How to Plan a Seating Chart for Your Wedding
Many aspects of wedding planning are tedious and can cause any engaged couple to sweat. Creating a seating chart is stressful for everyone because you’re trying to seat people that will get along, avoiding any confrontations, and ensuring there’s enough room in the reception hall for everyone. Here are some actionable steps to take in planning a seating chart for your wedding reception without wanting to pull out your hair.
Get the Floor Plan
Before planning any of the tables or deciding where to place your guests, first get the floor plan of your wedding venue. The floor plan allows you to visualize the amount of space you have as well as how many guests can be seated at each table. Without having access to the floor plan, tables could be too close, making it difficult for guests to move. See if you’re able to request the floor plan of your wedding venue to use as a tool to create your seating chart.
Determine the Size and Shape of Each Table
Once you’re able to see how much space there is in the reception hall, pick out the length and size of each table. Round tables are common at weddings because they’re less expensive to decorate, add a traditional element to your wedding, and it is easier to seat guests around. Alternatively, rectangular tables are great for guests to chat with one another and enjoy their meals. If your wedding venue offers tables and chairs, then your decision has been made because the venue made the choice for you.
The dimensions of each table also play an important role when seating your guests. For example, with a 60-inch round table (5 feet), around 8 to 10 guests can fit comfortably. After settling on the size and shape of each table, make sure that each table has plenty of room between them to allow guests to walk around. No one wants to feel cramped while sitting down or making their way to the dance floor.
The Newlyweds Sit First
It’s common for the newlyweds to sit at a romantic sweetheart table in a highly visible position in the room. These typically are small, rectangular tables solely for the two newly married spouses. However, few couples opt for this intimate option. Some couples choose to sit with their friends and family instead, so they can sit on their special day next to loved ones. Regardless of if you sit at a sweetheart table or with friends and family you and your spouse are sure to be the focal points of your special day.
Seat the Parents
Next, seat both sets of parents. It’s customary to seat the parents close to the sweetheart table to honor your parents for showing their love and support for you and your partner. The grandparents and siblings sit at the same table as the parents. Although, if you have a large immediate family or don’t want the grandparents sitting close to the speaker, you might have to split them up. Keep in mind that your parents and wedding party should sit closer to you and your fiancé because of how close they are to you both.
Seat the Wedding Party
Depending on how big your wedding parties are and if they have a plus one, there’s a possibility that everyone can sit together at the same table! Otherwise, you can split everyone up into their respective friend groups. No matter how you both decide to sit the members of your wedding party, try to get them as close to you and the dance floor to make it easier for toasts and for them to have the most fun!
Mix and Match Everyone Together
Now that the important guests have a place to sit, you and your spouse can focus on the rest of your guests. This could get a bit tricky because you want to make sure everyone is comfortable, and that the guests are familiar with the people they sit with. For example, guests around the same age should sit together to keep the party and conversation going. Meanwhile, older guests will likely want to sit in a quieter area, away from the noise. Overall, the goal is to create a seating arrangement that all your guests will enjoy.
Assign Table Numbers
Table numbers ensure that your wedding reception runs smoothly, and the guests can find their seats easily. Table numbers add a sense of order by giving your guests the direction to go in. Additionally, you can also create table numbers based on the color or theme of your wedding to make them decorative. No matter what the design is, make sure each number is clearly written so everyone can find their table. The faster your guests find their seats, the faster the festivities can begin.
Create a Seating Chart for Your Wedding with Ease
Making a seating chart for your wedding reception can be daunting, but following these steps can ease and streamline the process. Once you and your fiancé can plan where all the tables go, where important guests sit, and where additional guests can sit and get along with each other, everything is smooth sailing.
At Knowles Hospitality, northern New Jersey’s premier wedding venue, our wedding experts are ready to help make your dream wedding a reality. Do you need help creating your seating chart for your wedding reception? Speak with one of our wedding planning experts today at (973) 732-2360 for more information.