(Closed) Best way to keep guests from taking centerpieces

posted 9 years ago in Reception
  • poll: Best way to keep guests from taking centerpieces?

    Have DJ make an announcement

    Assign someone at each table to keep an eye on the centerpiece

    Assign one person during the reception to keep an eye on the centerpieces

    Attach a note to each centerpiece saying "please don't take me!"

    Let word of mouth travel not to take the centerpieces

    Something else (please elaborate!)

  • Post # 3
    14096 posts
    Honey Beekeeper
    • Wedding: November 1999

    Um, wow I have never seen anyone just take a centerpiece.  My cousin gave hers away at the end of the night, but no one has ever just grabbed it and walked away.

    I would not have the DJ make an announcement – it would seem really bizarre to me to hear anyone announce basically “Please don’t steal the decor.”  Do you have a coordinator who you can ask to watch and make sure they stay put? 

    Post # 4
    5070 posts
    Bee Keeper
    • Wedding: October 2012

    I’ve never seen anyone take a centerpiece without asking. 

    I don’t like the announcement idea either.  Seems rude.

    “hey, don’t even think about taking these centerpieces home!”


    Post # 5
    2457 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: November 2010

    I like the idea of a little note on it which states please dont take me.

    Post # 6
    3625 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: June 2012

    I have heard two schools of thought on this. I’ve organized corporate events and I was shocked that people take the centerpieces without being prompted to do so. So I get where your Maid/Matron of Honor is coming from. However, according to my florist, she has never had a single wedding where people stole the centerpieces. In any event, my florist said that usually the coordinator or the coordinator’s assistant or someone will keep an eye out on the centerpieces for you. We have venue coordinators and our own so they will be watching out for our centerpieces (although we have tall ones that are kind of hard to reach and haul off). Is it common at weddings you’ve attended for people to take them?

    Post # 7
    2692 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: November 2012

    The only thing guests will be able to take home from the decor are the flowers and votives.  The actual glasses that hold the flowers belong to my florist.  I plan to have the dj make some sort of announcement like “please feel free to take a votive and flower arrangement home but leave the glasses behind.”  Or something like that.  I dont think people will take the glasses but I anticipate fi’s family asking if they can take the flowers home. in that case, I won’t need an announcement.

    Post # 8
    2692 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: November 2012

    You could make a sign on the centerpieces that say “Property of the Bride and Groom”.

    Post # 9
    248 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: March 2013

    I have seen people snagging cetnerpieces before, for sure. I would just tell people to look out for that and correct the people trying to steal them. At one wedding I went to the Maid/Matron of Honor just went crazy on everyone who even so much as touched a centerpiece.

    Post # 11
    13561 posts
    Honey Beekeeper

    Guests shouldn’t take them without being prompted to, but you can always have one person keep an eye out!

    Post # 12
    5656 posts
    Bee Keeper
    • Wedding: August 2012

    Normally I have only seen guests take centerpieces when they were given permission. So make sure the family and the bridal party knows that no, people are not to take centerpieces home with them. That should be good enough. Especially make sure that grabby Maid/Matron of Honor knows! LOL

    Post # 13
    890 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: October 2014

    I’m not sure, maybe on each table write a little ‘story’ about how you are going to plant them at your house and watch them grow with your love or something like that. I think that if guests knew what you were going to do with them, they wouldn’t take them home.

    Post # 14
    3884 posts
    Honey bee
    • Wedding: September 2011

    For the succulents, you could just add a notecard or two per table or a little flag in the pot that says “Elysion and Mr Elyson will be planting me in their front yard, won’t you please come visit me there?”  which has a nice, non-negative tone but still gets your point across.  You could also consider buying a few empty terrariums or pots or favors that look like the terrariums, whatever, so that you can steer people towards taking those.

    Salt and Peppers will be a bit harder because guests can connect with the idea of not stealing someone’s garden, but may have a harder time grasping why anyone would want/need a couple dozen salt and pepper’s running around the house.  So I’d try to play up the “I’ve already got some plan in store for these” and add it to the note.

    I think this has to be written, not word-of-mouth, not announced by the DJ, because written is the only way I can figure out to make it not sound a bit tacky. If the DJ at a wedding I was at came over the PA and said “the bride and groom have asked guests not to take the centerpeices” I would really find it off-putting.  Even if I had been planning to do just that!  I’d be like, what do they think I am, a crook?  And you don’t want to turn any of your guests into the tabletop-nazi’s.

    Another alternative would be to request the catering/waitstaff to clear the centerpeices when they clear dinner dishes, but you’d probably want them to replace the centerpeices with *something*— perhaps if you’re doing a proper coffee service after dinner, the centerpeices come off and the creamers and sugars get arranged nicely in their place.

    Post # 15
    289 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: August 2012

    Those thiefs!!

    That is just strange. I would never ever help myself to a centerpiece….weirdos!!


    Post # 16
    32 posts
    • Wedding: May 2011

    People took mine even though they weren’t supposed to. We had 42 centerpieces with handmade vases, I think we ended up with at most 10? I thought that was crazy I would never think of taking centerpieces!!

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