Post # 1
My FI and I decided to sit down and do some mock seating arrangements to see if we could get all of our family and friends at tables that make sense.
When we showed the options to our parents, both sets freaked out.
My mom doesn’t want to sit with her sister, his parents don’t want to sit with his grandparents, his aunts and uncles from each side don’t fit nicely in tables of 8…etc.
It also gets really awkward because his parent’s friends and my cousins have overflow, so there ends up being a table with 2 couples in their 50’s and 4 single cousins in their teens and 20’s.
How did you handle difficult seating arrangements? Is it ok to put random people together because there is no place else for them?
Post # 3
For the most part our seating worked out, but we ended up with one table of randoms that we think will get along well for the most part. You’re always going to have stragglers that are from a lot of different parts of your lives and won’t know anyone else there. It’s just a couple hours for dinner, they’ll be fine.
Post # 4
I ended up not going to a reception because of poor seating arrangements. The ONE request I made of my niece (after I paid for her wedding party’s flowers as a Godmother’s gift) was NOT to sit me next to my EX (her uncle) who dumped me after 20+ years for a bar skank (also attending). Two days before the wedding I find out, you guessed it – that I was slated to sit next to the very people I begged her not to sit me next to. Needless to say I was PO’ed. Her excuse? The wedding coordinator made the arrangements. I said fine, and I will just switch with someone at another table and she threw a fit! Naturally I did not attend the reception (although I still gave a card and money) but she is still not talking to me after almost 2 years! The moral of the story is that even though seating prefernces can be a real PITA, it can save some potential problems at the reception. IF I would have attended anyway, I would have been miserable and I was still pretty angry at that point and would have likely caused an unpleasant scene.
Post # 5
You could throw out what you’ve got and start again – at my cousin’s wedding, they grouped people by age/interests rather than family group.
Me and my then boyfriend (who was a police officer – yeah, i’ve got a thing for uniforms!) were at a table with the groom’s brother & his gf, groom’s best freind from uni & his gf, 2 of bride’s work colleagues and their partners and two of their neighbours. We were all aged 25-30, and there was never a lull in the conversation. My mum & dad were at a table with groom’s aunt & uncle, bride’s dad’s business partner and wife, and a few other people that i didn’t speak to, and they had a blast too!
It was a little odd at first, as we were at a table where we didn’t know anyone, but it was great. And you could always do those “conversation-starter” cards, you know, like “someone at this table was an extra in a soap opera,” “someone at this table writes jingles for car commercials” etc to get people talking.
Post # 6
Post # 7
Its okay if you have some randoms. We tried to do things the best we could but of course there are people that just dont fit in the best place. We did tables by age as well. So we have cousins (from all sides) at the same table but they are all between 16-22 so I think it will be a good fit. Then we did a table of family friends (couples) that dont know each other but we think they will get along well. Just try to match age and personality types! And of course – the conversation starters are a great idea!! You could also do a crossword at each place setting and then the table could try to help each other out with it.
Post # 8
@silversixpence: we did a similar seating arrangement & it worked out great.
On a similar note about conversation starters, BIL & SIL had pictures of themselves at the age correlating to the table number & then, on the backs, through in fun facts, about themselves – which included fun stories about the people at that table – and fun facts about that year. Mr. & I were at table 18 (not near his parents or people our age – we were the randoms table) & had so much fun telling our stories & listening to others’, plus listening to people’s opinions about that year’s (1998) events.
Post # 9
Personally, I would consider just having no seating arrangement and let people find their own seats. Two reasons:
1. Cut down on the stress of finding the perfect arrangement
2. Let the guest decide where they WANT to seat (which I find makes them happier)
Regarding bluespurrs comment… I agree, It is sooo important not to stick people with people they are not comfortable with. My brother got placed at a table with my estranged father at a wedding. He was COMPLETELY uncomfortable and his wife had to walk around to find someone to switch places with them. and then my father knew they had switched seats and threw a big fit. The whole ordeal really ruined the wedding for my family.
Post # 10
we tried to accomidate the best we could, but it wasn’t possible to make everyone happy. we asked our parents who they wanted at their table b/c i definitely wanted them to be happy though.
Post # 11
Unless there is some kind of major family drama, I kinda think they can just suck it up and be adults about it.
Post # 12
Thank you OttawaBride2011!! That’s what I keep saying, though the response from my mother was that I was being “ungrateful”.
Both sets of parents want to sit at the head table with us. But we really want to sit with our wedding party (my FI especially wants this, and he has made a total of 3 requests throughout this entire process, so I’m partial to him getting what he wants).
If we put both sets of parents and the wedding party at our head table, it would end up being 15 people. Our entire wedding has 100 guests, so 15% would be sitting at one table, which I think would look pretty weird.
This is driving me crazy!!
Post # 13
@CanAmBride: You’re welcome! I think people can be adults for one day at least. I would try not to worry too much about what everyone wants, and just do what you want. You absolutely cannot make everyone happy, it’s impossible. Just accept that fact and move on 🙂 Good luck!