How to throw a big family wedding

To coincide with the launch of My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2 (in cinemas this Friday), we asked Mumsnetters for their tips for throwing a brilliant family wedding

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Do... be realistic. You've decided on a big family wedding, so go with it


"You are hosts throwing a party for family and friends. If you can't accept that, elope."

Don't... discuss the table seating plan with ANYONE!


"If you do, everyone will moan and you will stress out trying to keep them happy."

Do... have a sweetheart table if you're having top table troubles 


"...with two guest chairs for people to come and chat to you."

Do... what you want


"...unless that includes a poem asking for money."

Don't... lose control of the guest list 


"Have you seen them in the last year? Will you see them again in the next year? No? Do you really want to invite them?"

Don't... let people have a say unless they're paying


"You're not happy with who has/hasn't been invited? Unless you're paying for everyone's meals then tough!"

Do... know what is and isn't important 


"People won't remember chair covers, confetti on tables, or the myriad of little things that wedding blogs will tell you you need. They will remember standing around with nowhere to sit, not enough drinks or food and anything that makes one group feel like second class guests."

Do... find a venue with the bar and the dance floor in the same space


"That way you won't lose all the men at the party." 

Don't... let the bridesmaids have a say on their dresses


"They won't agree and at least one will be stroppy as they don't have the dress they wanted. The only way to go is benign dictator." 

Do... give your mother and mother-in-law something to be in charge of


"Choose something they can really make their own but doesn't impact on you too much. It will keep them from interfering in the important stuff." 

Don't... forget to enjoy the car ride to the reception


"'s a few precious moments of calm with your new husband/wife." 

Do... enjoy every precious moment


"I got a bit bridezilla when my huge entourage of aunties and uncles were taking up seats when I would have preferred mates to come along. Illness and bereavement in the family shortly after opened my eyes to how selfish I was being. Our photos of the day are now priceless." 

Do... invite children if you're having a big family wedding


"Just accept that it probably won't be a 'sophisticated' affair but hopefully a really fun party that everyone will enjoy and remember." 

Do... get goodie bags for the kids during speeches


"We made these different for each child according to age and interests." 

Don't... have a free bar!


"Nobody needs the stress of guessing how much of a bill good old Uncle Fred is racking up with a constant stream of triple whiskies." 

Don't... stay in the same hotel as your guests on your wedding night

 "The jokes and knowing looks you get the next day are more than enough!"

Most importantly of all, do...


"...remember it is a wedding and is only ONE DAY, a means to an end, not the be all and end all. It is the pre-cursor to (hopefully) a long and happy marriage which is much more important." 


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    Last updated: almost 3 years ago