Destination Wedding, At home Reception

milah1030August 22, 2007

My fiance and I are getting married away, but we are having an at home reception. I am confused as to how to conduct an at home reception after a destination wedding. What should we do and what kind of things should we have there? Should I wear my wedding gown and he his tuxedo? Help

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You have much leeway with the reception, depending on your budget and your personalities. First, you need to decide on how formal or informal you may want it to be. If it is somewhat formal, then do wear your gown, though your groom may choose to wear something other than a tux, such as a suit.

You might have dinner and dancing at the reception, or have a come-and-go open house, a barbeque, or anything in between. There is no right or wrong. The primary purpose of the reception is to celebrate your marriage with family and friends.

If you have photos or a video from the wedding, you might want to display those items at the reception so that guests can have a taste of the actual wedding.

    Bookmark   August 22, 2007 at 6:03PM
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I rarely disagree with sweet pea, and I don't on almost everything she wrote, except I wouldn't wear a wedding gown, and I don't think your husband should wear a tuxedo (unless it is a black tie party anyway, of course). (I stress that I am thinking of a traditional wedding gown; if you mean a regular dress, even a long white one, that you are planning to wear to your wedding, then wear it, as long as it isn't dressier than what the guests will be wearing, or at least not much -- i.e., if they will be wearing short party dresses, you could go ahead and wear an evening gown, but not if the party is casual or in the daytime.) Your guests won't say anything, but some will be secretly laughing and thinking that you are being kind of silly, and maybe even that "they just really want to have it all -- they didn't care enough about our presence to have the wedding where we could be included, but they still want us to admire them in their finery." This is one of the tricky things about destination weddings; you have to be careful not to be trying to do the same wedding more than one way. But you can have an absolutely terrific party for your home reception, dressy or not as you prefer.

Wedding gowns are for weddings, and yours will have been a different day. Wear a smashing party dress or terrific casual outfit, according to whatever kind of party you choose. (I'd rather wear that than a wedding gown any time.)

I like the idea of photos or a video from the wedding, but only if (1) either everyone or practially no one (wedding party and close family excepted) at the reception was invited to the wedding -- otherwise you're showing your B-list friends all the fun the A-list had; and (2) if you do a video, have it running on a loop somewhere where people can go and watch all or part of it as they wish; don't sit them down and give a presentation of the film. This is the same issue as the wedding gown; if you want them to see the ceremony, then have them attend it, but don't exclude them and then force them to watch a video or, worse, a reinactment.

As to what you should do and what you should have -- well, your imagination is the limit! A reception is a party. So have whatever kind of party suits your personalities, your budget, and your guests' tastes -- anything from a backyard picnic to a white-tie extravaganza. Although I would, as I said above, avoid any type of pseudo-ceremony -- don't fall into the trap of thinking your guests will feel cheated otherwise; they won't -- it would be great to have the same types of toasts and thank-you speeches and, if you have dancing, wedding dances that you would have at any other wedding reception.

    Bookmark   August 22, 2007 at 8:23PM
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