(Closed) Self-seating at my sister’s 200+ guest wedding?

posted 8 years ago in Etiquette
Post # 3
Member
1110 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: March 2009

Usually the weddings ive been to are those of HUGE hispanic families. Most of them have not had a seating chart. I would sometimes feel rushed to find a table where all MY favorite fam members would be able to get a seat at. However its not too bad. Everyone usually ends up sitting where they want to sit (I must say). Towards the end of the night everyone is usually dancing and doesnt stick to ONE place to sit. Just kind of around the same area.

Post # 4
Member
4485 posts
Honey bee

Yes that is a bad idea begging for a disaster to happen. People will get split up and other people will save seats for guests who don’t sit with them at any point. Even with a 10 person guestlist, you need a seating arrangement. I have been to a ton of events with open seating like you’re describing and I have never once seen any good come out of it. Unfortunately, some people are so set in their ways that nothing will convince them to change their minds about anything.

Post # 5
Member
1110 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: March 2009

I do have to agree though.. these weddings arent very organized, but since its mostly super tight family, it didnt matter.

Post # 6
Member
622 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2010

i wasn’t a fan of seating charts/table assignments before, but i really think they’re necessary. i think you have to think about people ending up in odd numbers and couples having to split up and sitting at different tables. like if one single person sits at table one and one single person sits at table nine, there will only be one chair left at both tables – leaving it hard for others to find a place to sit. i feel like if you do table assignments, it takes the worry away from your guests about sitting with people they know/like. plus, if they don’t like their “assignment” it’s only for dinner and that doesn’t last THAT long.

Post # 7
Member
3762 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: May 2010

If she is set on it then I think all you can do is offer suggestions to make it go as smooth as possible.  For example, if you are having 200 guests, you should probably plan for an extra 10% for empty seats. 

Say for example, everyone rushes to their tables and there are 8 tables with 1 chair empty!  What happens to the family of 5 that comes in?  What about just the couple of 2?

Unless everyone is just couples your tables will not be even and you should plan for a good amount of empty seats. 

Post # 8
Member
1209 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2010

I am sorry, I cannot back you up =)

Most weddings that I have been to (200 + guests) have not had a seating chart and it worked out just fine. Honestly I never even think about. I think that it is a regional thing and in my area seating charts are not common.  That being said, I can see where if in your area it is very common thing it may be a bit confusing to guests to actually not have a chart.

Post # 9
Member
541 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: December 2010

To me it spells disaster. If it’s 20 people like a large holiday dinner, fine.  But 200 people? I just know that when I go places I like order and when you don’t have a seat, as soon as the door opens you have someone tossing their purse and coat into two available chairs and running around like mad. Plus, what about the one person that is there single at a table for 10 who is really hoping the other single person sits there too so it doesn’t look like they are inconveniencing a couple by taking one of their chairs.

I really don’t get what the big deal is about taking time to accomodate your guests. yes we are all adults but to me, it’s about the experience.

To me, it’s like the analogy of a parking garage. Sure I can drive around forever and look for a spot and hope that one is convenient, while competing with the neighboring cars, but I would much rather prefer a reserved spot.

Post # 10
Member
14186 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2009

I’m picking when you play musical chairs….and then everybody dashes lol.

i’ve only seen it work out okay at one wedding–with like, 50 people =

Post # 12
Member
4485 posts
Honey bee

If she still refuses, then she will have to set up several extra tables with full placesettings. Otherwise it only makes her look bad. For you, step back because you’ve offered your help and it was denied so you’re basically done helping at this point.

Post # 13
Member
2007 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: September 2009

Eh.  I don’t know about all that.  It definitely depends on the venue and level of formality but we had an approximately 150 person wedding, no seating chart and everything was fine.  Actually, it was really fun to see who sat together and there were people who chatted all night that I NEVER would have thought to put together!  Granted, ours was outside on my dad’s peach farm with a buffet style dinner and not in a 5 star hotel but I don’t think it’s a rule that you HAVE to have a seating chart.  Actually, maybe it’s a regional thing because I’ve never been to a wedding with one!

ETA: We also didn’t really have any singles.  Everyone either brought a date or was with a group of friends and we had plenty of extra seating.  The extra space definitely makes things go much more smoothly.

Post # 14
Member
7174 posts
Busy Beekeeper

Have you asked her why she wants to do it that way?  Maybe once she explains her reasoning to you, you’ll have a better understanding of why she is choosing that.

LET IT GO.  It’s not your decision to make and you did your duty in sharing with her the concerns you saw.

I have been to two weddings where they did not do a seating chart for around 200 people and it was absolutely fine.  Friends found tables to sit together and people added chairs as needed.  At one of the weddings, I sat with such a great group of people that I wouldn’t have met otherwise.

Make sure she reserves at least 2 tables close to where she is for immediate family – that’s the only thing I’d steer her towards.  You don’t want the F/MOB, F/MOG sitting in the back corner! 

Post # 15
Member
1154 posts
Bumble bee

I think it really really doesn’t matter if this is a mistake or a disaster waiting to happen, if she is dead set on it and you’ve expressed your concerns bringing it up again is rude and pointless.  This is her wedding, her party and she can throw it the way she wants.  Trying to change her mind will only stress her out and upset her, this is not your responsibility. 

Your large parties will have seating charts and that is your decision to make but she gets to make the decisions about her own party.  Please try to be supportive, you don’t have to agree and you don’t have to approve you just have to be nice and polite about it. 

 

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