedding because it's lovely to share in the happiness of the day smile


Pandemoniaa Wed 09-May-12 14:35:58

I think the worst wedding I've been to was where the invitations really hadn't made it clear to which parts of the wedding respective guests were invited to. So several people turned up at the reception only to be turned away at the door. They were not placated by being told to come back at 7 for the evening do.

I do think that too much can be crammed into one day although I realise that this is usually the result of wanting more people to celebrate the wedding than can always be accommodated. But I think a good friend of mine has chosen a really sensible way to sort this. She gets married on a Saturday next month and has invited close friends and family to the wedding - 2.30pm in town - and then provided minibuses to take us all to a very nice village hall about 5 miles away. The reception will last until 8 and then we'll be driven back to town where we can hit the pub if we want. My friend and her husband then go away on their honeymoon. A week later, on the following Saturday, they are hosting a huge great party in a local club with a buffet and a band and everyone they know (including those of us at the wedding) are invited. That way you get 2 parties and the company of everyone you want but you don't have an endless day with the potential for misunderstanding.

hattifattner Wed 09-May-12 14:38:08

Wedding 1: lovely - a real laugh, plenty of booze (i was pg so not drinking) - except one of the female guests got completely bladdered. And bit the bride. SHortly afterwards she fell into the string quartet. She was a copper....! It is believed that she played for the other team, and was miffed that the bride did not share her feelings.

Wedding 2: we heard the father of the bride tell us all about his son for 20 mins, and how proud he was of him, before mentioning that the bride was sadly not very bright, but did look lovely on the day.

Wedding 3: One of my rellies, a fortune spent on trappings - 4 bridesmaids and a flower girl and paige boy, mother of the bride in coordinated outfit, horse drawn carriage, more flowers than chelsea flower show. We stood outside the church with the brides elderly grandmother who was a real character, but we were all freezing. 2 hours! DH scored huge brownie points with granny for giving her his jacket.

Got to the community centre reception, there were 2 bottles of wine for 8 people. SO a glass each then. That or orange squash. No bar. Dinner arrives....Heinz tomato soup (not enough to go round, so 4 of us didnt get any), followed by airline style chicken (about the same quantity) and supermarket black forest gateau still slightly frozen in the middle. Best mans speech "well, I dont really know (groom) very well...". We were sat with an ageing glam rock star who clearly had done waaaaaaaaaaay to many drugs back in the day, and could not string a coherent sentence together. WIfelet would have to mop his dribble at times (she was really sweet). Reception seemed to go on forever, until at 8oclock, the band arrives to set up, 9o'clock its like a gig and halleluja the bar opens. We managed to escape shortly after!

Wedding 4. My mother is helping her bf at bf's daughters wedding. BF says its time to cut the cake, mum is a little pissed and gets out the electric carving knife and cuts cake. Only the Bride and Groom have not yet cut the damn thing yet........ :D

VivianDarkbloom Wed 09-May-12 14:39:07

rip you stalked some strangers through the Yorkshire Dales to their house! grin They must have been terrified!

Mrsjay Wed 09-May-12 14:39:21

just wanted to say my friends actual wedding and meal was lovely just the evening reception was a Disater , feel like im scoring an episode of four weddings grin

TobyLerone Wed 09-May-12 14:42:06

Personally, I find evening invitations a bit crap. It says to me, "you're not important enough for us to pay for your dinner, but you can come later and bring us a present".

I don't usually bother to go to those, unless they're work colleagues' events because I know how much we all get paid and it's shit.

Pandemoniaa Wed 09-May-12 14:42:26

"Photography is NOT ALLOWED.NO. You'll RUIN it for me, you'll RUIN it for the Bride and Groom and you'll RUIN it for yourselves

It's even worse if you are the photographer! It wasn't until the technical rehearsal the day before the wedding that the minister in question assured me that all photographs had to be taken from the back of the church and that I was not to put a foot beyond this last pew. It was a long church and his suggestion of "using a great huge zoom lens like the paparazzi" was not a very practical solution either.

DamselInDisgrace Wed 09-May-12 14:46:07

To be honest, I hate ceremony and evening invites. don't care if there's a list of things to do in the envelope with the invitation; you still have to hang around for hours in a wedding outfit, uncomfortable and overdressed. And the evening reception always starts late, so you get to feel even more B list as you wait outside for the speeches to be over. It's especially bad if you're expected to travel for the wedding, so you've spent a fortune already.


Mrsjay Wed 09-May-12 14:48:48

at my own wedding i was poor but made sure everybody was fed grin , but a friend of MIl did the wedding video , there was the back of us a skip over the guests and the rest was of the friends family shock oh and the cake which the wife of friend made which was appreciated but all you can see if the knife going through HER CAKE and torsos of people gathered round , , we had to have a viewing and asked if we liked it , we just nodded and smiled and told people it didnt turn out as well as expected nobody else has seen it ,

ripsishere Wed 09-May-12 14:49:34

grin to make matters worse, we were in a black sports car. Obviously pre DD and debt.
There was also the wedding of a friends sister. One of the bridesmaids was around 2 and sparse of hair. His mum had got her own GD a wig from Oxfam.

gramercy Wed 09-May-12 14:52:20

Reading all this, who'd bother with a wedding?

I've been married 16 years and I have a relative who I see about once a year. Every time, without fail, she has turned the conversation round to how she didn't like the food at my wedding. (Actually it was very good food - no lukewarm buffet or chicken supreme.) She couldn't believe we didn't have a menu and she asked the waiter for something else, and she didn't like the starter etc etc etc. 16 bloody years later!!!!

MrGin Wed 09-May-12 14:52:51

A friends wedding in another country. During the speeches the brides uncle starts his speech in another language. There is a friend of the bride happily translating to the English half of the room.

The translator stops translating and the brides family all start to look mortified.

The uncle commands the translator to carry on. And it turns out he's saying what a terrible day it is for the family , that she shouldn't be marring a foreigner, we're not welcome etc and then storms off.

Was pretty good wedding apart from that.

TeWiDoesTheHulaInHawaii Wed 09-May-12 14:54:11

oh dear MrGin.

I liked my wedding, a couple of things got messed up. But everyone was warm and fed - clearly that counts for a lot!

LieInsAreRarerThanTigers Wed 09-May-12 14:58:51

Funny in a registary office it can be the other way round - we could only have about 30 people to the actual ceremony but invited many more (about 80) to the reception with lunch then all those who wanted to stay plus lots more extra friends (I turned it into a school reunion - bring a friend and a bottle, with a fantastic band and a disco) in the evening. Most of the 'olds' didn't want to stay for the evening do, except my parents and MIL who all complained about how loud it was, instead of sensibly going home like all the others!

Beanbagz Wed 09-May-12 15:02:53

localcrackpot DH and i went to a wedding where we assumed that canapes/drinks were the only thing on offer (it was in Spain).

Nearly 4 hours later we were told that dinner (3 courses) was served. To say that we were stuffed full was a bit of an understatement!

NiniLegsInTheAir Wed 09-May-12 15:06:37

I probably shouldn't say this, but one of the worst weddings I've been to was my own. sad
My groom got lost trying to drop our car off at our wedding night hotel and was late for the service.
Another wedding party stole the flowers from the venue before the service (we did get them back thanks to our determined wedding planner).
Groom's Dad refused to smile for any photos as we wouldn't let him bring along his new girlfriend he'd been with just a week.
My Chief Bridesmaid was nasty to me all day over some imagined slight I apparently performed at her wedding a few years before.
Groom's speech didn't mention me once. sad
As we started the first dance my groom decided he 'didn't like' our song so refused to dance - I had to smile and try and swing him around like nothing was wrong.
The DJ wouldn't play any of my requests, only those of my guests and my new husband.
My Gran refused to eat any of the food.

But our guests were kept fed and watered so I hope they enjoyed it. :D

I have been to a wedding once where the estranged Aunt & Mother of the bride turned up uninvited and attacked the bride. It was awful. angry

aloiseb Wed 09-May-12 15:07:25

The worst wedding I've heard of, my Dad was at. Apparently, at the ceremony, when asked "do you take this man.....?" the bride-to-be replied, "No, unfortunately, because he slept with the chief bridesmaid last night"

Oh dearie dearie me shock....he said the reception was still held, as a party for all the friends and relations, but imagine the poor wedding familysad

The worst wedding I have been at, we were singing for the service with a London choir, which the bride usually sang in, but the wedding was at her parent's very upper-class home in Northumberland. None of us knew any of the couple's (snooty) friends or relations. So why they chose to split us up around the tables for the meal, I don' t know - didn't want to see us having a laugh together, maybe, and lowering the tone!

DilysPrice Wed 09-May-12 15:10:34

I think ceremony + evening invites can be fine if you're in a town and can all hit a decent pub for lunch and there's a bunch of people in the same situation so it remains a sociable thing.
It is not ok if the venue is in the middle of nowhere.

DilysPrice Wed 09-May-12 15:17:35

At my own wedding I had the mad idea of mixing up people from
different friends groups on the tables. Very sensibly they just ignored my seating plan and sat where they liked.

PullyWoolOver Wed 09-May-12 15:20:59

Ugh, my own - married a twat.

Divorced now grin

Annunziata Wed 09-May-12 15:22:23

VivianDarkBloom It wasn't a Father McBride that told you not to use cameras in such a charming, polite manner, was it?!

We went to just the evening do of a colleague of DP - local, nice venue, good buffet, nice group of colleagues all together, so that was all fine. The wedding was a Sunday, on Father's Day, so after the first dance the DJ said something like "[bride] will now take to the floor with the other man in her life" - fair enough, until it turned into a 15 minute choreographed routine to about 5 different songs all mixed together (the actual first dance had been a little shuffle compared to this), complete with, at one stage, the FoB lassoing the bride in and then pretending to slap her bum in a very suggestive manor. We were all shock, the groom smiled VERY sheepishly, though her family seemed to think it was all fine...

lurkerspeaks Wed 09-May-12 15:24:20

Big wedding grandeur on small wedding budget - reception in a pub function suite, food terrible (gravy out of tea pot anyone), wine undrinkable. Pimms served in martini glasses (in October!) and strictly rationed and outside for the drinks reception.

We got dug out of the bar by the grooms mother (he is our friend) who was furious with us (old friend) and her son for organising it (she is v. posh and was upset that her family /friends were exposed to it)

Such a shame as a pub wedding (fish and chips/ sausage and mash), beer etc. would have been lovely and the food might have been edible!

Other cracker was the muslim wedding with a 2 hr drinks reception with no drinks. Those of us who drink (most of the bride and grooms university friends ) found it a struggle.

Best wedding - the one with a bottle of champagne / person and we didn't even mange to drink it all!

CeliaFate Wed 09-May-12 15:24:59

nini are you still married to him????

lurkerspeaks Wed 09-May-12 15:28:25

Oh and my brother was a best man once but didn't get invited to the meal... that was apparently family only.

Their call as he spent the afternoon in the pub with the other rejected guests and then apparently gave a v illuminating speech at the evening reception....

NiniLegsInTheAir Wed 09-May-12 15:36:00

Celia Yes sad

SmellsLikeTeenStrop Wed 09-May-12 15:38:57

The worst wedding was one at a small country hotel. After the service we were all kicked outside so that the staff could convert the room where the service was held, in to the dining room. It started to rain and we weren't allowed back in until they'd finished setting up. Fortunately there were trees we could shelter under, but still.

Another wedding, the brides parents were paying for the event so the groom was only allowed a tiny number of guests for the afternoon reception, his family and a couple of close friends. To try and conceal the fact that out of 100 or so guests, only 20 of them were the grooms, we'd been split up and dotted around the room. So rather then having a laugh with friends and family, DH and I ended up on a table with our 2 DCs, and 4 strange* teenagers.

*strange as in strangers

SmellsLikeTeenStrop Wed 09-May-12 15:43:01

Oh, and there was the wedding where we were invited to travel to the back end of beyond for the service in the morning, bugger off and amuse ourselves until 7 in the evening, and then come back for the evening reception. I didn't go to that wedding though.

shoegal34 Wed 09-May-12 15:46:08

The worst wedding I've been to was my good friend's sad

3pm wedding - twas a civil ceremony in a hotel followed by reception and 8pm(!!!) buffet at same hotel. Invite didn't give times re food etc. We were all absolutely starving and p*ssed by 8pm (I'd been there since 2pm). There wasn't anywhere near enough food (don't know why as the groom is loaded?!) so some people didn't get any at all! Bride was p*ssed before the ceremony and continued drinking heavily from there. Ended up going up to her room for a couple of hours before the buffet to lie down. Groom and his friends were snorting c*ke in the toilets then acting like d*cks on the dance floor afterwards. And there was a really horrible atmosphere all night. I couldn't wait to get home...

Their relationship pre-wedding was terrible, wedding was terrible, marriage is now terrible :-|

Thumbwitch Wed 09-May-12 15:56:33

Some horrors on here! I also want to know if Nini is still married to that groom...

My own wedding was a long drawn out affair, out of necessity really (short-range planning, had to take what was on offer) but worked out to be essential that we had a 2h gap between end of photos and the meal, as it gave us time to get to the hospital to see my Mum, who couldn't make it out (she died 2 weeks later). Guests were left with drinks and bar nibbles - but because I knew the schedule was a bit on the painful side, I had included it in the invitation, so people could see that there would be "lulls" in the proceedings. Nearly everyone stayed until the end, which was lovely - so it can't have been all that bad!

Worst one I went to was a Hindu wedding in Birmingham - nothing wrong with that per se, but the food was all deep fried awfulness, dripping in grease and overcooked. Nothing there that wasn't deepfried. I'd gone with my sister and we ended up having to stop in a pub on the way home to get some food, we were so hungry!

The one where the father of the bride, in front of well over 100 guests at a "big posh wedding" type affair, spent his whole speech slagging off his daughter and saying what a train wreck she was.

Bride cried. A lot. sad

Peetle Wed 09-May-12 16:07:49

My SiL's wedding was the full Baptist, bells, whistles, tambourines and guitars and quite entertaining. However, she'd blown all the money the family had given her on gifts for the bridesmaids, groomsmen, etc (no surprise). As a result the reception had no booze, and at the foyer to the church hall was a dish asking for contributions to pay for the hall hire (about £60). The food was a bulk order from the local chippy; greasy cardboard boxes all round.

For the photos the happy couple and their mates had scuttled off somewhere so the only relative in the photos is the groom's mother, in her mobility scooter, sitting like a battleship in the middle of everything.

theDevilHasTheBestMNNames Wed 09-May-12 16:08:36

My worst wedding was one I was invited to with then DP. We had to travel down and book a room. We didn't drive so was bit of a mare getting from hotel to church. Sat through very long service and at end found that while DP had been invited to reception afterwards but I hadn't hmm but was expected at evening do.

I didn't want to make a fuss and told DP to go. Made my long way back to hotel on my own - couldn't get a taxi so had to walk navigating with no map in an area I didn't know-and spent afternoon waiting round watching crap tv but didn't go and eat as was told there would be food at the evening do and didn't know when DP would be back.

He didn't come and pick me up till 7.30 pm. Got to evening do and there was no food. Was stuck at a really awful disco with drunk DP till early hours with a large number of people asking where I'd been at the reception which got me upset and embarrassed.

I don't think I've been to one since though that mainly due to them being DC free and us having no childcare so I send him with apologies. I've not missed going.

theDevilHasTheBestMNNames Wed 09-May-12 16:09:42

The actual ceremony was lovely - as apparently was the reception.

getabloodygrip Wed 09-May-12 16:10:59

My SIL professed undying love to my about-to-be-DH the night before, I was not there, she was very very drunk, but he remembers it well.

She then vomited mid ceremony.

DH had the good sense not to tell me either of these things until well after the event!!!!

ButternutSquish Wed 09-May-12 16:11:19

I think it's very difficult when you're organising a wedding. You want the day to be about you two but also want to have your guests with you to celebrate.

Most of the people who comment about being hungry and having no food seem to also say that they didn't have breakfast or weren't expecting to wait so long for food. I always assume when i go to a wedding that there's going to be at least an hour or two between the end of the service and the food. I have a good breakfast and have a banana or biscuit in my bag. How difficult is that? It's not unreasonable for the Bride & Groom to want to have their photos taken is it?

I think there's a balance to have between having a day you can't afford where you splash out of things like flowers and dresses and not feed & water your guests and going completely over the top with free bars etc.

In saying all that I'm getting married next year. Getting married at 2pm, eating at 4.30pm....drinks and canapes after the ceremony whilst DP & I have some snaps taken. Evening reception (for all the people we don't like - well, that's how it taken by some and not what it really means!) with a band and a casino.

EldritchCleavage Wed 09-May-12 16:11:47

A close rellie's (bride) first two weddings were fairly grim:

The first was to a complete inadequate who looked terrified and wouldn't speak to me or my immediate family, or anyone else who wasn't from their small community. My mother was muttering darkly about lambs to the slaughter, and she was right. He left her to go back and live with his toxic controlling parents, because he couldn't cope without them. They blamed bride.

Second wedding to a rough dickhead who got very drunk with his friends at the reception, made horrible crass sweary speeches, threw beer bottles and mocked bride's family.

Another older relative had breakdown in loos because she didn't have a daughter and would never see a daughter married because her awful long-term partner had refused to marry her and have kids and ruined her life but it was all too late now. My mother had to talk her down.

My parents left with bride's parents. Her father was too depressed to speak and her mother burst into tears. Groom left bride the minute they got back from honeymoon (all planned, he just fancied a posh wedding and first trip abroad paid for by rellie's family) dumping her with a mortgage she couldn't afford on her own.

Third time lucky. She ran off to Gretna Green and married a very nice man with whom she has children.

vixsatis Wed 09-May-12 16:16:27

The one at which I (aged 32)had to be MIL's bridesmaid, without her having asked me- she just told DH that was what would happen. The bride (aged 72) wore an ivory lace dress and flowers in her hair. The groom had a gammy leg. The priest had never done a marriage before and kept making mistakes (a minor problem when compared with his being convicted of paedophilia a few weeks later). The happy couple, being a bit deaf, kept wandering off during the photographs.

The one at which we arrived at the stated time with very small baby and sat for two hours before anyone else arrived- we were supposed to know that 2pm meant 4pm

The one at which the best man announced to the assembled company of the bride's parents' golfclubby friends that he knew that M loved T because she had made him wait six weeks before sleeping with her. The bride's parents had genuinely believed her to be virgo intacta.

The absolutely perfect wedding in sunshine in a beautiful English village, jolly service, lots of food, lots of champagne, when the cake collapsed, followed a few months later by the marriage

All weddings where the photographs take longer than 30 minutes

ballroompink Wed 09-May-12 16:22:46

I don't think I've ever been to a truly-awful-in-every-way wedding, but there are bits from two family weddings I've attended that stand out.

1) Vicar conducting service acted like he'd had one too many beforehand, it was really quite bizarre. The bride kept getting the giggles during the vows. Quite a few guests were sniggering/chatting/not really bothering to sing the hymns etc and my DM was therefore doing a total catsbumface throughout as she hates 'inappropriate' behaviour in church. Reception was nice enough, decent food etc, but then when it got to the evening reception no-one would dance, at all, they just sat at tables not really doing anything and looking miserable. The dancing ended up being done almost exclusively by me and my sister.

2) DH was involved in playing the music for the service and was told he had to be at the church to practise at 9am because they'd been too disorganised to do it properly the night before (wedding was at 2pm). The ceremony went on for close to two hours, had NINE songs, and lengthy bits of preaching about the 'roles' of a husband and wife in marriage (aka strict gender roles). It was also dropped in that both bride and groom were still virgins in a really smug way. Again my DM had an epic catsbumface going on. Photos went on for ages, long past the time we were supposed to be at the reception venue for drinks and nibbles. It was a very humid day and everyone was really flagging by this point. It was 5pm by the time everyone got to the hotel and DH had had nothing to eat or drink since breakfast so was in a foul mood. We were then faced with waiting for the wedding party to do a receiving line for 200 guests. After reassurances from the bride about how wonderful the food (catered by one of her friends) was going to be it turned out to be completely bland and uninspiring. Proceeded to get really drunk.

gramercy Wed 09-May-12 16:23:39

LOL at being mil's bridesmaid!

LIttleMcF Wed 09-May-12 16:41:55

We went to an evening reception years ago, where the bride had fallen out with most of the wedding guests and was sending everyone death stares. Then the music started up; a mobile disco outfit with the drinkiest, bitterest dj ever. It was strangely hilarious, he downed pint after pint with an expression of churning inner misery, whilst trying to get the 'happy couple' to hit the floor with Band of Gold as the first dance.

My sis recently spent a small fortune getting to a wedding; where the plate of chips food was inedibly bad. It's not really fair when people have flown/travelled miles and spent loads of money, to not at least feed them properly. As someone else (sort of) pointed out, you wouldn't invite someone to dinner, then chuck them a Pot Noodle and a used tea bag.

spatchcock Wed 09-May-12 16:52:30

I once went to a wedding where the vegetarian option was salmon.

I once went to a wedding where the vegetarian option was salmon.

It's surprising the number of people who claim to be vegetarians but who eat fish ;-/

Wedding many years ago, about two hours' drive away. Ceremony fine, reception on very basic community hall - again, fine. Glass of orange squash on arrival, then we sat down to a meal of (and I kid you not) tinned ham (the big long rectangular tins of pressed, processed stuff), tinned new potatoes and garden peas. Pudding was tinned fruit and evaporated milk. Sweet sparkling wine to toast with (one glass), no wine with meal. After the speeched, the bride's father stood up and announced that there would be a gap in proceedings until the evening reception but there were several pubs nearby where people could spend the time (at our own expense, obviously).

DH and I drove to the nearest town and got fish and chips grin

At our wedding I bribed two small children to march about with baskets of Cadburys Heroes between the ceremony and reception for any nibbly people. The venue would have provided canapes but when they provided a sample they were naff so we did this instead.

CockBollocks Wed 09-May-12 17:11:47

I was repeatedly harassed at a wedding by the brides sister, she wanted me to dance. She was trying to get everyone up on the floor.

I kept explaining that I had heels on, it was a slippery floor with some quite energetic dancing going on that had knocked the other bridesmaid over.

I was 4 months pregnant and she got so aggressive I had to sit outside in the end!!

fluffiphlox Wed 09-May-12 17:21:04

Posted further up thread but more have occurred to me. We went up to Yorkshire for a wedding, had to stay overnight for two nights. On the day of the wedding everything was done and dusted by 6pm and we had nothing to do. We knew no-one. We went back and sat in our B&B. We were young and not that well-off then. It seemed like a total waste of money to me. (Oh and it was in a chapel and young relatives sang a sort of happy-clappy number during the service. Embarrassing as they were deeply untalented)

Another one was where I only knew my DH, not even the B&G.

Another was where my DH was given an evening invitation addressed to (DHs name) plus 1. (We'd been married about 12 years at the time!)

I have refused a number of wedding invitations and now only go if I really can't NOT go.

PavlovtheCat Wed 09-May-12 17:44:14

oh man I am pretty sure that somewhere in this list is our own wedding. Which I personally thought was fantastic, but certain it was not everyone's cup of tea...
luckily I have fab memories of it and I doubt anyone who thought it was shit would not dare tell me to my face so I will never know differently grin

Ungratefulchild Wed 09-May-12 18:00:40

We got a cheese and onion pastie as the vegetarian option at one wedding. it was really nice actually smile

lifeisfuckinggreat Wed 09-May-12 18:02:09

When a friend of mine got married, her husband nipped out the other exit to smoke a joint, leaving her to come out of the church by herself <tosser>
She came out to face his drunken Aunty shouting abuse because she hadn't be invited. Grim.
I haven't stayed in touch (too dysfunctional) but I hope she left him.

crapartist Wed 09-May-12 18:10:17

DontmindifIdo An evening invite would have been fine, I wouldn't have minded that, but why invite people all that way and make them wait and spend more money when you could have just had them at the evening do? And we were sent a present list too. Bloody cheek!

CelticPromise Expecting people to hang around all afternoon is a bit rude in my opinion. I would not want any of my friends to feel less important than another so I would just never consider doing that. We came back after the dinner because my DP wanted to support his mate but some of our friends didn't, as they were so embarrassed.

GinPalace Wed 09-May-12 18:12:47

Not as bad as some on here which have me shock

However, do try to pick a venue the right size for your guests...

the reception was in a hotel in a massive function room, with a lounge/bar area at one end up a few steps.

even if all guests had been in the function room it would have been a 3rd full at best. As it was, most people disappeared into the lounge at first opportunity and ensconced themselves in the comfy sofas never to move again for the duration.

The remaining 30ish guests were scattered around the enormous function room while a DJ in a leopard print leotard tried to get the dance floor going. He forced a few people up and tried some jolly antics hmm

Anyone brave enough to have a go had to dodge the rolling tumble weeds and try to not to feel totally awkward under the attention of the frantic DJ, there would have been more atmosphere on the moon!

We did our best to have fun and be sociable, but as most of the core wedding party, including the couple, were chatting in pairs/fours in the lounge and no mixing, or any kind of activity whatsoever, was going on it was a dead loss and we left as soon as we politely could. sad

aliphil Wed 09-May-12 18:28:24

I wouldn't say my wedding day was a disaster; there were a lot of good things about it including the fact that I got to marry my DH grin. But my father provided a couple of dodgy moments. I didn't really want him there - he left when I was 14 and hasn't taken much interest in me since except when it suits him - but my mother begged me not to do that as he would take it out on her (yes, even though they were divorced).

At the reception he made a speech about some girl - I think it must have been his ideal daughter as it bore very little resemblance to me; my friends thought it was hilarious but I was mortified. Then he toasted me and my brother, instead of me and DH. Later on he escorted my granny back to her hotel - fair enough - but then didn't come back for ages. He and my mother were supposed to be paying the balance on the reception that evening, and she thought he'd done a runner and was furious. DH and I wanted to leave but had to wait around in case he didn't come back, and guests kept coming up to us apologetically and asking if we minded if they went because it was getting so late. When he eventually came back, it turned out he'd decided to have a nap at the hotel first confused.

You do get some funny guests as well though. Friends of mine had decided they could only afford a small wedding - family and close friends - so not all our crowd had been invited, which had been explained and we were fine with it. But one girl who hadn't been invited assumed it was an oversight and turned up to the reception, and couldn't understand why she wasn't on the seating plan. Rather than cause a fuss, bride and groom felt they had to find her a seat and a meal; I don't know if she knows the hassle she caused them even now! The same girl turned up at the christening of every child of the same group of friends assuming she was a godmother, even though she hadn't been asked ... hmm

plugplant Wed 09-May-12 18:42:07

Truly the wedding from hell. German groom and French bride, so everything was translated into 3 languages (including English): the registry official, speeches, videos in reception etc. Wedding was in a registry office at 10am where no one had emptied the bins or made it look weddingy.

Bidesmaids hadn't bothered to dress up or brush hair, long walk to reception (3 miles) women struggling in high heels, blisters in the 35 degree heat. Another couple had a baby but no one told us the walk was going to be so long and they hadn't brought supplies. Husband eventually had to run back 3 miles to get them.

Photos taken on a park bench along the way, locals on skateboards staring and jeering at the wedding party.

Eventually arrived at reception but no water on offer, we were all dying of thirst and exhaustion. Only half glasses of cava on offer. No food. It was now 2pm and told there wouldn't be any food until the evening. Alot of us had headaches from dehydration.

Hung about while bride's family assembled chairs and tables and cooked the food!

Helped lay napkins.

5pm they sat us down and played excruciating home made videos of the bride and groom's child hoods (2 hours long each inc translations of jokes that did not translate).

7pm first course of a small dish of olives arrived.

10pm second course of lettuce leaves and dressing arrived.

So utterly bored and hungry by now we were laughing hysterically at how poorly organised and dreadful the wedding was. Bride's brother came over to our table to photograph 'how happy the guests are'

Couple with baby left as couldn't bear it any longer. Apology from bride's family for long waits 'due to having to wash up crockery and cutlery between courses.

1am third course served chicken slices in mayonnaise.

We left soon after. It was unbelievably bad and had blocked it from my mind until now!

The bride and groom were extremely well off but the groom apparently was 'touched' that the bride's family had wanted to do everything for their big day. hmm

ENormaSnob Wed 09-May-12 18:45:23

I don't mind the evening only invitations. I like a good party.

Wouldn't be pleased with a church then evening only invitation though. That would piss me off tbh.

Another bad one was a wedding a few years ago. Lovely wedding, great meal and speeches, few drinks with meal, all going well until there was a 2 hour lull between daytime do and nighttime do. The bridal party disappeared to their rooms and about 20 of us sat about waiting for the night do hmm

notcitrus Wed 09-May-12 19:03:50

The evangelical Christian one of a colleague - we only went to the reception, which was about 500 people at enormously posh London venue. First there was standing around in the public part of the venue while photos were done. For two hours. With no drinks or anything.
Then my boss heard it was going to be an alcohol-free wedding.

Which would have been OK I suppose, but the only drink on offer was fizzy grape juice. Which was foul.
Finally, after we'd been there for 3 hours, food is served. It looks great and we're about to tuck in - when they start doing speeches at the top table. There are honorary parents and grandparents of both bride and groom, each of whom talk for at least 10 minutes. To be fair, they are quite entertaining, especially the honorary grandfather chap who talked about his three wives and you saw at least 300 stony stares. But the food is getting very cold.

Finally they stop and declare we shall now eat (4pm). Except then one of the top table is moved to praise the Lord so there's another half hour of the room chanting and praying before we can actually tuck in. Shame, as the food would have been great if it was hot!

After that it got a bit surreal with various guests giving out sort of party favours to everyone - like a plastic washing-up rack each! But at least quite fun once we'd been fed.

Then there was my friend's one which was fine, in a hotel opposite a National Trust park, until the photographer got us to all cross the road to the park for some nice photos. And then it turned out he didn't have a permit to be there, so we all got chucked out. He also spent the day trying to convince the bride and her sister and SIL to do some 'glamour' shots - actually during the reception, not for later. They didn't. And then the photos didn't come out...

rubyhorse Wed 09-May-12 19:04:21

Mine is no reflection on the very hospitable bride and groom, but I still have nightmares about a drinks reception in a stately home with a 1 and 4 year old. Had to shadow DS constantly to stop him toppling armour and stuffed deer. DH took DD out for a walk into a mobile reception black hole so missed the call into dinner. I'd taken loads of books / drawing things / toys to entertain my kids and all the others there, but when dinner was called everyone strolled out leaving me to stuff it all into boxes and bags on my own and then attempt to carry that and a crying one year old through the grounds to the dining room. Had to try to maintain a decent distance between us and the bride and groom who were supposed to be having a romantic stroll to dinner, but who in the end turned back to try and help me. Lovely people, but so embarrassing for me to intrude. In the end I was rescued by the photographer's wife who took my stuff to the car, gave me a huge cuddle and DS a sweetie, and by DH returning in the nick of time.

And that, my friends, is why child-free weddings aren't such a bad idea after all...

kellestar Wed 09-May-12 19:06:15

The worst has to be the Shrek themed one, all guests had to dress up. Was a good friend and DH pleaded off so went as a generic fair maiden. Not sure i'd want to spend my wedding day in green body paint and shrek ears hmm

A family wedding where we had to wait two hours at the reception venue waiting for the bride and her family to return from their own private photoshoot where the grooms family were not welcomed.

Another good friend was getting married in a small church which will take about 50 seated, she had the ushers issued with a list of the guests that were allowed in the church all others had to wait in the churchyard, even though we had invitations and had driven 6 hours to be there. Her reception was similarly done, not enough seats and no tables to put a plate or drink down on. A nice roast style dinner buffet [even had gravy] and I had to sit on the floor to eat it.

hazelnutlatte Wed 09-May-12 19:07:06

Wedding of an old school friend. I was surprised to be invited as I'd not seen her for years, but I went along with another school friend. Most guests lived fairly locally but we lived miles away so stayed in the hotel.
The wedding itself was fine, in a posh hotel, but we were surprised to find there were only about 40 people there (although chairs put out for twice as many)
It turns out there had been a family feud so half the guests didn't turn up!
The meal and reception were in this massive room that was practically empty. Most of the other guests left straight after the speeches. Some evening guests turned up and then left again within an hour. By 9pm there was just me, my friend, the bride and groom, the brides mum, the bridesmaid and the grooms sisters. We stayed on the dance floor with fixed smiles pretending everything was totally normal until the music finally stopped at 11 and we could go to the hotel bar and get pissed (it was a Muslim wedding so no alcohol to help with the sheer awfulness of it)

Euphemia Wed 09-May-12 19:34:47

I've been to a French wedding too, bloody weird.

It got to 10pm and all we'd had was salad and nibbles, so I commented on this to another guest. "On fait nuit blanche," said he i.e. it's an all-nighter. confused

He wasn't bloody joking either - it got to 2am and we'd had a starter. The British guests all left as we just couldn't hack it any longer!

The French tried to persuade us to stay, as the tradition was to see the sun rise, then the women would clean up and make everyone breakfast!

plugplant Wed 09-May-12 19:38:30

Oh just remembered another!

We were kindly hosted in brides' friends' stately home, all of us who had babies/toddlers.

We had such a good time with the hosts that when their dad announced he needed to check on the cattle before the evening reception (they had a herd of rare breed steers),my dh and a few others decided to go off and help him.

It was getting late for the evening reception and the slightly inebriated cattle checking party had not come back from the fields as we all waited.

Unfortunately the babysitter did not turn up either so I was unable to go to the reception! I decided on an early night and enjoy our night in the country pile.

Over an hour later the males returned having had to round up escaped cattle. They had to quickly change and then dash off to the reception, very very late.

Left alone, my dc and I decided to explore but we didn't know where the lights were and with huge moose heads and suits of armour on the landing it was quite eery/ scary so we had an early night in the 4 poster bed.

In the middle of the night suddenly the light in our room came on and 4 burly men in firemen uniform burst in.

For some strange reason I thought they had come to a fancy dress party and had got lost! They explained to me the fire alarm had gone off and they were checking to evacuate everyone from the building.

My poor dh told me later that the host had been told there had been a fire at the manor and had had to rush home, but he didn't want to worry anyone so didn't tell dh.

Dh wondered where the hosts had gone to be told about the fire so then managed to get another member of the bride's party to drive him back thinking me and dc had burned to death.

Later found out that the bride's mother was absolutely livid that the bride had to sit on her own for most of the evening reception as most of the people in the top table had either not turned up/had turned up very late/had to leave very early. shock

JustFab Wed 09-May-12 19:49:11

When DH proposed he agreed with me that everyone who was coming to watch us get married was coming to everything. I think it is rude to have a B list type situation where people only get invited to the evening do. As it turned out DH didn't want an evening do and we left at 6. Everyone went back to MIL's for a get together and DH and I went off to our bridal suite at the hotel. Wedding at 12, free bar after photos and until everyone went home. We were eating by 2.15 and it was great. Only thing I would change was the food as it wasn't what I was expecting but everyone seemed happy.

mouldyironingboard Wed 09-May-12 19:55:43

Worst wedding I attended was a lunchtime 'champagne reception' in a posh London venue. There was no food all afternoon and no soft drinks available (I don't drink alcohol). In desperation, I went out and bought myself some soft drinks and a sandwich.

When it's a church and evening invitation I never go to the church, I've always assumed it wasn't expected blush.

DontmindifIdo Wed 09-May-12 19:56:13

Sorry, I wasn't clear, with church weddings, the bride and groom are often told by the vicar that they must invite people to the church - as it's open and they can't not invite people to it, it's one of those ettiquette things - going back from when all your guests would be local and it wasn't that they'd have to hang around, just go back to their houses and do their normal stuff then return for the evening party. If it's not a convienent place, the bride and groom have probably been told that they should invite you but you'll probably not come to the church. It's completely ok to RSVP that you will be there in the evening but can't make the church earlier.

I haven't had a 'church and evening' invite that I could actually go to anyway (the only ones have been clashing), but I'm always surprised when (non-religious) people bother to go to go to the church then entertain themselves for hours, rather than just come to the evening do...

Disclaimer - DH was of the opinion it was 'all or nothing' for us so everyone got an all day invite, and we had the ceremony start at 2:45pm to make sure that everyone had time to eat first and because those staying over at the hotel could only check in at 2pm, then we only had 30 minutes of photos, with free drinks and mingling, food at 4:30pm, the money we would have spent on favours and other things we decided we didn't care about was stuck behind the bar, then fed everyone again at 9pm - of course that meant that no-one was actually hungry in the evening and we had about 1/2 the food left over in the evening....

EatsBrainsAndLeaves Wed 09-May-12 19:58:20

The worst wedding I have been to was purely because of the father of the bride's speech. She is a lovely woman, but I hadn't met her father before. During his speech he went on about how lovely she is (which is fine) but kept saying things about her that had a sexual overtone. Can't actually remember the details now as I tried consciously to forget them. But it all had slightly lecherous undertones. It was truly awful

Helenagrace Wed 09-May-12 20:01:08

I went to a wedding where the reception was evacuated due to a bomb scare. It was in NI and there was a coded warning.

Nothing was found but it was quite stressful having to return to the hotel after they'd declared it to be all-clear. I was very grateful that the sniffer dogs are well trained!

Tortu Wed 09-May-12 20:02:12

My worst one is quite sad, really.

I was working in Africa and one of my colleagues (young and European), who I didn't know well, invited a group of us along to her wedding. I'd never met the groom.

When we arrived, it became clear that he was a very good-looking conman of the, 'I will get a visa to Europe and I don't care how I do it' type. Her parents and immediate family were the only other Europeans there. I have never seen a group of people look more devastated as their beautiful daughter threw her life away.

We spent the whole evening comforting a group of people we didn't know, whilst trying to be positive and diplomatic. The mother sobbed throughout the whole thing whilst the others were only intermittent- everybody trying to hide it from the daughter.

To make matters worse, all of the wedding money was stolen. It was left on a table and somebody went off with it. It could only have been one of the guests who took it.

He left her just over a year later but after she had had his baby and got him the visa.

MockTheGeek Wed 09-May-12 20:02:42

I have a great one.

Invited to rather rushed wedding of old schoolfriend and his new-ish girlfriend. We knew it was going to be unusual when they declared that they were both virgins in a quote about the sanctity of the marriage bed on the invitation. The sermon at the church was nearly 2 hours long and had nothing to do with the bride and groom, but declared amongst other things the perils of living in sin, evils of divorce, the terrible fate of bastard children born out of wedlock, and the abomination of homosexuality as a debasement of the family unit. Large amounts of fire and brimstone. Also a lecture about the woman's commitment to a man and her family but nothing about his to her, lots about her privilege to speak in church on her wedding day (apparently this is a big deal as after she is married she is expected to follow her husband in all things and therefore married women cannot speak in church). And it goes on and on, as we, the unmarried parents, languish in the back row.

We found out that women weren't allowed to speak at the reception either so we heard the groom, the best man, the father of the bride and so on all quote scripture and talk about the duties of a wife. During the grooms speech he referred to his old friends (ie us) as unenlightened - like him 'before' and now look at him 'after'. We were basically called heathens in the speech.

After the meal we went out into the bar area so they could move the room round for the evening do, the bride and groom announced that they would be retiring now to the marital bed (both of them looked green) the groom picked up the bride and carried her off into a corridor. Followed by her mother who was to help him undo the corset. We didn't see them again, just got to imagine them upstairs.

When the room was turned round we went in, wedding disco set up for 70 people. None of the other guests ever joined us. Some stayed out in the bar and most apparently went home. There were six of us at one table surrounded by empty tables all done up in wedding ribbon with centrepieces. One very bored bartender and a bemused DJ.

We got very very drunk on extortionately priced drinks, played some drinking games, requested (and danced to) very inappropriate songs and then, when we were good and bored, went and crashed a prom which was happening in one of the other function rooms just for some human interaction.

posypoo Wed 09-May-12 20:02:52

The worst wedding I have attended was mine. I hated every minute of it (and the fact that everything about it was being scrutinised!) Was worth it though smile

lycheejelly Wed 09-May-12 20:13:57

The most bizarre I've come across was a couple who didn't send out invitations and then were surprised when nobody came! I was asked if I was free to come a couple months before the planned date and told I'd receive a formal invitation with times on etc nearer the time. The invitation didn't arrive so I assumed they had decided not to invite me. Anyway, they just didn't get around to doing invitations. Two people (who were friends of mine) other than immediate family turned up and they said being the only people other than parents and siblings in what was planned to be a big wedding was an experience not to be repeated.

RightBuggerforit Wed 09-May-12 20:18:12

Some lovely friends of ours had an amazing wedding last year ...apparently! Dh was best man, I didn't get to see most of the day. Bride had texted beforehand to ask that dd (18 months) not be allowed to make any noise/run around/cry during the ceremony, so as not to distract. This made me so wary about it that I spent most of the ceremony outside with dd just to make sure.

There was a second ceremony, but I didn't even bother going in and trying for that one - I noticed the only other person with a toddler did the same, so we amused our kids for an our in an empty room. ...Then we amused them for a further 2-3 hours (all this time no food and no drink available) while everyone did go-carting! It would've been a great day to be involved in, but unfortunately for me it was just really hard work, I was starving, bored and exhausted etc! Had I realised it'd be like that I would've taken a load of toys books/food!

EverythingInMjiniature Wed 09-May-12 20:26:35

I am absolutely terrified after this thread. How can you control the weather? We have a wet weather contingency plan for the outdoors bit but what do you do if it's hot??

2.30 ceremony, drinks reception and canapes while we do photos etc from 3/3.30 - 5 then 3 course wedding breakfast and evening buffet around 9/10? Is that ok?

chipmonkey Wed 09-May-12 20:27:23

<<<Does raindance for EverythingInMiniature>>>

EverythingInMjiniature Wed 09-May-12 20:35:29

grin s'ok chipmonkey has my back

DontmindifIdo Wed 09-May-12 20:39:39

Everything - your timings sound great and relaxed, if you have wet weather plans then the shelter you have for rain will also offer shade. If it's forecasted to be hot, call the venue the say before and request extra jugs of tap water be put out as people will get through them.

DontmindifIdo Wed 09-May-12 20:40:08

*the day before

feralgirl Wed 09-May-12 20:43:38

Oh god, I am going to two this summer that are threatening to out-do each other for worst wedding ever.

One is going to be frills and flounce and sailor suits and miniature dove-cots as table centre pieces and a bride's mother from beyond hell.

The second is going to be tacky and tasteless and DH is doing the photos as our present. The bride has already told him in great detail about how none of the pictures should look staged, they are all going to be very carefully arranged to be "natural-looking". She has planned exactly how she wants to have her and her DH peeking out from behind trees, chasing each other through a field, lying in the grass together etc. I have a horrible feeling that they are going to be keeping the wedding party waiting for an incredibly long time while all these very 'natural' shots are painstakingly arranged. If you want natural looking photos, then let the sodding photographer take natural photos ffs.

D0G Wed 09-May-12 20:49:11

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

TheVermiciousKnid Wed 09-May-12 20:52:45

My husband offered to take photos at his sister's wedding. He only realised afterwards that he hadn't put a film in the camera. (This was in the days before ubiquitous digital cameras.) grin

The worst weddings I have been to are the ones where the B&G are clearly not meant to be. You can forgive everything else if you can feel the love in the room!
Best thing you can do to keep your guests happy? Food and don't let the photographer take over.

SittingBull Wed 09-May-12 21:04:48

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

takethatlady Wed 09-May-12 21:19:45

I went to a dry wedding once. Enough said.

takethatlady Wed 09-May-12 21:23:01

I didn't go to this wedding, but my friend went to one where the cake was a lamb because it was Easter, and when the bride and groom cut it open it was filled with red food dye so it bled grin

And then the bride got so drunk that during the first dance she just hung, unconscious, from the groom as he dragged her around the dance floor grin

Sounds fun to me!

Euphemia Wed 09-May-12 21:28:36

SIL's family tried to organise a dry wedding (Wee Frees) but my family were having none of it! SIL's mum was aghast at the idea that guests should be handed a drink on arrival at the reception - by the end of the night (at which point my auntie was pissed enough to be persuaded to do her Mick Jagger impression) she must have wondered what shower of Lowland heathens her DD had married into! grin

takethatlady Wed 09-May-12 21:29:37


Seabright Wed 09-May-12 21:36:36

My friend came from a landowning family and they had a cattle farm. The best man managed to compare the mother of the bride to a cow.

AKMD Wed 09-May-12 21:39:20

I have to keep reading this thread to see if my wedding's mentioned grin I think it went alright but you never know...

I did go to one wedding when I was in the early weeks of pregnancy and missed out on the food at the reception because I was being sick in the loos with DH holding my hair sad

MotherofPearl Wed 09-May-12 21:47:54

Worst one I ever went to (a relative of DP's) the bride sobbed broken-heartedly throughout the whole ceremony. I don't mean a few tears of happiness, I mean full-on sobbing. Then the reception was held in a room above a pub. The windows didn't open and it was July and boiling hot. The reception had barely started when most of the (male) guests went downstairs to the pub to watch the football that was being screened. The speeches were dismal. And the food! Everything was made of potatoes! Mashed, roasted, boiled. In July! Only thing that saw me through was a large number of G&Ts.

ScrambledSmegs Wed 09-May-12 21:51:12

Ah yes, my own wedding - several things happened that would totally out me if I told them on here, sadly. Suffice to say it didn't go quite to plan. My dad's speech, in particular, was pretty boring with some horrible but unintentional double-entrendres thrown in. I'm giving him the benefit of the doubt on that, anyway.

We had fun though. I think most of the guests did too - they were certainly well fed, had about a bottle of champagne each due to caterer over-calculation, and had only an hour to wait between ceremony and meal. All happy. Well, apart from one of my bridesmaids, who managed to upset and offend pretty much every member of my family and friends (and tried very hard to turn my morning of quiet wedding prep into her drama). One of my friends (army man) suggested that he could quietly 'remove' her and no-one would ever know shock

FashionEaster Wed 09-May-12 21:51:44

My exMIL wore a 'designer exclusive' from a little boutique in her town, only to find FIL's first wife, and mother of the bride, wearing exactly the same designer exclusive! I have to say, impartially, that the dress was bloody animalprintastic awful, so how two people could contemplate wearing it, only jeff knows.

The look of absolute horror on their faces as they saw each other at the church was priceles, especially as one considers the other grannified before her time and the other as mutton dressed as lamb.

Oh, and exSIL invited 300 people to the reception, didn't cater enough food, and those on tables 1-10 finished eating 2 hours ahead of tables 20-30 who probably could have snarfed the tablecloth they were left so hungry.

AKMD Wed 09-May-12 21:58:20

Nearly forgot - at my wedding the best man was foreign and got so nervous when it came to his speech that he forgot to speak in English. I think DH might have made a calculated manoevre there to save himself from embarrassing stories, but then slipped up in his own speech by not applying the 'think before speak' rule and making a statement about that night's activities that had half the guests giggling in shock and my uncle laughing so hard he nearly fell off his chair grin blush

monkeymoma Wed 09-May-12 22:03:38

"nobody sets out to have a bad wedding and make guests miserable"

Hmmmm. Remembering "It's MY day its about ME" where the top table got served a different meal to the horrible buffet the rest of the guests ate, and everyone was treated like crap by the bride before during and after... she also bought all the bridesmaids dresses in the wrong sizes, so not sure I'd agree that NOBODY sets out to make guests miserable as that normally shrinking violet did seem to use her wedding as a chance to get revenge on everyone she'ld ever come second fiddle to in her life!

Minshu Wed 09-May-12 22:06:25

Rushed uni wedding of two people I happened to share a house with. They also met at the beginning of the academic year due to the house share, and the wedding was the following spring. He was a young virgin with few friends, she was / had less of all of these.

The "reception" was held in the shared house (the only reason I was invited), best man's speech consisted of a list of girls the groom had failed to get off with over the previous few years, and the groom's mother later tried to get off with the best man. "I've had my eye on you since you were 14", I think was her chat up line...

Pretty sad state of affairs, really.

My wedding was lovely, marriage didn't last that long.

Beamur Wed 09-May-12 22:09:43

I was probably the worst guest ever attending a wedding...
I sort of gate crashed this very posh and expensive wedding, (I did know the people but hadn't exactly been invited but went along as a plus one with a friend) got very (very) drunk got caught snogging one of the ushers (younger brother of the groom) by his Dad and then topped it off by allowing said usher to come back with me to my B&B. He wasn't terribly discrete about it either! Witnessed by various friends, an ex-boyfriend and other no doubt horrified bystanders. I also recall the so-called friends of my ex's new girlfriend trying to confide in me that she wasn't really right for him - happy to say they are now married and have been for years.

ViviPru Wed 09-May-12 22:14:08

This thread is priceless. It's really sad how little consideration people give to the comfort and enjoyment of others.

My sister's wedding was lovely in the main, but was riddled with minor disaster:

1. My Dad stood on her dress walking her down the aisle, I don't think it was damaged but she had a go at him in front of everyone

2. My Dad spent the day glued to his phone (presumably texting his bit on the side) having recently separated from my Mum after confessing to an affair. My Uncle had a go at him in front of everyone (a theme is developing, no?)

3. The Wedding gifts were stolen from the venue.

4. My then best friend (who was my +1) had a knee trembler in the fire escape with the best man during the reception. My sister (the bride) subsequently spent a good part of the evening trying to ensure that the best man's bemused fiance didn't find out what was going on and why her betrothed was acting weird and kept disappearing off. My sister then had a massive go at me in front of everyone about bringing my then best friend in the first place.

5. The photographer got blind drunk.

I went to a weird wedding years ago of a friend of my sister where the reception was held at the family home in a jumble of small interconnected marquees which snaked around the house. My family and I were in a marquee near the front of the house. Apart from being freezing cold, I remember thinking it weird when the speeches were taking place round the back and edited highlights were relayed chinese-whisper style through the marquee-snake.

GinPalace Wed 09-May-12 22:17:32

My worst wedding experience was actually a very lovely wedding itself.

Small do far far from home for everyone, 15 close people in total only.

I had 2 mo baby who had really bad reflux and feeding was frequent. I fed dc at the wedding breakfast, discretely and only close family present who seemed fine with it at the time.

Then B+G went off on honeymoon while rest of wedding party arranged to meet in family friendly pub, in a small village an hour drive down the road near accommodation of some of the guests for further drinks and social.

We had to stop en route to sort out bawling DC. Arrive at pub to find we have been stood up. We walked about hoping to find everyone (no phone signal), maybe spot someones car. I ended up sat on a roadside grass verge breastfeeding in the rain. We eventually realised we had been abandoned and made it the hour drive back to our hotel.

later discovered the breastfeeding was a major issue for the family - thought it was disgusting (I was fondly imagining that as dc was the brides parents grandchild they might approve of him being bf) and instead of asking me to do it out of sight, or saying they felt uncomfortable, thought it would be easier to just stand us up in a isolated village miles from home and leave us to it for the evening. They managed to complain vociferously to the bride (on her wedding day) about it though - but say nothing to me (I am approachable honest!). Poor bride.

It was DH's sisters wedding - he wanted to celebrate the occasion - that didn't happen. It was also our own 1st wedding anniversary and one of the most stressful days ever! sad

Shame as up t that point I had thought it was a beautiful and fabulous occasion (still do, very happy couple, but the memory is marred) There were some other crappy things people did that aren't worth going into but the gist is there.

Butwhatdoyoudoallday Wed 09-May-12 22:18:16

I went to one a few years ago that wasn't actually a wedding. It was the saddest spectacle I've ever seen!

The bride had spent years arranging the lovely wedding, at a very expensive venue, and had planned everything beautifully. A few weeks before the day (after invitations had gone out) they went to give notice at their local register office and her fiancé said he couldn't find his decree absolute but had ordered a new one to be sent from court that would be there in time. Said decree absolute didn't materialise and when she chased it up they told her that it didn't exist - he was still married to his ex wife.

For some reason she agreed to go through with a commitment ceremony, which is for people who are unable/unwilling to get actually married but want to put on the show. My DH called it a very solemn ceremony of absolute meaninglessness. It was heartbreaking as only a couple of us knew the truth, and her whole family thought it was her wedding. Her dad did a beautiful speech and everyone was celebrating the "happiest" day of her life. sad

Then the groom did his speech about how their relationship was based on honesty and trust shock

I feel so sorry for her, and for her family. What should have been a very happy day for her was just so sad.

Mibby Wed 09-May-12 22:21:16

My aunts wedding last year had the reception outside, at a nature reserve, on a wet june day. Two gazebo type things for shelter, no loos, no baby changing despite about ten under twos, lots of cold, wet people crammed together trying to look vaguely cheerful everytime it stopped raining and we were dragged out for photos. Not exactly well planned.
We had another invite recently for a wedding three hours drive away, where the church has no loos or parking and the reception venue has no bar. We're not going smile

Oh definitely the one where DH and his cousin had to physically remove the groom's ex from about the groom's person, and suggest strongly that she was not welcome, the groom being too pissed to do this himself.

My favourite thought was not terrible but hilarious - church wedding, vicar getting into his stride, "marriage is an estate which must be entered into soberly..." at which exact point the organist knocked a book off his music stand onto the key board - crash "fuck" grin

Oh Gin, that's dreadful sad

Triphid Wed 09-May-12 22:29:08

Butwhat Did he ever divorce properly? And did her family ever find out the truth? A very sad tale. sad

ViviPru Wed 09-May-12 22:34:34

nobody sets out to have a bad wedding and make guests miserable

This is true, but equally, if couples are inviting people to share the day with them, they should take more care to think through the agenda of their day and provision for guests' comfort.

Good friends of ours had a very VERY small family wedding breakfast in the middle of a wedding day to which they had invited MANY guests from all over the country - we'd travelled 200 miles. We were all told in advance that this was the case so were able to prepare to a degree.

What we weren't prepared for was the non-existant parking and extensive roadworks in the one way system of the city centre where they held the ceremony. The torrential rain didn't help.

Pretty much everyone was late for the service. Afterward, many of those not invited to the wedding breakfast (in the next town) jumped in the awaiting cars that had been booked for the bridal party, leaving close family stranded in a gridlocked roadwork-riddled rush hour one way system with no taxis available in the entire city. Although we were not attending the breakfast, as we had our car we offered to take some family members to the reception. Because of the horrendous traffic, the family members we gave a lift to were 2 hours late to the wedding breakfast. Other family members missed it altogether.

As we had been doing impromptu taxi duties for the bridal party, we'd not had chance to get any food, and by the time we'd got back to our digs it was time to go out for the evening reception.

Now the bride and groom couldn't have accounted for the roadworks or weather, but having the ceremony in a city centre that ended at rush hour on a Friday then the wedding breakfast in a town 12 miles away was ill-conceived IMO.

ViviPru Wed 09-May-12 22:37:50

a very solemn ceremony of absolute meaninglessness

grin Sounds like something Mr. Pru would come out with, Butwhat

GinPalace Wed 09-May-12 22:40:17

Thanks 2tired sometimes I think me finding the situation deeply sad is me being unreasonable, so it's good to know someone else thinks it was a bit rubbish. DC grandparents have not spoken to me since that day as apparently I am a militant lentil weaver. hmm <disclaimer I am not, I even use disposable nappies>

Had I been made aware it was an unwelcome act I could have done something about it! It's like a bad soap where you feel like shouting at the characters - why don't you just talk to one another and save all this misunderstanding!

Anyway, enough about that... loving all the stories - some are very shock and some rather grin

CelticPromise Wed 09-May-12 22:45:06

Bugger, seems I got it wrong with church plus evening invites. For me, the ceremony is my favourite part of the day and I would be really pleased to get an invitation to that as an evening guest. And if it meant I had to stay an extra night somewhere expensive and it was a ballache I would just decline one part or other.

You can't please everyone. At least noone was cold or hungry and there was lots of free booze!

Some of these stories are grim.

Adversecamber Wed 09-May-12 22:49:12

DH went to a shocking stag night once, think live sex show on one of those little boats you can hire that chug along The Thames. The groom had been stripped naked and had eaten a Twix out of the strippers fanjo. I didn't know the bride at all but just felt terrible for her and loathed the groom.

ViviPru Wed 09-May-12 22:54:46

Celtic I wouldn't worry, most people understand that inviting evening guests to the ceremony is standard practice and if they feel that it will be too inconvenient they will give it a swerve.

Adverse that's rank sad

monkeymoma Wed 09-May-12 23:05:43

Celtic don't worry I like the ceremony best and the meal sat beside randoms least so am happy with church + evening invites so long as they're local

NOT impressed if its a journey away though!

Anste Wed 09-May-12 23:26:15

We travelled to Philadelphia, USA for a wedding that started at 5pm and we were on the bus back to the hotel at 10 .30 p.m. It was all over, finished, the end!

See with the church and evening do only invite, when DP and I told our parents about it they were absolutely horrified. We were planning our wedding at the same time - didn't happen but we're still together - and they told us it was extremely rude to invite someone to the church service and not the reception straight afterwards. I think most people know that church weddings are public events and anyone can go into a church and watch a service but to me if you value someone enough to want them to see you and your new DH/DW commit to each other then to expect them to bugger off for five hours and to to turn up for the disco later is a bit crap.

That is the only invite like that we've ever had. We've been to loads of evening receptions for work colleagues and friends that aren't particularly close and none apart from that one have included an invite to the church service.The church services we have been invited to have all included the daytime and evening reception, but these have all been relatives and close friends.

Maybe I'm just old fashioned at 44 but it's either all or evening do only!

Thumbwitch Thu 10-May-12 00:22:47

I went to a church and evening only do. I wouldn't have bothered with the church bit but I was part of the choir, singing at the ceremony. Everyone else in the choir was invited to the reception, afaik - I went to a friend's house (which was nearer than driving all the way home) and when I got back, they hadn't finished the speeches and those of us who turned up for the evening part weren't allowed in until the speeches were finished.

I couldn't even have much to drink because I had to drive home after - really really wish I hadn't bothered!

EmmaNemms Thu 10-May-12 00:38:56

I got married in December last year and now I'm feeling a tiny bit concerned! However, being older and wiser, we really tried to think about our guests as well as what we wanted.

Having been to weddings in the past when I was very hungry, we served canapés and mulled wine and cider in church at the end of the service - seemed to go down a storm! The meal was then about 2 hrs later. We had banqueting style seating, so no worry about seating plans, people sat where they liked.

We sent everyone an approximate timetable so they could come and go a bit as they liked, without missing anything important. The thought of 12 hours straight celebrations can be quite daunting.....

We had a few children at the wedding, mostly young neices and nephews and the venue set up a table in the adjoining room during the meal, with children's menu and supervised by staff from the venue (we have a 4 year old so we have a vested interest!) the parents were delighted and the kids loved the space to run around.

We didn't have a disco (too old!) but had lots of entertainment - ceilidh, table magician, musicians and musical cabaret.

We had a bloody fabulous time but also lots of compliments. Not that much happens in our village, they're still talking about it...I think the key is to keep things a bit relaxed....hard as it is!

EmmaNemms Thu 10-May-12 00:42:12

A couple of my husband's relatives came to the sit down and the evening, but not the service!! I know he has been married before but I was a bit taken aback!

bitbewildered Thu 10-May-12 00:52:03

church too full, reception venue too full, bar really packed so not enough to drink, bf-ing DC1 in car in car park trying to hide from pissed & curious smokers, DH got food poisoning from dinner, but the sun shone and they're a lovely couple . AND had plenty of lovely nibbles during photos ... swings and roundabouts!

Anste, one of my best mates flew to Arizona for an old college friend's wedding (mate is from Arizona). She had to pay for her flight, dress, shoes, hotel, and, adding insult to injury, the reception started at 4pm and ended at 8pm. She was raging and went on the piss with the other BMs.

The worst wedding I have been to? DP's brothers. Catholic ceremony, so I was very careful to wear a below-knee skirt and cover my shoulders. All of the females on the bride's side showed up in skin tight dresses, with cut-outs, navel-grazing necklines and arse hugging hems. Plus, the bride and grooms families disliked each-other and didn't speak at all on the day. Nice and tense.

At the reception, the guests were left to fend for themselves, while the bride and groom spent two hours having photos taken (wedding at 1, over at 2, so by now it was 4). Then they arrived for family photos (another hour). During this time, guests were enjoying the 'reception' - tea and biccies, which were gone by the time we got there.

Dinner was about 3 hours later - the 'top' table had steak, the rest of us had a sad turkey dinner. No starter, no desert (again, the 'top' table had these). Then time for the toasts. Top table had Champagne, none of the rest of us did (was full pay bar for the whole day). Then band and DJ - I spent the whole night dragging people out to dance, as I felt bad for DP's brother and his wife that no-one was dancing.

Next morning - DP's brother and his wife moaning about how shit it was. Then bragging that they got so much money as gifts (obviously went back to their Honeymoon Suite and counted it all) that it paid for the wedding. Then bitching that some people bought household items for them, because 'they are already living together, why would they want toasters, duvets and shit'? Charming.

Primafacie Thu 10-May-12 02:55:32

DS1's wedding - the groom got blind drunk. Reception was at my parents' and the bride and groom never managed to get back to their honeymoon suite as my BIL was outside throwing up in the garden. My sister shared a bed with my mum on her wedding night. They are now happily divorced grin

DS3's wedding - she and I have ishoos, but I flew back (my family is abroad) for her wedding. I then found out she had gone out of her way (many guests passed comments) to sit me away from my other sisters, who I love and obviously don't see often, and at a table where the youngest other guests were 70. The top table were served wine with dinner but not the rest of us. She had a go at my mother for talking to me. Other than that the B and G never ackowledged my presence.

Thumbwitch Thu 10-May-12 03:25:11

Prima - you're talking about your sisters here, right? Not your sons? Just to make absolutely sure...

One of dh's close friends, had been an usher at our wedding. Bride disliked us (no idea why) so we got an invite to the evening do only, though still received a naff rhyming request for money for their ' wishing well' <boak>
When we got there the bride went out of her way to ignore us, even when we tried to congratulate her, but her very nice husband made a real effort to chat and looked a bit embarrassed.

We feel a bit sorry for him nowadays. He's hardly ever allowed off the leash out and the friends who do still see him describe him as being rather cowed sad

Primafacie Thu 10-May-12 06:45:47

Ooops, yes I meant my DSis1 and 3!!! Not my sons! That's what happens when you post at 3 am!

DH's cousin's wedding. We were sat on a table with the best man's parents and the best man's wife's parents (although she wasn't actually there). The two men were fairly senior police officers. Wouldn't initiate a conversation with us, would only talk to each other about police issues especially how much crime immigrants committed and how the BNP had the right idea. And how all the p****s and n*****s should be locked up as it's just 'in their nature' apparently. I explained that I thought their views were disgustingly racist and was told that a girl like me couldn't possibly understand. I seriously thought about going to the PCC about them.


EatsBrainsAndLeaves Thu 10-May-12 07:35:20

Went to a wedding that was initially great until later on. Virtually all of the guests were either very elderly or had very small children - apart from us. Naturally at about 9/10pm people started to leave taking toddlers with them. G and G (civil partnership) alternated between furious and upset that everyone was leaving "early". Some closest friends and family hung onto 11am in spite of having small children with them or being very elderly and obviously flagging. We felt obliged to stay.

So from 10pm we were in a large room with a disco and about 10 guests with a couple of very very tired children and from about 11-12.30pm it was just me, DP and the G&G. The whole 2.5 hours the G& G bitched and got upset at the unsupportive guests! It was awful. They had booked the room and dj until 2am and had expected everyone to carry on partying until then. Fine if they had invited a load of young child free guests - but really! We weren't even close to them, but we felt obliged to stay until they wanted to go as we had no valid excuse to leave earlier.

We did try to say gently why guests might have left earlier, but soon shut up from the reaction we got.

MotherofPearl Thu 10-May-12 07:42:55

Oh Mamma, how hideous. sad

Butwhatdoyoudoallday Thu 10-May-12 09:29:43

Vivi - yes he got a divorce and now they're properly married more's the pity and as far as I know her family never found out.

fiventhree Thu 10-May-12 09:33:48

Not my second wedding twenty years ago, but the previous one.

I was 12 weeks pregnant.

We werent going away for a week or more after, so stayed at home. I started miscarrying in the pub, and went home. He didnt join me as we had guests.

When he got home, he told me he had agreed with his sister that his 12 year old neice could stay for a week so she could have a holiday.

I went to bed furious and distraught, still bleeding (missed abortion- ie fetus didnt come out, it transpired). There was fucking rice in the bed and I had to clear it out to get my sorry beelding self into bed. He came up a few hours later.

What a swine. Didnt last long.

milk Thu 10-May-12 09:34:42

I hate receptions where the food is on trays being carried around by waiters angry I find unless I stand next to the kitchen, I miss all the good food sad I call such events "floating receptions", and if I know in advance I simply don't attend (unless its close family- but then I know I'll be invited to the dinner so that is ok).

theressomethingaboutmarie Thu 10-May-12 10:22:55

Ugh. We went to a wedding where the reception was held at the brides parents lovely house in the middle of nowhere. We'd been assured that there would be transport to the nearest town and from there we'd sort ourselves out - no problem. BTW, the drinks at the wedding were absolutely foul, has anyone heard of Pol Remy? It's a 99p fizzy wine that tastes disgusting and was the 'star of the show'.

Cue going home time, we get ourselves into the car provided and believe that as mentioned, we're heading to the nearby town. Taxi driver then told us that he'd only been authorised to take guests to a nearby village (where getting a further cab would be nigh on impossible at 1am)! We talked him round thankfully and he took us the to town where we were able to get a further cab and make our way to our hotel. Just ridiculous.

The rest of the weddings I've been to were thoroughly enjoyable. I always take some snacks with me for DD, DH and I. We have two more wedding this year and as I'm currently 24 wks pg with DS1, I shall ensure to have PLENTY to eat and drink with me!

TheSmallClanger Thu 10-May-12 10:29:04

Worst wedding ever=DH's cousin's wedding, where DD was a bridesmaid.

It just started off badly and didn't improve, really. It was at 1, but I had to take DD round to cousin's house at 10, which I thought was excessive. I thought I could dump and run, but the bride and her older helpers had no intention of watching DD (then 9) and insisted I stayed. DD was also a very tall 9yo and made to wear a very wide-skirted flower girl dress, which she didn't like and looked ridiculous in. I put my foot down over paying anything towards it.

DD had to get into her daft dress straight away, because they were doing those tacky "getting ready" shots with the photographer, and wanted some with the younger bridesmaids gazing admiringly at the bride. DD was not allowed anything to eat, and was only allowed water, in case she made a mess. She was in an absolutely foul mood. Bride didn't seem to realise that 9yos can feed themselves competently and drink out of cups normally.

The ceremony was all right, nothing special, although I was in a crap mood from having spent most of the morning minding a moody DD. The reception was dominated by photography - everyone was shunted around, shouted at and generally harangued while a never-ending stream of faux-natural pictures were taken. Dinner came at about 5, and it was crap. The bride and groom had been bragging about how it was £60 per head, angling for expensive presents. I'll just say, if I'd have paid £60 for a crap roast dinner and cheap wine in a restaurant, I would have sent it back.

Bride kept disappearing throughout the evening do, for more photos and to have her makeup redone. Bride and groom both disappeared for quite a long time at one point. They did a choreographed first dance which was rubbish, because neither of them can dance, at all. They were proud of the fact that they had under-catered at the evening do to save money, so all DH and I got was a bit of bread and some dodgy old cheese. Most of the buffet food was pork-based, so we couldn't eat it anyway.

DH and I were fighting over who got to take DD home to her granny's after the first dance!

Worst wedding ever= sil wedding.
Hot summer all family including mil heaped into a mini van on the motorway to sil county where wedding was taking place: that bit was hell in itself was hell!!!

Anyway we get there hotel had booked us top floor by mistake!!
We had to carry all our cases, travel cot, pram and little baby up stairs as fil wouldnt let me leave pram in van!
My dh pissed of for two hours to have drink with groom-to-be and bestman & fil and other family members-taking the hotel key leaving me alone with 2 kids in a place id never been before with no milk, or drinks of any kind-couldnt leave room as he'd took key & all money by mistake!!
Dh got back after id showerd, dressed and got both children ready!angry
Had to drag my pram downstairs along with changing bag and a baby whilst he carryied nothingangry
Anyway we got to the wedding ceromony which in itself was ok but poor sil dress nearly revealed her entire left boob (big girl) i was told by family ILs not to tell herconfused, everyone had to stand around for what seemed like an hour whilst they cleared the chairs for reception (in same room!!) and took endless photos of bride still with her boob nearly out -i felt so bad for her.
My other sil had to stand for an hour heavily preggers whilst mil was the only one offered a seat whilst they set out tables and food.
No one had allocated me at seat! So i stood up whilst everyone was seated with baby in pram! Dh was sat at a table with mil, fil, sil, her kids, my eldest, 2 dhs cousins with their gfs to which i said where is my seat or dont i belong in this family to which dh says calm down and gets me a chair, mil just laughs at me.
After food we had to wait another hour whilst they cleared chairs for dancing, kids were bored by this point and wanted to go to hotel along with preggo sil whom had enough of standing on her feet! We left with bride sil dancing with groom with boob still the same way blush.
The drinks were awful there too, cost a bomb and only cider and pimms were available!!

LadyHarrietdeSpook Thu 10-May-12 11:26:26

Many aspects of mine and DH's wedding could probs have been improved - from the point of view of guests and us. There are people who will never forgive us for having it in England (although we live here permanently.)

I really grasp what one of the posters said above: most brides have never done this before and don't know what's likely to go wrong/right. I do also agree that most people don't set out to cause discomfort to their guests! So- my inclination is generally give the benefit of the doubt!!!

As a Yank I will probs never come round to the evening only invites...esp after the one I've been to...but I know I'm in the minority. But please if you do do this brides lay on some proper food and provide some drinks! Honestly - if all you're willing to cough up for people included in this part of the day is a cash bar and bacon sarnie I think you need to rethink whether it's that important to you that they're there...

redrubyshoes Thu 10-May-12 11:45:11

I was once at a wedding were I was sat next to a couple and the woman clearly had ishooos. When the food was served she made a huge fuss and started crying and saying that 'everyone was watching her'.

I quietly assured her that no one was as ermmm no one was confused until she started crying and she insisted that the waiters set up a table in the kitchen so she could eat in there. Our table was a bit quiet after that.

Same wedding, three little bridesmaids and one older at about nine years old. Bride notices that nine year old bridemaids hair ribbon was falling out and asked if I would retie it (bride had hands full of bouquet and champagne). I bent down to do this and the bridemaids mother came storming over, snatched it out of my hand and hissed right in my face "Do you know what you are doing?".

Well I was going to tie a ribbon.......................hmm. I have heard of a Bridezilla but The Mother of the Bridesmaidzilla is a new one.

LeQueen Thu 10-May-12 11:58:17

Was only 8 weeks pregnant at BIL's wedding.

Stayed at wedding hotel the night before, left DH drinking in the bar. He crashed into our bedroom at 5.30am, crawled into the bathroom and stayed there for 3 hours. I had to step over him to use the shower.

I struggled with morning sickness all day. DH never actually really sobered up (neither did BIL). BIL suffered a panic attack, and DH and the BM had to tip even more whiskey down him to get him down the aisle.

There was a mix-up in the kitchens so the wedding breakfast wasn't served until 8.45pm (should have been 5.30pm) - and when it finally came the food was dreadful and cold.

Because we were so very late eating, the DJ didn't start up until after 11pm, and then the hotel pulled the plug on his sound-system at midnight because they didn't have a late licence - cue lots of very drunken guests heckling the hotel staff, and some argy-bargy...

I (very gratefully) went to bed at midnight. DH crashed into our room again at about 5.30am, and crawled into the bathroom, where he was copiously sick in the bath...

Not yet, but I may well be encountering one this time next year.

D bro is getting married, in a barn, in Wales. Stunning location etc, all great.......except here's hired the entire fucking campsite.

We’re expected to camp.

We ave no tents.

It's in the middle of nowhere.

We're none drivers.......I'll be back with updates !!

TobyLerone Thu 10-May-12 12:02:04

Sounds like my ideal wedding, Apocalypse. At least you have time to get/arrange everything you need smile

CeliaFate Thu 10-May-12 12:03:30

Camping!! At a wedding? UGH! Get a hotel room, quickly.

MarysBeard Thu 10-May-12 12:03:32

Most brides have never done this before, but most brides have been to other weddings before - I was 28 and the first of my school friends to get married, but I had still been to maybe five or six weddings before our own and had made at least mental notes of what worked and what didn't.

I think some people are so much into it being a chance to show off, it being their Big Day and bugger anyone else, and there lies the problem.

LeQueen Thu 10-May-12 12:05:00

And, at our SIL was distinctly overheard by both my Mum and my best friend, slagging off DH and I for deliberately having a more glamourous wedding than her, in order to show off.

Later, SIL argued with BIL, and spent 2 hours crying in the gardens, before returning to the celebrations and snubbing my Mum and Godmother.

DH drank two bottles of whiskey (and yes Bathsheba I entirely blame MrBathsheba for that) , and was somewhat indisposed in the gent's loos for quite a while.

When DH finally returned to the dancefloor he fell into the DJ stand twice and knocked it all over.

When we retired to the bridal suite, DH flung himself onto the bed, over-shot, fell out the other side, broke the bed-side table, and spent our wedding night passed out on the carpet next to the bed...momentarily rousing himself at 4am to pee into a wardrobe...

But, having said all that I actually luffed our wedding smile

MarysBeard Thu 10-May-12 12:09:15

Blimey, how far have the guests got to come, Apocalypse? It's ok if most people are local, but if people have got to get there with no car from outside Wales they may as well being having the wedding on the moon.

MarysBeard Thu 10-May-12 12:14:43

LeQueen, I kept nudging DH during our wedding reception and saying "Don't get too drunk" <nudge nudge wink wink> smile

Somehow we were not TOO drunk in spite of seemingly drinking rather a lot.

LeQueen Thu 10-May-12 12:19:52

Mary when we got married, I'd already been with DH for nearly 11 years...there wasn't a cat in hell's chance he wasn't going to get blind drunk at our wedding grin

I did point out to him the next day that I could have the wedding annulled as it hadn't been consumated...he made up for it on honeymoon though, and DD1 was born exactly 9 months to the day, after our wedding grin

LeQueen Thu 10-May-12 12:21:46

When my DB got married, their wedding was actually luffly, but DH was such a royal pain...

He got copiously drunk at the reception, and was sick into my auntie's vair expensive designer shoes (she'd taken them off, before dancing). The evening went downhill after that...

Poledra Thu 10-May-12 12:21:47

Marysbeard my lovely SIL says that after our wedding, I drifted off up the huge staircase in the hotel, carrying my shoes in my hand and looking tired and happy. DH then followed, bouncing off every wall on the way and she did wonder if she should make sure he made it back to the room grin

Two bottles of whiskey? shock

Seriously - I didn't think that was possible!