As you’d expect from a company that’s been in the wedding industry for 60 years, the team at Milsom Weddings has seen and heard of just about every seating plan nightmare that you can imagine.
From family members who don’t see eye-to-eye, to single guests and those with children, working out where people are going to sit during your reception can be tricky; and that’s before guests have had to drop out, or have been added.
Alleviate those wedding jitters now by reading our tips for creating the perfect seating plan. Once that’s sorted, everything else will fall into place.
Consider the figures
How many guests will you be seating? Have you considered the number of tables you’ll have, and the size of the room you’re working with? It’s almost impossible to create a seating plan unless you know the basics first.
Strike a balance
Weddings are a great place for family and friends to mingle and get to know one another, but placing guests away from those they know could be a mistake. It’s important to strike a balance between groups of family and friends, taking into consideration people’s ages and interests as you go.
Be open to changes
It’s important to be flexible during your wedding planning; guests and circumstances can and will change. Rather than attempting to create a permanent seating chart, use table-planning software or sticky notes so that guests can be moved about until you’re happy.
Use a visible guide and place cards
Walking into a reception venue of any size can be daunting for guests, particularly if they know few other people. Make sure there’s a large seating plan displayed prominently, and use name cards so that guests can find their places quickly and easily.
Think about access
Do you have any guests with additional needs, or family members who may need more room than others? Wheelchair users, parents with pushchairs, and guests with additional needs should be considered relatively early on in your planning, as their placement in your venue could dictate their enjoyment of your reception.
Forget to organise a top table
Before you start stressing about where everyone else will be sitting, think about your top table. Are you keeping things traditional, with the bride and groom, both sets of parents, the best man and the chief bridesmaid, or do you intend on mixing it up? Once you know who’ll be seated at your right and left hands, you can begin the process of organising everyone else.
Be tempted to create a singles’ table
There’s a longstanding joke about every wedding having a singles’ table, where guests without partners are seated in an attempt at matchmaking. Don’t be tempted to follow such a train of thought, though; your single friends may be uncomfortable about attending the event alone, so seat them with friends or family they know.
Let disputes ruin your big day
You know, there’s a good chance that your guests will be happy to sit anywhere, as long as they’re sharing your big day. Petty arguments and disagreements can often be put aside for such an occasion, so talk to any guests who are causing you concern. Can they put their differences aside? The chances are they’ll be willing to.
We’re proud to be able to offer amazing wedding packages at some of the most incredible venues across Suffolk and Essex. The stunning Hengrave Hall in Bury St. Edmund’s, Suffolk, really does have the wow factor, while Maison Talbooth is an exquisite venue for smaller weddings when you don’t want to compromise on luxury. When the location, food, accommodation and service are as exceptional as this, we’re sure the stress of drawing up seating plans will be forgotten in a heartbeat.
For wedding memories that you’ll treasure for a lifetime please do contact us. We’d be delighted to accompany you on your journey towards that perfect big day.