I had the privilege of being a “plus one” to an intimate Los Angeles ranch wedding last night. The early evening lighting was picture perfect, the deep love of a beautiful bride & groom in the air, and the drinks were flowing with a handsome man by my side— how much better can a date night get?
I was inspired to write this post because I’ve attended many weddings in this city as the wedding date. Being asked by your guy to accompany him to a friend or family member’s wedding is kind of a big deal. Most bachelors who are casually dating without a special someone would rather go stag and scope out the cute bridesmaids. The commitment-phobia guys are the number one offenders of dateless weddings. They like to avoid taking girls to weddings because all single girls—yes, all—are inevitably fantasizing of their own dream wedding to come. There’s nothing scarier to a label-fearing guy than the girl he’s sleeping with suddenly struck with wedding fever!
So, here are a few wedding etiquette tips to help you get ready to attend as your man’s special lady and +1.
DO show enthusiasm and appreciation for the invitation from your guy in a newer relationship. Inviting someone to a wedding during the early stages of a relationship takes a bit of courage.
DON’T leave him hanging. A wedding is an event with a required RSVP for a reason, not just for him but for the marrying couple. Being a no-show to a price-per-plate dinner is tacky.
DO help him pick out the wedding gift. Most guys need a little direction when navigating through Crate & Barrel’s gift registry. And yes, always shop specific to the registry.
DO have fun getting ready together. Weddings are like proms for adults. It’s just so much fun to get your hair done, finally wear the special occasion dress hanging in your closet, and maybe put together a subtle match of colors with your date.
DON’T wear a white dress. This one’s a no-brainer. I hesitate to even wear beige. White is for the bride ONLY.
DO wear waterproof mascara. Watching couples exchange nuptials gets me every time.
DON’T overdo it. Dress for a wedding as if you were having dinner with Oprah. You don’t want his friends whispering about your cleavage—think flowy and sweet. Modest dress + statement necklace= golden.
DO come prepared to answer the “Are you guys next?” question. When you get to a certain age and have been together for enough time, people are naturally curious when you’ll take the next step. Keep your responses brief, optimistic, and light-hearted. Now is not the time to pour your heart out and tell guests how long you’ve been waiting for him to pop the damn question already!
DO bring cash to tip the bartender! Many weddings have an open bar with complimentary drinks but make sure you’re carrying enough change to take care of your server.
DON’T get wasted if you’re the plus one and you’re not too familiar with his group of friends yet. Save yourself and your date the embarrassment.
DO become familiar with formal place settings prior to the wedding. The trick to all those utensils? Work from the outside inward. And your bread plate is always to your left. Also, holding your fancy glass from the stem is considered the proper way to drink.
DO mingle with strangers at your assigned dinner table. You want your date to be confident in choosing a social, friendly gal as his date.
DON’T worry about that weird superstition where it’s bad luck to say, “Best wishes” to the groom and “Congratulations” to the bride. Showing happiness and well wishes is always appreciated– no matter how it’s said.
DO take lots of photos. I grew up in a family where home videos and family photos are cherished. Life is not only too short but too beautiful to not capture.
DO enjoy being in the presence of true love.
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