(Closed) Cocktail Wedding Reception Timeline

posted 8 years ago in Reception
Post # 3
Member
613 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2009

i would probably move it to later and cut out the “cocktail” hour.  we had a cocktail and hors duerves reception, and the cermony started at 8 pm.  there was passed apps and stations, lots of drinking and dancing.  a lot of our elements are similar, but my reception went from 8:30-ish to 12.

it seems like youre planning for everything to be traditional except the manner in which dinner is served. if that is the case, i think your timeline is good.  if you are trying to create more of a “party”, i would push it to later.

Post # 5
Member
299 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: April 2011

Thanks for posting this I have been working on my own recently too. Our plan is similar our ceremony will be at 6:30, cocktail hour from 7-8, then our “cocktail” reception will be like 8-11:30.  I would love to talk with you more about your plans for tables and everything else.  I’m starting to worry myself over there being enough seating.

Post # 7
Member
299 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: April 2011

Our plan is similar except we will be having around 250 people… Our venue has a few different rooms that all open up to each other along with an outdoor patio.  We are going to do a few hightops around the dance floor and outside as well as scattered and I’m working on the exact number of tables but at my last count we had about 12 which is only enough seating for like 90 lol I have some more work to do!  I’m guestimating 4 people around a hightop and maybe putting some stools at some of the high tops.  We are also having a lounge area off of the dance floor so that will provide a few seats as well. I’m going to have the tables right near the dance floor reserved for family so they atleast have a place to put their stuff and sit where they can see everything.  I know in the end it will all work out because my cousin had the same thing at the same venue but right now everyone has got me nervous about seating.

Post # 8
Member
1765 posts
Buzzing bee

@LRin2011:

If it worked out for your cousin’s wedding it should work out for yours!  Unless you are having a big difference between the amount of guests at each wedding.  How many tables did your cousin have set up?  🙂

Post # 9
Member
151 posts
Blushing bee

I’m doing a cocktail reception also…about 170 guests, but only seating for 150. There will be lounge chairs around the dance floor for extra seating, as well as hightops around the bars. I wanted enough seating so people could “park” their stuff (purses, suit jackets, etc.). Hopefully, it’ll work out!

Post # 10
Member
14494 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2011

To be honest, I would move the father/daughter dance up closer to the first dance and move the garter toss and cake cutting up also.  I usually see the f/d dance soon after the first dance, gives the father the opportunity to dance with his daughter before everyone else does.  And if you are really having a good time dancing, you might get all hot and sweaty before you get the shots of you and your dad dancing or cutting the cake.

Post # 11
Member
353 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: July 2011

This is a side note to the original time line question but I would strongly recommend you get enough seating so everyone who wants to can take the weight off their feet.

I went to a similar cocktail style reception last summer and although it was fun, it was awful having to stand up the entire evening. 5 hours in stilettos on a hard surface = pain and discomfort! Perhaps you can warn your guests to bring comfy footwear?

Also, have you tried eating standing up whilst holding a glass? If you are having hot food stations you need to have enough places so people can put their glasses/plates down to grab the fork in the other hand. If your guests also have a clutch like most women do, it gets pretty tricky to eat whilst standing up.

I love the idea of a cocktail reception but it’s worth spending some time thinking about the practicalities too

Post # 12
Member
407 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2011

Thank you for starting this thread. I am planning the same concept for our wedding, and also have concerns about enough seating for our 60 guests. We will not be able to bring in any lounge style furniture, so most of our guests will have to stand. Our venue coordinator told us only 8 cocktail tables/hightops could fit in the room with the dancefloor. I am hoping to place extra chairs along the sides too. Also, the comments about ladies holding their purses or trying to hold a drink and eat food is another major concern! I am hoping people will share tables and mingle around, instead of “claiming” a table all night. I will ask for one traditional round table to be squeezed in for our grandparents/older guests who have to be able to sit.

Post # 13
Member
407 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2011

As far as timeline is concerned…I like yours and agree to move the F/D dance up to right after your first dance. Our timeline is almost exact with the Cermony at 5:30, followed by the “cocktail hour” at 6 so that we can take pictures. I was curious about spreading out the “dinner hors d’oeurves” since everyone will come fresh form the cocktail hour. So I think at 7pm when we all go in the room, we might do the first dance and F/D dance first and perhaps even the “cake” cutting to get those pictures out of the way before all the party dancing.

Post # 14
Member
299 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: April 2011

@808mjm202: 8 hightops is plenty for the amount of guests you have coming, but it worries me that you are only going to have one table? and no lounge.  My ultimate goal is to have enough seating for about 2/3 -3/4 of our guests and enough high tops that everyone will have a “space.”  I would try and maybe arrange some chairs in a lounge like setting near the dance floor so your younger crowd can rest some from dancing but you don’t want them all the way at the back of the room.

Post # 15
Member
407 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2011

@LRin2011: Thanks for the feedback – but I am confused why you say 8 hightops are plenty, but then are concerned for only 1 regular table? Yes, I am hoping to get extra chairs in at least. Or ask for 4 chairs per hightop (as opposed to the traditional 2).

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