Photo by Jeremy Wong Weddings on Unsplash

Divide fairly
Work out how many invitations both sets of parents would need and subtract that from your ideal number of guests.

If their lists have too many people, e.g. 70 out of 100, reduce it to a more reasonable number.

Skip the co-workers…
Unless they’re close to you. You can, however, safely invite your boss.

Limited places
Let those you’ve invited know that you have limited seating and that you’d appreciate if they didn’t spread the news of your wedding dinner.

Forget children
This is difficult, but if you can skip the kids, you can whittle your list down further. Just invite the older family members like aunts and uncles.

One way to get the hint across, is to list down the names of the guests who are invited only. If anyone has any queries, you can get your parents or your helpers to get the word across.

Also, do give advance notice about you aiming for a small affair, so no one will have any complaints when the invitations don’t turn up.

Divide and conquer
If either set of parents won’t budge on their lists, try this. Ask them to divide their guests into A- and B-lists. A-list carries the closest guests while B-list has the less important ones.

Send out the A-list invites two months before the wedding, and for every regret, send out a B-list invite.

Make sure the B-list invites are sent out at least a month before the big day, so guests don’t feel like they’ve been given a last minute invitation.

Photo by Lanty on Unsplash

Ditch the “and guest”
Unattached guests without a fiance or a boyfriend with long-term plans don’t warrant a date.

Don‘t max capacity
Even if your ballroom can hold 150 guests, don’t be tempted into inviting that many. Discipline yourself – don’t budge from the original 100.

Date your RSVP two weeks before the wedding
This buys you time to find out if tardy RSVPers are coming and also gives you time to decide if you have to “open up” reserve tables.

No contingency guests
Meaning an “If I invite Jane, I’ll have to invite the netball gang” situation. If so, forget everyone.

Plan B
If you simply cannot cut the guest list, consider a more drastic solution. Think about a smaller reception or an elopement, with just immediate family and friends.