Etiquette with Anna Post: Receiving Line Basics
Confused about wedding etiquette in the 21st century? We turned to Anna Post to lay down the law for the modern bride; even in the modern era, some essential values remain.
To have a fabulous reception today involves more than choosing a venue, planning the menu, hiring musicians or a DJ, and arranging for cake and decorations. Here are some helpful tidbits:
Let's start by setting the record straight: A receiving line isn't required. However, the bride and groom do have to greet and thank each and every one of their guests for coming to their wedding. A receiving line really is the best way to be sure they don't miss anyone, especially if the wedding is large (more than 75 people).
The receiving line is held either at the ceremony site as people exit the service, followed by formal picture-taking, or as soon as the couple reaches the reception site, after the formal pictures. Ideally, the location permits guests to have refreshments while they wait their turn, or allows the line to flow into the reception area.