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Black acrylic wedding seating chart by Lily & Roe Co.

Your Guide to Wedding Seating Charts: Etiquette, Inspiration, and Tips

Your wedding seating chart is an essential detail of your reception. It informs your guests where they will sit and who will share their table. However, seating charts aren’t just functional. They’re also a beautiful themed detail that reflects your wedding colors and overall design!

You need a seating chart at your wedding reception unless you are having an escort table instead. You only need one or the other, but you must choose one so your guests know where to go! If you’ve decided on a seating chart but aren’t sure where to start, we’ve created this guide to wedding seating charts to help. You’ll find all the information you need, including how to design an easily readable chart, how to seat your guests according to proper etiquette, and when to place your order. Let’s get started!

elegant seating charts by Lily & Roe Co.

Guide to Wedding Seating Charts

Designing a Beautiful and Functional Seating Chart

While your seating chart is a decorative component of your reception, it’s also a highly functional detail. Your guests need to be able to locate their seats quickly so a line doesn’t form! For that reason, designing a seating chart that’s both beautiful and functional is crucial. 

Usually, couples arrange seating charts one of two ways: by table number or alphabetical order. We strongly recommend taking the latter approach. Your guests are much more likely to find their name quickly listed under their initial than hidden among a sea of tables! That said, if you arrange by table number, ensure you have an even number of tables. Your chart will be more aesthetically pleasing when balanced with the same number of tables on both sides.

In addition to being user-friendly, your chart should be easily readable. Don’t try to cram too many names onto one sign! It should be legible from a distance, especially for your older guests. If you’re working with a long guest list, consider listing names by couple or family unit (e.g., Mr. and Mrs. Jones) to save room.

The size of your seating chart plays a part in its readability. A standard 24"x36" seating chart can fit approximately 160 names listed alphabetically (or 12 tables if listed by table number). When placing your order, reference the "Details" tab on any of our product pages for additional sizing and display recommendations. To give that "wow" factor, consider ordering a reception sign set! These statement-making displays will capture your guests' attention and guide them efficiently to their seats while enhancing your reception décor. Shop now.

Guide to wedding seating charts by Lily & Roe Co.

Etiquette Guidelines for Seating Your Guests

When deciding where to seat your guests, try to group people who know each other together. No one wants to get stuck at a table full of random strangers! It might go without saying, but you should also avoid seating family members who don’t get along at the same table. While your guests’ behavior at your wedding is out of your control, this will help keep the peace if you or your partner have concerns.

We recommend avoiding the creation of the dreaded “singles table.” Instead, seat your single guests with friends or family members they know. If there won’t be anyone else at the wedding they’re acquainted with, invite them to bring along a plus-one, even if they aren’t currently in a relationship. You can also seat them next to a guest with whom they have hobbies or interests in common!

When considering table numbers and the layout of your venue, you should also make an effort to ensure your VIPs have great seats. You don’t want your bridal party members relegated to the back corner of the room or your grandparents so far away they’ll have trouble hearing the speeches. Consider where you and your partner will be seated (and whether or not you want a traditional sweetheart table or head table), then go from there. 

When to Order Your Seating Chart

Begin designing your wedding seating chart early! We recommend beginning table assignments as soon as you begin to receive RSVPs. This way, you will have time to place your order without paying for rush shipping. The ideal timeframe to place your seating chart order is at least three weeks before your wedding date to allow time for proofing and shipping. 

We hope this guide to wedding seat charts has cleared up any confusion! Your seating chart should be beautiful, functional, and easily readable. Moreover, it should seat your guests in an optimal arrangement that places friends and family members together so everyone can enjoy the celebration to the fullest! Finally, we recommend ordering your seating chart early to ensure it arrives before the big day.

Lily & Roe Co. sells professionally designed acrylic or gatorboard seating chart signs that effortlessly blend style and function. We also sell large seating chart sets for couples who want a display that truly wows! Our 3x6 foot gatorboard signs are currently the largest size available to order online.

Place your seating chart order today to take advantage of our BOGO deal, running from 2/22/24 through 3/2/24, and receive 25% off a wedding welcome sign! Reopen or refresh our website to get the pop-up code.

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