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How to Build a Wedding Guest List?

If you are getting married and in a panic about your guest list – stop! We have the answers you need about who to invite.

Planning a wedding is a lot of work. From buying dresses to hiring venues, there are a thousand little things that can go wrong… and all of them take up more time than you would like to spare. One of the things about wedding planning that can easily spiral out of control, is your guest list.

If you never considered planning a wedding guest list to be a difficult task before, then think again. It starts with trying to invite every aunty and uncle on each side so that nobody’s parents get offended and ends with you having to explain to dear old Jeanie, your second cousin’s ex-husband’s next door neighbour, why she didn’t get an invite in the post.

Wedding guest lists are difficult, fact. Let’s try and make things easier for you with a guide on how to (successfully) build your wedding guest list.

A Short Guide on Planning your Wedding Guest List

If you follow our advice, you might just end up with the best wedding guest list any couple ever created.

Step 1: Decide on a number and stick to it

There are only so many people you can afford to cater to. Similarly, there are only so many people you can fit in your evening venue. If either of these numbers is exceeded, you have too many guests. Use this as a hard-and-fast limit.

Step 2: Decide on the Essentials – and stick to it

Next, you have to figure out who actually MUST be at your wedding. Your essentials should include close family members such as the bride and groom’s siblings and parents. Grandparents may be included, and best friends shouldn’t really be forgotten about.

Now, if you are having a wedding that is strictly family, you can get your wedding guest list down to the essentials. You could have the parents, siblings, and grandparents, and have a wedding of less than 20 people.

Step 3: Deciding who your best friends are

Now comes the tricky part. There are in your life who you won’t want to invite, but who feel like they are owed an invitation. You must be strict about this. The people who attend your Big Day should be those that you genuinely want to be there, not those who have guilted you into an invite. Be strict and cut them out.

Step 4: Optional Extras

Once you have figured out who you cannot live without, you can start adding in optional extras. These are in your life but who don’t play a major part. It is at this point that dear old Jeannie has a chance. If you do not have the budget for this, that’s fine… There’s one last trick reserved for just such occasions… Don’t invite them to the service, just for the evening reception once the meal is finished.

Don’t forget your photographer!

When you finally have a guest list and have planned a wedding to die for, don’t forget who helped you with the planning! A good photographer is hard to find, but you can have a London-based Italian photographer and videographer at your wedding simply by getting in touch. It might just be the perfect complement to round off the perfect day.


Gaetano Di Giacomo, 

Videographer & Photographer

A professional in both wedding and corporate Media Production.
Based in Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire but working across the UK.
Shooting with my Sony a7 III and a range of prime lenses, while my DJI Ronin creates smooth gliding shots! Interested in working with me? Contact me here today and let’s arrange a chat!