When I first noticed the term “B list” in wedding magazines, I skimmed right over it along with advice on china patterns and the pros and cons of pre-nups. Now that I’m farther along in my planning, it keeps popping up and it seems I can’t ignore the issue any longer. I apologize if the following post seems just a tad bitchy…and by all means if you have had a different experience with this feel free to contradict me.
Let me start by stating for the record what I understand about this concept. You split your guests up into two lists: A listers which are the people that are a) really cool b) will give you sweet presents or c) you really care about and/or obligatory family. These fortunate ones are the people that you immediately invite to the wedding. Then you have your B list. These are people you will invite only if said A list people decline your invitation.
I understand having a budget and feeling conflicted about who to invite. We’ve already done our guest list, and while it was a relatively painless process there were still a few decisions we hesitated over. You want to include everyone without going overboard and still maintain a balance between friends and family. I get that.
The one thing that every advice site/wedding magazine seems to agree on about this topic, is that if you do use the list system, your guests cannot find out. Even if you avoid the mistake of the couple in an article I read (don’t mark large A’s and B’s on the invitation envelopes) chances are your guests will wise up anyway when their invitation arrives much later than everyone else.
However, I really think it should go one step further. Using this system implies to me that you care more about the overall number of guests at your event rather than who those guests are. Its all about priorities. If you have 250 people you feel you MUST invite and your venue only fits 150, maybe you should consider a different venue. On the flip side, if your heart is set on that particular venue then be prepared to make some hard choices. When you’re deep enough into a relationship to be getting married, you know that most things in life take compromise. So don’t make your guests feel like they’re the last kids picked for dodgeball at recess.