Receiving lines are becoming less and less common at weddings as couples are opting for the more casual option of going from table to table at the reception to greet their guests. For the couple who does choose to do a receiving line, we wanted to share the proper standing order for a receiving line. No one can say it more succinctly than the doyenne of etiquette herself, Emily Post:
"Whoever is hosting the wedding is the first in line. Traditionally, that’s the bride’s mother, followed by her father, the groom’s mother and father, the bride, the groom, the maid or matron of honor, and one or two bridesmaids (they can take turns and share the duty). But if Aunt Martha and Uncle Fred are hosting, Aunt Martha starts the line. Fathers aren’t required to stand in line; they can circulate, with the groomsmen, among the guests. However if one father participates, the other should also. In a military wedding, it’s protocol for a groom in uniform to stand before his bride."
-Emily Post's Etiquette