Wedding guest in pink dress with handbag

Navigating New Jersey Wedding Etiquette: The Do’s and Don’ts for a Memorable Celebration

Jul 5, 2023

New Jersey weddings are the perfect occasion to bring together friends and family to celebrate the union of two individuals in love. While these events are filled with happiness and excitement, they also come with their own set of etiquette rules that guests should always abide by.

If you’re new around here, we’re Well-Dressed Events, New Jersey’s premier style-centric wedding, party, and event planning company. We specialize in high-end, unique events for modern, bold, standout clients and we pride ourselves on cutting-edge, creative design, styling, and event management.

As New Jersey wedding planners, we have planned hundreds of weddings with all different themes and venues. From backyard weddings to farmhouses to “grand” venues we’ve seen it all. Our years of experience have allowed us to learn what rules to set in place to ensure your wedding runs smoothly. So, whether you are planning a New Jersey wedding or attending one, we have curated the perfect list to help you navigate wedding etiquette.

Without further ado, here are our top do’s and don’ts as NJ wedding planners to ensure your New Jersey wedding is a seamless and memorable celebration!

DO: RSVP Promptly

As a potential guest at a New Jersey wedding, it is your responsibility to respond to the wedding invitation promptly. The couple relies on timely RSVPs to finalize their guest list, budget and to make necessary arrangements like guest transportation. Responding in a timely manner shows respect and consideration for the couple’s planning efforts.

DON’T: Assume a Plus One

When receiving an invitation, carefully read ALL the details to determine whether you have been granted a plus one. Invitations are often extended to specific individuals, and assuming you can bring a guest without confirmation can cause unnecessary complications for the couple. If you’re unsure, it’s perfectly acceptable to reach out and inquire about bringing a plus one. Remember, if you’re not invited with a guest it’s usually not personal! New Jersey weddings are expensive, and often times couples have to make hard decisions about who to cut.

DO: Dress Appropriately

New Jersey weddings come in different formality levels, ranging from casual to black-tie affairs. It’s crucial to dress appropriately for the occasion. If the invitation specifies a dress code, adhere to it. When in doubt, it’s better to err on the side of being slightly overdressed than underdressed. We at Well-Dressed Events think a midi-length cocktail dress or a sleek black suit are safe bets, unless the invite specifically says “black tie.” Then you want to opt for a floor length gown or a tuxedo. Remember, a wedding is a formal event, and dressing respectfully shows your appreciation for the couple’s special day!

DON’T: Be Late

Punctuality is crucial when attending a wedding. Being late not only disrupts the ceremony but also draws attention away from the couple. Don’t forget New Jersey traffic is terrible, especially on a Friday in the summer.  So set that Waze alert and leave early to allow time for traffic, parking, and finding your seat. Being prompt showcases your respect for the couple’s wishes and ensures you don’t miss out on any important moments.

DO: Respect Unplugged Ceremonies

Some couples opt for unplugged ceremonies, where they request guests to refrain from using their electronic devices to capture photos or videos. Respect their wishes and put your phone or camera away during the ceremony. This allows everyone to be fully present and enjoy the moment, and the professional photographer hired by the couple will capture the memories beautifully. Trust us, there’s nothing worse than a professional shot ruined by someone’s phone or *gasp* iPad!

DON’T: Bring Uninvited Guests

This is certainly related to the plus one note above, but also children. As mentioned, it’s essential to adhere to the guest list provided in the invitation. Bringing uninvited guests, especially without prior notice, can create logistical issues for the couple and lead to unnecessary discomfort for everyone. Only bring those individuals explicitly mentioned on the invitation, and if you are unsure, just ask them!

DO: Mind Your Manners

Weddings are social gatherings that call for courtesy and good manners. Be mindful of your behavior and avoid excessive drinking or any inappropriate conduct. Treat the venue, staff, and other guests with respect. Remember, your actions reflect not only on yourself but also on the couple who invited you. We’re not saying don’t have fun, but there is a line. We’ve seen some really wild guests do some inappropriate things, which isn’t fun for anyone involved.

DON’T: Criticize or Complain

Avoid making negative comments about the venue, food, or any other aspect of the wedding. Even if something does not meet your expectations, it is essential to maintain a positive attitude and express gratitude for being part of the celebration. Negative remarks can dampen the overall mood and make the couple feel uneasy.

DO: Participate in Wedding Traditions

Weddings often include various traditions and customs that the couple holds dear. Whether it’s a bouquet toss, first dance, cutting of the cake, or something more unique and cultural, be sure to participate in these moments with enthusiasm and joy. Your active involvement will contribute to the overall ambiance and create beautiful memories for the couple.

By implementing and adhering to proper wedding etiquette, you ensure that your big day is filled with love and joy. So, if you’re attending a New Jersey wedding, remember to RSVP promptly, dress appropriately, arrive on time, respect the couple’s wishes, and maintain good manners throughout the celebration. We know that every couple wants their New Jersey wedding to be perfect which is why we’re here to help! If you want more advice from one of the top New Jersey wedding planners or want help planning your wedding from scratch, contact us!

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