Each Wednesday, we tackle wedding etiquette. At times, it’s a reader question or one from a colleague, friend or family member and other times we’ll cover a popular issue. (Note: Questions may be edited for clarity and brevity.)


My longterm, live-in boyfriend and I decided to get married. We are not traditionalists and plan to have a small courthouse ceremony followed by a gathering of our closest friends and family. The date is about three months from now (we scheduled it around vacation so we can have a honeymoon, which is a little traditional, but more practical in terms of it already having been planned), so there is plenty of time for the usual parties and showers. We already have everything we need and it seems weird to us to even think of registering or having gift-giving parties. (We would also prefer not to get wedding gifts.) Do we have to have wedding-related showers?

Congratulations on your upcoming wedding. It sounds simple and as though it aligns with your personality as a couple. The short answer is, you don’t have to have any parties or showers. It’s entirely up to you. Another option is to allow any family or friends who want to celebrate you prior to the wedding to plan a shower, but to ask them to put a note requesting that guests forego gifts and that their presence is your present.  Additionally, start a word of mouth campaign about it (and your wish to omit wedding gifts) as well, to catch those folks who don’t thoroughly read their mail.

Do you have a solution to share or a wedding etiquette question? Respond in the comments or email Melanie@MyNewOrleans.com.