In our African culture, our extended families can form a whole clan. They also have a close relationship and in events of weddings and funerals they show up in large number in celebration and consoling in the respective events. In this case, how do you hold a small wedding? This is a dilemma faced by brides who wish to spend small amounts on their wedding and those who intend to have an intimate ceremony.
How do you tell your nosy aunt she is not invited to your wedding while she asks if you have “got lucky” every time you meet? How do you tell your mother that her women group members or church members cannot come to the wedding while they helped find her way around those enormous cooking pots during your dowry payment ceremony? In most Kenyan weddings, people would rather have bad food, but be part of the wedding attendance (they will still talk about how bad the food was).
If you are decided to have a small wedding, here are some of the steps to follow. Let’s hope your relatives will still be speaking to you after this.
Don’t fuss about the wedding; don’t go telling everyone you are getting married. Every time you tell someone you are getting married, they expect to be invited to the wedding. It is better if only very few people who are close to you know you have an upcoming wedding, that way you will not have to disappoint a lot of people.
Start thinning early
Start thinning the people you don’t plan to invite early enough. By the time you have the introduction and dowry payment ceremonies; you have an idea of what kind of wedding you’ll have. If anyone was present on these ceremonies, they expect to be at the wedding. Therefore choose your guest list this early, and avoid having to cut down later.
Plan a reception only invite list. This is whereby you hold a small intimate wedding and plan to throw a party for everyone else thereafter. This idea helps you not to keep your many friends out on your big day. If your main issue is cost saving you can host the reception in a restaurant where guests can buy their bites and drinks, you only pay for the venue. This is a win-win, you get your intimate wedding, and don’t get to disappoint your friends, not to mention the cost saving.
Hold a wedding on a weekday. People will be too involved in their lives to remember that they didn’t get an invite. It will also a good excuse to give to those who ask why they were not invited later. You will explain you didn’t want to disturb them at work.