A Celebrity Wedding Planner's Guide to Seating Charts

Discover helpful tips and tricks for assigning your loved ones seats at the reception.

Written by: Tessa Brand

Whether you have a wonderful wedding planner by your side, or you are planning your wedding all on your own, there is one aspect you and your fiancé undoubtedly have to work out yourself – the seating chart. This can be tricky. While no one can help you figure out just which family member your third cousin is currently speaking to, here are some tips to get you started.

wedding reception outside twinkle lights vineyard wood chairs tables of 11 tessa lyn events
Photo by M. Hart Photography; Planning & Design by Tessa Lyn Events

Family Towards the Center 
No matter if you do a sweetheart table or a head table, the two tables closest to the newlyweds should include the immediate families. Sit family at the table closest to you on either side. While not all of your family members will fit at one table, consider having one table for each set of parents, siblings, grandparents, and closest relatives. This not only keeps your loved ones close to you throughout the reception, but it makes it easier for them to come up for speeches and parent dances during dinner.

Tables of 11
Don’t be afraid of odd numbers! If you’re using 72” round tables, aim for tables of 11 guests. Undoubtedly you will end up with attendees without dates, so add them to a table of ten. By doing this, you may be able to eliminate a table, adding more space to your ballroom and saving money on one less centerpiece.

wedding reception outside twinkle lights vineyard wood chairs long wood tables tessa lyn events
Photo by M. Hart Photography; Planning & Design by Tessa Lyn Events

 

Edges of the Room
All of your guests are so special to you that you likely want them all as close as possible. However, inevitably, you must seat someone at the outer tables. The outer tables are a great place for any families with children. This way, the children can get up to play or run around with a little more space. This is also a great area to put your younger guests and rowdy friends. Friends from college, or friends and coworkers you see all the time, will enjoy easy access to the bar and understand that family will appreciate a closer view. Save the tables closer to the sweetheart or head table for the VIP guests.

Special Accommodations
Ballrooms can get crowded; sometimes your guests have to squeeze through a walkway made a little too narrow by guests sitting far back in their seats. This may be even harder for guests using a wheelchair, walker, or other special accommodation. Make their path easier by placing anyone who may need extra help to their seat in a location with a clear and easy path. Place them near a doorway, or ask the venue if they have a side entrance used by catering. Another handy tip is to invite these guests in a few minutes before the other guests, so they have a clear path to their seat.

wedding reception outside twinkle lights vineyard wood chairs sweetheart head table settee tessa lyn events
Photo by M. Hart Photography; Planning & Design by Tessa Lyn Events

For more advice, find out if your wedding needs a seating chart, see more weddings planned by Tessa Lyn Events here, and read the celebrity event planner's tips for advice on the morning of your wedding!

Authored by: Tessa Brand of Tessa Lyn Events

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