I get this question all the time: “Should I have assigned seats for my wedding reception?” The answer isn’t as simple as you might think. I’m gonna give you everyone’s favorite answer…. it depends. If all of your guests know each other and you want a mix & mingle atmosphere, maybe you don’t need to assign seats. However, more often than not, this is not the case. Two separate families, friend groups, and lives are bringing together many different individuals.
From personal experience, I HATE being a guest at a wedding without at least table assignments. I feel lost, confused, and stressed to find the perfect seat. One of my biggest concerns is when groups or families might have to split up because there are not enough seats at a particular table. This has become the basis for my preference of assigned seating at weddings.
Assigning tables for your reception can be a tedious task. You can spend HOURS trying to find the perfect groups, which is why many people dread doing it. Since I think that it is incredibly helpful for your guest to have a sense of direction and place, I want to provide some tips to help you assign tables in the most practical and efficient way.
First, we want to start with the logistics. How many tables will you have? What shape will those tables be? How many guests can sit at each table? How will those tables be arranged in your reception space? (Pro tip: ask your venue for popular floor plans to save yourself some time and headache) After you’ve decided all of that, you’re ready to move on to the fun part!
Take a look at your guest list. You probably have groups of people that you invited that come from similar places. Start assigning tables based on those groups: Families, friends from college, friends from high school, friends from church, co-workers, etc. Yeah girl, it can be that easy!
After you’ve done that, start looking for similarities to fill tables. This can be done by grouping people with similar ages, hometowns, or careers. Who knows, you might just leave a wedding with a few new friends if you have some strangers sitting at your table!
Finally, you can decide who you want to sit where. Do you want your friends or family close to the head table? Who should sit closest to the dance floor? Do you want to have a kids table? All of those questions can help you assign groups to floor plans (:
See, that wasn’t so hard! Although I realize that seating assignments aren’t for everyone, I definitely think they have some benefit for your guests. What tricks have you heard of/ used when making seating assignments during the planning process for weddings? I’d love to hear in the comments below (: