Broke-Ass Tag: kids at weddings


Got a question for Liz? Go to the contact page and let us know what’s up!

Sooo many. Or, wait…not enough??

Dear Liz, 

Help! I’m getting married at a  local museum, and we have to bring in all of our rentals. My wedding is in November, and we’ve already made at least 8 changes to the rental list, and it’s driving me crazy!! I’m not even sure I need half the stuff that’s on there. Is there a complete list of rentals that I should get for 150 guests?


Forked Up

Dear Forked,

Heh, “Forked.” Sorry, I’m 12 years old today. Rentals can drive you nuts, so I get it. So, now is time to back up, take a deep breath, and look at the big picture again, instead of the details. Print out the list, and walk through the wedding in your head. Guests are coming in from where, and what are they going to see or do before they get to the ceremony area? What needs to be there? Tables? Linens on the tables? Programs? Where are they dropping off gifts? How many chairs do you need for the ceremony? Are those being taken over to the reception after? Can you afford to get double the amount of chairs? After the ceremony, people are going where, and what needs to be there when they get there? Are there enough plates, silverware, cups/glasses for all of your guests for the cocktail hour and reception? This is where the crazy comes in, because realistically speaking, one of each won’t work, it’s more like three of each thing. Once you go through the list, my next stop would be your caterer or catering staff. Send them the list, ask them if anything looks like it’s missing. Most often it’s trash cans, trash bags, and anything related to scullery and serving. If they feel that you need more of anything, get it. If they feel that you need less of anything, drop it. Usually, you need more of something. Go over the list again a couple days before the balance is due to your rental company. Don’t make changes unless your guest list drops by more than 10. Excess is a relief in this case.

The answer is up to you.
(Photo courtesy of Jagger Photography, via Green Wedding Shoes)

Dear Liz, 

We stated “No kids” at the wedding, because of the expense and not wanting to have crying babies. Now, I’ve been suckered into inviting my only two cousins (8 + 12). My fiancé’s cousins’ kids are coming too, but only for the rehearsal dinner, not the reception.  Should I now tell the adult cousins that their children can come to the reception, too? The expense wouldn’t be too much for them to come,  and they were going to make their kids stay upstairs in their hotel room during the wedding.  I feel like since we allowed the other couple of kids, we should extend the invite to those, too.  We do have legit reasons- they’re all traveling from other states, and they’re not babies. Or should I just allow the original pair of kids that were coming, and risk hurt feelings?


Two Pairs or a Straight Flush?

Dear Pairs,

I say let them all come. You don’t sound too put out about it, other than that you said “no kids”, and now there’s going to be kids, so you might look a little hypocritical, or whatever. Let it go. Bottom line is that circumstances change, and you can invite, or not invite whomever you want to. If someone does say something about it, just shrug and reply, “Yeah, we ended up having to invite them.” And then keep moving.

Do you have any rental questions of your own? What did you decide to do with “dangling” kids? Let me know in the comments below! And, if you would like to find out more about me and my little corner of Wedding World, come visit at

See you at the end of the aisle,

  • 5/31


    Photo: Roger & Lyndzee Ellsworth from EPLove

    Dear Liz,

    I’m getting ready to send out invitations for our September 14 wedding. We’re expecting about 150 people. Now, we’re at the age where all of our friends have been getting married over the past couple of years, so quite a few of our guests have, or will have very small children. I just went through our guest list and there are nine (!) babies that could potentially attend. I don’t mind kids, but I feel like that many could get disruptive, and their parents definitely won’t have as much fun.

    A groomsman who is coming from out of town has already asked to bring their infant, which we’re fine with, as there isn’t really another option for them. Do I have to use the “invite one, invite them all” philosophy, or is it okay to only invite kids whose parents have to travel to come?


    So Many Babies!

    Dear So Many,

    That is a lot of babies. But, yeah, if you’ve already told one person that they can bring their infant, you’ve pretty much opened the floodgates for the rest. Resentment for that stuff can be sky-high: What are their babies, chopped liver? You’re going to spend a lot of time justifying it to a lot of people. That’s just a warning: You could put “Adult Only Reception” or some other notice on your invites and let the chips fall where they may. If you’re uncomfortable with having infants at the wedding, it’s your wedding, and that’s okay.

    Or, if it’s not worth the backlash, you could figure out ways to manage the children that are going to be there. There are a few ways to do that.

    Not sure if it’s feasible, if you are talking about young babies and infants, but get a name for a baby-sitting service (your guest hotel or venue should have a recommendation) and put it on your wedding website. Have an usher escort all the couples with children to the back of the ceremony room, or, if they arrive late, ask them to wait outside until the ceremony is over. Find out where the “quiet” rooms are in your reception venue, give them a heads-up that some guest might need it, if anyone asks, and put that on your wedding website, too.You can also keep the couples with children on one side or in the back of the reception room. I know, it’s starting to sound like parental apartheid! The only thing I can say is that there really is no point in worrying about whether they are going to have fun, since they’ve already agreed to come. Everyone in that group knows what a wedding is about, and it’s up to them to figure out how to enjoy it.

    So, how are you dealing with kids at your wedding, or have you decided to just not deal at all? It’s a bit controversial in Wedding World – where do you stand? Let us know below!  And if you want find out a little more about me and my part of Wedding World, go to

    See you at the end of the aisle,

  • 11/9

    Got a question for Liz? Go to the contact page and let us know what's up. Break's Over. Oy: Hi Liz, I'm in need of some advice! I'm getting married next year and butting heads with my parents a bit on the guest list. One of my major concerns is my mom's brother. Although he is an alcoholic and has sent time in rehab in…

    Read the full article →
    Share this!