You’ve finally finished one of the hardest parts of wedding planning – deciding who’s sitting where at the reception! Now that the tricky bit is over and you’ve finally found a place for all the cousins, siblings and friends of the family, it’s time to choose how to display the seating arrangement.
Table plans make a huge impact. They’ll be one of the first things your guests see when entering the reception venue, so it’s a great way to show off your carefully thought out theme. Couples are getting more and more crafty when it comes to wedding decor, and the seating chart is no exception. They don’t just have to be pen on paper any more – you can create charming and eye catching pieces that don’t have to cost the earth! If you’re struggling for ideas, you can get some inspiration from what we’ve put together.
Back in blackboards
An old favourite and a genuine classic, you can’t go wrong with a blackboard. What’s great about them is that they’re so versatile – at a minimum all you need is some chalk and a friend with neat handwriting!
If you want to up the ante, blackboards can be decorated with all sorts of accessories depending on your theme. For a countryside wedding, try adorning it with fresh flowers or herbs. For an evening wedding, string some fairy lights across the top. If your theme is all out vintage, some classic bunting will give your blackboard a boost.
Mirrors are an elegant friend of the blackboard, and they are also adaptable to suit your theme and budget. Pop along to your local antique shop and you could find a hidden old gem, perfect for a rustic wedding. Pens for glass only cost a few pounds from any good stationery shop and you’re all set!
If you’re planning a sophisticated affair in a country house or the like, you could get the plan printed onto the mirror in a font of your choice. We like this one from The Perfect Wedding Shop – you can even have the text removed afterwards and have the mirror as a memento of your big day. Or keep the text if you prefer!
Scroll with it
Fancy giving your reception a little sprinkling of days of old? If you’re planning a gothic themed wedding – maybe it’s even taking place in a spooky old castle – consider a scroll for your table plan. Depending on your venue it could be hung from the wall, the ceiling or freestanding on a wooden easel and will make your guests feel like they’ve stepped back in time as soon as they set foot through the door.
Here’s another idea which can be as quirky, inventive or decorative as you like. Try collecting a variety of picture frames and pop the seating cards inside each one. You can then display them however you choose – stood up on a table, or perhaps mounted on an easel. If you’re all about the matchy-matchy you can buy identical frames, or go down the shabby chic path with mismatched ones from antique shops.
Bottle it up
This is another great low cost but striking seating plan idea. Collect bottles from wherever you like, be it junk shops, from friends or ones you were thinking about chucking in the recycling!
Soak them in warm water and soap and gently peel off the labels, then once they’re clean they’re ready to go. You could get stickers printed and pop the plan onto each bottle – check out these personalised stickers from Ways to Say Thank You. Alternatively you could pop a cork in the tops, cut a slit in them and slide in a decorative card!
Map it out
Maps are a great idea for couples who love travelling or have friends and family from around the globe. You could have a map of the country you’re from, where you first met or even where you’re headed on your honeymoon! All kinds of maps old and new can be found online – Maps International is a treasure trove. Pin on card luggage tags for the perfect pilgrimage place names.
Perhaps a metaphor for the new life you’re about to step into together, a door is a striking and unusual way to display your seating plan. Head down to your local junk yard or ask around and see if any friends are redecorating. Other great shouts are eBay, Freecycle and Gumtree.
Doors with glass panels mean you can write straight on in the right pens, or attach cards with string, bunting or pegs for a simple and homely look. You could even bring a pop of colour and paint it to go with the rest of your theme.
We hope that these tips have given you a little inspiration for your table plan arrangement. Remember, it can be just as unique as you are so let your imagination run wild. Good luck – and if you need any help or advice with your actual wedding, have a look at our essential tips and tricks for planning a wedding.
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