Outdoor Weddings

standing during ceremony

We just booked our venue for our summer 2015 wedding...yay so excited. We love, love, love the venue, but there was one little thing I didn't like about the ceremony part. And that is,our guests will be standing. We can have a few chairs for the elderly, but everyone else will be standing around. I've never seen or been to a standing ceremony. 

It's not going to be a long ceremony (non religious) so they won't have to stand long, but I guess it's just weird to me, because that's not what I am used to. The ceremony is outside, but we have an option of inside with chairs, but outside is so much prettier.

Have you been to one? Or had one yourself? How did it turn out?

Re: standing during ceremony

  • Why is there no seating?
  • We just booked our venue for our summer 2015 wedding...yay so excited. We love, love, love the venue, but there was one little thing I didn't like about the ceremony part. And that is,our guests will be standing. We can have a few chairs for the elderly, but everyone else will be standing around. I've never seen or been to a standing ceremony. 

    It's not going to be a long ceremony (non religious) so they won't have to stand long, but I guess it's just weird to me, because that's not what I am used to. The ceremony is outside, but we have an option of inside with chairs, but outside is so much prettier.

    Have you been to one? Or had one yourself? How did it turn out?

    Ask them how much chairs cost for outside and work it into your budget.
  • You need to have a seat for every butt.  Period.  If they allow a few chairs for the elderly (remember these are not the only people who may need chairs, people have back issues, knee issues, pregnant, etc oh and standing in grass in heels is a bitch) then you should be able to have chairs for everyone.

    Also, your ceremony might not be long but people get to a wedding 15-30 minutes early so that means that people could be standing for up to 45 minutes.  That is not going to make very happy guests.

    onlyjamielynn
  • Is there no way to set up chairs for all of the guest? 

    I would not be happy if I had to stand for the duration of a ceremony. Even if it was 10-15 minutes, I would have arrived 10 minutes prior. So I'm standing for at least 20 minutes. And that sucks. 
  • so the venue is a restaurant and it's outside on their lower patio. The patio has 3 levels, so the way it's set up you can't have chairs.
  • so the venue is a restaurant and it's outside on their lower patio. The patio has 3 levels, so the way it's set up you can't have chairs.
    Then you need to have your ceremony inside where the chairs are.  If the view is pretty then take pictures outside once the ceremony is done.

    southernbelle0915KatWAG
  • I answered you on Ceremonies.
    What did you think would happen if you walked up to a group of internet strangers and told them to get shoehorned by their lady doc?~StageManager14
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  • yeah, sorry for posting twice. I meant to under ceremony, not outside, and I'm not sure how to delete!!

  • I am no wedding expert, but I've been to a very small city hall wedding where we all stood.  It was lovely and it felt very intimate to have the small number of very close friends and family circled around the bride and groom.  One drawback was that without designated seating areas and a somewhat rushed start (due to time tables of the officiant), it was a little difficult getting everyone into a position where they could see. And it made pictures a little more complicated.  Will you be able to have something (arch, flowers, something) to make it clear where the bride and groom will be standing so guests can position themselves accordingly?

    I am planning a beach wedding next year in Hawaii. Due to restrictions intended for the preservation of Hawaii's pristine beaches, no chairs (or arches or other structures) are allowed, so all of our guests will be standing as well. No one on our very small guest list (under 25) has mobility issues, so I think/hope it will be a non-issue for us as well.

  • how big is your guest list OP?
  • Don't ask your guests to stand. Figure everyone will get there at least 15 minutes early, plus 15 minutes for the ceremony. Thirty minutes of standing in heels is no fun. You don't want everyone uncomfortable and figity during your ceremony.
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  • I agree that everyone should have a chair
    and it's super "unusual" but "unusual" isn't quite the word I am looking for. . 

    If they are immediate family & super close friends, I wouldn't worry about it too much. 

    Can they sit at/in other levels of the restaurant if they arrive early?

    Do you have a lot of elderly guests or guests with medical issues?

    I am assuming you know because 44 is quite intimate in my opinion, so I am also assuming you know all of your guests pretty intimately and can guess how each and every one of them will feel about standing for the ceremony.

    Sorry if I assumed too much! You know what they say . . . lol

    But seriously. . . you only get one wedding. If you like the option you picked best and you think your guests will have your back on it, I say go for it.

    If it were huge and lots of decrepit people I would say no way.

    I know my answer goes against "the rules" but I am thinking of my own wedding - I know everyone intimately enough to know if they'd be cool with it or not, to my face or not.

    I hope I made some kind of sense.

    Good luck! 
    soontobemrshamilton
  • MobKazMobKaz member
    First Anniversary First Comment First Answer 5 Love Its
    I am no wedding expert, but I've been to a very small city hall wedding where we all stood.  It was lovely and it felt very intimate to have the small number of very close friends and family circled around the bride and groom.  One drawback was that without designated seating areas and a somewhat rushed start (due to time tables of the officiant), it was a little difficult getting everyone into a position where they could see. And it made pictures a little more complicated.  Will you be able to have something (arch, flowers, something) to make it clear where the bride and groom will be standing so guests can position themselves accordingly?

    I am planning a beach wedding next year in Hawaii. Due to restrictions intended for the preservation of Hawaii's pristine beaches, no chairs (or arches or other structures) are allowed, so all of our guests will be standing as well. No one on our very small guest list (under 25) has mobility issues, so I think/hope it will be a non-issue for us as well.

    No one may have mobility issues NOW, but you cannot predict the future.  It is very inconsiderate of any bride to prioritize their venue over their guests.  Mobility is not the only issue in play.  I might be perfectly mobile, but perhaps have a health issue that makes it difficult for me to stand for long periods.  Standing in one spot for any length of time, and mobility in general, are two completely different issues.
    [Deleted User]
  • MobKazMobKaz member
    First Anniversary First Comment First Answer 5 Love Its
    edited July 2014
    HauteRoxy said:
    I agree that everyone should have a chair
    and it's super "unusual" but "unusual" isn't quite the word I am looking for. . 

    If they are immediate family & super close friends, I wouldn't worry about it too much.  I have never understood this logic.  Why would you want to inconvenience and make uncomfortable the people closest to you?  I can get just as frustrated/angry with an immediate family member as I can a perfect stranger.

    Can they sit at/in other levels of the restaurant if they arrive early?

    Do you have a lot of elderly guests or guests with medical issues? The elderly are not the only people who have difficult standing in place.  Not every person necessarily discloses their medical issues.  I had a significant medical issue last year, and only my spouse was aware of it.

    I am assuming you know because 44 is quite intimate in my opinion, so I am also assuming you know all of your guests pretty intimately and can guess how each and every one of them will feel about standing for the ceremony. I can also make an educated guess as to how people would feel about standing for a lengthy period.  I am willing to bet that my guess is quite different from yours.

    Sorry if I assumed too much! You know what they say . . . lol

    But seriously. . . you only get one wedding. If you like the option you picked best and you think your guests will have your back on it, I say go for it. No, no, no!

    If it were huge and lots of decrepit people I would say no way.

    I know my answer goes against "the rules" but I am thinking of my own wedding - I know everyone intimately enough to know if they'd be cool with it or not, to my face or not. This goes beyond etiquette rules.  It is a matter of common sense and courtesy!

    I hope I made some kind of sense.

    Good luck! 

    QueerFemmedoeydo
  • HauteRoxy said:
    I agree that everyone should have a chair
    and it's super "unusual" but "unusual" isn't quite the word I am looking for. . 

    If they are immediate family & super close friends, I wouldn't worry about it too much. 

    Can they sit at/in other levels of the restaurant if they arrive early?

    Do you have a lot of elderly guests or guests with medical issues?

    I am assuming you know because 44 is quite intimate in my opinion, so I am also assuming you know all of your guests pretty intimately and can guess how each and every one of them will feel about standing for the ceremony.

    Sorry if I assumed too much! You know what they say . . . lol

    But seriously. . . you only get one wedding. If you like the option you picked best and you think your guests will have your back on it, I say go for it.

    If it were huge and lots of decrepit people I would say no way.

    I know my answer goes against "the rules" but I am thinking of my own wedding - I know everyone intimately enough to know if they'd be cool with it or not, to my face or not.

    I hope I made some kind of sense.

    Good luck! 

    Makes perfect sense and I actually agree with you. 44 is intimate and I believe with that small number of people I do knew them well enough to know.  People can sit around before the ceremony starts, so really it will be just during the ceremony. We actually can have 8 chairs during the ceremony, probably for our family. Even though I don't want people uncomfortable or distracted during the ceremony, we haven't knocked it off our list. We are looking at 2 other places this week (with seating :) but this venue is still high on our list. We just feel really good about this place and if our guests have to stand for 15mins it's not the end of the world. They will sit before and after!
    DeniseJP
  • You know, just because people may be physically capable of standing for 30+ minutes doesn't mean that they actually want to stand.  Be good hosts and provide chairs.  If the venue does not allow you chairs then you need to think of an alternate venue.

  • Everyone should have the option of sitting in a chair if they want to.

    I don't think it's right to try and justify to yourself reasons why having seating for only 18% of your guests makes sense. You could go around all day long saying "well, it's a small group" and "it's just a short ceremony" and "I'm sure they won't mind" and "only old people need to sit" and blah blah blah. But at the end of the day, you are making excuses for doing something that is a basic requirement of inviting people to a wedding. 
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    doeydo[Deleted User]
  • I scribe to the everyone needs a seat line of thinking. We did so for our own beach wedding. That said, I've been to many beach weddings that did not have chairs for everyone. There were no complaints (I guess us islanders are just use to it - plus most of worked in bars/restaurants/boats where we stood all day). All of the beach weddings I've attend the guests were in a holding area of sorts (beach side bar/restaurant, sitting in cars, sitting on picnic tables, etc). Right before the ceremony were were asked to go to the spot. They had the ceremony (around 10 mins), then we all went to the reception. Not idea for the mainstream, but it seemed to work for all the ones I went to.






    What differentiates an average host and a great host is anticipating unexpressed needs and wants of their guests.  Just because the want/need is not expressed, doesn't mean it wouldn't be appreciated. 
    soontobemrshamilton
  • I was at a standing ceremony this year with seating (outdoors) for the elderly who were attending but standing for everyone else.  It was lovely and was one of my favorite weddings to date!!!  It was shady in the park, the weather was perfect and the short ceremony was perfect for the couple and guests who were there to celebrate.

    Last year I went to a more formal, outdoor standing ceremony that was a wee bit longer... it was a very warm day and standing in the sun in the late afternoon in June was not as pleasant as standing in a mid July wedding with shade.  From a guest's standpoint, it is important to be comfortable and I am keeping that in mind for my second wedding, which will be at a beach in mid-September in New England (also hurricane season, which could make things interesting since the venue was destroyed during Hurricane Sandy and does not offer hotel services anymore).

    That being said, the length of the ceremony and the venue may determine whether standing is appropriate as guests will want to get on to the next step of sitting and chatting.


  • DeniseJP said:

    I was at a standing ceremony this year with seating (outdoors) for the elderly who were attending but standing for everyone else.  It was lovely and was one of my favorite weddings to date!!!  It was shady in the park, the weather was perfect and the short ceremony was perfect for the couple and guests who were there to celebrate.

    Last year I went to a more formal, outdoor standing ceremony that was a wee bit longer... it was a very warm day and standing in the sun in the late afternoon in June was not as pleasant as standing in a mid July wedding with shade.  From a guest's standpoint, it is important to be comfortable and I am keeping that in mind for my second wedding, which will be at a beach in mid-September in New England (also hurricane season, which could make things interesting since the venue was destroyed during Hurricane Sandy and does not offer hotel services anymore).

    That being said, the length of the ceremony and the venue may determine whether standing is appropriate as guests will want to get on to the next step of sitting and chatting.


    This is bad advice. Its wonderful that you didn't mine standing. However, it is bare bones etiquette that you need to provide a seat for every butt.
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  • DeniseJP said:

    I was at a standing ceremony this year with seating (outdoors) for the elderly who were attending but standing for everyone else.  It was lovely and was one of my favorite weddings to date!!!  It was shady in the park, the weather was perfect and the short ceremony was perfect for the couple and guests who were there to celebrate.

    Last year I went to a more formal, outdoor standing ceremony that was a wee bit longer... it was a very warm day and standing in the sun in the late afternoon in June was not as pleasant as standing in a mid July wedding with shade.  From a guest's standpoint, it is important to be comfortable and I am keeping that in mind for my second wedding, which will be at a beach in mid-September in New England (also hurricane season, which could make things interesting since the venue was destroyed during Hurricane Sandy and does not offer hotel services anymore).

    That being said, the length of the ceremony and the venue may determine whether standing is appropriate as guests will want to get on to the next step of sitting and chatting.



    SIB (seriously, why can I not get out of the box these days?)


    But to the bolded....no.  Everyone should always have a seat.  Period.  It doesn't make any sense whatsoever to ask people to come watch you partake in an intimate occasion and not even offer them a place to sit, no matter the weather/health of guest/length of ceremony/etc.

    Anniversary

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    southernbelle0915
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