I cannot express how strongly I advocate FOR the use of a seating chart at your wedding! I’m summarizing my hundreds of reasons for being “pro-chart” into a few concise paragraphs. Below I’m sharing two of my greatest reasons and a little preview into my rational behind them.
Firstly, is my largest and most multidimensional reason, which is that utilizing a seating chart makes it easier for EVERYONE; not just your guests, but also yourself and significant other! The last thing you want to be bothered with the day of your wedding is twice-removed Uncle Bob, sitting to close to estranged Aunt Suzy, who happened to bring two of her friends to your wedding uninvited. Now they have taken up seating leaving your sister and her husband without a place to sit.
Minus the names in this example, I have personally witnessed this happen. And after fifteen minutes, when the extra table and chairs were done being wheeled in from a dusty closet somewhere seemingly miles away, the siblings of the bride and groom were left sitting in the far reaches of the venue nowhere near their own family.
I know creating a seating chart is tedious and time consuming. However, all the effort of arranging and rearranging those tiny little names on a floor plan will pay off. You’ll feel at ease when your guests show up to your reception and flow effortlessly into their seats. And when you finally sit down next to your brand new spouse, you can look just a few feet away and see your mom, dad, sister, brother, nephew, cousin or whoever is most important to you in your life; not a complete and utter stranger who you’re not even sure if they are meant to be at your wedding in the first place.
This also brings ease to your guests and vendors. Your friends and family no longer have to mill about and take up time. Trust me! I have seen this become some of the largest and most frustrating games of musical chairs ever played on the face of this planet.
Despite how much you think Tony will be dying to sit those four-feet closer to Suzy, they will get over it. As soon as that music begins to play, the seating chart goes out the window anyways. Tony can then sweep Suzy off her feet. And guess what? He will forever forget about those four feet.
In regards to your food vendors, imagine this scenario. You’re in a room full of about 150-200 complete strangers. The best man has just stood up to give his speech and the room is dead silent. The floorboards are quite squeaky at this venue and the room is packed to near capacity with tables, chairs, children and many other forms of obstacles. Now without disturbing anyone you have to find the one vegetarian in the room. Seems like a fun task right? Wrong! But if your trusty and fore-thinking wedding planner has given the head of catering your list of dietary specialty guests, they will know exactly what tables and seats those guests are in.
I can’t express enough to my couples how much of your wedding day is meant to be about them. No one else! Not the problems or opinions of others, but about the love you two share. Your wedding day should be a collective effort between all of your guests to kick off the beginning of your new life together in the most joyous and exciting of ways!
Many guests sadly lose sight of this fact and make the day about themselves. This means that I as a wedding planner have to take proactive steps to ensure that no one takes away from YOUR day. And I feel strongly that one of the greatest things you can do to protect your day (as corny as it sounds) is to make a seating chart.
Only being married for a year myself, I never believed the hundreds of friends that told me your wedding day goes by in a flash. But goodness they were right! So what I want for all of my couples is to spend the entirety of that flash enjoying the celebration, not organizing chairs!