Want To Have A Small Indian Wedding? Here's How

January 7, 2016 - by Zara

All Indian brides know that when it comes to planning a desi wedding, you can usually expect a huge guest list. While my non-desi friends complain that they can't seem to wrangle their guest lists down to 150 people, I think about the 500 people on my own wedding's invite list and cringe.

According to my parents, having a huge wedding is "inevitable." It makes sense: Since many of our parents immigrated to this country, they formed incredibly tight communities. You can't really leave out the aunties who have known you your whole life, nor can you leave their children off your guest list. But just because you're obligated to have a big fat Indian wedding, doesn't mean you can't also enjoy an intimate celebration as well. Here are five tips to hosting a small(ish) Indian wedding.

1.Make it a destination wedding: If you get married in a different city, state or even country than the place you grew up, it automatically slashes your numbers. Having a destination wedding is a great solution because everyone expects them to be small affairs. Think about it: Harsh as it sounds, a lot of people only go to weddings because they see them as community functions. Have your wedding away from the community and people will understand if you don't invite them - or they'll simply decline to make the trip.

2. Get married at your home: If having a tiny wedding is truly important to you, why not host it at your home? It's a great solution if you're trying to invite fewer people without offended them (space constraints are very real, after all). Additionally, getting married in your own home is such a meaningful gesture.

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3. Have a family-only ceremony: My fiancé and I know we can't exclude family friends from our wedding completely. That's why we decided to have our actual ceremony surrounded by just family and very close friends the day before our huge reception. That way, we get the intimate feel of a small wedding without offending anyone.

4. Make it a kid-free event: A lot of couples implement a no-kids policy at their weddings. It certainly makes sense: Children can cause disruptions during the ceremony and likely won't enjoy the food or the wedding itself. Removing kids from your list will probably cut the number significantly and people tend to be understanding about this. ryan-brenzier width=

5. Establish a 'if I don't know them, they don't get invited' policy: It's probably important to your family that you invite close family friends. Here's where you may be able to draw the line, though: Tell your family that you'd prefer to not invite anyone who you don't know personally. It might be a tough sell but just remind everyone that it's your wedding - you should have a connection to your entire guest list.

Did any of you have small Indian weddings? We would love to hear about your event in the comments!

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