Maid of honor..What do I do?

January 11th, 2011

I got married ten years ago, at the age of 20.

My baby sister, who is 25, is getting married the first weekend of December andI am the maid of honor. When my husband and I got married, we had a very very traditional formal black tie ballroom type wedding. When we started planning my sister’s wedding, she was talking about a wedding very similar to what both my twin sister and I had. Everything was going smootly until the last minute details started to pan out.

The one and only “issue” that has risen is the grapple over the seating chart. My little sister doesn’t want it…I don’t see a problem with this either but my mother and other sister do.

So my question is…Has anyone done a large wedding (450 people) without a seating chart? Or been to one? I don’t really need the “it’s her day” answers, because I agree with that. I am simply wondering how smoothly it went without the seating chart. (By the way, she is still making name cards for purposes of the food, they will just lack table numbers.)

8 Responses to “Maid of honor..What do I do?”

  1. perfectvelvet says:

    I’ve only been to one wedding with a seating chart; the rest were free-for-alls. I don’t think seating charts are necessary at all, unless you’re inviting people who hate each other and you need to direct them apart (although that won’t last all night). I like the idea of being able to sit wherever I want with whomever I want – and I bet her guests would appreciate it too.

  2. Ashley D says:

    i have been to more weddings that have no seating chart than those that have them

    honestly, it went just fine. either way you do it, some people still end up waiting ages for food.

  3. river_girl1977 says:

    I agree- seating charts are good for smaller receptions and in occasions when you need to separate people (dad and new GF away from angry, bitter mom)

    Most weddings I’ve been to- small and big- had no seating chart other than the head table, and it went very well. The crowd kind of organizes itself as to who they want to be sitting with.

    Hope your sister’s wedding is a wonderful one for all of you!

  4. Karen C says:

    A seating chart originates from medieval times, when guests were seated by order of hierarchy to the throne ergo the closer in line to ascend throne, the closer to the Head Table (King/Queen) you sat. The seating of lesser royals by “House of” was a method of manipulation by the Monarch, as he/she would bring a table or ‘House’ closer or farther from the HT to show his/her pleasure or displeasure with them to the other guests.

    While the reason behind seating charts has become obsolete, whenever I’m seated at a table towards the back of the room, I can’t help but feel of lower importance, which is why I prefer seating by choice …. you can’t blame another guest for getting there early and choosing a good table!

    Good Luck

  5. Tiger by the Tail says:

    Just have a few tables reserved for close family and dates/spouses of those in the wedding party. The rest of the folks are adults. Really its not that big of a deal and less of a headache for her.

  6. Messykatt says:

    I’m going to slightly disagree, mainly because of the size of the wedding. I went to a large wedding once (I think it was around 350) and they didn’t have seating charts. It was chaotic. However, part of the problem is they had no extra seating. So towards the end, there were tables with one vacancy and couples were coming in. And then people had to wander around looking for seating (which nobody likes to do).

    If your sister doesn’t want seating, she does need to talk to the event coordinator and see what she recommends to make it easier. If the seating is tight, and with this large a group, I can see it becoming dodgy after a good portion of people are seated. There’s just no way to avoid it if there’s only enough place settings to cover the guests.

    Also, if she’s having a truly “formal” wedding, this is pretty much standard. People can mingle all they want after dinner.

  7. lady says:

    I prefer the open seating plan also. Reserve “family” tables closest to the bride/groom or head table and let everyone sit where they want. I was just at a wedding where my husband and I were seated with 8 people who were strangers…..people we did know were also seated with strangers, clear across the room from us…we would have liked to have sit together and caught up on news.
    JMHO

  8. Jilly says:

    Normally I’m extremely anti-seating chart. Well, not anti-seating chart but just that they’re REALLY not necessary. However, a 450 person black tie wedding is probably going to need one. It’s just SUCH a large number of people that I feel that anything she can do to eliminate any traffic jams will be appreciated.

    Even from a logistical point of view. She is doing cards for people based on meal selection, right? Totally normal. But how are all these people going to get the cards. Will they be on a table? Pinned to a board? You’re going to have a line 20 people deep for an hour to pick those cards up. I suppose you could do it alphabetically with a few different tables but I just think it’s going to be a mad scramble with those numbers.

    Again, normally I don’t think they’re necessary (everyone can be an adult for an hour and make small talk with their table mates) but in this case I kind have to go pro-seating chart.

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