Wedding Styles: Children or No Children

Kneeling on the floor in front of bride after bride we get to hear a lot of wedding planning stories at The Wedding Seamstress. Lately, one of the most talked about subjects while brides are being pinned up at our boutique is the question: “Should they invite children to the wedding or not?”

Having children it took me a lot of patience to just be quiet and listen. I could never fathom not having invited children to my wedding. It doesn’t seem right. There is something magical about seeing a beautiful wedding with two people that love each other share that eternal love in front of those closest to them. I think it is critical for younger boys and girls to both experience being at a wedding at least once in their lives!

However, after much listening and zero talking I have an expanded understanding as to some of the reasons that brides and grooms may be choosing a “zero” child policy. Some of them are detailed more closely in the links I have provided at the bottom and others are not.

Reasons Why Children May Not Be Invited:

  • The wedding is very formal and not the appropriate setting for a younger child.
  • The bride or groom simply don’t like children at weddings… they may just not like children, who knows???
  • The venue they have chosen can only accommodate so many people, obviously causing them to make some decisions.
  • Finally, the cost. I hadn’t heard this one until recently. A bride was stating that the catering company was going to charge full price for each child, regardless of age. The bride was also stuck with the caterer as they were contracted with the venue. Sometimes your hands are tied and things are out of your control.

So, as you can see there are a number of reasons that couples may choose to not invite children to their wedding. Some are understandable and some are just a matter of it being someone else’s wedding and just being okay with their decisions. Of course, in any of the scenarios it is essential for the couple to make sure they know early whether they are inviting children so they can state as much in the wedding invitation. Some would argue that an invitation made out only to the parents, and not to the children, is sufficient. In today’s world where etiquette is a word people know less and less about I wouldn’t take this approach. It should be clear on the invitation that the wedding is “Adults Only” or “18 and up”… Something along those lines. There is no sense creating confusion.

One of the more interesting compromises I have seen is the idea that children would be allowed to the ceremony, but not the reception. In this case the couple would need to provide a childcare solution for children but I have heard that this has worked out great for a number of couples who have friends with children. The whole point is for the married couple to enjoy their day while not coming off as child-hating beasts so I like this compromise.

The links below give great ideas on both how to address the Childless Wedding in the invitation as well as what options there are for the compromise solution and providing childcare for the reception. Enjoy!

 

Useful Links

http://www.marthastewartweddings.com/228425/children-your-wedding/@center/272440/wedding-etiquette-adviser#98339

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/05/10/kids-at-weddings_n_3247928.html

http://www.essentialkids.com.au/family-life/family-home/should-children-be-invited-to-weddings-20140129-31mmk.html

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