Miss Manners says…

After the ever-fabulous Mcmiller mentioned Miss Manners’ Guide to Excruciatingly Correct Behavior in our little discussion of shower etiquette the other day, I had to order the book. I mean, who can resist a title like that? So I’ve been flipping through it, taking special care to dog-ear all of the pages that concern wedding manners, and wanted to share some gems with you.

Regarding how guests should dress:

If there were a rule forbidding wedding guests from being prettier than the bride, Miss Manners supposes that they, not the bride, would have to wear veils…attractiveness is in the eye of the beholder. If the bridegroom finds this lady more attractive than the bride, Miss Manners only hopes he finds out before the ceremony.

Regarding the fact that it is now appropriate to say “Congratulations” to a new bride:

It is because today’s brides hear far worse. Those who are repeatedly told, “It’s about time!” and asked, “Are you pregnant?” are only too happy to accept kind thoughts, however they are phrased.

Regarding tossing rice at very pregnant brides:

You could throw minute rice, symbolizing that things are happening any minute now. Miss Manners prefers the paella or pilaf approach: The more good things in your symbolism the better, but don’t examine it too closely.

Regarding grooms that find traditional wedding cakes ostentatious:

Who are you, the Mies van der Rohe of the pastry shop? Wedding cakes are supposed to be vulgar. Go buy yourself a doughnut to satisfy your aesthetic sense, and let [the bride] have her wedding cake.

Seriously, Miss Manners’ Guide to Excruciatingly Correct Behavior is awesome. Check it out already!

6 Responses to “Miss Manners says…”

  1. eowyn_2 says:

    One is not supposed to tell a bride congratulations? Why? To avoid the evil eye? Interesting…

  2. Never teh Bride says:

    According to now outdated etiquette rules, one could tell the groom congratulations (as in, “Congratulations on landing such a fine lady”). One wished the bride “Best wishes” as it was considered ill mannered to suggest that a woman had been “so lucky as to land a man.”

  3. Ninjarina says:

    Haha, Miss Manners sounds like a riot. I guess there is a given though that the female guests not wear a white gown?

  4. Becky says:

    I adore Miss Manners. The letter about the monkey alone was worth the cost of the book.

  5. Never teh Bride says:

    That, Ninjarina, and also that you should always wear a tea length dress or something shorter to an afternoon wedding.

  6. La BellaDonna says:

    I was lucky enough to have Miss Manners autograph her book for me in Philadelphia, and we cooed admiring sentiments about each other’s headgear. Alas, it was one of the (too many) books that got left behind when my marriage came unstuck – but Miss Manners manages to combine unfailing politeness with some pretty pithy sentiments. Her books are well worth getting (or getting again, as necessary).

    I see no harm, however, in wishing either, or, preferably, both parties, congratulations – it’s more of a statement that you are happy each has found the person to spend a lifetime with – a thing meriting congratulations, in my book (if not in an etiquette book).