Although not much heard of, morning weddings do happen, and as a matter of fact, in my personal opinion, are a pleasant breath of fresh air (literally and figuratively) from the usual afternoon and evening weddings. Morning weddings are convenient for the guests, since they get to carry on with their daily activities after they attend the wedding, and even the couple gets to spend the remainder of the day together as newlyweds, as opposed to a rush to the hotel room to simply sleep, which is a common phenomenon at evening weddings. Plus, a morning wedding is simply more creative, innovative and brighter and fresher than after half the day has gone by. Attending and hosting a morning wedding does come with a few dos and don'ts. Here's the lowdown on some useful morning wedding etiquette that might come in handy in case you're planning to opt for this relatively inexpensive wedding idea.
Quite obviously, the first thing that comes to everyone's mind when we think of a wedding, let alone a morning wedding, is what to wear. Not to worry! The following have been given the mark of approval and have been systematically arranged in descending order of the fuss that's made over them.
A bride is definitely the most beautiful woman in the ceremony. At a morning wedding, she has a couple of options that she can explore. A formal ceremony calls for a floor length gown (not satin) with a long fingertip veil or elbow brush. Sleeves or no sleeves can be decided by taking into account the weather condition and also the choice of the bride. For a semi-formal affair, a bride can be dressed in a skirt suit and even a pant suit if she wants.
Next comes the groom. Well, since it's a morning wedding (read not very formal), a groom can be spared the torture of baking himself in a full-fledged tuxedo (though he may be required to wear it, if the ceremony is a formal one). Else, he can wear a normal dark-colored business suit or even pinstripe trousers with a regular sportcoat. The fabric should be one that breathes well, and a necktie is an absolute must.
Bridesmaids and Groomsmen
The bridesmaids' dresses, even for a morning wedding, need to perfectly complement the bride's and also the overall decor of the place. Morning weddings tend to use and highlight flowers to decorate the venue, for very obvious reasons. So, the bridesmaids' dresses should also be in colors that harmonize with the decor. Generally, light pastel shades or bright floral ones are what bridesmaids are dressed in for morning weddings. As for the groomsmen, take the outfit that the groom is wearing as your cue to what you should be wearing. If it's a tux for the groom, you should be in one yourself. If it's semi formal, then you can opt for simple trousers, a shirt and a tie too.
If you're going to be attending a morning wedding, dressing up couldn't have ever been easier. Women can bring out all their floral, morning dresses and accessorize them with a nice hat. Morning weddings are the best to flaunt your fancy hats. So get them out and indulge yourself in some much-needed vitamin D! Men can relax in a semi formal attire like trousers and a shirt, with or without a jacket. Even a tie is optional for a male guest! Didn't I tell you it was easy?
Aah! Here comes the real ticker. The timing! First of all, get it into your head that for a morning wedding, you will be required to wake up at the crack of dawn, if you intend to make it down the aisle at the time mentioned on the invitations. You don't want to do it with people glaring at you like they could eat you up for the breakfast that you never served them. So, wake up early and get ready on time (which already includes the 15 minutes grace period that all brides are given). Note to grooms of morning weddings: you simply CANNOT be late to reach the venue. There's nothing more embarrassing to a bride than reaching before her groom has reached the altar! Also, we all know that it's YOUR day, but have some mercy on the guests as well. Keep the wedding at a reasonable hour, if you want people to actually attend it. Any time from 7 am onwards should be acceptable to guests. If you plan to keep an early ceremony, make sure you invite only a few very close friends and family. Would you yourself attend a colleague's or acquaintance's wedding at 4 am?
The bridesmaids are expected to be at the beck and call of the bride all through the ceremony, even at a morning wedding. They are expected to help the bride throughout with things like the bouquet, the ring, the dress train, etc. They are also required to help with the seating of the guests, in the absence of ushers. The groomsmen need to be with the groom to oversee the ring, to receive the minister, and other such things.
Food at a morning wedding is one of the major reasons why couples opt for it in the first place. Serving breakfast like sandwiches, bacon, eggs, pancakes, etc. is a more inexpensive option compared to the exquisite and elaborate wedding meals, don't you think? However, there is some etiquette to be followed even in the case of food. Basically, it is the timing of serving the food. Make sure your guests are served breakfast or a light lunch before they start getting too hungry. But see to it that the counters are closed while the ceremony is on. Also, if you're getting delayed, then you can always have a few welcome drinks served to the guests before the actual meal. That will keep them occupied while you finish off a photo shoot or meet some friends.
Another thing that needs to be taken care of during a morning wedding is that the guests are not bored at any point during the wedding. This can be done by having some simple form of entertainment for them. It could be a live band, soft music in the background or even a few professional performances. Just make sure they're not too loud. Keep the lewd jokes for another evening. You don't want your guests to leave with a 'bad taste in their mouths'.
Who thought morning wedding etiquette would be so stringent? Well, come to think of it, the points are all very fundamental and need to be taken care of at any wedding. But in case of a morning wedding, a little more care needs to be taken because your guests have sacrificed their sleep to attend your special day. Make it worth their while!