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After Reception Checklist

Just like the wedding ceremony and the reception, there are a number of tasks that we need to do after the reception. Be it packing the leftovers or gathering the favors or cleaning the venue, we need an after the reception checklist to do these tasks.

Make a list of things you don't want to forget to collect after the reception party is over. However, delegate the task to a responsible person as this is your day even after the reception is over. You won't get the time to do these things as you will be flying off to a destination honeymoon or a honeymoon suite in town.

The list of things that you need to bring back home once the reception is over is as follows:

  • Payment Receipts - Make sure all the vendors have been paid and keep the receipts in a file folder for the couple to review it later. Hand it over to the couple after they return from the honeymoon; until then, keep it safe with you.
  • Guest book and pen - Having a guest book is a brilliant idea. This helps you remember who attended your wedding and reception and would be a nice keepsake for years to go. However, it should be packed away along with the other important things and kept into the custody of some responsible person - a friend or a parent.
  • Cake knife - Most of the times, the cake knife is a family heirloom and it belongs to your grandmother. This should be handed over to a responsible member of the family; preferably the grandmother, so that it remains safe.
  • Unopened bottles of alcohol - Take home the unopened bottles of alcohol. They come in handy!
  • Groom's tux - The groom's tux is mostly rented. After the party, make sure the tux is packed and returned to the shop from where it was rented. Generally, the best man does this thing, but it is better to notify the vendor so that he can collect the groom's tux and the other men's rented clothes. He will make arrangements to collect them if there are a number of clothes to be returned to him.
  • Leftover decorations - Collect all the decorations once you are done with the reception party. Generally, a reception venue is decorated according to the theme and hence the decorations can be varying. For instance, if you have fall foliage as the decorative item, you have to make separate arrangement to collect and dispose it off. Don't leave the balloons, streamers, ribbons, place cards or anything else that can be taken away at the venue.
  • Leftover favors - We tend to make or order a bit more favors than the anticipated number of guests. However, it sometimes happens that some of the guests are unable to show up or they have to leave early. In such cases, the favors are left and they should be collected and taken back to home.
  • Top layer of the cake - Traditionally, the top layer of the cake is to be preserved for the first anniversary of the couple and people tend to follow this tradition even now. Speak to the baker and ask him the technique to preserve this layer. It has to be done carefully and without fail. Assign this responsibility to a person who is careful enough to follow the instructions given by the baker. Some bakers pack it for preserving if you ask them to. The best idea is to order an identical cake for your anniversary.
  • Leftover flowers - Flowers are integral to decoration. However, they remain fresh for days and you have to take these leftover flowers home with you. You can give some of them to the guests, children accompanying the guests or you can just scoop them up and get them delivered to your home by the florist.
  • Table centerpieces - Centerpieces are graceful and elegant. They are usually according to the theme. Some people use centerpieces as favors. However, you have to carry them home once you are done with the reception party. If they are floral, you will have to dispose them off after two to three days, but if they are non-perishable, you can use them as keepsakes and to decorate your home.
  • Gifts and gift envelopes - When you receive the gifts from the guests, ask someone to collect them right away and store them in boxes kept at the back of the platform.

    You can also put the checks, flowers and appliances in different boxes and pack them right away. One of the ushers can do it for you. Ask someone to deliver these gifts to your home.

  • Leftover food - Collect the leftover food and pack it away to your home immediately after the party is over. Do not leave it at the venue.
  • Rentals - Rented items like cake top, stand, pillars, etc. need to be returned to the concerned vendors within two to three days of the reception. Delegate the task to one of your friends or family members who will do it without fail and who is responsible enough to make a call to you to say that they have done so.
  • Wedding dress - If the bride plans to change into going away outfit, someone (preferably, the Maid of Honor) should pack the dress and all the accessories that come with it. The Maid of Honor is preferred to do this as she can pack it away with utmost care just like the bride would have done.

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