The Cocktail Wedding Reception
A Cocktail Wedding Reception can be a lot of fun but has to be planned especially carefully as the timing is crucial. This type of reception is usually done in the late afternoon before dinner…happy hour time. Though it’s my personal opinion that it could also be done late in the evening 8 ish if so desired. Basically, before or after dinner hours or your guests will be hungry and come expecting to be fed. Your invite should state very clearly that this is not a dinner. “ Cocktails and hors d’oeuvres will be served at our reception. Please join us” should work fine.
As in any cocktail party, hors d’oeuvres and cocktails should be served! The usual fare of hors d’oeuvres is fine. Follow the etiquette rules of about 10 pieces per person and you should be fine. To keep the open bar from reaching sky high costs try limiting it to beer, wine and maybe a few specific drinks.
As with the Dessert Wedding Reception, seating for everyone is not required. Create a fun, cozy atmosphere by setting up seating areas that make it easy for people to mix and mingle. Meanwhile, a singer or duet…whatever you choose can be entertaining in the background.
The Brunch Wedding Reception
Brunch is not only for Sundays anymore. It’s easy to incorporate a late morning wedding with a brunch reception. Everyone loves brunch! Who doesn’t like to eat breakfast all day! And it provides your guests and you with many choices to create a varied menu. As always, a clearly stated message in your invite should answer all your guests questions as to what to expect. “Please join us for brunch immediately following the ceremony” is all your guests will need to plan accordingly.
Again, any kind of background music will suffice if you don’t want to have a band or live music of any sort. Though a small musical grouping will allow you to have all the traditional dances if you so desire.
With a brunch you should have seating for all as your meals can be a little heavier than some with breakfast fare. Though you may decorate in a light and easy manner in accordance with the early hour. Simple flower centerpieces or small arrangements will add a nice touch.
Brunch drinks are fairly standard and include mimosas, champagne, sangrias and wine. Of course, you may want to provide beer as well. Coffee and tea should be available throughout.
As with all weddings and receptions, this is your day. Whatever you plan will be fine if you balance your wishes and your guests’ needs. Above all else…have fun, your wedding day will be a memorial event for all!