Stationery Help: Table Plans

Table Plans can often cause a bit of stress, so I thought I’d bring together a little blog post to explain where to start, some Table Plan options, and I’m also going to have a little chat about creating flexible table plans if you’re worried about COVID affecting your wedding day.

Dearest Love Photography, Floristy: May Rose Floral Design

So firstly, what are Table Plans?
Table plans tell your guests where to sit to eat. They are usually split into sections, with each section representing a table. You can also list guests in alphabetical order, next to which you’d list their table number.

Do we have to have one?
If you’re having allocated seating, then it’s advisable to have a table plan so that your guests aren’t rushing around trying to find their names on the tables. If you’re asking guests to sit wherever they’re comfortable then you don’t need one – though this isn’t always feasible as your caterers need to know who is eating which meal and what table they’re on!

Siobhan Beales Photography, Cakes: Hannah Culley's Cakes, Floristry: Vervain Floral Design, Styling: Wedding Creations UK, Venue: Orchard at Munsley

How do we decide who sits where?
You know your guests best! It’s always nice to have at least one person on the table that someone knows, or, if a guest is coming to your wedding alone have a think about if you have a friend or relative that you think they’d really get on with and pop them next to each other.

What kind of Table Plans are available?
Every stationer will have a different range of Table Plans – at Pigment + Paper we use either board (usually A2 or A1 in size – 420x594mm or 594x841mm), fabric hangings, or separate pieces per table which can be arranged really beautifully at your venue.

Should we have Table Numbers or Names? How do we name them?
This is completely personal preference – for ease, you can go for numbers.
If you have a theme to your wedding or you have a strong interest/hobby as a couple you could name the tables after those (perhaps different wildflowers, books, films, animals, places you’ve been etc.) We can even illustrate each of the items, and you can have corresponding table names.

Do you do fabric table plans?
We do, we do fabric table plans and signage. They can be up to 1m square. They can be printed on a range of fabrics and are printed with eco-inks.

We think we’d like separate pieces for each table, how shall we arrange them?
There are so many simple (and not so simple!) ways to arrange table plan pieces – you can use props such as window frames, benches, or crates, you could even talk to your florist and see if you can nestle them amongst flowers and make a beautiful feature of them. If you have a stylist it’s worth working through ideas with them as the individual pieces can be really striking when thoughtfully arranged.

Faye Taylor Photography, Floristry: Clementine Moon Floral Design, Styling: Wedding Helper UK

Think outside the box! Here they’ve been styled by Kirsten at the Wedding Helper onto a bench – how gorgeous does this look? Photographed by Faye Taylor at Pauntley Court, floristry by Clementine Moon Floral Design.

Che Birch-Hayes Photography

You can even pin them to a wall, or onto an entrance door. If you’d like to prop them onto an easel, the separate pieces can be mounted onto a board using wax seals for a really luxurious touch.

If your venue has a feature, you can make use of that (with their permission). You’ll see below that we dangled the table plan pieces off some racking on a stone wall at The Mule Shed so that guests would see it as they walk towards the dining hall. The second photograph has the pieces pinned to a beautiful wooden door, and the third image has the pieces attached to a bare plaster wall.

How do we start designing them?
Each of our Collections have a corresponding Table Plan, which can be customised in terms of colour and format (fabric, board, separate tables) free of charge. It’s just deciding which to go for!
Alternatively, you can go for a bespoke table plan – if you have ideas of what you might like to include, just send us an email and we can put together some sketches and a quote for you.

Dearest Love Photography

How much notice do you need to create a table plan?
For bespoke designs, we need as much notice as possible as we’re booked up months in advance. If you’re having a table plan from one of our Collections then we’d ideally need around 4 weeks. If you’d like to wait until as close to the wedding as possible, 2 weeks before the date is the latest we’d leave it to send it to the printers. We would need to have designed it before this, so please book in as soon as you’ve decided you’d like us to create it for you (even if a year in advance)!

How can we create a flexible table plan to allow for changes due to COVID?
Something that we’ve done before is printed each guest name on separate pieces of card, and then arranged the names onto a board under table name titles. This means that you can change the guest list right up to the day of the wedding just by putting out the names of guests who are going to attend. We try to be as flexible as possible so do get in touch if you’ve ideas of ways you’d like to create a flexible table plan.

What else do we need for the tables?
Importantly, you’ll need the corresponding table number/name, so that once guests know which table they are seated at, they can find it! You will also need name cards, these can however be combined with favour packaging if you’d prefer (for example, personalised gin bottles, personalised boxes for edible favours). You might also like to have menus – these can be one per guest, or they can be put in the centre of the table.

I really hope this has helped, but if you do have any questions just contact us and we’ll do our best to help! Take care and thanks for reading!

A huge thank you to all the photographers and suppliers who have taken the photos or been part of them, I have listed and linked to each below.

Photography: Dearest Love Photography, Che Birch-Hayes Photography , Faye Taylor Photography, Siobhan Beales Photography | Styling: Wedding Creations UKWedding Helper UK, Dress to Impress by Julie | Floristry: Vervain Floral Design, May Rose Floral Design, Clementine Moon Floral Design | Stationery: Pigment +Paper | Cakes: Hannah Culley’s Cakes

Our Wedding

Our wedding day! A very wet and windy day under the oaks in Herefordshire.
We were married in Hereford Town Hall on a gorgeous sunny morning, with only immediate family due to our complete fear of doing a ceremony in front of more than a handful of people…! Topped off by an absolute feast of a brunch at the wonderful La Madeleine in Hereford.

We had a party with all of our friends and family on my Uncle’s farm, with some lovely big tents, loads of delicious food, and good music. It was the hottest summer ever until…the day of our wedding – where it was torrential rain until about 7pm.
We had planned a million lovely things in the sunshine – with tent sides that opened for panoramic views over the Malvern Hills in the background but instead everyone had to get cosy in the tents until it passed, and wrap themselves up in blankets in the evening. The wonderful guys at Ffwrnes pizza kept us all fed with delicious warm pizzas – how they managed to set up their kitchen in those vertical sheets of rain I will never know!

We wanted everything on our wedding day to have a story, and to be eco-conscious where we could.
We had zero plastic, and generated very little waste. My Mum and I made my outfit – the top I designed and embroidered which you’ll see in the photos – the top half was bamboo and the bottom half was linen. It’s the first thing we had made so potentially a little ambitious… We actually also made hers, and I designed the fabric – she wanted polka dots with some very particular colours!
My sister made our wedding cakes, and my Dad made the wedding cake stand from wood slices from felling some trees in my in-laws’ woodland. My parents made 200(!) cotton napkins, and I decorated them with lavender from our garden. The table runners were printed recycled cotton rag paper, with illustrations from my top all over them. We had petals on the tables, again, dried from our garden!
We drove my car (Otis the Morris Minor!) and turned our campervan into a music-hub for the day!

We inadvertently had an oak-themed wedding. We got married in ‘The Oak Room’ in Hereford Town Hall, we live under a giant oak tree, and we ended up partying under the oaks in Bromyard. So, we harnessed that and set our invitations around it. We called it Webbapalooza (party of the newly-webbs), and created a fully hand-written, hand-drawn invitation.

We printed them onto cotton rag paper (made of recycled cotton), and bundled them up with some acorn ‘hats’ we collected from the oak tree that shadows over our home, and felted the balls to go inside them to make little colourful acorns.
We had a map of nearby towns (we were married rather remotely, and people were travelling from all over the country so we wanted to give them an opportunity to make a day of it!), a lot of information about taxis and accommodation, and an RSVP all on the 5-fold concertina invitations.
Photographed below on my wedding top with one of our table runners!

We were so lucky to have the most wonderful friends and suppliers on our day. I’ll list them properly at the end of the post, with links, but each has a long ol’ story.

The wonderful Jo at Issy & Bella created the most gorgeous flowers for us all – I just sent a picture of my dress fabric to Jo and asked her to do whatever she fancied – and had the most incredible creations with gold accents.

My shawl had a similar story – I sent the fabric image to a felt artist on Etsy and asked her to do what she liked, and ended up with a gorgeous fern filled shawl with gold threads intertwined.

The mens’ suits were from James Lear of Arundel – the lovely Polly, in Nailsworth. Frankl’s (the dog!) bow tie was from a lovely maker on Etsy.

We had a huge spread of antipasti and salads with an inhumane amount of cake for lunch –  fantastic bread from the local bakery, cheese from the local deli, and salads from our local café.

Our wonderful friend Rich took our wedding photos for us, and our rings were made by Helen Brice who we are now superfans of – having 4 rings between us!

A family friend gave us his old Butchers’ bike, which we filled with a friends’ flowers to have a bit of colour outside the tent. (Soon to be a very soggy bike – but at least we had a few rainbows!)

We had so many friends help us to make the day special – those helping us in the intense few days running up (you all know who you are!) are just completely wonderful and we treasure the memories of those late nights!

Wedding Brunch: La Madeleine, Wedding Lunch Suppliers: Café Eleganza, Marches Delicatessen, Wedding Dinner: Ffwrnes, Tents: Tents4elements, Bouquets, head-crown & buttonholes: Issy & Bella, Photography: Richard Woods Photography, Men’s suits: James Lear of Arundel, Rings: Helen Brice Designs,