Monthly Archives: March 2012

Wedding Table Names, Themes, Ideas and Suggestions

Sienna wedding table name

Choosing your table names at your wedding can be a surprisingly difficult task. Firstly I have to state there’s nothing wrong with numbers. They’re functional, easy to understand but your unlikely to win any prizes for imagination for these but then there are no prizes for imagination – though you may get compliments. So this article is not trying to be a definitive list of table naming schemes. Instead it’s meant to give a wide range of different ideas with some examples to start your imagination working.

Why should you consider names over numbers? Well it’s a real chance to put a personal stamp on your wedding and say something about yourselves.

The significant places option – this can be everything from hometowns, where you studied, where you have relatives, anywhere that’s significant
Examples:
Cambridge, Oxford, Queen Camel
Guildford, London, Cardiff

The Holidays option, this can be combined with the above scheme as necessary and can be lots of different holidays or maybe several locations from one holiday.
Example 1: Florida, Antigua, Barcelona, Tuscany
Example 2: Orlando, Kissimee, Tampa, Cape Canaveral, Miami, Everglades

The favourites option, this can be anything like favourite foods, films, books, authors, anything!
Example 1: Chocolate, Caramel, Grapes, Strawberries, Scones, Steak
Example 2: The Hobbit, Cloud Atlas, Hamlet, Guards Guards Guards
Example 3: Indiana Jones, The God Father, Spirited Away, Toy Story

Sweets or fruit, this could be covered by above but I want to mention it separately as it lends itself to using bowls of fruit or sweets as table directions. E.g. why not have a bowl of Jelly Babies on the Jelly Baby table? Sweets are easy to adapt to a theme to as you can have classic sweets or ones from your childhoods.
Example 1: Jelly Babies, Buttons, Skittles, M&M’s
Example 2: Plums, Apricots, Strawberries, Tangerines
Example 3: Cola bottles, Liquorice All Sorts, Sherbet Dips, Gold Coins

The Quiz Option, why not make it fun and not entirely predictable. Your table plan can be fun and interactive, instead of names on the Table Plan why not ask Questions where the names on the tables are the answers. You can give the answers to your little Bridesmaids or other parties so the answers are out there but if you have place names people will be able to know where they should be sitting.
Example: Where did the Groom go to University, Table Name: Exeter
Example: Where did Jon and Laura get engaged, Table Name: The Cotswolds
Example: Where is Jon and Laura’s honeymoon, Table Name: Barbados

The Pairs options, why not have a bit of fun like the Quiz and have pairs of things so the table plan would have one half on and the table name would be the other.
Examples: Plan Cagney – Table Lacey, Plan Romeo – Table Juliet, Plan Strawberries – Table Cream, Plan Fish – Table Chips
For an extra personal twist why not choose things based on your names so use things with the same first letters. E.g. using if you were C&O (Chris and Oriane) then Cheese and Onion would fit this.

Colour Options, this can be personal or not and there are lots of interesting colour names out there. I would advise making this personal and find good sounding names based on your colour theme. E.g. if you have a blue and pink colour theme then use names of shades of blue and pink. Wikipedia is a great source of these names.
Example: Cobalt, Sky, Sapphire, Celeste, Persian

Greek Classic Options, these could be based on the names of ancient Greek cities, mythology, or even the alphabet.
Example 1: Athens, Sparta, Thebes, Corinth
Example 2: Apollo, Athena, Zeus, Artemis
Example 3: Omega, Rho, Omicron, Gamma

The Sky options, why not draw inspiration from looking up by choosing names of stars, planets, constellations or types of clouds.
Example 1: Rigel, Sirius, Betelgeuse, Polaris
Example 2: Mars, Venus, Jupiter, Neptune
Example 3: Libra, Gemini, Taurus, Andromeda, Triangulum
Example 4: Cirrus, Cirrocumulus, Stratus, Cumulus, Noctilucent

Classic Film Options, why not go to Hollywood and choose films or actors and actresses who are well known for classic tales of love and romance.
Example 1: Hepburn, Bogart, Sinartra, Gene Kelly, Leonardo Di Caprio
Example 2: Casablanca, Gone with the Wind, Breakfast at Tiffanys

Essential and Optional Information for Wedding Invitations

Trifold Invitation showing invitation text, rsvp and wedding information

The idea of this article is to provide a check list for what information needs to be mentioned on a wedding or any other type of invitation. This includes the essential information and some of the more common extras which are really down to the particular wedding or event.

Information for Wedding Invitations:

Who the invitation is coming from Traditionally the invitation comes from the Bride’s parents. This is normally the case when the Bride’s parents are paying for most of the wedding or where there is a strong wish to use more traditional text and they are involved in the planning. Examples of this text include:

Mr and Mrs John (Bride’s Father Firstname) Smith (Bride’s Parents Surname)
request the pleasure of the company of
Guest(s) Name(s)
at the marriage of their daughter…..

Mr and Mrs John (Bride’s Father Firstname) Smith (Bride’s Parents Surname)
would be delighted if
Guest(s) Name(s)
would join them at the marriage of their daughter…..

Mr and Mrs John (Bride’s Father Firstname) Smith (Bride’s Parents Surname)
would be delighted if
Guest(s) Name(s)
would join them in celebrating the marriage of their daughter……

It may come from the Bride and Groom. This is normally the case when the Bride and Groom are paying for most of the wedding or when family politics means mentioning the parents is best avoided for fear of upset. Two ways of structuring this is by either starting with the guests name first or with the Bride and Groom’s first as shown below:

Guest(s) name(s)
Bride’s name
and
Groom’s name
request the pleasure of your company to celebrate their marriage

Bride’s name
and
Groom’s name
Request the pleasure of the company of
Guest(s) name(s)
To attend their wedding and reception

The third frequent way is for the invite to come from the bride, groom and both sets of parents. This often happens where everyone is sharing the cost of the wedding. The options for this are similar to those above using your choice of formal or informal text. One example would be

Together with their families
Bride’s name
and
Groom’s name
Request the pleasure of the company of
Guest(s) name(s)
To attend their wedding and reception

You could fully list the parents names though in my experience this is rarely done and is quite bulky on the text.

The rest of the text could look like this:

To attend their wedding at
Bridwell Park in Devon (Wedding venue)
At 1.30pm on Friday 21st July 2017

To be followed by a wedding reception and an evening of dinner and dancing

Who is being Invited

These are the guest’s names. If you’re inviting a single friend and they may bring a date you should put and guest, if it is a friend who is seriously dating or in a relationship it is normally expected that you will invite them by name. This may mean needing to confirm spelling; facebook can be a great tool here. Also only using first names will save asking for surnames. You can treat different groups differently, ie friends could be more informal and use first names, while family members could have a more formal approach, e.g. Mr and Mrs.

Who the wedding is for

If the invitation comes from those whose wedding or party it is then this is already taken care of, if not you need to include the Bride & Groom’s name. Traditionally and in 95% of invitations printed by Artemis Stationery the Bride’s name comes first.

What they are being invited to

In the case of a normal wedding starting in the day you need to be clear what you’re inviting them to. The traditional day invitation is to attend the ceremony followed by the reception and wedding breakfast. Followed by the evening reception. Where the ceremony is being held in a church it is becoming popular for guests of the evening reception to be invited to the ceremony too. If this is the case you need to be really clear that they are not being invited to the main reception as if they follow the other guests there and unwittingly things could get awkward!
Increasingly there is also a trend for evening weddings. Sometimes it’s because many guests would not be available in the day or because the venue wanted is not available during the day. There are also day weddings with no evening celebrations. So it can be important to be clear what you’re inviting your guests to so your guests can plan accordingly. This often means letting them know what type of food will be provided and approximately when.

Date

It is probably obvious that the date should be in there, it’s worth mentioning the day to, these days weddings can happen every day of the week. Also it will make it harder to be confused on the wedding day. I recommend the year is also put in to be sure this is clear as people increasingly plan ahead.

Start Time

Another self-explanatory thing to include is the start time. If you are arranging transport, such as a Routemaster Bus, for your guests you will need to include the meeting time as well as marriage ceremony time. Though remember that guests being invited to just a church ceremony and the evening reception need clear times for both.

Location

Obviously your guests will need to know each location that you expect them to attend. A postcode is essential as these days a lot of people will look up addresses on Google and use sat navs in driving to a location. You may wish to mention parking at this point if restrictions or alternative locations are to be used.

End Time (Optional)

Some invites include an end time, this can be vital for people arranging baby sitters. People often say ‘carriages at……’

RSVP

You need to tell your guests the date by which you need to know if they are able to come, together with any other information you need from them – this could include confirming names, menu choices etc.. They will also need to know when to RSVP by, who to and how. Some people include self-addressed RSVP cards with their invitations. If you expect people to send their own card then you need to give them an address to send it to. Other people gather RSVPs by email or text. Whatever makes your life simplest. When the invite is coming from the Bride’s parents the RSVP’s will normally go to them. Sometimes a friend or relative who is helping out may also receive them.

Food and Menu Options

If your wedding has a choice of food which must be made in advance then it’s good idea to give your guests the choices in their invitation and then include an RSVP which allows guests to record their choices. If your wedding doesn’t have any menu choices you still may want to gather information on who needs vegetarian food and who has any other special dietary requirements. The last thing you want on your big day is someone who is unable to eat anything from the menu due to food allergies.

Maps

Thanks to sat navs and the internet, maps are not often needed but can look good if properly done on larger styles of invites. They can also make it clear of the proximity of locations e.g. if the church and reception venue are within walking distance of each other.

Accommodation

It can be good to let your guests know the options of where they can stay. Especially if you fancy going to breakfast in a hotel and seeing lots of friendly faces there. You may want to let people know of alternative accommodation in the area. If you have any arrangements for discounts for your guests be sure to mention them.

Taxis

Local taxi companies’ telephone numbers are useful to be included, so that your guests can plan their transport for your big day.

Gifts & Lists

Now this is a contentious one, there is a lot of etiquette out there which says you shouldn’t mention anything to do with gifts in the invitation as this is implying that in return for coming to your wedding a guest must bring a gift and such an implication is considered very impolite.
However there is a flip side of this, as most people will want to bring a gift. Complying with strict etiquette, guests should contact the parents who will give details of the gift list or items you would like. Without a list, guests may bring great presents which however aren’t required, duplicates or just totally random unwanted items! Most of your guests will prefer if you are honest about what you would like or need for your home. Close family and friends will want to give you gifts which they know you will find useful or treasure.

Money

The final thing to consider is whether to ask for money. There are a lot of rhymes which make this sound more polite than saying ‘Gifts: cash or cheques only’. People do realise that many people live together before the wedding so aren’t suddenly in need of equipping a whole house. Vouchers are away around this, as people will know their money is going on something wanted/useful, this can include travel vouchers towards the honeymoon.