Sunday, July 19, 2009

Well Received

Way back when, it was thought that the bride and groom were blessed, so that anyone who touched them would have good luck and the receiving line was born. Over the years, the receiving line grew to include the parents of the bride and groom and the entire wedding party and the receiving line became something for guests to endure.
While I am a fan of tradition, it can be a long and sometimes awkward process for guests to walk through a line of people, shaking hands and trying to make small talk. The goal of the receiving line is to make sure all of the guests have face time with the bride and groom (which can sometimes be difficult with a large wedding). Here are some alternatives to the old-fashioned receiving line that might make sense for you:
  • After the bride and groom exit the church, they return to the front of the church and dismiss each row of guests. This works well with small to medium sized weddings, but if you have over 200 guests, this process can be quite long.
  • A receiving line made of only the bride, groom and their parents either immediately following the ceremony or at the reception
  • The bride and groom visit each table at the reception. This option allows for a photo opportunity for all of the guests with the bride and groom.
  • During the cocktail hour, the bride and groom can stand near the bar (with or without their parents) and have a casual "meet and greet" with their guests. If the wedding is large, this option doesn't guarantee that the bride and groom meets everyone, but works very well for smaller weddings.

Regardless of your style and the size of your wedding, it is important to make sure each guest feels welcome and has the opportunity to congratulate you.

Have more questions about receiving lines? Or do you have a unique way to greet your guests? We'd love to know!

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