If your family means the world to you, you’ll want to involve them in your wedding day as much as possible; arranging an intimate reception is one way to make sure those nearest and dearest to you get to experience the authenticity of your nuptials.
Read on for five top tips for achieving an intimate reception that will create lasting memories for you and your family.
Choose the right venue
Where you decide to have your wedding reception will have an impact on the style of proceedings, so take a look at reception venues suitable for small parties to ensure the event has a personal feel. You might pick a rustic barn by a lake for an informal yet picturesque setting, a boutique hotel to add a touch of city glamour and provide overnight accommodation, or an attractive manor house set in rolling countryside for a tranquil event. Country House Wedding Venues has a great selection for you to be able to browse through, before choosing on your perfect destination.
Do away with a gift list
The key to an intimate wedding reception is to do away with formality wherever possible, so think about forgoing the traditional gift list with a specific department store in favour of something more personal. You might ask your guests to contribute towards a honeymoon fund by putting a money box out and allowing people to make anonymous donations, or ask that your guests give money to a specific charity or cause that is close to your heart.
Keep the entertainment low key
If you want to avoid an overblown, showy reception, steer clear of too many gimmicks like photo booths and fairground rides, as well as the traditional DJ. If your guest list is small, there’s no need to go over the top with the entertainment; think about hiring a local band or some musicians to play some soft music in the background and something more lively when you want to dance. Forgoing the typical DJ and dance floor setup means you’ll be able to spend more time chatting and bonding with your family without having to compete with loud background noise.
Up the involvement levels
Your family is bound to want to help out with your wedding plans as much as possible, so let them; with regards to the reception, your relatives could help you decorate the venue, organise the entertainment and have some input about the food and drink you’ll serve as the event (they’ll be the ones eating it after all!). If you’re having tables set up for the reception, your family members or friends could help you dress these, and arrange the centrepieces, wedding favours and anything else you plan to decorate the tables with.
Give things a personal touch
Nothing makes a wedding reception more intimate than a homely, informal feel, which you can achieve by customising elements of the event to reflect your personalities and tastes. Rather than going for a polished, manufactured look at the venue, consider making your own decorations, like bunting made from bits of cloth you’ve collected cheaply and attached to ribbon.
You might want to get crafty with wedding favours and bake muffins or create a hanging decoration guests could later use somewhere in their homes, or make your own unique table centrepieces from bric a brac you’ve collected over the years. Charity shops and stores that are closing down are ideal places to pick up individual yet inexpensive bits and bobs.
This post is in collaboration with wedding-venues.co.uk