wedding tables

How To Style Long Wedding Tables

When it comes to wedding receptions, the traditional set up has often been for a long top table for the bridal party, with round tables through the rest of the reception set up.

But while the old classics are tried and tested go-to’s for a reason, that doesn’t mean you have to stick to it.

As the taste in venues has changed in recent times, with many couples going for more laid back, rustic venues, the demand for long tables has increased and it’s not hard to see why.

Whether going for a room full of long tables, one big long table or a mix or round and long, they are something you should consider for your wedding day décor, both for their convivial nature and for their eye catching impact.  

Here we look at options and ways to style them to the max. In the meantime, don’t hesitate to get in touch with me directly if you wish to chat about any aspect of your wedding planning and décor.

 

Chairs

There’s no hard and fast rules when it comes to matching chairs to long tables, but there’s no denying that a long table set up certainly evokes a more laid back, relaxed style for your reception. Think village hall chic, no set table plan, people sitting and chatting where they feel most comfortable and a really intimate feeling. With that, often the best chairs to match can be bistro style or Chiavari chairs. Keep it simple and leave them naked or if you want to add an extra layer of chic why not add some tasteful draping or even streamers?

 

Florals and Garlands

Long tables love long garlands. They are a match made in heaven. Whether you decide to go for long lush greens paired with crisp whites, or florals with pops of colour interspersed along the way, it’s all about that overhang at the end. A long contrasting coloured table runner is also a great addition, as are the odd tall focal points, such as blossom trees or candelabras to bring a really visual counterpoint to the finished look.

 

Finishing Touches

There’s no limit to the amount of finishing touches you can add to your long tables. If you want to keep to a budget paper pieces such as pop-poms interspersed with your garland can look really well, as can economical yet rustic chic wooden boxes and slices. Candles of differing sizes lined along the centre line will look absolutely show stopping, as will lanterns.

 

A Mix of Long/Round

The exact type of table set up will often be dictated by your venue, so when viewing options be sure to ask what is and is not possible in terms of the space.

The style of venue will often be a factor too. Barn or lofty style venues generally work best with long tables. It also depends on what look you’re after – formal or relaxed.

Bear in mind that often a contrast looks more eye catching than uniformity, so consider a mix of round and long.

 

 

Spring Fling – Wedding Colours

Spring is all about the return of colour. In nature, the buds return to the trees, we start to get daffodils and tulips peeing through, cherry blossoms, the grass gets that touch greener and it’s all about a sense of freshness.

It’s a beautiful time of the year to tie the knot. And if you’re planning a spring wedding and you want to tie in with the seasonal colours and themes, then think colour and fresh greenery.

Often, spring evokes those ice cream dream pastel colours of blush pink, baby blue, canary yellow and mint green. All of which will look absolutely stunning and are easy to work with.

However, don’t discount going bolder with colour, either all round through your decor and flowers, or just with a few pops to offset the pastels. And of course a refreshing touch of crisp white and vivid greenery is always a classic look too.

Here’s some ideas to get your thinking. In the meantime, don’t hesitate to get in touch with me directly if you wish to chat about any aspect of your wedding planning and décor.

                                                           

Ceremony

Whether you’re saying ‘I do’ indoors or outdoors, flowers are key to channelling spring. Don’t be afraid to add some bright colours to your bridal bouquets, but equally don’t fear going for the more traditional blush pinks or soft peaches either. If you want to make a really stunning statement of spring, why not have a floral wall as your ceremony backdrop? Add colourful confetti for your church departure and why not consider having blossom trees line your aisle in the ultimate tribute to the spring?

 

On the Table

A heady mix of burlap, wooden slices, vases and pops of spring colour will look stunning for your table décor. If your budget is tight, why not go for a mix of paper pom poms in a range of colours, against some beautiful baby’s breath? Add in lanterns and candles for the perfect mix to bring your table to life

 

 

Around the Room

While flowers play a key role, lighting will also be a big factor in how your room looks and feels. Intersperse fairy lights with up-lighters and candles for the right mix of spring garden. Chinese style lanterns hung from the ceiling or over the dancefloor in a variety of pastels will look amazing during the day and even more romantic as the sun goes down. Don’t forget to dress focal points like staircases, fireplaces and consider having a flower wall for guests to take selfies at during the evening.

 

The Cake

When it comes to the cake, you can really have a lot of fun with a spring colour palette. But if you want to try something more unique, why not go for a naked style cake but with a different colour for each tier, for an almost pastel rainbow effect? Add flowers to your tiers and play around with buttercream and fondant finishes for that really stunning effect. And why not have fun adding additions like cake pops, donuts or mini cakes too in a variety of spring colours.

Velvet Crush Wedding Theme

This year velvet is making a big impression on weddings. A beautiful fabric, full of rich texture and visual impact, there are dozens of ways to bring a touch of velvet into your wedding décor.

From pops of velvet in the bridal party’s attire, to delicate details on bouquets and to adding well placed elements in the reception itself, expect to see velvet popping up everywhere.

It’s a versatile fabric that can be used in plenty of ways, although it is probably best to stick with accents rather than having velvet overload. There’s a range of colours to choose from, but if you want to keep it classic think of rich tones of purples, sage, red and blush pink.

Ideal for weddings with a more vintage vibe or elegant theme to it, don’t be afraid to have fun and contrast the beautiful texture with sharper finishes such as cool metal or wood.

Here’s some ideas to get your thinking. In the meantime, don’t hesitate to get in touch with me directly if you wish to chat about any aspect of your wedding planning and décor.

 

Flowers

One of the best ways to include a touch of velvet into your big day is with your bouquet. Think velvet style ribbon detailing on the brides bouquet or indeed the bridesmaid flowers too. Go for a colour that compliments your chosen florals and ensure the ribbon becomes a feature in itself to enhance the elegance of the bouquet.

 

Clothing           

Expect to see lots of pretty velvet accents appearing in the bridal parties clothing this year. From velvet shoes to velvet bow ties or even grooms jackets, this is a trend that crosses all gender lines for the couple. If you want to go all out, why not have your bridesmaids in velvet dresses? Invest in a velvet bolero for the bride, or if you want to add detailing to your dress why not have a visually impactful velvet bow around the waist of the dress?

 

On the Table

There’s plenty of ways to add velvet accents to your wedding tables. Think about velvet style table runners, or velvet ribbons around the menus or place cards. Velvet sashes on chairs will make for a stunning counterpoint with draping for example. Play around with textures when it comes to velvet and have a mix of finishes on the table. Cool metal or wood work well as contrasting textures for velvet.

 

Around the Room  

There so many ways to have fun with velvet around your venue. From adding velvet ribbons to garlands, to going big with velvet style backdrop for photos or even some upcycled velvet couches for guests to chill out on and for use for some great wedding photos, don’t be afraid to get creative.

 

 

Quirky Wedding Menu Ideas

As you get deeper into your wedding day planning, you realise there are many ways to add your own stamp and personal touches along the way. Indeed many of these little touches are just that – small details that actually make a huge impact and anything you can do to make the day feel more personal and special to you both as a couple is always worth looking into.

Menus for example are a great way to add a spark of individuality to proceedings and it doesn’t necessarily have to be a big expense. Many wedding venues and packages will provide a plain printed menu for your reception, but there are lots of ways you can customise the menu to make them almost part of your wedding day décor. For example if you’re going for a rustic style wedding theme, then a large menu on a board or palette would be a great fit. Similarly you need to take into account the type of meal you’re having. If it’s a quite formal affair, then individual menus would work best, but if you’re having long cafeteria style tables or a more relaxed buffet meal, then one or two larger menus for the whole group work perfectly.

If you’d like to chat about this or any other aspect of your wedding day décor, then please don’t hesitate to contact me directly.

 

Leaves
Using oversized tropical style leaves is a great alternative for your wedding menu. Ideal if you’re having a classic theme of green and white with a focus on foliage, or indeed if you want to channel that Hawaiian feel, it works very well too.
leaves

 

Doilies
Doilies may be synonymous with the old world, but they can look super smart for your wedding menus. Ideal for a host of themes from vintage to elegant, think about playing around with spraying the doilies different colours, and getting a calligrapher to individually write each one, with each guest’s name on the doily too.
doilies
Chopping Boards & Blackboards
Boards work really well with a more casual themed wedding. Whether that be a rustic, barn style or a wedding with long cafeteria style tables, consider using boards instead of plain printed menus and if you’re serving a buffet or more relaxed style of meal, boards are the perfect match. You could opt for one large oversized board on a palette for example. Large or mini blackboards and chopping boards also work really well.
boards

 

Glass and Mirrors
Similar to boards, creative use of mirrors or glass can work really well for your menus. These are generally larger pieces, akin to the size of the seating plan and is placed in a central location on the room so all the guests can read it.
glass

 

Napkin Menu
This works really well for practically any style of wedding and you can get as creative as you wish. You can also add a personal message and use it as the guest’s place card too, for maximum multi-tasking.
napkin

 

Food and Drink
Why not have a paper bag printed up with the menu on it and inside pop a bread roll or other edible treat for the guests? And if you’re both wine aficionados, why not turn each table’s bottle of wine into the menu via the label?
food-and-drink

 

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Ice Breakers for Wedding Guests

No matter how much time and energy you put into the seating plan for your wedding day, you should be prepared for the fact that you may end up with a few tables of mixed guests or indeed have a few guests who may only know one other or indeed not know anyone else on their table at all. While of course, it’s not an ideal scenario, there are lots of ways you can help these guests to feel at ease.

Icebreakers are the ideal solution and there are tonnes of fantastic, fun ideas to play around with that should have your guests mingling and laughing in no time at all.

You can go from the very simple, such as speech sweepstakes, to the more elaborate such as dares or treasure hunts, but whichever you choose to go for, just bear in mind the best icebreakers are usually the simple ones that provoke a few giggles and get people chatting. And of course as the meal progresses, things tend to become much more relaxed naturally.

If you’d like to chat about this or any aspect of your wedding day décor, then please don’t hesitate to get in touch with me.

 

Speech Sweepstakes
The speech betting is a universal a classic, but that doesn’t mean there’s anything wrong with using it, as everyone just loves betting on the length of the speeches. It’s one of the simplest and best icebreakers as and gets the whole table involved. You can even print out sheets so guests can all fill in their guesses. Another great betting game to consider is the ‘Thank You’ game, where each guest, or pair of guests puts a €5 in a glass and moves it to their left each time one of the speakers says the words ‘thank you.’ Wedding speech bingo works in a similar way too, but you can make it more formal with printed sheets and phrases for guests to look out for in order to get a full house!
sweepstakes

 

Board Games
Forget monopoly or risk, or more serious board games and instead think fun games like operation, jenga, hungry hippos, connect 4 or buckaroo! The emphasis here should be on getting people relaxed and laughing, instead of serious game playing or winning.
board-games

 

Nametags
This is a bit of a quirky one and again, great for mixed tables as it helps people not only remember each other’s names, but it should help start a conversation too! The idea is the guest can fill in their name on the tag, plus how they know the bride or groom! You could leave this section blank for them to fill in, or provide some funny options to get things going. Have a look on Google for some funny templates to play around with.
nametags

 

Fact Cards or Madlibs
Provide fact cards for your guests to fill in – they can either write one interesting fact, have them shuffled and then everyone has to guess who each fact belongs to, or you can have them write down three facts – two true and one fake. The rest of their table then have to guess which fact is the fake. This is a great way to get your guests chatting and laughing together. Madlibs are another guaranteed winner to get the giggles going as are the classic ‘he said, she said.’
madlibs

 

Dares or Tasks
Setting dares or tasks can be great fun, but bear in mind your guests temperaments. Your 90 year old conservative granny may not take too kindly to being dared to kiss the groom for example, or then again perhaps she would! Just know your audience before launching in on the dares. However if you know they will go down a treat, then go for it. They can be as silly or mischievous as you wish. Why not leave them in a bowl to be plucked out at random and passed around the table, or be inspired by a dare dice or write the dares in an origami style fortune teller like the ones you would have made as school? If you want to get really creative why not give each guest a fortune cookie as their favour but have a dare printed inside each one?
dares

 

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Wedding Fruit Centrepieces

Fruit can make a really quirky centrepiece or addition to your wedding day décor and it can be a great way to keep an eye on the budget versus fresh flowers too. Super versatile, fruit can play into practically any theme from retro to vintage to modern, glamourous, barn style and so much more. Plus if you’re having a very seasonal focused wedding, then again fruit can really play a huge role in setting the scene and feel for the venue.

You can also have a lot of fun with fruit. From golden pineapples to King Henry the VIII style opulence, fruit can do it all. Plus if you’re a DIY lover, then there’s plenty of ways you can get working on some creative homemade fruity centrepieces, especially if you’ve a green thumb and want to add some of your home crop in on the action too. And don’t forget, you can arrange the fruit in such a way as to let you guests have a nibble, making for a fun ice breaker.

If you’d like to chat about this or any aspect of your wedding day décor, then please don’t hesitate to get in touch with me directly.

 

Seasonal
If your wedding is having a specific seasonal feel, then fruit is a great option to really set the scene. For winter think holly berries, chestnuts, mandarins and cranberries. For autumn, pumpkins, squash (yes technically veggies but these work well too!) apples and blackberries. For summer it’s got to be punnets of fresh strawberries and raspberries while for spring think plumbs, radishes and cherries.
seasonal

 

Tropical
For that fun tropical feel there’s plenty to get creative with. Pineapples are the obvious choice, but why not go all out and spray them gold for the extra kitsch factor? This works so well if you’re going for the whole pink flamingo’s Hawaiian theme! Don’t forget other exotic fruits such as papayas, mangoes, coconuts, limes, lemons. And there’s lots of ways to display them without going to OTT on the tacky factor. Sliced limes and lemons for example look super smart when lining vases.
tropical

 

Vintage
Fruit works really well if you want to channel a vintage inspired vibe. Think about mixing the fruits with some vintage style blooms too for the full effect. In terms of fruits, consider those that were seen as exotic and expensive in the Victorian era or even the long tables of King Henry VIII. Grapes, pomegranate, figs and dates are ideal.
vintage

 

Get Creative
When it comes to displaying the fruit as your centrepieces, it pays to get creative as while fruit can look stunning, it does need help to be presented. Think about spraying fruit with metallics, recreate the feel of apple trees with a creative use of tall vases. Display fruits with candles, under cloches or in mini wooden crates for that home-grown produce feel. The sky is the limit on how you want to display it.
creative

 

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Games to Entertain Your Wedding Guests

Weddings can be a long day for everyone. Of course for you, as the couple getting married, most of it will pass by in a wonderful whirlwind of emotions and ceremony, from walking down the aisle, to saying the I do’s, to getting photos taken, to the speeches, cutting the cake and the first dance, most of the day is regimented and set out. For guests, however parts of the wedding can be a little long, especially when you are off getting your photos taken, some guests can feel this part of the day drags slightly.

So it’s a good idea to think about some kind of entertainment. And that doesn’t mean it has to be expensive either. Sure it’s nice to have a musical act entertain your guests during the drinks reception, but with a little thought, there’s plenty of quirkier ways to keep guests having fun, plus it can also serve as a great ice breaker too. Think about giant jenga, connect 4, or if you have outdoor access in your venue maybe some boules or croquet?

To chat about this or any other aspect of your wedding day décor and room theming, then please don’t hesitate to get in touch with me directly.

 

Retro Games
Who doesn’t love a good retro game or board game? Think about classic retro board games dotted around the drinks reception area and let the guests play as they wish, with the likes of draughts, connect 4 and scrabble. And don’t forget about giant versions of these games too, such as giant jenga, a giant word search or giant connect 4!
retro-games

 

Outdoor Fun
If you’ve got access to outdoor space at your venue and the weather allows, then make the most of it with some fun outdoor lawn games everyone will enjoy. Think about having a carnival style theme with old fashioned sack races, ring toss or throwing horseshoes. Classic croquet is always great fun, as is boules. Table tennis is another one that young and old will enjoy and if you’re feeling creative why not DIY a spin the wheel with different tasks for guests to carry out.

outdoor-fun

 

Games at the Table
The fun doesn’t have to stop when the guests sit down to dinner, and indeed here games are even more important as an icebreaker for groups who may not know each other so well. Of course the classic speech sweepstakes is always firm favourite amongst Irish wedding guests, as is the ‘thank you game,’ but others you may want to include are ‘he said, she said,’ wedding madlibs and wedding guest bingo!
table-games

 

Late Night Fun
When the lights go down and the music goes up, it’s a safe bet that most guest will be feeling more relaxed, so why stop the fun and games? Think about games like twister, the limbo, beer pong, a piñata or even fun dance offs or sing offs for guaranteed grown up giggles? Just make sure you’ve got the cameras ready to capture all the shenanigans.
late-night

 

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How To Use Greenery In Your Wedding Decor

A big trend this year has been for greenery in wedding décor. On first thought, it may seem a little boring when compared to colourful florals, but on the contrary, using bold greens in your décor can be incredibly stunning. Think of a vibrant array of greens against crisp whites for the ultimate look. They can also be much more budget friendly then fresh florals, which is another major plus to consider.

There’s also a huge range of greens to choose from, such as ferns, herbs, boxwood, moss, eucalyptus, lambs ear, lavender, gypsophila, banana leaf, bamboo, holly and many more. And there’s so many ways to incorporate them into your wedding day décor and theme, for example using more banana style leaves will give it a tropical theme, whereas more moss and ferns will make it feel more woodland. From the ceremony itself, to the room décor and even in your bouquets, greenery is the really versatile addition to your wedding day.

To chat about this, or any other aspect of your wedding day décor or planning please don’t hesitate to get in touch with me.

 

In the Ceremony
Greenery works incredibly well for your ceremony pew ends. It can look so atmospheric especially in a church setting. If you’re going for lanterns, then why not surround them with a mini garland or greens or use mini green wreaths on each pew? Alternatively a scattering of green leaves can look stunning along the aisle and don’t forget an arch, which can look incredibly eye-catching in vibrant greens.
ceremony

 

On the Table
Table runners work so well especially for long tables, but don’t discount it for round tables too. Use the greenery in a circle for a unique centrepiece that will really stand out. Also think about wrapping candles in greens, bamboo or leaves and why not use larger banana style leaves for the each guests place name.

table decor

 

Favours
Herbs are a super quirky idea for favours, especially if you and your husband or wife to be have a bit of a green thumb. You can give guests mini potted herbs or even some seeds for them to grow. Micro cacti works really well too.
favours

 

Hanging Greenery
If you don’t want to go for greenery on your tables or around the room, but would like to incorporate it in other ways then think about going for hanging greens. It can be a real stand out detail of your décor and is relatively easy to pull off. Just take a hula hoop and some greens and you’re got a readymade woodland chandelier! Also inverted lace parasols stuffed with greens make ideal hanging décor too. Greenery can be hung over the top table, the dancefloor, over a dessert station or cake table, or indeed over each table.
hanging greens

 

Staircases
If you’re lucky enough to have a staircase in your wedding venue, then make the most of it, by styling it with some dramatic greens. It is a look that works so well and especially when you team the greens with simple candles. It is surprisingly impressive and very simple to pull off.
staircases

 

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Alternative Top Table Arrangements

Seating plans can provoke a sense of dread in a bride or groom to be. While it’s often obvious which groups of guests should sit where, there can be some problems and the top table is not immune from these issues either. Some parents may be separated, divorced or remarried, some may be on good terms, and some may not. Some couples’ parents may have passed away and they may wish to have grandparents present at the top table, while some couples may have children and would like them at the top table too. There are a staggering number of possibilities to consider and it’s very much individual to the couple.

But the important thing is not to panic. It’s understandable that in the middle of the wedding planning melee, the top table seating plan can give you the shivers, but there are always options. Remember you don’t have to stick to a traditional long table and seating arrangement for the top table. There are lots of great alternatives and no one arrangement is better than the other.

As an award winning wedding planner, I’ve organised lots of non-traditional top tables to suit every couple’s needs. If you’d like to get in touch about this or any aspect of your wedding planning or décor, please email me.

 

Sweetheart Table
Kitsch and cute, a sweetheart table is essentially a table where the newly married couple sit apart at their own table, facing the rest of the guests. It can be a little much for those who don’t want to feel like they are ‘on show,’ but there are other advantages. It allows you to spend more time with your new husband or wife and allows the bridal party to be seated at other tables giving you scope to move people around more easily as you’re not leaving anyone off the top table. Also consider having a sweetheart table where the newly married couple sit with their kids at their own special table.
sweetheart

 

Round Top Table
The classic top table tends to be a long rectangular one facing the rest of the guests, but that doesn’t have to be the case. Think about having a round top table as it is perfect for maximising socialising, plus there’s no real middle in this style of table so you can again move people around more freely without anyone left feeling like they’ve been left out in the cold.
round

 

Bridal Party Only
If family issues are proving to be a problem with parents, stepparents and partners, then a great solution is to have just the newly married couple, along with their bridesmaids, best man and groomsmen at the top table. This way you can seat the parents and/or stepparents at other tables in the room or even ask them to ‘host’ these tables in a special VIP role.
bridal party only

 

Long Table
Having long tables is great when you have large numbers, rustic style themes or you want to make the most of the space in you venue. They are also great if you aren’t keen on a traditional top table, because everyone is sitting equally and no noses will be out of joint. Plus to make it even more relaxed, don’t have any names on the seats and allow people to sit there they wish.
long

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