This is such an exciting Wedding Wednesday post, because we are SEVENTEEN days away from one of the best days of my life. We are extremely excited + all of the other emotions that go with planning/having a wedding. The vision that I have had since I was a little girl combined with the vision Lane and I have shared for the last few years will be coming to life in just a few weeks. I am currently working on our reception seating chart so I thought this post was appropriate to share this Wednesday. I’m not going to lie, this is a pretty stressful part of the planning process especially with 200 guests, but with the help of WeddingWire it is a lot easier than I thought.
The best time to start creating your seating chart is when you have the majority of your RSVP’s in (75-80%). Of course, you always have the guests you know are coming but slack in the RSVP process so it’s best to go ahead and add them anyways. HAHA. Make sure you communicate with your wedding planner/venue to learn the size and shape of all of your tables. They’re most likely going to be the 72′ round tables that will hold about 10-12 people. For me personally, I am going to try to keep 9-10 people at each table just to make sure everyone is comfortable and if anyone brings someone that wasn’t on the invite list (insert eye roll emoji here!). To know how many tables you need, take your guest count and divide it by how many guests you want at each table. Voila! Make sure your reception area is big enough to host the amount of guests you plan on inviting, a bar, the DJ/Band area, Cake Table, Favor Table, Sweetheart Table, Guestbook Table and Gift Table.
Okay, question of the hour! How do you decide who sits where and with who?
At the beginning of this wedding planning process, I was not about to sit there and stress about where to put 200 people in the reception area. I think it honestly just stressed me out thinking about it and I shuttered at the idea! After much thought and consideration, we decided it was needed for many reasons. The top reason being that I wanted to make sure my family was front and center and away from the DJ (mostly our grandparents and other older family members!). Another reason was to avoid the awkward table talk. Everyone knows what I’m talking about… I’m sure you have been to a wedding and had to sit with complete strangers and participate in that awkward “how’s the weather?” talk.
The easiest way to start your seating chart is to group all of your guests up into categories such as brides family, grooms family, extended family, friends, wedding party/dates, etc. I would definitely recommend keeping both sets of parents in the loop in case they know something you don’t…. which is a likely situation. LOL
What if an extra guest shows up the day of the wedding?
My biggest fear… but at that point, you kinda have to just shrug your shoulders and say “oh well”, right? It’s probably more awkward for the guest than it is for me, but if this does happen, you need to contact your planner/coordinator/venue immediately and let them know what table will have an additional guest. Honestly, they are used to have these last minute changes so they will be able to execute seamlessly.
Ways to Lead your Guests to their Seats…
There’s multiple fun and creative ways to make sure your guests find their seats easily.
Places Cards are normally already on the table before your guests arrive. They can be displayed in numerous ways such as a folded card placed on top or in your napkin, laser-cut name tags, wedding-theme decor with name, or a labeled name.
Escort Cards are a fun choice to help guide your guests to their seats! They’re normally displayed on a welcome table for everyone to grab before heading into the reception area. You can be really creative with these and incorporate your wedding theme.
Last but not least, a Seating Chart, which is what we opted to do. This is usually done by a calligrapher on a mirror or glass piece so that your guests can easily find their name and figure out where their table is located. You can dress up the Seating Chart with flowers too!
To find the entire Reception Seating Guide from WeddingWire, click here. All of their planning guides have helped me tremendously in my wedding planning process and with only 17 days left and being so far ahead of the game, I encourage you to use them as well. I promise you there’s one for every occasion! If you have any questions regarding your wedding plans, please don’t hesitate to ask! Between working at a wedding venue and planning my own, I feel like I’m a pro. Xx