When you are planning your wedding, you picture the last few weeks to be filled with bridal party brunches and afternoons at the spa and manicures with your friends and those last five pounds that you wanted to lose just magically melt away while you sip on champagne at your final dress fitting.
And then reality sets in. You've got two weeks left, people keep changing their RSVPs, which is making it impossible for you to plan your seating chart, or finalize your bill with the rental company and catering company, and the weather channel is predicting rain on the day of your outdoor ceremony and cocktail hour. Oh and just four days before the wedding, an unseasonably early frost kills every flowering plant in your parents yard that was planted specifically to bloom at the wedding (by the way, asking for pity when you are buying every last flowering plant at Lowes can get you a decent discount in the gardening section!). Everything you carefully planned in the past months is basically getting thrown out the window and you find yourself coming up with Plan B and Plan C and Plan D.
All of that would stress out many a bride. It definitely stressed me out (and may have actually help me lose those last few pounds that week). But luckily we all got through it together, but not without some creative thinking and lots of flexibility.
When Tom and I first discussed our vision for our wedding, we were both pretty set on the idea of just a few long banquet tables - we wanted our guests to feel like they were sitting at a giant dining room table, a community table, passing around plates of food and enjoying one another's company. I knew I wanted to assign specific seating at our large tables (25 - 30 people per table).
Since a lot a people had to change their RSVPs for various reasons, we had to play around with the seating a lot to try to keep family with family, friends with friends, etc. I ended up buying a set of menu stamps from Papersource and some antiqued tags from Etsy. We stamped everyone's meal onto one side and hand wrote their name and spot to leave their table number on other.
Then I hung up pieces of paper in the layout of our reception tent and loosely taped the name tags up, making it easy to switch them around.
We tied the name tags to our favors that would be left at each place setting (little bags of wildflower seeds with a little poem we made up and had printed by another Etsy seller) and added the final table numbers a few days before the wedding when we were confident enough that it wouldn't change again. Then we bagged up the favors by table and left them with the decorations that would be put out by the caterers the day of the wedding.
Since we had such big tables, I also thought it would be easiest if people knew which table to head to when they entered the main tent. One of my bridesmaids' parents let us borrow an old glass panel door and using a white paint pen, my MOH painstakingly wrote each guests name on the glass. We stapled some burlap to the back to have some contrast to make reading the names easier, and also just because we had a TON of leftover burlap available.
It came out great and we actually got quite a few complements on the door idea. I'm sure every person that hosts a party feels this way, but it was so nice for people to notice the little details that we spent so much time on. It made the stress of the past months all melt away...(as did the copious amounts of alcohol).
And just for fun...a few shots of the guys from Big Top Tent Rental building the floor and putting the reception tent up. I had initially planned on trying to set the camera to take photos throughout the process to create a little stop motion video to show at the rehearsal dinner, but again, when you end up spending a few days cutting out dead plants and replanting so the whole yard doesn't look dead, those other things you planned on get pushed to the wayside.
Just a few wedding posts left folks...do I know how to stretch out the fun or what??