So your invitations are all sent out and you’re now planning the finer details of your day. How many order of service do I need? How do I arrange my seating plan? This second part of my guide to wedding stationery covers all the ‘on the day’ stationery.
Order of Service / Order of the Day
These provide your guests with the details of the ceremony and can also be a nice souvenir of the day. Ideally you should provide one per person (or at least one per couple) plus any extras for whoever is involved in conducting the service.
An order of service for a church ceremony would be more comprehensive with the readings and hymns printed out in full for your guests to follow along. For a civil ceremony you could still have quite a comprehensive order of service with details of the music and readings printed out in full.
Order of the day details the timings of the various parts of the day and could include a brief outline of the ceremony including the titles of any readings and music.
You will need one or two per table depending on how many guests are on each table. Don’t forget to include a vegetarian option, and make sure you have catered for any special dietary requirements your guests may have.
Table Plan & Place Cards
A table plan on display at your venue will enable your guests to find their seats quickly and easily. The plan should show each numbered table with a list of the guests sitting on each table. If you want to assign particular seats for each guest then you will also need place cards at each place setting on the tables.
When working out your seating plan, there are a few things to bear in mind.
Think about guests who have disabilities, are elderly, or have young children and seat them at tables that are more easily accessible for the exits/toilets etc.
Seat younger guests near the dance floor, older guests further away.
Families should be sat together, try to avoid having a table of leftover people who don’t really know each other by mixing singles and couples in with family groups so that everyone will know at least some of the other guests at their table.
But of course there are many ways to seat a top table, and it is a case of what will work best for you. It can obviously be more complicated if parents of the bride and groom have divorced and remarried. To avoid any issues some couples have what is called a sweetheart table for just the bride and groom.
Table Names / Numbers
These will help your guests to find their assigned table easily. It is very popular now to have tables names rather than numbers. The names can fit in with the theme of the wedding or have a special meaning to the bride and groom.
Thank You Cards
It is very important to remember to thank your guests for sharing your day and to thank them for their gift. It is a good idea to make a list of who has given you what as you open your gifts. Or if you have your gift list with a department store they will often supply a list for you.
If you haven’t already seen it, take a look at my Guide to Wedding Stationery – part 1 for helpful advice on save the date cards, invitations and rsvp cards