Sure, figuring our your guest list isn't as fun as, say, shopping for your wedding dress or the cake-tasting, but the paring-down process can be a whole lot easier than you think. The key is to make a set of cutting rules — and actually stick to them until you reach your magic number. Deciding on a set of rules you and your groom both agree on is the hard part, but if you're able to stick to your guns (no wavering!), ultimately you'll save yourselves a whole lot of stress and drama in the long run, guaranteed. What do we mean by cutting rules? Here are a few common ones that we've seen used with great success — mull them over together and figure out the ones that will work best for you.
• If the person's phone number is not saved on your cell phone, then it's been too long since you've talked.
• No dates you've never met before.
• When it comes to children, set an age limit — say, only kids 12 or older are invited. Or restrict your list to the children of immediate family members and/or children of members of the wedding party.
• No second cousins.
• No coworkers.
• The one-year rule: No friends you haven't spoken to in more than a year.
• Parents' friends: If you've never met or heard their name before, they aren't invited.
• Anyone who's on the list only because you feel guilty about leaving them off — maybe because you were invited to their wedding or they're friends with lots of people who are invited.