You're engaged! Now what?

If you are anything like me after I got engaged, you're probably Pinteresting up a storm and binge researching every wedding venue within a 60 mile radius. Before you send another email to a potential vendor, it’s important to start with this one detail: who and how many people are on your guest list? This number will effect a lot of things throughout your planning process from the venue size to the number of tables you’ll need and of course, invitations! Below are answers to questions I had once I finally closed my Pinterest window.


What’s the difference between household count and headcount?

Your household count is the number of households that you will be sending your save the dates and invitations. For example, you may be inviting the entire Jones family of five, but you only need to send one invitation. Your household count should be less than the total number of guests invited.

So good news - you will need less invitations than the total number of guests invited. And trust me when I say every number counts when it comes to estimates! Your headcount is the total number of guests who have replied “yes” to your invitation. This number will effect your day-of print details (programs, menus, escort cards etc.) and meal counts for catering.

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Is it rude to have an A/B guest list?

No. It is actually very practical, especially when your venue space is limiting. Would I broadcast it to the world if you have one? Definitely not, that would be rude.

After forming your guest list, you and your fiancé will need to prioritize guests onto an A-list and B-list. Your B-list should be in preferential order as you will go down it from top to bottom when you receive a “no” response from your A-list. 

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How do I make sure guests know they can/can not bring a guest?

The clearest way to do this is to add a line on your response cards that indicates the number of seats being held per household. If you are allowing a single guest to bring someone, make it clear by addressing the mailing envelope with their name “and guest." 

Photo cred: Robin Gottesman and Dyanna LaMora


More questions about managing your guest list? Feel free to reach out to me. I’d be happy to help!