Post # 61
I think some people have very fixed and rigid ideas about what is a wedding. It may be regional also. I would hazard a guess to say most of the weddings I have been to do not have seats at the ceremony for everyone to sit…people stand at the back and I have never heard anyone complain. Also ‘cocktail style’ reception is quite normal where I come from and people don’t expect to sit in the same spot for hours.
As someone else suggested I would setup as many chairs as you have in that first room and get an usher to make sure that older people people or people with health issues or mobility issues sit. Everyone else can stand for 20 minutes. If you are an able bodied person who cannot stand for 20 minutes without passing out from fatigue then I’m not sure how you manage your day to day life (ie waiting for coffee or a bus or in line at bank/post office or generally standing or walking at work).
Post # 62
I think the basement with plenty of seating is the best idea. I would be pretty annoyed if I had to stand for a whole wedding. I’m short and I probably wouldn’t see a thing.
Post # 63
ozbee : I don’t know how thinking about the comfort of one’s guests might be described as having “fixed and rigid ideas about what is a wedding.“
Post # 64
After your wedding is done I would be making a complaint because while it’s great that there is a room that can sit all your guests, it’s not in the room you had originally intended and had been told was fine. I would also be putting reviews up like a PP said because it sounds like this won’t have been the first time they’ve pulled this trick. If I was you I’d want some money back.
Post # 65
I forgot that I actually HAVE been forced to stand at a wedding. In the rain. I was PISSED. Super pissed. The ONLY reason I didn’t leave the ceremony is that me leaving this particular wedding would have caused a blow up with my own husband so I decided to keep the peace. My husband had his reasons but I don’t want to get into, because it is ENTIRELY possible that the bride in that wedding is on here.
Post # 66
I think it’s really important to remember that there are invisible disabilities and therefore the idea of “having chairs for the elderly and pregnant” isn’t sufficient.
When there is only seating available for people who visually look like they need it, people who need to sit but “look healthy” get the stink-eye from others.
You cannot tell by looking at someone if they are capable of standing without any sort of impact to them. And you also don’t know if someone might bring a date or a +1 who requires seating. Or if someone who usually would be fine to stand will sprain their ankle 2 days before your wedding.
Post # 67
Speaking as a wedding guest, I’m super annoyed by standing at weddings. I think it’s just rude and inconvenient. While your ceremony is likely only 20 minutes you have to remember that most of your guests will arrive at least 30 minutes prior – as that’s considered pretty standard to ensure you have a seat and are not late. That’s 50 minutes of standing, and if your ceremony is running late that’s even longer. Add to that a cocktail hour = another hour of standing, before you finally go into a cocktail reception?
Now speaking as a wedding photographer our biggest nightmare is a ceremony where the guests are standing. It makes it *incredibly* hard for us to move around to get different angles. More often than not we are stuck staying in one spot which definitely limits what you get image-wise in your final gallery.
My solution would be to stock up on inexpenive pashimas and fleece blankets to have out in a basket, as well as rent some heaters, and have the ceremony outside. I’d rather wrap up in a blanket in a chair (and for a November wedding when it’s cold they’re most likely showing up in a coat anyway) outside than stand for hours on end in heels.
Post # 68
starfish0116 : That’s a really good point about standing guests being a potential obstacle for photography! I hadn’t enough thought about it, but it makes perfect sense.
I know this is a topic I can be pretty passionate about on the bee, but I have a lot of friends who have mobility issues. Many of whom “look healthy” and the average bystander would assume they would have no issues with standing for 15, 20, 30+ minutes.
I’ve been with friends before when they’ve been scolded or even yelled at by strangers for “taking” the priority/accessibility seating (on a bus, subway, etc) or for not offering up their seat to someone who looked like they needed it more or someone who was elderly. It’s a really awkward and uncomfortable situation to be in.
No one should have to disclose primate health information or infromation about their body to strangers, in order to simply be able to sit down.
Post # 69
Can you rework the ceremony setup/layout? Instead of the couple at the front and guests facing them, could you put the couple in the center and the guests seated in a circle/ring around them? Maybe that would give you more space…?
Post # 70
I think everyone who says standing for the ceremony won’t be that bad should actually try standing up straight for 20 minutes without pacing or stretching or bending over at all. It’s a lot harder than you think!
Post # 71
Unfortunately our venue has this problem too. Seating for only 30 during ceremony.
Luckily there is a bar at the venue right beside the ceremony location that is exclusively for our use, so I am going to ask that our guests can wait inside, out of the sun until right before the ceremony.
They should accommodate as it’s also where cocktail hour is behng held post-ceremony, prior to dinner in the ballroom
Perhaps your venue has another place they can gather until it’s starting?
Post # 72
I just went to a wedding last weekend where everyone had to stand for the ceremony. I’m on the small side and I was able to perch on the landing of the stairs. Mercifully it was very short. Can’t say I recommend this.
Post # 73
wonderwedding : It is definitely much harder than people think, especially having to stand relatively still in one place, which is totally and much more physically challenging than being able to move around freely. It’s not that uncommon to hear of members of the wedding fainting.
Post # 74
frenchtoastvegan : i voted to provide seats for everyone but that was before I read your latest post explaining the issue.
The venue messed up. Big time. That said, I think you should NOT change your original plan. Instead, why dont you offer seats in a different area that are available to those who arrive early that way they arent standing for 45 min+ as has been mentioned? Then they can file in when the ceremony is about to begin.
Please don’t get married in a basement.
Post # 75
chocolateplease : frenchtoastvegan : I agree! I would happily take the death stares from older people taking the seat I need, if it means that my friend/family didn’t have to get married in a basement! I have to put up with it all the time on public transport etc. anyway. Just be as accomodating as you can and people will understand. It isn’t ideal but it isn’t your fault. Do what you can to provide seating for as many as functional, have clear instructions for guests and complain to the venue for adding stress to your plan!