• Images
  • Text
  • Find a Couple + Registry
GO
Etiquette

Reception Seating

My biggest fear is having one side of the reception his family/friends and the other side my family/friends.  I would rather have people sit at a blended table and have everyone get to know each other.  MY FMIL wants to have tables reserved for families but I don't think that's really fair.  The way I see it is that our TWO families just became ONE so shouldn't they at least mingle for one night.  The only reserved table will be the the Head Table, and the Immediate Family (MOB, MOG, FOB, etc...)

Am I wrong for wanting people to mingle?  And what is more appropriate?

Wedding Countdown Ticker
My Planning Bio - Update 6/8/2012 LilySlim Weight loss tickers

110 Ready to have a Good Time image Final Head Count

Re: Reception Seating

  • Keep in mind that dinner will be the only time that they will ALL be sitting down in one spot.  Once dancing starts, people will mingle.  People rarely sit at the table all night.
  • lyndausvilyndausvi Western Slope, Colorado mod
    Moderator Knottie Warrior 10000 Comments 500 Love Its
    You can't force mingling.

    Most weddings I attend are also attended by people I do not get to see very often.  I would much rather spend time with my cousin who lives in another state and I have not seen in a while than my cousin' new husband's 2nd cousin who I'm more than likely never going to see again.. KWIM?






    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. 
  • It's great that you want people to mingle, but most guests will probably still sit with people they know and you risk having a table full of people thrown together b/c they had to be, not b/c they want to be.
    I get what you want to do, I just don't think it's the best plan, in  my opinion. Plus, most people only sit for dinner.
  • Honestly, people don't want to mingle with strangers all that much. I'm happy to talk to anyone during the cocktail hour, on the dance floor, wandering around. But I want to sit with my own friends or family during dinner. The idea of two families becoming one is sweet, but not really true for the most part. For example, your cousins are unlikely to ever see his cousins; your parents' friends will not be socializing with  his parents' friends, etc.
  • I would hate spending dinner with strangers from the "other side" while good friends I rarely see are also having dinner with strangers.

    Please don't overthing this and please don't do this to your guests.  No one cares about meeting and eating with strangers.  Sit people together that know one another and enjoy each other's company.

  • Forced mingling is awful for everyone involved.  You and your FI will become part of each other's families, but that doesn't necessarily mean that your extended families need to be forced to talk to each other.  If they want to chat, they will.  But for the most part, most families take it as an opportunity to catch up with the peole they haven't seen in a while. 

    I know my 82-year-old grandma greatly appreciated being able to talk to her son during dinner whom she hasn't seen in 2 years because they live out of state instead of being forced to make small talk with my H's aunt that she's never met in her life, and will probably never see again.

    Please consider seating people with others they know and would enjoy their company.  A good host want their guests to be as comfortable as possible.  I know I would NOT be comfortable sitting at a table of people I didn't know while my friends and family I'm dying to catch up with are scattered about the room (also with people they don't know).

    You have good intentions with this, but please trust us when we say it's a bad idea.
    Anniversary
  • YOU are choosing to marry your FI.  That will LINK you and FI.

    The concept that your marriage means that every member of your family is now ONE with every member of FI's family is pretentiious.

    If I'm your cousin and I'm coming to your wedding, I have absolutely no interest in mingling with your FI's relatives.  I'm coming to see my blood relatives.  I'd like to sit with them and talk to them.  A wedding is not a place for a mandaory meet-and-greet.
  • I'm not sure why you're afraid of separate tables. People want to sit with people they know, preferably not strangers. I get that you want the two families to get to know each other, but dint you want your guests to be in a comfortable setting?
    image
  • Agree with PPs.  If you're worried about one side being "all you" and the other side being "all him," you could seat families on one side of the dance floor.  They're not sitting at tables with people they don't know, but they are close enough that some mingling might occur.

    And if it doesn't, like PP said, you have to let it go.  I'm shy, so I'm not likely to go strike up a conversation with some rando I don't know, even if his brother-in-law just married my cousin-in-law. 
    Anniversary

    image

    image

  • In Response to Re: Reception Seating:
    [QUOTE]Agree with PPs.  If you're worried about one side being "all you" and the other side being "all him," you could seat families on one side of the dance floor.  They're not sitting at tables with people they don't know, but they are close enough that some mingling might occur. And if it doesn't, like PP said, you have to let it go.  I'm shy, so I'm not likely to go strike up a conversation with some rando I don't know, even if his brother-in-law just married my cousin-in-law. 
    Posted by professorscience[/QUOTE]

    I would like to do something like this... I guess my explaination wasn't FULL enough.  I would like to do alternating tables and just blend that way.  I agree with PPs stating that sitting at a table full of people you don't know can be a little nerve wrecking for some people. 
    Wedding Countdown Ticker
    My Planning Bio - Update 6/8/2012 LilySlim Weight loss tickers

    110 Ready to have a Good Time image Final Head Count

  • Oh, I think I understand you a little better now.

    I'll be honest, assigning tables is certainly not required, but especially if you have a big group, it's nice to have.  It's also nice to at least reserve tables for your family to make sure Grandma doesn't get stuck at a table in the back with a bunch of people she doesn't know.

    And, anecdote.  A CW told me a story about a wedding in which she was a bridesmaid.  After the ceremony, the WP was taking pictures, and an aunt stormed in and started chewing out the bride for "not having enough seats."  There were plenty of seats, this aunt just wanted to be able to sit with a certain group of people (no assigned seats), and her group had shown up later and hadn't been able to find a table with enough seats for all of them.  She wanted to move seats from the head table to another table so there'd be enough room.  It was really unnecessary and it stressed out the bride and it probably could have been avoided if she'd just assigned tables.  (Then again, maybe the aunt would have just tried to steal seats from another table... who knows?)
    Anniversary

    image

    image

  • Please don't force people. His family coming is about 17 the other 80 are mine. His attendants and then two tables..I had his mom choose who sat at what table because of the HUGE HUGE issue we have with his aunt who can't act like a grown up and start drama. Oh how my snarky mother would love to sit with her and keep her in check lol. As you also said your family is theres...not really? How many times do you think your mom and his will go out shopping and spend Christmas together?
    Nichole Tampa, FL BabyFetus Ticker
  • I suggest that you don't try to force people together. FH and I went to a wedding last fall where they did this. Yes we were only really at the table during dinner but it was awful and awkward...and everyone comment on how awful and awkard it was.
  • A wedding isn't the place to get to know new people, for most its a place to catch up with people they already know and celebrate the wedding of a loved on.

    I don't think theres anything wrong with putting some of your friends and FI's friends at the same table if you think they will get along or whatever, But with a big huge BUT, most people would rather be with at least a few people they know, and I would never spilt up my family at family gatherings, they are all going to move and try and change how i set it up if i do that anyways (although now you go me thinking...put sexist FFIL with ultra feminist Aunt...could be fun to watch....jk!)

    May 2012 July Siggy: Favorite Vacation Spot Kaleden, BC
    July Fave Vacation Spot photo IMG_0268-1.jpg

    Daisypath Anniversary tickers
    My Blog:Through My Eyes

  • DH has a very small family and I have a very large one. Had we seated his family on one side of the room and mine on the other, there would've been 10 tables and on one side and 2 on the other. We just mixed the tables up around the room, but kept people who know each other sitting at each table. But regardless of where their tables are located, the families probably aren't going to really mingle, especially if they have no desire to. The parents, grandparents, that kind of thing is different. I've attended a ton of weddings and very rarely do you see the families mingling, other than the immediate family members, or while dancing.
This discussion has been closed.
Choose Another Board
Search Boards