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Here comes the bride, here comes the bride, and here comes that drunk uncle ruining the moment by spewing some unhinged stories from the 1970s, and now everyone is uncomfortable. Sounds familiar? That’s because getting intoxicated is just one of many common faux pas perpetuated by guests at weddings.

Despite September and October being the most popular months to get married, as per The Knot, millions of couples will be tying the knot over the summer, with June being the second-most popular time of the year to get married.

Fortunately, etiquette experts Maryanne Parker, who runs Manor of Manners, and Rosalinda Oropeza Randall, who owns the Rosalindarandall.com business, shared some insights to help future ceremony guests avoid the 10 most common wedding faux pas.

#1

Making Big Announcements

Making Big Announcements

Maryanne:

Making big announcements at other people’s weddings – such as wedding proposals, engagements, announcing pregnancies, etc. – [is a wedding guest faux pas]. 

We are all obsessed with social media, [and] likes and attention [sadly become] more important than the actual events in our lives. 

Instead, focus on the bride and the groom, and be the best support system for both of them. Acknowledge the importance of their event. It is not about you.

Rosalinda:

Guests who use the occasion to announce their engagement, pregnancy, divorce, promotion: Not your dime, not your time. 

Unless you’ve spoken to the couple in advance, do not assume that they’ll appreciate sharing their moment with you and whatever it is you have to say. If they decline your request to make an announcement, don’t pout or tell others.

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Captain Kyra
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3 weeks ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

I suppose this is true, my SIL announced her pregnancy during the groom family photos. She was the photographer and got a great reaction shot. It didn't bother me because that was the only mention. The grooms family focused on the wedding and we celebrated their little one later.

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#2

Outshining The Bride

Outshining The Bride

Maryanne:

Trying to outshine the bride is always a very big faux pas. This is one of the most significant moments in most people’s lives, and every bride deserves the opportunity to be the center of attention and to shine bright on this special occasion.

Instead, follow the invitation’s requirements [and] dress according to the occasion, season, and the venue.

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Magenta Blu
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3 weeks ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

And the groom? Just a necessary accessory? We should not encourage bride entitlement, marriage should be a couple celebration and not a freak bride star show

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#3

Wearing White

Wearing White

Maryanne:

Wearing white – usually, etiquette is the result of traditions and religious beliefs – women should avoid wearing white, wedding-like dresses. 

Only if this is specified previously by the bride that she doesn’t mind her guests wearing white dresses. 

This tradition comes from back in the day, during Queen Victoria’s wedding to Prince Albert. The white color [represents] purity, innocence, and vulnerability.

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somed ay
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3 weeks ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

My maid-of-honor's mother not only wore white, she wore her own wedding gown. To MY wedding. Fortunately it was tea length and a very different style from my dress. But what in the world made her think that was okay??

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#4

Inappropriate/Unplanned Speeches

Inappropriate/Unplanned Speeches

Maryanne:

Making inappropriate jokes – I always advocate for all of us to be mindful regarding our jokes because something being funny to me might be truly triggering for you! 

And hurting someone's feelings deliberately can affect the positive emotions at the wedding. However, if the jokes are tasteful, entertaining, and truly enjoyable, go for it!

Rosalinda:

Guests who make an unplanned speech that includes negative stories or past flings about the bride or groom [is a wedding guest faux pas].

We’ve all seen wedding speeches that embarrass either the bride or groom. Not to mention the parents, grandparents, or children having to hear it.

As a friend, if you feel compelled to share something risqué about the bride or groom, do it at the bachelor/bachelorette party. 

Ask yourself the purpose of sharing this at [a] wedding reception. Sharing unfortunate or embarrassing experiences about a friend is a quick way to end a relationship.

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Jessica SpeLangm
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3 weeks ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

My dad, during his speech at my wedding, said something to the effect of "I never thought you and your sister would find someone to put up with either of you. I'm so happy I was wrong."

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#5

Getting Too Drunk

Getting Too Drunk

Maryanne:

Not paying attention to your alcohol intake – I understand it is a very exciting time and many people will indulge in alcohol and have a great reason for it. 

However, being remembered as the drunk uncle at your niece's wedding is never a great honor. 

Be mindful and know your limitations. Some people even turn into violence and might ruin the entire wedding.

Rosalinda:

At our wedding, there were a couple of guests who had a falling out years prior. But we all thought enough time had passed where they’d both let bygones be bygones. 

Well, [after] a few drinks in, an all-out knockdown drag-out fight broke out. Thanks to a couple of brawny family members who stepped in, both guests were sent on their way, allowing the reception to continue.

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sbj
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3 weeks ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Being remembered for being the drunk one at any occasion/event is always a bad thing

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#6

Bringing A Plus One Without Permission

Bringing A Plus One Without Permission

Maryanne:

Bringing a plus one without permission and inviting controversial individuals [to] people’s weddings, such as ex-partners, spouses, estranged relatives, and more, [are wedding guest faux pas].

The plus one rule is always very specific. If you really need to bring someone, you need to address the matter with the bride and the groom in advance and get their approval. 

Organizing a wedding is an expensive and sensitive event. On many occasions, the new family might be on a smaller budget; however, even if you are allowed to bring the plus one, make sure to be mindful.

Rosalinda:

Bringing your current love interest when they were not invited is tacky and adds to the cost of the happy couple’s day. 

If this person was of deep significance to you, discussing it in advance with the bride/groom could have resolved it, whether in your favor or not.

Perhaps your plus-one was not included because they only want people at the wedding [who] they know well. Or maybe they don’t like your plus-one; it happens. Their day, their choice.

What are your options? Attend only the ceremony. This is your loss, and it may be construed as pouting. Attend both the ceremony and the reception because this isn’t about your joy – it’s about the couple’s joy.

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Vix Spiderthrust
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3 weeks ago (edited) DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

This isn't a faux pas, it's a di*k move. The caterers have a plan, people.

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#7

Dressing Inappropriately

Dressing Inappropriately

Maryanne:

Dressing too casually – We live in a very relaxed society. However, we need to learn to “read the room” and ... the invitations.

Based on the event, the location, and the time of the day, use your common sense and dress appropriately. 

If you are attending a beach wedding during the day, obviously a cocktail dress won’t be your best option. Only if suggested by the bride and the event planner, if there is one.

Drawing attention to yourself and taking the attention away from the groom and the bride, the dress code is one of the first things most people observe at weddings. 

We cannot be too extravagant or too casual at [people’s] weddings. Once again, check the requirements, and the obvious elements, and use your common sense.

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Cyndielouwhoo
Community Member
3 weeks ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

I think folks are getting too obsessed about the one day, rather than the rest of their marriage.

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#8

Filming Or Photographing Without Permission

Filming Or Photographing Without Permission

Rosalinda:

Guests who post “live” videos or photos of the couple without their permission [are wedding guest faux pas].
 
Some couples [include] a sort of non-disclosure statement on the invitations because guests take the liberty of posting as the event is taking place.
 
Videotaping or snapping photos during the ceremony blocks the view [of] the people sitting behind you. This includes selfies. 

When you’re on your phone, you are not focused on the special moments, which is why you were invited.

If you insist on snapping a few photos, even when asked not to, do it quickly. Be prepared to receive annoyed looks from those around you. 

Save the videos and send [them to] the couple later that day.

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UselessKnowledgeFont
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3 weeks ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

People taking their own pix to preserve the day for themselves is nothing new. I can still recall the sound of all of the extra cameras snapping pictures as the bridal procession took place at my sister's wedding. Heck, I don't even think she officially had anyone recording it, but our news reporter uncle sure did. With his top of the line, slightly bulky, mid1990s camcorder

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#9

Getting Political

Getting Political

Rosalinda: 

Guests who wear message t-shirts or pass out flyers in support of their cause or political party.

First, a wedding is not the type of event where sharing political views would add to the joyfulness of the day. 

Secondly, engaging in controversial topics with someone with whom you are acquainted may be okay. 

[However], not knowing the guest or what the relationship is with the happy couple can create relationship trouble. And lastly, it’s not your dime, so it’s not your time.

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Mike F
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3 weeks ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

If you need to get this message across to people, perhaps it's better to not include them in the first place.

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#10

Not Getting A Gift Or Getting An Inappropriate Gift

Not Getting A Gift Or Getting An Inappropriate Gift

Maryanne:

Always send a gift for the new couple. We are living in difficult times, and everyone needs a little help in the beginning. 

Also, make sure the gifts are not highly personal, [as] this can be inappropriate. Get a gift for both of them, indicating that you support their union.

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somed ay
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3 weeks ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Times are always difficult, and not everyone needs help in the beginning. Some couples are in their 30s and combining two complete households - they don't need more stuff. But it's always appropriate to give a celebratory, sentimental gift.

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