BTB Tip #16: Editing the Party Guest List

Back to basics tip #16: When you are hosting a party or an event, it can be difficult deciding who to invite. But sometimes, the hardest part is decided who not to invite. You don’t want to hurt people’s feelings or exclude certain people. But you may not have to space or the party budget to invite everyone you know. Next time this happens, ask yourself these questions…

  1. Who is this party for? If it’s for a child, invite those who will be fun for the child to have at his/her party. If it’s for your husband, invite your husband’s friends, not yours.
  2. What is the purpose of the party? Is it a birthday, graduation, anniversary, girl’s night out, baby shower? You may only want to invite those who have influenced the person in that certain way (school, church, family).
  3. Who else will be coming? If you have friends who are not acquainted with each other, you don’t have to invite them. Or if certain people don’t get along.
  4. What do you want to spend your money on? Do you want to spend most of your budget accommodating everyone or making it a fancy party for just a few people?
  5. Remember, you don’t have to invite everyone. It’s your party. You get to decide who comes or not. If someone feels excluded, invite them next time to something more fitting for them. And don’t feel obligated to invite someone to your party just because they invited you to theirs.

» Tell me… How do you decide who to invite or who not to invite to a party?

6 Responses to “BTB Tip #16: Editing the Party Guest List”

  • Jb

    The only “parties” I’ve done are for birthdays. I just invite pretty much anyone we know, because people are fickle and you’re lucky if anyone shows up sometimes. I have yet to figure out what makes people decide to come or not to come. Sometimes it has been standing room only, and sometimes it’s just the grandparents that show up.

  • Nikki

    I have three small kids and parties can get too big pretty fast if you live in a small space. I solved this problem with my 5-year-old’s recent birthday by having the party at 11am on a weekday. This way, moms could bring their kids, while most dads and even my extended family was busy at work and couldn’t come. Sneaky 🙂 It was fun for the kids and fun for the moms, MUCH less stressful than those huge parties because it really focused more on the birthday and the birthday girl.

  • Jade @ Tasting Grace

    For most parties, that’s not really a problem for us, especially as they tend to be casual and we think the more the merrier (and as Jb noted, a lot of people flake – dealing with flakes is a whole other topic!) But there was one time it did become a nightmare: our wedding! we had two ceremonies and two receptions: one American-style and one Thai-style. I handled all the American-style arrangements and my mom handled all the Thai-style arrangements. But my parents own a restaurant and my dad often goes around and greets the guests. Unbeknownst to us, my dad began inviting customers to the wedding! And then forgetting to tell us he had invited them! Two weeks before the wedding I found out I had a contingent of an extra 20-25 people I’d never met before in my life! But…they’d already been invited and we couldn’t uninvite them…so we just had to scramble to make it work. Lesson: don’t let someone else get involved in the inviting. 🙂 LOL. But it did all work out nicely in the end.

  • Tiffany

    This does get very tricky. I totally agree with everything the only thing is. My mother!! She’s set in her ways, and will always be giving me a hard time when it comes to my kids birthdays and who to invite, and what food to serve. We have a a very large family. But I hardly see them!! Why do I need to provide free food and entertainment for them when they don’t even know my kids names?!

    I’ll just forward this tip to her come every birthday.


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