Seating Family at Weddings & Receptions

 

These days not everyone does "until death do us part", so many bride and grooms have more than one set of parents to deal with on their big day. Wedding Planner Katie Zuniga joined us to share some things to consider when planning the family seating for your wedding.
 
Ceremony:
  • The tradition of bride's side /groom's side is not as common. Instead couples are opting to mix their guests.
  • It is still common to have parents and family sit at the front on either the bride or groom side.
  • First seat closest to the couple is for the mom, second seat goes to the dad, third seat step parents if there are any, then grandparents. 
  • Second row is usually relatives, uncles aunts cousins etc.
  • These are just guidelines. If there is a strained family situation feel free to move things around. I had one wedding where the parents wanted to sit on the "opposite" side of the aisle than tradition dictates so they could see their daughters face instead of her back.
Reception
  • Even if you don't have a seating chart or assigned seats you still need to have a table reserved for the parents.
  • More and more couples are doing something other than table numbers.  I have seen songs, romantic movies, and even favorite date spots.
  • If you are doing a seating chart make sure it's clear and you have someone available to help people find their information. No matter what makes sense to you, someone is bound to get confused.
  • There is a difference between escort cards and place cards. Escort cards can double as place cards if you are just having them sit at a certain table but not a specific seat. 
  • A seat plan is important even though it is a lot of work. It can save you money by cutting down on the number of tables you'll need.
  • Have a Wedding Planner help you design your plan. We have see a ton of different ways to do it, some awesome, and some that just left people confused.
  • If you have strained family situations, consider having a table for each parents. I have had situations where the divorced parents were seated on opposite sides of the room.

 

For more information on planning a wedding, visit Katie's website.

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