So much work goes into planning your own wedding, especially on a budget. As you take care of so many aspects of the wedding reception, it can be easy for you to miss a few important details along the way. While you’ll be comfortably seated at a well-appointed head table with the rest of your wedding party, most of your guests will be seated at tables of their own across the room. With a few of these gorgeous ways to dress up your reception tables, you can not only make sure that each and every guest feels properly appreciated, but you can also ensure that your entire reception venue will be colorful, memorable, and beautiful—scenes you’ll be sure to capture in your photo book.
Start with the Tablecloth
It’s amazing how simple tablecloths can transform drab pieces of furniture into the stages for so much beauty and creativity. As you start to design your reception tables, be sure not to omit your tablecloths as an important aspect of the design. Doing more than simple, unadorned white or off-white is a terrific first step to jazz up your tables. Of course, even with colored accents, white tablecloths are the go-to selection for weddings, but adding pale golds, pinks, blues, or lavenders can make a big difference on an oft-ignored avenue for creativity. Depending on how the rest of your design comes together, you may feel emboldened to get more creative with patterns or seasonal tones. Some couples, hosting exceedingly rustic weddings in outdoor settings, have even used burlap for their tablecloths! A word of caution: if you’re planning to go all out with the rest of your table design, you may want to exercise a little bit of restraint when it comes to tablecloths. Too many loud patterns or bold colors can clash with the rest of your table and draw a little too much attention.
Wicks and Wax
Candles have had a special place in human civilization for centuries. It’s almost as if we’re innately drawn to the warm glow and gentle heat. Whether you opt for traditional candlesticks, arrange a bevy of tiny tea candles, or go with the DIY charm of mason jars, incorporating candles into each reception table will make them much more magical. You could even try floating candles in a bed of water for notes of delicate nuance. Candles in colors that match or complement your wedding theme can be a great way to add more character to the setting if they don’t find themselves competing with the rest of the table. And when it comes to competition, scented candles are one variant you’ll definitely want to avoid—too many scented candles in one place are sure to clash with the aromas of the reception dinner, and guests may be sensitive to the candles’ scents.
Baby, You’re My Centerpiece
Don’t fall victim to the modern architectural axiom that form follows function. What works for glass-and-steel skyscrapers doesn’t necessarily work for wedding receptions. For one special night, it’s fine to have form with no function! Relative to the rest of your table, where plates and tablecloths serve clear purposes, a centerpiece doesn’t really do anything. But it doesn’t need to—all it must do is look beautiful and lend some more beauty to what you’ve already transformed into a beautiful room. Centerpieces can include your favorite flowers, candles, or even lanterns. Don’t feel limited to flowers, however—if you’re a green thumb yourself and want your wedding to represent your verdant inclinations, other bits of greenery like ferns or decorative mosses can add unique character to a centerpiece. As we discussed above, every table’s centerpiece needn’t be identical, and in fact, they probably shouldn’t—subtle distinctions between centerpieces can help guests find their seats and feel a little more special once they’re seated.
Bursts of Color
It’s not just alliteration that ties white and weddings together. As a color of hope, peace, and purity, white and its many subtle variants—eggshell, cream, bone, parchment, ivory—all feature heavily in traditional wedding décor. Straying too far from the family of whites is dangerous, of course, because at some point your wedding ceases to look like a wedding, but there’s also something to be said for using too much white. Anyone who’s ever stepped outside on a snowy day knows how much that one color can fatigue the eyes. Don’t be afraid to embrace colorful accents that tastefully but effectively break up the monotony of an entire room of cream or parchment. You can even consider color-coding your reception tables by napkins or centerpieces—sending guests to robin’s-egg blue or tangerine can be more interesting than merely directing them to Table 12.
Tablecloths, centerpieces, candles, and colorful accents are all necessary parts of the table. With so many aspects to concentrate on, it can be easy to lose sight of the reception dinner and what you’ll be serving it on. Not only can using the venue’s own dinnerware be expensive, it could also be unacceptably bland. Plain white porcelain plates? People use those at home. For a once-in-a-lifetime occasion as special as this one, eye-catching one-use dinnerware is only appropriate as one of the gorgeous ways to dress up your reception tables.
Whatever your tastes and however you’ve designed the tables, one of our many lines of disposable plasticware will be the perfect feature in a perfect table arrangement. Whether it’s the luxe feel of burgundy accents on white, the restrained charm of gold on ivory, or intricate geometric patterns along the rims, you can affordably lend elegance to each reception table with one of our lines of single-use dinnerware. And every table’s dinnerware needn’t be the same. Depending on how creative you’ve gotten with each centerpiece, you may find that different designs are better suited to different tables. We’d love to see what sorts of ideas you come up with!