The Rehearsal Dinner
It's not just an American thing....
It's always been the tradition in the US, and now it is definitely becoming a more popular part of the wedding here too. When I first heard about this, I did initally feel, 'Oh no - but isn't that just another expense? Does it really need to be done?' And the answer is, no, of course not. It's one of those optional extras. However the more I've read about it, the more I get it. The whole point of it is to gather the people who have been involved in the planning of the wedding so they can meet each other before the big day. And it gives the bride and groom an opportunity to show their appreciation for the things they have done - in an informal way. So this is normally restricted to the imediate family, the bestman and the bridesmaids and close friends.
It can be held up to a week before the wedding, but it usually takes place the evening before. I actually think it's a lovely way to spend the night before the wedding. It can be as relaxed as you like, and doesn't even have to be dinner - canapes and cocktails would be very nice too...as long as you don't get absolutely trashed. Not a good look to have a hangover on your wedding day.
I've known many people to have this dinners at home, in the form of a BBQ or hog roast, but if that isn't an option, then a really good local pub is perfect, or a private room in the hotel you are staying in....here are a few ideas for venues in London who do a great wedding, but would be lovely for a rehearsal dinner too!
Main picture, one of my favourites: The travalgar Tavern in Greenwich - look at their listing for more details:
And below, Jamie Hince and Kate Moss photographed before their rehearsal dinner at the local pub