A Community for Brides Planning their Wedding in Australia

 
pookie2014
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Small and Intimate

Mon Aug 20, 2012 7:11 pm

Hi ladies,

I'm still fairly new to this forum, well, still new to the whole wedding planning thing actually and I have to make some decisions (which I'm terrible at doing!!) and I was hoping you could shed your wisdom on me... :)

FH and I are looking at getting married April 2014 in Victoria. Firstly, he really wants to get married on the beach but the weather is far too unpredictable for that so I think we will go for photos instead and have the ceremony under cover.
We basically want a small and intimate wedding, say 60 people, give or take. The reception I originally had in mind was dinner and drinks at a nice restaurant with our guests. The thing is, 60 people would include our immediate family only (parents, siblings & partners and grandparents) and close friends. No Aunty's, Uncle's cousins etc.

So my first questions is: Is anyone planning on not inviting these relatives to their wedding? FYI - to add these relatives on is another 40 people.

I am the MOST indecisive person EVER! and I keep getting distracted with pretty wedding venues, generally for a larger number of guests and then think that maybe we could have a bigger wedding in the frame of mind that "the more the merrier"... but really, I don't think it is "us", whereas small and intimate is.
My sister is getting married in November next year and is inviting ALL of them. When I asked her why, she says its how she always pictured her wedding day. Fair enough.

My parents are divorced, and HATE each other, which is another issue I'm having. The smaller the reception, the closer they have to be to one another. They have been divorced for 20 years and should really get over it but I don't want animosity on the day. I think I have to tell them to suck it up and be adults and respect the fact that its our wedding day. Haha.

Back on track... small and intimate. Has anyone had or been to or planning their wedding with this in mind? How did they do it? Where did they have it? Can anyone suggest any restaurants that would be able to cater to this? Preferably Mornington Peninsula way?

Any advice, tips, criticism, help is welcome!! I need to start making decisions and stop changing my mind every day!!! Haha. Also, I want to get to the fun stuff!!! :)
 
pookie2014
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Re: Small and Intimate

Mon Aug 20, 2012 8:18 pm

Thanks Slinky, I was just looking through your S&T before - everything is beautiful!!

I think small and intimate is lovely too, and I think it goes with the whole meaning of the day. Cost is also a big issue for us as we are saving to buy a house. Everything is just so expensive and I really want to stick to a reasonable sized budget, without compromising on quality of food etc.

To answer your question - I have NO idea!!! Haha. My sister and I are very different, she is a mum's girl and I am definitely a dad's girl. We have different ideas and opinions on everything. Her and her FH have been together much longer than me and FH, and have two kids. They aren't very family orientated as far as the extended family goes, so I don't fully understand why she is inviting them all TBH.

I guess my point is, when FH and I got engaged, only some my Dads side of the extended family bothered to contact us to congratulate us, but no-one on my Mums side did. (We live in the NT and all the family are in Vic so we don't catch up regularly with the extended family). Having said that, Mum hasn't even met FH yet - terrible I know, but she was living in SA whenever we were in Vic to catch up with everyone and she had to work. So because FH hasn't met Mum, he hasn't met Mums side of the family...

Its difficult because I would be more inclined to invite my Dads side but not necessarily my Mums... But I cant invite only a select few. Can I? And then what about the cousins. About 30 of the 40 people are cousins. Some are older, married with kids, some are teenager/early 20's and some are so young I haven't even met them! So where do I stop?? Its not like I am particularly close with any of them. We catch up on facebook and that's about it!

I am sooo confused and want to get the guest list sorted before I look at anything else. I would love to elope but couldn't do it without my immediate family and grandparents! I don't want to regret not having them there, and don't want to cause problems but it is our day. A friend told me to not worry about making other people happy.

Sorry for the big mess of thoughts, but my brain is totally scrambled at the moment!
 
falling_dawn
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Re: Small and Intimate

Mon Aug 20, 2012 11:38 pm

On the venue front I loved Sails on the bay - it was too small for us, right on the beach with the whole wall glass so its like being on the beach but you are inside so its ok if the weather is poorly
 
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mrcm1166
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Re: Small and Intimate

Tue Aug 21, 2012 12:03 am

we are having a tiny wedding (all our rellies are interstate) and at this stage it will be our kids and a couple of close relatives and thats it, a total of around 15-16 people in total.
getting married at the registry office then going out for lunch or high tea after (havent really decided on that yet).

if we had stayed in wa then it would of been the whole big shindig with all the family and being the second marriage for each of us we really didnt want that much of a fuss.

to get all my family (and thats sisters, partners, niece, nephew only) there would be close to 80 people with my partners family its about 20 and then theres our kids and their partners so in total would of been close to 110-115 if we had invited friends too.

just too crazy for me so this way we are having a very small wedding and we have talked about heading back next year for a holidy and having all the family together for a bbq lunch.

you have to do what you feel is right and if a small wedding is what you are after then go for it, if you dont want to invite aunties uncles and cousins but your sister did then again thats your choice.

I am only new to victoria so not much good with venue help but hope it all works out and I know that this forums will be great for advice.

:D
 
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Re: Small and Intimate

Tue Aug 21, 2012 12:25 am

Hi Pookie

We are having "medium sized" wedding with 52 people invited including us which is down to 45 possibles so far with 2 weeks to go til my RSVP. We originally aimed for 30!
What we did was invite uncle & aunts (8 total), siblings (5 invited + partners & kids), parents (4) and grand parents (3) only (no cousins). This alone came to 25 people + 3 nephews/niece = 28 mouths. If we had of invited cousins + their kids it would of blown out to at least 10 cousins + partners + 8 kids on my side alone. Dont get me wrong, i would of loved to catch up with 1 or 2 of my cousins but the rest would be there for the feed as im not close with any of them and wouldn't know what 5 of them looked like (not being mean but we grew up on the other side of the country so never really knew / saw them other than once every 10 years or so). There was 1 uncle and a couple of siblings on his side that we did not invite due to neither of us having had contact with them in many many years.

After that we made a rule if we both dont know them, they weren't invited. This wasnt too hard for us as we've been together for 9 years at the time. We had a small list of must invite family friends on both sides and our mutal friends. We haven't invited many friends our age as we figured if people wouldn't be willing to visit us (if they could) when we moved to WA they weren't important enough to shout a free dinner. Our best mates (who are hubby and wife anyways) are our Best Man and MOH.

Our best mates on the other hand only had 16 people including them & us at their wedding, so you can go as big or as small as you want.

Hope this helps. You have to be cruel with your list, its the only way to keep some sort of budget. I dont regret our decison of who to invite / not invite but these days people understand. We originally weren't even going to invite the uncles as neither famlies are terribly close, but as my mum said, there's only one way to re-connect with your family and excluding them is not the way to do it.
Last edited by adrienne on Wed Aug 22, 2012 12:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
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Re: Small and Intimate

Tue Aug 21, 2012 10:42 am

Hi Pookie,
I guess it also depends on how close you are to your family. I haven't spoken to most of mine since my mother died (including my sister) so frankly i'm not inviting any of them. I think if people aren't involved in your everyday life, they shouldn't expect to be involved in the special stuff either. Your wedding is your day and your sisters is her day - different people, different types of weddings. Invite who you want there - if its only some of your dad's rellies you want there, then only invite them. Your friend is so right, don't worry about making other people happy - cause you can't please all of the people all of the time. This is supposed to be a fun time, so ignore others and have exactly what you want. good luck :)
 
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Re: Small and Intimate

Tue Aug 21, 2012 11:14 am

Welcome and Congrats on your engagement :)

Your sister had a great answer in that she wanted her wedding to be a certain way, if you don't want that for yours then do it differently :)

I am having a cocktail style reception so i dont have to even worry about where to sit people if they dont get along, i think its a great way to make an intimate wedding more sociable and people can choose where they sit and who they talk too :)

I went to a beach wedding last year in sorrento, they were married on the cliff over looking the water then walked down for some photos then back to the cliff where the reception was, the place is fantastic for intimate weddings and cocktail, i would highly suggest all smiles i had such a great night there and all the staff were really friendly :) http://www.allsmiles.com.au/
 
pookie2014
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Re: Small and Intimate

Tue Aug 21, 2012 7:08 pm

Hi ladies, thanks for all your wonderful feedback! I am feeling a bit better having heard some other peoples opinions and thoughts... :) I am still confused though and unsure what I am going to do!! haha.

Thanks curly. Its not that I dont "know" my cousins or aunty or uncles, or haven't met them or anything. I know all of them! We use to be a much closer family when us "kids" were younger, especially on my Dads side. We would have family gatherings quite often. I am the oldest cousin on my dads side so i would look after the younger ones and stuff. The whole family still did these gatherings up until a few years ago when my grandfather passed away. We often joked that he was the mafia boss of our family (he was Maltese) and kept us all in line. Since then, things have changed, everyone has grown up and moved away... My mums side is different though. We use to have family gatherings, but it was nothing like on my dads side. Not how I remember it anwyay. Mums side has a variety of ages, cousin wise. Some are much older, and some are much younger. All the older ones have partners and some have children. Some would need to travel a couple of hours to attend the wedding and I would feel rude about not inviting them to the ceremony after that...

falling_dawn, i just checked out that venue and it looks lovely... will keep it in mind. :)

mrcm1166, a registry office wedding is sounding great!!! I appreciate that I have to do what feels right to me, but i am so indecisive! haha, I am not 100% sure that small and intimate is what I want. I am also of the mindset that "the more, the merrier" and worry that I will regret not having the extended family there. Is that something you were worried about or your tiny wedding just felt right to you?

adrienne - I love that rule!! We have also made that rule, but I am putting exceptions to it as FH hasnt met my Mum yet. The rule is basically in place for friends... We have been together for almost 3 years and have lived in the NT most of that, so the extended family have very limited opportunities to meet FH. But, if we dont know about certain friends, than they are off the guest list!! As you said, there's only one way to re-connect with your family and excluding them is not the way to do it... I think i will consider this statement from your Mum. As I said above, we use to be much closer before my grandfather passed away, so getting everyone together again might be a nice way to reconnect...

Thanks never too old - I appreciate all of that. :) Excellent advise! I am never going to make everyone happy and thats that!!!

Thanks stormageddon. :) My sister did have a good answer. And I have actually spoken to her about all of this and she is no help what-so-ever! LOL. I originally didnt want a cocktail style reception; i insisted to FH that we have a sit down meal... but i think now it is appealing to me a little more... It will be a little more casual and will create less tension between my parents i think. And its funny that you mentioned All Smiles as it was the very first wedding venue I found online, but basically ruled out as it was cocktail style and not sit down meal. At the end of that beach, there are some small cliffs with big rock pool things at the bottom of them. We spread my grandfathers ashes there. I was always very close to him and he meant a lot to me. FH was not fortunate enough to meet him so when we were in Victoria, i took him there to "meet" him. We took some flowers and sat on the edge of the cliff while I told FH some funny stories about him, and had a good cry all at the same time... So I did like that venue due to the fact that he would be there with me on the day. Sounds weird I know, and I know he will be with me no matter what, but that area is close to my heart i guess... So thanks for bringing that up for me and I might look into it again... :)

I really am grateful for all of your feedback, you are a great sounding board and a good way for me to get all my thoughts out!! :)

I guess I have to do some thinking of what it is that I do want and go from there. FH family is so much easier!! One Aunty/Uncle on ones side, and one on the other!
 
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Re: Small and Intimate

Tue Aug 21, 2012 7:42 pm

we had seriously thought of the whole big family wedding and had places in mind as to where to have it, our first weddings werent big and part of me wanted to give my darling FH the wedding he didnt get first time around.
then we planned to move interstate and after alot of thinking about it I realised I didnt really want the whole big wedding thing, having the people we want the most there was more important than feeding people we only spoke to once in a blue moon. So thats when we decided just our kids and a couple of close family members who are willing to travel here for the day.
we went to allsmiles cafe for the first time the other day (close to where we live) and its gorgeous, if we were going to be on this side of the bay when we got married I would of chosen that as the venue to have lunch.
 
pookie2014
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Re: Small and Intimate

Tue Aug 21, 2012 8:26 pm

We currently live in the NT, and did consider about having a wedding up here (mainly to invite the extended with the hope that maybe they couldnt come!) but my great-grandmother is 94 years old and I would like her to be there more than anyone. It would be a bit hard for her to travel. Also, I dont think certain immediate family members would be able to afford to get here, even with notice. It just worked out to be a bit too hard. We dont want to be feeding people we only see once in a blue moon either! Its so difficult!!
I did enquire about All Smiles at the very beginning of our engagement and recall it being quite expensive for a cocktail function. I am sifting through my emails at the moment to find the package they sent me. Do you have any idea if you can have your ceremony there somewhere ([possibly undercover if weather is typical vic weather!) as we would like to have the ceremony and reception at the same location...
 
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Re: Small and Intimate

Fri Aug 24, 2012 3:29 pm

I have always believed you should invite who YOU want to YOUR wedding. After being engaged for 5 years this conversation used to come up all the time with my mum saying I HAVE to invite all my cousins from my dad's side plus aunts and uncles. As we never had any communication with my mum's side growing up that was a no brainer. I don't believe in inviting someone to such a special occassion that you only see once a year and the occassional status like on facebook. As it turns out for other reasons none of my family are invited to our wedding. It is going to be a very small, intimate gathering of about 32 people that we WANT there. None have been a forced invite. I think this is the time you need to stand up and have no regrets and have your wedding the way you and your FH want it and not how everyone else demands you have it.
 
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Re: Small and Intimate

Wed Oct 10, 2012 11:24 pm

My daughter had a small wedding (47 guests) and it was amazing. Everyone mingled and there was time to talk to everyone. On the other hand, I had a large wedding for both of mine. And they were wonderful and everything that I could want. So you are right when you say that you need to decide what is right for you. I don't have any regrets. Looking back even after quite awhile, it truly was what I had always wanted.
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