Post # 1
Hello Bees! We are having about 95 people at our wedding. My fiance’s family is primarily Spanish speaking. My family speaks English. My question is should we have a seating arrangements where we put his family together and my family together separately? Or should we put a mix of the Spanish speaking and English speaking tables together? I’m not really sure how to go about setting everybody up for the reception or if we should even have a seating chart and just let people sit wherever they want. What are your thoughts?
This topic was modified 4 years, 8 months ago by CaitlinP.
Post # 2
Definitely have assigned seating, this is very important. If it were my wedding I would not mix the two sides or two languages at each table. I’d keep them separate.
Post # 3
I wouldn’t let people sit wherever they want, you risk having a close relative at a back table if they arrive a little later than those who grabbed up the closer tables.
I think mixing it up and mingling the families is great (as opposed to his family on one side of the room and yours on the other), but at adjacent tables near each other rather than @ the same table. People will want to sit nearest to people they know and converse with. A seating chart allows you to put those closest to you on both sides nearest the head table. I would recommend a seating chart with a greeting in both languages.
p.s. what about making cute little cards for each table that lists common phrases translated into the other language so guests can have fun practicing how to say ‘hello, have a nice time’ ‘congratulations to the bride and groom’ etc Would be a great icebreaker & encourage interaction between tables.
Post # 4
Always have a seating chart!!!
Post # 5
People on this site are big fans of seating charts, and I’m in full agreement. Guests have better experiences when they don’t have to hunt down a seat. Given the potential language barriers, I think I seating chart is even more important for you.
I’d also recommend seating in language groups. Of course they can mingle, but its customary at weddings to seat people with people they know. Unless you’re families are already well acquainted, I’d keep them separate.
Post # 6
I think having a seating chart depends on what is normal with your family/circle. In mine, it is very abonormal. I have been to dozens of weddings, and have never been to one with a seating chart. Some people find that not having one is like trying to find a seat in the HS cafateria. I would find having one being like being assigned a seat in English class. If neither family does seating chart, it would be very odd to start one now.
That said, if people typically do seating charts on either side of your family, I would in this case. I don’t think people will want to be at a table with people they can’t speak with. Also, most families us weddings as a chance to catch up, and your family would probably prefer to catch up with your family than be seated with strangers. Yes, you will all be family now, but I doubt your cousin’s will ever see eachother again.
Post # 7
Seating chart with people who know each other together. It seriously irritates me when a bride puts us with people we don’t know so we can “get to know each other”. Um, pretty sure I’m never going to see your cousins again, even if we are the same age.
Post # 8
If you are doing a plated meal, assigned seating is a must. That is how the servers know to take 5 beef and 3 chicken to Table 7. But you can assign people to tables instead of specific seats if you want, then let them decide amongst themselves who gets which chair. I would not seat people together if there is a language barrier; the Spanish speakers won’t learn English in the course of a meal nor will the English speakers learn Spanish.
Post # 9
+1 to a seating chart, it will change your life in wedding planning.
As for mixing families, I would not. Keep his with his, and yours with yours. I mixed our friends instead, it made it much easier, then grouped all of the ‘friend’ tables in the same area.
Post # 10
- Wedding: August 2013 - Rocky Mountains USA
Yes seating chart.
Definitely put people with other people they know, ESPECIALLY since your guests speak different languages! My brother-in-law’s wedding this summer was half English, half French speakers and it would have been terribly awkward to be paired with French strangers instead of with my family and friends. We all mingled pretty well once the booze was flowing…no need to force it.
Post # 11
I’m another vote for seating plan. I was all for being chilled and just letting people sit where they like but I realised how helpful it was even for our little engagement celebration supper. it helped in two ways – ensured people got seaTed quickly when the restaurant needed us to take our seats and it also meant no one got left out of a group or something.
I’d say sit people with who you know they’d like it sit with.
Post # 13
Yes to seating chart! Usually on here I see people suggest mixing up groups of friends so people get to chat with someone knew, but with your crowd I would stick to people they know. Part of the fun of a wedding is chatting with people at your table. I would feel a little awkward sitting with people I was not able to communicate with.
Post # 14
I used to not care either way but was going to do one for our wedding until about 2 weeks before our wedding when we went to a wedding. DH family does not typically do seating charts and this wedding was no different except that there were about 10-12 of us that did not have a table at the reception. There were scattered seats around the room but none we could sit together (even just 2 people together). That was a perfect example for me of why the Bee is so big on seating charts. We couldn’t eat because we had no table, found 2 random chairs against a wall to sit at for a while then left early. It was no fun and this was a close family member!