weddings 101

Receiving Lines: Are You Saying Yes To This Tradition?

The receiving line used to be an expected part of every wedding — and for good reason. It was considered the most effective way for the bride and groom (and their parents) to greet every single guest and welcome them to the reception. However, in recent years the popularity of the receiving line seems to be on the wane. Some couples think it’s too old-fashioned and are opting for suitable alternatives instead. Are you on the fence about how to greet guests at your reception? We’ve laid out the pros and cons of the traditional receiving line; as well as some other options you might want to consider.

Your guests will feel appreciated. Acknowledging each guest face to face is the best way to express gratitude.
You don’t have to worry about missing anyone. Instead of chasing your guests down over cocktails, they’ll come to you!
-You can introduce people. This is a good time to encourage your guests to connect with your parents and members of your wedding party.
You’ll be able to enjoy your dinner. Meal time is a lot more relaxing when you can rest assured that you’ve already made everyone feel welcome.

-You have to make your guests wait. Nobody really likes waiting in line…even if it is to see a beautiful bride! If you have a lot of guests the wait might be long.
-It might be a tight squeeze. Your guests won’t enjoy being stuffed into a narrow hallway while they wait, but unfortunately some venues don’t have a lot of open space.
-The lineup will cut into party time! You don’t want the receiving line to interfere with the rest of the evening. You want your guests to eat, drink and be merry, not stand in line forever!
-The potential for family drama. If things are tense between your parents, for example, putting them side by side in a receiving line might be a recipe for disaster.

-Greet your guests as a couple. Instead of a traditional receiving line that typically includes the bride, the groom and both sets of parents (and sometimes the wedding party), keep things simple: with fewer people to meet and greet your guests can hit the bar sooner!
-Mix and mingle during dinner. Instead of greeting guests before dinner, many couples are choosing to visit each table between the entree and dessert. Working the room is a great way to say hello to everyone in a more casual way.
-Set up a bride and groom station. Hand out glasses of champagne, pieces of cake or sweet favors so your guests will have to come to you and chat! They get a treat and a moment with the happy couple: now that’s what we call a win-win.
-Say hello right after your vows. Instead of making a quick getaway after the ceremony, why not stay to greet your guests right away? Make your way from row to row to shake hands and share hugs before heading out to take photos. Your guests will appreciate being able to congratulate you while the excitement of your “I do’s” is still fresh.

Image: barebone photo

filed under: ,