A directory of Wedding Services for
Gloucestershire & South East Wales

county bride flowers
wedding etiquette county bride    county bride brochure

Protected by Copyscape Unique Content Check

Other Etiquette

The Gift ListThe Gift List

The tradition of giving wedding gifts to the newlyweds originates from a time when the couple would have spent their lives, prior to marriage, in their parental homes. Marriage was - and often still is - a time of setting up the new marital home from scratch. It was usual for friends or older relatives to contribute items of kitchenware, furniture or money to give the couple a helping hand.

Today, however, the reality is that very few couples start from scratch, often having lived independent of the parental home for some time prior to the marriage. The gift list was introduced to prevent duplication of the same gift. The couple compile their list of required items and then make that list available to anyone who intends to give a gift. This saves guests wasting money and time by giving a gift which is either unsuitable or is a duplication.

For smaller gift lists, the mother of the bride or groom may be asked to take responsibility. Everyone should be requested to contact the person holding the list who will then advise them of the gifts still available for purchase. For larger lists the couple may use the gift list services of a major department store. This method often allows the list to be viewed and purchased via the internet. When creating the list, it is advisable to select gifts from a selection of price ranges. This will be helpful for the guests, as their budgets will surely vary. A good tip is to keep the list limited. This way you will ensure that you receive the items you really want.

After the gifts have been received, it is customary to reply with a handwritten thankyou note. Computer generated letters should not be considered, as they lack that 'personal' touch.

The groom is expected to purchase small gifts for the attendants on behalf of the couple. Although the gifts need not be hugely expensive, careful thought should be given when buying so as to provide a lasting momento of the day.

Invitations

Traditionally it would be the bride's parents who would invite the guests to the wedding as they were technically the hosts. Today this is not always the case. The wording on the invitations is dependant on who is 'hosting' the wedding. It is important to decide who the hosts are and word the invitations accordingly. Most good stationers are able to provide samples of invitations - and appropriate wording.

Bride's Parents are hosts

Mr and Mrs 'Bride Parents'
request the pleasure of your company
at the marriage of their daughter
'Daughters Name'
to
Mr 'The Groom's full name'
at 'The name of the Wedding Ceremony Venue'
on Saturday 25th June 2011 at 2.00pm
and afterwards at
'The name of the Reception Venue - and address.'

Bride and Groom are hosts

Miss 'Bride's Name'
and
Mr 'The Groom's full name'
request the pleasure of your company at their marriage
at 'The name of the Wedding Ceremony Venue'
on Saturday 25th June 2011 at 2.00pm
and afterwards at
'The name of the Reception Venue - and address.'

Bride's divorced Parents are hosts

Mr 'Bride's Father' and Mrs 'Bride's Mother'
request the pleasure of your company
at the marriage of their daughter
'Daughters Name'
to
Mr 'The Groom's full name'
at 'The name of the Wedding Ceremony Venue'
on Saturday 25th June 2011 at 2.00pm
and afterwards at
'The name of the Reception Venue - and address.'

Bride's widowed Mother is host

Mrs 'Bride's Mother'
requests the pleasure of your company
at the marriage of her daughter
'Daughters Name'
to
Mr 'The Groom's full name'
at 'The name of the Wedding Ceremony Venue'
on Saturday 25th June 2011 at 2.00pm
and afterwards at
'The name of the Reception Venue - and address.'

Bride's Parents are hosts (mother remarried)

Mr 'Bride's Father' and Mrs 'Bride's Mother'
request the pleasure of your company
at the marriage of their daughter
'Daughters Name'
to
Mr 'The Groom's full name'
at 'The name of the Wedding Ceremony Venue'
on Saturday 25th June 2011 at 2.00pm
and afterwards at
'The name of the Reception Venue - and address.'

Groom's Parents are hosts

Mr and Mrs 'Grooms Parents'
request the pleasure of your company
at the marriage of their son
Mr 'The Groom's christian name(s)'
to
'Bride's Name'
at 'The name of the Wedding Ceremony Venue'
on Saturday 25th June 2011 at 2.00pm
and afterwards at
'The name of the Reception Venue - and address.'

Civil Wedding with only one venue

Mr and Mrs 'Bride's Parents'
request the pleasure of your company
at the marriage of their daughter
'Daughters Name'
to
Mr 'The Groom's full name'
'The name of the Venue - and address.'
on Saturday 25th June 2011 at 2.00pm.

The invitation should also include the following information.

State if invite extends to the ceremony, reception or evening party.
Childrens' names should be included if invited.
Who to reply to (bottom left hand corner).
RSPV address.
Telephone number.
Dress code. (leave off if no dress code)
Address the envelope to the female on the invitation (if applicable).

photographyPhotographs

Wedding photographs are one of the most important elements of your wedding day. In years to come they will provide treasured memories of the day. Taking 'professional' photographs at a wedding is not something to be entered into lightly. Careful planning is essential to ensure you obtain the photographs you desire, without guests waiting around unnecessarily for the perfect shot.

There are a number of traditional photographs that are expected. You may also require some less formal shots. These go under the heading of 'Documentary', 'Reportage' or 'Photojournalism'. It is recommended you decide on your preferences in advance, informing the photographer and those involved of your intentions.

Here is a list of the more traditional wedding photographs.

Bride and Groom.
Bride and Groom with Both Sets of Parents.
Bride and Groom with Immediate Families.
Bride and Groom with Bridesmaids, Ushers and Best Man.
Bride and Bridesmaids.
Groom, Ushers and Best Man.
Bride and Groom with Bride's Friends.
Bride and Groom with Groom's Friends.
Bride and Groom with All Guests.

You may also want to include

The Bride preparing.
The Bride and Bride's Father arriving at Church.
The Groom and Best Man at the Church.
Cutting the Cake.

To view Photographers in your area click on one of the following:
Bath  Bristol  Gloucestershire  Wiltshire


Speeches

The traditional order of speeches are as follows.

The bride's father proposes a toast to the bride and groom.
The bride's father continues, with an insight into his daughter.
The groom then responds on behalf of his wife and himself. The groom usually uses this opportunity to say 'My wife and I' for the first time. This is usually followed by a round of applause from the guests.
The groom thanks all those involved in the organising of the wedding.
The groom may wish to present his and the bride's mother with bouquets.
The groom thanks his attendants and presents them with his gifts.
The groom then speaks about his new wife.
The groom will then propose a toast to the bridesmaids.
After the groom has finished, the bride may wish to speak.
The best man responds on behalf of the bridesmaids.
The best man then announces any messages, telegrams or e-mails from absentees.
The best man then delivers his speech where he talks about the groom, often including some amusing reflections and memories of the past.

Bride's Mother - Hat Removal

Traditionally at an English wedding ladies remove their hats only after the Mother of the Bride has removed hers. This would normally be done after the formalities of the wedding breakfast when coffee is being served and gentlemen are free to remove their jackets. In a less formal wedding it would be acceptable for the Mother of the Bride to remove her hat after the ceremony, if she so wished.

Blessings

A wedding blessing is normally performed after a civil ceremony and is usually seen as a way for the couple to confirm their commitment to each other in church. It differs from a marriage ceremony because it is not an official marriage service nor is it legally binding or governed by law. There is no official paperwork involved as the legal requirements have already been met at the civil ceremony. A blessing is normally performed in church, although it can take place at an outside venue. The couple may decide on a blessing when they are from differing religous backgrounds - or because one or both parties are divorced. A blessing can also be used for couples who wish to renew their vows. The renewal of vows are for couples who wish to re-emphasise their continued commitment to each other. No official paperwork is required for the renewal of vows.

A blessing can also be performed without a civil ceremony. Although the couple would not be legally married, some couples see it as a way to commit to each other in a non-formal way.

Rehearsal Dinner

Whilst in the US Wedding Rehearsal Dinners are the 'norm', here in the UK they are optional.

An informal dinner immediately after the wedding rehearsal gives an opportunity for those involved with the wedding celebrations to relax and get acquainted before the big day.
Traditionally the groom's parents would host and pay for the event, but today many couples budget for it in their wedding planning and in some cases choose to host it themselves.

The dinner can be held 1 to 3 days before the wedding but normally takes place the evening before. It can take the form of anything from a Bar-B-Que at home to a lavish restaurant setting. Typically it would fit the budget and style of the wedding.
Those present would include the bride & groom and their immediate families, each member of the bridal party - with a guest, and any other close friends. Out-of-town guests can also be invited if the budget allows.

Time would normally be set aside for drinks beforehand, with an opportunity given for mingling after the meal. During the meal the bride & groom would give thanks and offer toasts to the families and participants for all the hard work and planning. Thank-you gifts can also be presented to the bridal party at this time.

Invitations are not necessary for a rehearsal dinner as they are normally issued verbally.
If invitations are to be used send them a few days after the wedding invitations. Include an RSVP if needed.


etiquette Top