31 May How to plan a child-friendly wedding
It’s not everyone’s cup of tea, but many couples love the idea of a child-friendly wedding. If your family and friends have children, inviting them to the wedding seems the natural thing to do – and it helps you avoid any babysitting issues or grumbling parents.
If you’re planning to add children to your guest list, you do need to be prepared. While a wedding is all fun and games for your adult guests, younger ones can be impatient, fussy and unpredictable (not unlike some big kids!). We’ve compiled some top tips on how to plan a child-friendly wedding.
The guest list
First things first, it’s important to ask yourself whether you definitely want to invite children. If you don’t, that’s okay! A lot of weddings are adult-only. If you do want to invite kids, it’s a case of who and how many. Are you just inviting children within you and your partner’s families, or is the invitation open to any guests’ children? Make a note of which of your guests have children, and how many, and figure out the practicalities.
A child-friendly wedding requires a child-friendly venue. It’s best to pick somewhere that will allow them to run around and have fun, all the while staying safe. If the kids have somewhere to blow off steam, it’ll allow your adult guest to have a great time, too. A venue with a lot of outdoor space is ideal – especially in summer – but if you’re confined to indoors, consider setting up a room just for kids to play in.
Plan your itinerary
First things first, you’ll want to consider how the day is going to flow, as well as how involved you want the children to be. Will the kids be attending the ceremony, reception, or both parts of the day? Do you want to involve the children in the ceremony? Giving them a role in the proceedings is a great way to keep them interested and happy – plus a mini page boy or flower girl is always a major cute-factor! Even just giving your younger guests a small bag of confetti is likely to put smiles on their faces.
Food glorious food
No one wants a “hangry” kid. Make sure you have plenty of child-friendly snacks and food on offer. Mini pizzas, hotdogs or small portions of chips could be included in your canapés – keeping the kids satisfied while the adults graze on finer things. A food van offering treats such as ice cream always goes down a storm. When it comes to the dinner seating, having a kids-only table is a great way to keep them happy and occupied. Consider having a disposable tablecloth that they can doodle on during the speeches.
It’s crucial to provide entertainment to keep the kids busy during the day. You could go all out and hire a professional entertainer, but a bouncy castle, lawn games or a dressing up box are all great options. You could even set up a mini cinema for kids to kick back in, which is also a great way to wind them down later into the evening. Also, putting together goody bags filled with age-appropriate toys and games will give them a cute memento of the big day.