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Wedding Reception Seating

Martha Stewart Weddings, Volume 6 1998

The bride and groom hold the two most important seats at the reception. Their table should be easily seen from anywhere in the room so all the guests can be witness to their expressions of happiness. The following diagrams offer suggestions for seating attendants and family members.

The Wedding Party
Traditionally, the table for the wedding party is rectangular, with seating on one side only, facing out, so the guests can see the couple easily; often the table will be on a dais. The table should be centrally located, and flower arrangements should be kept low so as not to obstruct anyone's view.

  1. Usher
  2. Bridesmaid
  3. Best Man
  4. Bride
  5. Groom
  6. Honor Attendant
  7. Usher
  8. Bridesmaid

If the table is round, the bride and groom should still face the room. The best man is seated to the right of the bride; the maid or matron of honor sits to the groom's left. The remainder of the wedding party is seated outward from the bride and groom, alternating groomsmen and bridesmaids.

 

  1. Officiant
  2. Groom's Mother
  3. Bride's Father
  4. Officiant's Spouse
  5. Groom's Father
  6. Bride's Mother

Parents of the Bride and Groom
At the most traditional hosts' table, the bride's mother sits in the center facing out, where she can keep close watch on the party; the bride's father sits directly across from her, and the groom's father sits on her right. The officiant may be seated to the left of the bride's mother. The groom's mother traditionally sits to the right of the bride's father, with the officiant's spouse to his left.

  1. Bride
  2. Groom
  3. Honor Attendant
  4. Grandparent
  5. Groom's Mother
  6. Bride's Father
  7. Officiant's Spouse
  8. Groom's Father
  9. Bride's Mother
  10. Officiant
  11. Grandparent
  12. Best Man

The seating arrangement above allows the closest relatives and friends of the bride and groom to join them at one table. The wedding party is represented with the best man to the right of the bride and the maid or matron of honor to the groom's left. Traditionally, the male-female pattern continues around the entire table. Grandparents or siblings can be seated on the other side of each of the honor attendants. The officiant is seated to the right of the grandparent next to the best man; the bride's mother is to the right of the officiant. On her right, the groom's father is seated with the officiant's spouse (if he or she has one) on his right. Finally, the father of the bride is seated to the right of the officiant's spouse, while the groom's mother is seated to his right.