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.) This installment is from New Orleans Bride Magazine’s etiquette columnist, Dee Lane.


Question: My fiancé and I have already mailed out save-the-dates, but we’re no longer able to throw a wedding and are going to elope. How do we tell our guests that we’re canceling without everyone getting angry with us?

Answer: First things first: Call your immediate family. It’ll be like pulling off a band-aid: it’ll hurt, and they’ll probably be disappointed, but they’ll understand. Next, make sure out of town guests know so that they don’t make or continue to pay for travel plans. Though word of mouth will do a lot of your work for you, attempt to get in touch, by phone if possible, with as many of those you originally invited as possible. If you have a wedding website, update it with a short statement.

After your elopement, send out an announcement telling them exactly what you want them to know and letting them know how happy you are.


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