The Evolving Guest List

When we sent our save the dates I thought we were done with the dreaded guest list. We had our list drafted for a while, cross-checking Facebook with daily interactions and whatnot. We thought of everyone and then had the hard part of deciding how big our list could be and how many people we needed to cut.

We originally wanted to give a plus-one to everyone, but as space issues started to worry me we decided to only give them to known relationships. When all was said and done our guest list had 158 people on it. Our invitations go out in just a few weeks, and I am finalizing all the bits and pieces, which is simultaneously stressful and cathartic.


Image via someecards

Well, as everything in wedding world seems to go, things aren’t so simple. In the last week we have added six people (three couples) to the list. Six! We are already way over capacity (now inviting 164 when our venue seats 120), and adding three invitations is really going to cut into my wiggle room.

How did we manage to add six people in a week? I am responsible for one couple and Mr. B is responsible for the other two. My person is a friend who I see and hang out with pretty regularly, and I am really not sure why she wasn’t on the original list. Every time Mr. B and I hang out with her we leave saying to each other that we need to invite her to the wedding. I finally got sick of the regret and decided to save a seat for her and her sort-of fiance. I really do hope she comes—she is a lot of fun and I love having her around.

Both of Mr. B’s were people he thought were on the list that actually weren’t. We were at dinner last week and he mentioned so-and-so not being sure if they could come, and I pulled up our guest list on my phone and informed him so-and-so wasn’t expected to come because they weren’t invited. Oops! Add two to the list. Pretty much the same story for the next couple, but at least Mr. B realized what he did and told me before he could mention it nonchalantly in conversation.

So how does one make oneself feel better when they are facing a guest list of 164 and a venue that seats 120? Go through the list person by person and try to guess who will and will not come. We came up with 84 definite yeses, 42 maybes, and 38 definite nos. This made me feel so.much.better. Don’t get me wrong—I want (almost) everyone we invite to be able to attend. But my mom’s second cousin who doesn’t know me from Adam? I most certainly won’t be disappointed to open that “no” RSVP. There are a few people we know aren’t coming who I am said about (Bridesmaid Bosox’s husband, for one), but life is life and I will get over it.

With only two weeks before invitations go out (!!!) I think we are finally final. I can’t be the only one out there with last-minute additions. Did you add people? Did you think about it but decide it was already final and move on?


Mrs. Bicycle

Tallahassee, FL/Savannah, GA
Wedding Date:
October 2013
Classifieds: August 14, 2013
Maps, Revisited: Table Numbers
Add a comment


  1. mswallaby Member
    mswallaby 2070 posts, Buzzing bee @ 1:54 pm

    That’s so stressful – we went through the same thing. Hope it all works out!

  2. mswaterfall Member
    Mrs. Waterfall 1403 posts, Bumble bee @ 2:07 pm

    I don’t miss this one bit. Worst part of wedding planning, hands down!

  3. Member
    icanhearyousmile 1626 posts, Bumble bee @ 2:13 pm

    Ugh, I am looking forward to the “No” people. We have gone through but there are a lot of “maybe??” people. I don’t want a huge wedding and a lot of my inviting has been to placate my mom and FMIL at once. So if those second cousins twice removed say no, I will cheer!

  4. Guest Icon Guest
    Katie M, Guest @ 2:16 pm

    So far, I’m just trying to find a really large venue. And keeping a 50 person up/down allowance. We both have huge families. And a lot of friends.

  5. Member
    lealorali 4827 posts, Honey bee @ 2:20 pm

    It is definitely the worst part of wedding planning. I invited 134 and ended up with 116 for what it’s worth, but 70% of our guests live literally 30 minutes from the venue, so my attendance was slightly higher than normal.

  6. Guest Icon Guest
    Lone Star, Guest @ 2:30 pm

    Be prepared for when the invitations go out, those people will then try to add people. “Can second cousin and his wife come to the party?” asked my husband’s grandmother. Grr. IT IS NOT A PARTY!

  7. Member
    veggie_rachel 575 posts, Busy bee @ 2:39 pm

    I’m sort of in the same boat. We have the space for all the people we invited, but we didn’t really budget for them… Our list grew from about 105 to inviting about 140. I’m actually HOPING that around 20% say no. Eeep!
    My fingers are crossed for you!

  8. mscamera Member
    mscamera 300 posts, Helper bee @ 2:59 pm

    I had the exact. same. thing. happen to me – and I spent hours going through putting Y, N or M next to people’s names! I’ll tell you what everyone told me, and will inevitably tell you – there will be people you were SURE would come who won’t, and people you were SURE would never come in a million years who will.

    But it all works out in the end :) good luck!!

  9. Member
    bluebelle23 854 posts, Busy bee @ 3:52 pm

    @Miss Camera: This.

    My BROTHER cheezed out at the last minute and didn’t come and a very sweet coworker I never thought would come, and didn’t even give an invite to, came. He totally was invited, I just put one up at work and let people tell me if they were coming.

    All in all, we had slightly more than we planned. But we were pretty laissez-faire about RSVPs and such. I do wish I’d have gotten 20 more ceremony chairs.

  10. wellies Member
    wellies 1425 posts, Bumble bee @ 4:06 pm

    Keeping my fingers crossed for you!

  11. mspalmtree Member
    Mrs. Palm Tree 1122 posts, Bumble bee @ 6:02 pm

    Another one for @Miss Camera‘s comment. Also, even though you don’t ever want to think this, there will inevitably be the a-holes who RSVP yes and then don’t show (UGGGGGGH). I’m sorry that there have been so many last minute adjustments but hopefully you’re finally final! :)

  12. msbicycle Member
    msbicycle 718 posts, Busy bee @ 6:40 am

    @Mrs. Waterfall: That’s what I always heard and it is proving to be true!
    @icanhearyousmile: Same page :)
    @Lone Star: Ugh, I hate that people think they can do that!!
    @Miss Camera: Haha, I know – I am sort of prepared for that…

  13. Member
    Beltacular 51 posts, Worker bee @ 9:59 am

    I thought I was done with my list too, but after STDs and invites went out, people started dating other people and now want plus ones. I am at my max venue wise (inviting 240 for something that seats 200) but don’t want to look like a jerk. I think in the end, you should be good number wise, but I think no matter what everyone does concerning the guest list, there is always going to be that nugget of “oh we should have done this…”

  14. Member
    canway11 406 posts, Helper bee @ 6:38 pm

    I am glad I am not alone. My FI says he thinks I am the only one who is hoping people will not come. That is not true. I love my friends and family. I want many of them to attend. But it is horribly hard to plan and estimate a budget when the yes guest could be as low as 80 and as high as 120. See many are out of town or family that we do not see often. So we will see.

add a comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.

Sent weekly. You may unsubscribe at any time.

Find Amazing Vendors