To Tweet or Not to Tweet
Wedding Etiquette advice from Anna Post, great-great granddaughter of Emily Post and author of Do I Have to Wear White? and Wedding Parties
Q. Can I Tweet from a wedding I’m attending? How about posting pictures I take during the wedding on my Facebook page?
A. You can Tweet live updates of a friend’s wedding, but the real question is, should you? While it would be exciting to share the events of the day in real time, you’d be taking your focus away from the wedding. Talk to the couple ahead of time. How do they feel about Tweets on their wedding day? It may make sense if there’s a special group of close friends or family who can’t be there on the day of the wedding. Otherwise, who else would really want such immediate access to such a personal celebration? The people who didn’t get invited? If you do receive permission to Tweet, keep the comments upbeat and cheerful. This is not your opportunity to snark about the bridesmaid’s dresses or entrée selection.
Bridal Shower Is a Gift in Itself
Q. I’m hosting a shower for the bride. Do I have to give her a shower gift as well?
A. Hosting a shower is a gift in itself, and no other gift is required. As the host, you’ve accepted a responsibility that will likely take months to carry out. You offer your home (or rent or borrow an appropriate location), select and send out invitations, plan the menu—and that’s all before the event even takes place!
For Vow Renewal, Gifts Are Optional
Q. We were married over a year ago but never had a wedding celebration. Now we’re having a vow renewal to celebrate our marriage. Is it OK to register for gifts?
A. Reaffirmation ceremonies or a renewal of vows used to be the purview of the geriatric set to commemorate a milestone anniversary. But now, it’s a trend many couples embrace as a way to acknowledge their ongoing commitment or to mark the passage of a particularly difficult or joyful time.
Another great reason to renew vows is to do just what you’re suggesting: have that big celebration you missed the first time. At this kind of a belated celebration, guests are not expected to give the couple gifts. One of the primary purposes of wedding gifts is to help the couple set up their life together. Since you’ve been married for more than a year, a gift registry may make it look like you’re more interested in the loot rather than the opportunity to celebrate this milestone with those closest to you.
You’ll probably find that family and close friends will want to give you a gift anyway, and that’s fine. If you’re repeatedly asked about what you’d like for a wedding gift, that may be reason to establish a small gift registry. Remember, registry information is spread by word of mouth, so let those who want to know know, don’t send out mailers and call to tell people.
If guests do bring gifts to the party, accept them in private to avoid causing an awkward moment for guests who didn’t bring a gift.
Handling Food Concerns
Q. How do I handle guests’ food allergies?
A. Though personal preferences and beliefs such as vegetarianism and veganism should be respected, food allergies, with the threat to health, fall into an even more serious category.
People with dangerous food allergies typically take appropriate precautions. If you know of close friends and family members with food allergies, you can mention it to your caterer so that they can either avoid that ingredient or let you know where they plan to use it so that you can let people know.
When you’re planning a large gathering such as a wedding reception, you don’t have to ask each guest about individual food restrictions. If you know that many of your friends are vegetarians, discuss some appropriate dishes and options with your caterer. That way, everybody will find something he or she enjoys.