Day-Of Wedding Stationery: What items do you really need?
When it comes to day of stationery, there are a lot of options and things to consider, but it leaves you wondering: what do you actually need? What is useful?
A few weeks ago I shared about what wedding stationery items you really need to include (you can read about it here), and like then, I’ll be erring on the side of “less is more”. If you want more, GO FOR IT! I’m not here to tell you want you want, but mainly to help anyone wondering what they need and what they should focus their time and budget on.
Seating Charts or Escort Cards
Firstly, you don’t need both as they are two different ways to fulfill the same purpose: directing people to their table.
But which is right for you?
I’ve got to say, I’ve got a soft spot in my heart for seating charts - they’re my favourite day of wedding calligraphy to do! And I think what really comes down to it is what you think looks nicer, as price between the two doesn’t vary much for calligraphy: the biggest price difference would come in the materials used because paper is generally cheaper than chalkboards, mirrors, acrylic, or other fun materials.
If you have assigned tables - one of these two is absolutely necessary. If you’ll be letting your guests pick their own tables, then it won’t be necessary (although then you’ll want a sign of some kind directing people to choose their own seats). If you go that route, I’d also recommend having a few tables reserved for your families up at the front. I once encountered a wedding where NO tables were reserved for family and the mom of the groom ended up sitting in the back. Let’s avoid that!
The question to ask yourself here is: Do I care where in the table people sit?
For smaller tables, like less than 10 people, place cards might not be necessary. However, if you’ll be having long tables that seat many people, you might want to use place cards to ensure that people who know each other get seated together!
The consideration here is less need and more want. I can’t tell you how often I hear people becoming thrilled to see their name written out so neatly on a card or tile to indicate their spot. It can make your guests feel cared for and thought of, and they get to take it home as a little keepsake!
If you’re having assigned seating, you’ll need these. If you are letting your guests choose their own tables, table numbers won’t be necessary (unless you’ll be having a buffet at the wedding and need to let your guests know who is up next!).
These are so pretty to include at the entrance of your wedding, and they can help guide guests to where they are supposed to go.
Usually, these include your names and the date, and are really fun to have on wood, chalkboards, mirrors, or acrylic!
Menus can go a few ways:
1 large sign describing the menu, usually by the buffet table
A few paper menus at the table
A menu for each guests at their seat
A menu isn’t necessary, especially if you’re serving only one dish - so if you’re on a budget skip this one. They’re also a really great way to add a little more decor to your table.
Want it to multi-task? Combine your menu with a place card. I’ve printed menus before and then gone in and added the guest’s name at the top to indicate their seat!
Ceremony programs can also go a few different ways. Traditionally they are paper handouts at the ceremony to let people know who is in the wedding party, who the parents are, and the order of the ceremony. An alternative is to have all this information on a sign as they enter the ceremony space.
Again, I’d say that if you’re budget is tight, skip this one! People don’t need to know what’s coming next in your wedding ceremony!
What “other signage” entails varies from wedding to wedding, but it might be a sign with instructions for the guestbook or photobooth, or a signature drinks sign for the bar. Anywhere where you might have instructions or additional details that would be useful for your guests to know!