Wedding Etiquette – A Guide to Savvy Seating & Table Plans At Your Wedding
Oh Hello, gorgeous ones. We’re in shock as the realisation creeps upon us that is it going to be August tomorrow, how please is it that it feels like spring had just sprung a few days ago, and now we’re nearing the end of Summer? As Autumn weddings start to cloud our wedding-filled minds with bright pops of purple, burgundy hues and warming metallics, we can honestly say we’re looking forward to the crunch of leaves, snuggled up evenings and roaring log fires. But first? We’re hoping there’s a little sunshine left in Summer yet!
Today, however we’ll be talking all about your wedding table plans. Understandably, it’s not the most glamorous part of planning a picture perfect wedding – we’ll even admit to that, however there’s no escaping the post-it notes, highlighters and countless attempts at drawing out your chosen wedding venue.
Having an organised seating plan at your wedding helps everything to run smoothly, and means your guests can avoid the mad panic of trying to find a seat – and of course, will leave you feeling like the most blissed out Bride and Groom on the day.
Image: Jose Villa Photography
Start organising your seating plan as soon as possible to avoid too much unnecisarry stress. Don’t wait for all the RSVPs to come in before you start planning as it may become too much of a rush before the big day, when there are other important things to sort out. You can always edit your seating plan nearer the time according to your RSVPs.
Image: Claire Duran Weddings
If everyone is seated in family groups, people may actually lose the chance to mingle. On the other hand, don’t place people together who don’t know each other at all as it could be slightly uncomfortable for them.
Find a good balance, whilst taking into account your guests’ ages, connections and interests. Try to make sure all tables have an even number of men and women so you get a good mix of conversation. We all know that things can become a little rowdy with same-sex tables once the alcohol starts flowing… Oh, and too, consider your own position to guests, too.
As a rule of thumb, guests who attend your wedding with a partner are always seated together. Although match-making might seem fun, don’t force it on your guests or make it super obvious as this will only cause a whole load of awkwardness during the meal.
Never, ever have a table dedicated to ‘the singles’. If you’re worried about where to place singles, try think of their personalities, who will they get on with, or is there anyone at the wedding that they know to be sat with?
Image: Rachel Pealman Photography
Finding your seat
Always use clear place cards, signage and stationery so your guests can find their seats easily and quickly.
If you want to create something a little different with your seating plan why not name the tables after things you and your partner love? Cocktails, travel locations, cities and foods all make for clever and quirky table names. This also avoids the awkward hierarchy of table numbers too! We have plenty of chic table chart ideas in today’s post to help you out with inspiration.
Also, always remember you can always break tradition and assign guests to tables rather than allocated seats, giving them the choice of who they sit next to throughout the reception. This means they can always switch seats and are free to mingle. Do remember however, this may work more accordingly to sharing buffets, BBQ’s and set menus.
Image: Rebecca Arthurs
It may sound pretty obvious, but with all the table plan stress going on some brides and grooms forget to include themselves in the seating plan!
You don’t have to have a traditional top table and can always sit with your bridal party or even on your own in a cutest sweetheart table. More and more ofter we are seeing examples of couples ditching the top table and opting to sit with their nearest and dearest, either in lavish banqueting tables, or sociable round tables… that decision is of course up to you!
Of course, if you’re really struggling with organising the seating plan and the stress is getting too much, call in the professionals! Wedding Planners are experts in their field and will be able to work with you to collaborate on some idea’s. Ditch that mountain of post-it-notes and get someone else to do it, if it’s becoming too much.