Wedding Etiquette Forum

Bridal Party Dates at Head Table?

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Re: Bridal Party Dates at Head Table?

  • SP29 said:
    You could also do a King's table, either at the head or in the centre of the room, to include B&G, WP + dates. 

    The point is, although anyone can manage to occupy them self through dinner (and toasts, and maybe a first dance) without their SO, they shouldn't have to. At any social event, a guest should have their SO invited. A wedding is a social event. It celebrates the love and union of the B&G; it is "unfair" (for lack of better word) to celebrate this for the B&G but ignore it for the WP or other guests. It's kind of backwards for the B&G to eat dinner together, and for the rest of their guests to eat dinner with their SOs but not the WP. 

    Why not have the bride sit with her side of the WP at one table, and the groom sit at another table with his side? Most people would put their foot down on that- "because we just got married". Again, why acknowledge that relationship, but not the others? 

    Most of our BP are couples so that would def split them up.
    Wait, hold on ... here's how I read this...

    Let's say you have 4 bridesmaids (A,B,C,D) and your FI has 4 groomsmen (E,F,G,H).  What I'm hearing you say is that A & E are a couple, B & F are a couple, and C & G are a couple.  

    Am I understanding you?

    We have more than that, but essentially, yes. There are two groomsmen that are not in relationships as of right now. If they choose to bring a random date that I don't know, that would be super awkward to have her at the table with us.

  • holyguacamole79holyguacamole79 a taco truck in Houston member
    5000 Comments Sixth Anniversary 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    SP29 said:
    You could also do a King's table, either at the head or in the centre of the room, to include B&G, WP + dates. 

    The point is, although anyone can manage to occupy them self through dinner (and toasts, and maybe a first dance) without their SO, they shouldn't have to. At any social event, a guest should have their SO invited. A wedding is a social event. It celebrates the love and union of the B&G; it is "unfair" (for lack of better word) to celebrate this for the B&G but ignore it for the WP or other guests. It's kind of backwards for the B&G to eat dinner together, and for the rest of their guests to eat dinner with their SOs but not the WP. 

    Why not have the bride sit with her side of the WP at one table, and the groom sit at another table with his side? Most people would put their foot down on that- "because we just got married". Again, why acknowledge that relationship, but not the others? 

    Most of our BP are couples so that would def split them up.
    Wait, hold on ... here's how I read this...

    Let's say you have 4 bridesmaids (A,B,C,D) and your FI has 4 groomsmen (E,F,G,H).  What I'm hearing you say is that A & E are a couple, B & F are a couple, and C & G are a couple.  

    Am I understanding you?

    We have more than that, but essentially, yes. There are two groomsmen that are not in relationships as of right now. If they choose to bring a random date that I don't know, that would be super awkward to have her at the table with us.

    It sounds like the majority of your wedding party will already be seated with their dates since they are also in the wedding party, so you don't have much to worry about.

    If the groomsmen decide to bring a date, the polite thing to do would be to allow them to sit together.

    If you have more than 4 people on each side, it sounds like your head table will already be bigger than 10 people.  Having 1 or 2 women you have not yet met will not kill you.  You'll hardly notice that they are there.

    Also, you won't be sitting down and eating for long.  You'll likely have people coming over to say hello to you during your dinner.  It's not like you're at a regular dinner party where your attention will be 100% on the people at the table with you.
  • SP29 said:
    You could also do a King's table, either at the head or in the centre of the room, to include B&G, WP + dates. 

    The point is, although anyone can manage to occupy them self through dinner (and toasts, and maybe a first dance) without their SO, they shouldn't have to. At any social event, a guest should have their SO invited. A wedding is a social event. It celebrates the love and union of the B&G; it is "unfair" (for lack of better word) to celebrate this for the B&G but ignore it for the WP or other guests. It's kind of backwards for the B&G to eat dinner together, and for the rest of their guests to eat dinner with their SOs but not the WP. 

    Why not have the bride sit with her side of the WP at one table, and the groom sit at another table with his side? Most people would put their foot down on that- "because we just got married". Again, why acknowledge that relationship, but not the others? 

    Most of our BP are couples so that would def split them up.
    Wait, hold on ... here's how I read this...

    Let's say you have 4 bridesmaids (A,B,C,D) and your FI has 4 groomsmen (E,F,G,H).  What I'm hearing you say is that A & E are a couple, B & F are a couple, and C & G are a couple.  

    Am I understanding you?

    We have more than that, but essentially, yes. There are two groomsmen that are not in relationships as of right now. If they choose to bring a random date that I don't know, that would be super awkward to have her at the table with us.

    It sounds like the majority of your wedding party will already be seated with their dates since they are also in the wedding party, so you don't have much to worry about.

    If the groomsmen decide to bring a date, the polite thing to do would be to allow them to sit together.

    If you have more than 4 people on each side, it sounds like your head table will already be bigger than 10 people.  Having 1 or 2 women you have not yet met will not kill you.  You'll hardly notice that they are there.

    Also, you won't be sitting down and eating for long.  You'll likely have people coming over to say hello to you during your dinner.  It's not like you're at a regular dinner party where your attention will be 100% on the people at the table with you.

    We will be sitting to have dinner. We are doing first looks before the ceremony and a receiving line into the reception. No table visits. I love food. nom nom
  • holyguacamole79holyguacamole79 a taco truck in Houston member
    5000 Comments Sixth Anniversary 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    We will be sitting to have dinner. We are doing first looks before the ceremony and a receiving line into the reception. No table visits. I love food. nom nom
    Even if you aren't doing table visits, you will still have people come up to you during dinner, tap you on the shoulder, and give you a hug to say good bye.

    And I still stand by my other point.  You said you have more than 4 people on each side.  So as it stands, you have more than 10 people at your table.  If you are gracious enough to allow your groomsman's date to sit with you, chances are you won't really even talk to her.

    Let your friends sit with their date.  This is not a hard concept, and it will not ruin your perfect day.
    PrettyGirlLost[Deleted User]InLoveInQueens[Deleted User]
  • We will be sitting to have dinner. We are doing first looks before the ceremony and a receiving line into the reception. No table visits. I love food. nom nom
    Even if you aren't doing table visits, you will still have people come up to you during dinner, tap you on the shoulder, and give you a hug to say good bye.

    And I still stand by my other point.  You said you have more than 4 people on each side.  So as it stands, you have more than 10 people at your table.  If you are gracious enough to allow your groomsman's date to sit with you, chances are you won't really even talk to her.

    Let your friends sit with their date.  This is not a hard concept, and it will not ruin your perfect day.
    Who leaves during dinner? That's what I'm paying for! lol
  • holyguacamole79holyguacamole79 a taco truck in Houston member
    5000 Comments Sixth Anniversary 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    We will be sitting to have dinner. We are doing first looks before the ceremony and a receiving line into the reception. No table visits. I love food. nom nom
    Even if you aren't doing table visits, you will still have people come up to you during dinner, tap you on the shoulder, and give you a hug to say good bye.

    And I still stand by my other point.  You said you have more than 4 people on each side.  So as it stands, you have more than 10 people at your table.  If you are gracious enough to allow your groomsman's date to sit with you, chances are you won't really even talk to her.

    Let your friends sit with their date.  This is not a hard concept, and it will not ruin your perfect day.
    Who leaves during dinner? That's what I'm paying for! lol
    Just let your friends sit with their dates.
  • holyguacamole79holyguacamole79 a taco truck in Houston member
    5000 Comments Sixth Anniversary 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    Who leaves during dinner? That's what I'm paying for! lol
    If you must know, we had a couple come up and say goodbye to us halfway through dinner and thanked us for a nice time.  I found out a few days later that they left because he was in so much pain that his wife rushed him to the ER.  His appendix was about to burst and he had it removed.
    InLoveInQueenspinupbride6189
  • (ugh can't figure out how to change my name...anyways) My ex BF was a BM at his brothers wedding. The bride did not want to sit alone with her new husband because she "didnt want everyone staring at them". So she made the MOH and BM sit with them (just them no one else in the bridal party). I was then sitting alone at a table full of the rest of the bridal party + their dates. It was awful. It really was about the only thing I remember from the wedding. Well, the cake was pretty bad too.  
    It's totally not intuitive and kind of hard to find, but go here: https://www.theknot.com/account/settings/profile and you should be able to figure it out :)
    BabyFruit Ticker
    luvskittles55
  • PrettyGirlLostPrettyGirlLost A Land Filled with Unicorns and Cat Hair member
    5000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its First Answer
    I can manage to occupy myself for a meal without my FI next to me. I can't wrap my head around why this is such a huge deal.
    So when a friend hosts a party- because that's ALL a reception is, a glorified party- an you attended said party with an SO or a date and then you were separated from each other during dinner, wouldn't that seem bizarre and rude to you?  Especially if you didn't know anyone else you were forced to sit with?

    I can manage to occupy myself for a meal as well, but if I'm attending that meal with a specific date, why in the hell should I be expected to manage by myself? 

    The wedding ceremony is over by the time the reception begins, there is zero reason why the WP needs to sit with the B&G while they eat.  Zero.  I say this as a BM at least 10 times over; there was no reason for me to sit in the front of the room while everyone stared in our direction while I ate, especially when the B&G spent all of 10 minutes at their head tables ><

    "Love is the one thing we're capable of perceiving that transcends time and space."


    glasgowtolondonholyguacamole79
  • (ugh can't figure out how to change my name...anyways) My ex BF was a BM at his brothers wedding. The bride did not want to sit alone with her new husband because she "didnt want everyone staring at them". So she made the MOH and BM sit with them (just them no one else in the bridal party). I was then sitting alone at a table full of the rest of the bridal party + their dates. It was awful. It really was about the only thing I remember from the wedding. Well, the cake was pretty bad too.  
    It's totally not intuitive and kind of hard to find, but go here: https://www.theknot.com/account/settings/profile and you should be able to figure it out :)
    You totally rock, thanks! :) 
  • lyndausvilyndausvi Western Slope, Colorado mod
    Moderator Knottie Warrior 10000 Comments 500 Love Its
    I can manage to occupy myself for a meal without my FI next to me. I can't wrap my head around why this is such a huge deal.
    So when a friend hosts a party- because that's ALL a reception is, a glorified party- an you attended said party with an SO or a date and then you were separated from each other during dinner, wouldn't that seem bizarre and rude to you?  Especially if you didn't know anyone else you were forced to sit with?

    I can manage to occupy myself for a meal as well, but if I'm attending that meal with a specific date, why in the hell should I be expected to manage by myself? 

    The wedding ceremony is over by the time the reception begins, there is zero reason why the WP needs to sit with the B&G while they eat.  Zero.  I say this as a BM at least 10 times over; there was no reason for me to sit in the front of the room while everyone stared in our direction while I ate, especially when the B&G spent all of 10 minutes at their head tables ><
    Well I know a lot of people who have assigned seat a dinner parties.   Often the couple is split up in terms of they are at the same TABLE, just not next to them.  That is not unusual.

    However, what is unusual is to pick and choose who gets to sit with their partners and who doesn't.  If you have 50 couples, it's very odd to say 5 couples can't sit together but the other 45 can't.


    Not one person has offered a good reason why we single out our nearest and dearest.






    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. 
    SP29ILoveBeachMusicsparklepants41[Deleted User]
  • PrettyGirlLostPrettyGirlLost A Land Filled with Unicorns and Cat Hair member
    5000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its First Answer
    SP29 said:
    You could also do a King's table, either at the head or in the centre of the room, to include B&G, WP + dates. 

    The point is, although anyone can manage to occupy them self through dinner (and toasts, and maybe a first dance) without their SO, they shouldn't have to. At any social event, a guest should have their SO invited. A wedding is a social event. It celebrates the love and union of the B&G; it is "unfair" (for lack of better word) to celebrate this for the B&G but ignore it for the WP or other guests. It's kind of backwards for the B&G to eat dinner together, and for the rest of their guests to eat dinner with their SOs but not the WP. 

    Why not have the bride sit with her side of the WP at one table, and the groom sit at another table with his side? Most people would put their foot down on that- "because we just got married". Again, why acknowledge that relationship, but not the others? 

    Most of our BP are couples so that would def split them up.
    Wait, hold on ... here's how I read this...

    Let's say you have 4 bridesmaids (A,B,C,D) and your FI has 4 groomsmen (E,F,G,H).  What I'm hearing you say is that A & E are a couple, B & F are a couple, and C & G are a couple.  

    Am I understanding you?

    We have more than that, but essentially, yes. There are two groomsmen that are not in relationships as of right now. If they choose to bring a random date that I don't know, that would be super awkward to have her at the table with us.

    Lol, why?  You are sitting next to your husband, not the GM's dates.  You will likely have your MOH on your right, and I presume you know her, correct?  Those are the only two ppl you'll be socializing with at the table.

    Have you never gone out to dinner with friends and then their dates that you hadn't met prior to the dinner?  How super awkward was that?

    And you're not going to be sitting at the damn table for more than 10mins-15mins anyways- you will be getting up and talking with people prior to dinner being served, then you'll spend about 10mins eating and then you need to be up and doing table visits.

    Please, listen to the feedback and do a sweetheart table or let your BP sit with their dates and SO's during dinner so that they can actually enjoy their dinner like everyone else at your reception, not eat as quickly as possible so they can be with their dates/SO's or try to pull extra seats up to the tables their dates/SO's were dumped at.

    "Love is the one thing we're capable of perceiving that transcends time and space."


    [Deleted User]
  • Do you want your guests to have a great time or do you want them to manage?
    PrettyGirlLostlc07[Deleted User]InLoveInQueens
  • MobKaz said:

    I have never seen the dates of the bridal party included at the head table. Maybe the Midwest doesn't do it.

    Is this really a have-to-do thing?

    PLEASE  don't make this a regional issue, because it is NOT. 

    My daughter and son both married in Chicago.  My daughter had an "adjusted" sweetheart table. Her MOH and SO, and his BM and SO joined them at the sweetheart table.  The remainder of their wedding party sat with their SO's and group of friends among the guest tables.

    At my son's wedding, his seating mimicked more of a king's table.  Both sets of parents, the bride and groom, siblings, and their MOH, BM, and their SO's all sat together at a table.

    Be the first to "break the mold" in your circle.  MANY people continue to perpetuate poor etiquette because "that's what has been done".  I'm a Chicagoan who knows how to host properly regardless of "what is done".  You may have never joined your SO at a wedding before, but wouldn't it be lovely if you did? 
    I have joined my FI at weddings. Most of them he did not stand up, but of the few he did, we didn't sit together. He is going to be a GM in January (CA) and a BM in April (FL) and I can guarantee that I will not be seated with the rest of the bridal party. I'm not butt-hurt over it because I have never expected to sat with them. (these are friends of FI and are not in the same circle)
    I can manage to occupy myself for a meal without my FI next to me. I can't wrap my head around why this is such a huge deal.
    You asked in your first post - "Is this really a have-to-do thing?" and we are telling you yes.

    Don't ask a question if you don't want to hear the answer.




    Let me turn the tables for a minute and ask you the same question .... you say:  "I can manage to occupy myself for a meal without my FI next to me. I can't wrap my head around why this is such a huge deal."  Why can't you manage to occupy yourself for a meal without your bridal party next to you without their SO?    

    IMHO, it's just super weird to have the dates at the head table. It just is. The head table is for the B&G and the bridal party. Period. It has been this way for decades. It seems just recently that everyone feels so entitled that they cant sit without their "bae" for a meal without getting offended.

    It'd not about you; it's about your wedding party.  Their dates are people who they like and want to spend time with.  You told them they could invite a guest with the full knowledge that they would pick somebody who they liked and wanted to spend time with.  Why then would you keep them separate from that person for most of the night?  Let them be with the person they've brought to the event to be with.


    auriannaPrettyGirlLost
  • JoanE2012JoanE2012 Exit 21 (Jersey!) member
    5000 Comments 500 Love Its Fourth Anniversary 5 Answers
    I have a feeling OP cares more about the "look" of the head table than making sure her guests are comfortable.
    holyguacamole79
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