6 Unique Wedding Reception Seating Ideas

Every seat will be the best seat in the house

Updated 04/01/18

Photo by Lucky Malone Photography, Planning by First Look Events

Once you've finalized the perfect ceremony seating arrangement, tackle the next item on your wedding planning agenda—creating unique reception seating that will satisfy all your wedding attendants. Gone are the days of merely designating guests to assorted round tables scattered throughout your chosen venue (and exiling any B-listers to the back corner). Instead, make every seat the best seat in the house. Decorate the space with much more modern and unexpected table and chair setups, like square-shaped arrangements or long banquet-style tables that can accommodate the entire wedding crew.

No matter how lengthy your guest list, your wedding reception layout can instantly add a much more intimate feel to your wedding day, which in turn can make friends and family feel more involved in the festivities. When it comes to seating your nearest and dearest, you have limitless options for creatively arranging (and styling) the tables and chairs within the confines of your venue, no matter your wedding style. Whether guests will be dining al fresco or inside a cozy event space, bid farewell to the standard table and chair combos and check out a few of our favorite unique reception seating ideas as inspiration for your own wedding.

01 of 06

Square

Photo by Lauren Fair Photography, Planning by Kaleidoscope Solutions and Weddings

Physically surround yourself with all your loved ones through a square table setup. If you're craving a sweetheart table, situate one within the interior of the shape to keep the focus on you and your partner during the big day.

02 of 06

Among Foliage

Photo by Volvoreta

For an outdoor reception venue, allow Mother Nature to effortlessly contribute to your table layout. This couple aligned their seating, complete with a square setup and two longer tables, with plenty of bushes and pretty bougainvillea to let natural elements do the most of the talking.

03 of 06

Scattered

Photo by Ben Yew Photography, Planing and Styling by Matthew Oliver Weddings

You can still opt for multiple separate, rectangular tables to seat your guests, but add a less cookie-cutter approach by scattering them around the venue space. This will ensure the locale feels more fresh and open. Just don't overthink the placement—the mismatched look will add a casual and spontaneous feel regardless.

04 of 06

Banquet-Style

Photo by Steve Steinhardt, Design by So Happi Together

No more stressing over where to seat your estranged cousin Leslie! With a long, banquet-style table, every place setting is just as wonderful as the next, so kick assigned seating to the curb. If you're looking to establish a heightened sense of community at your wedding reception, creating one large table to fit all your nearest and dearest will do the trick nicely (as long as your venue has the space).

05 of 06

Meandering

Photo by Lucky Malone Photography, Planning by First Look Events

Take banquet-style tables up a notch and throw in a wave-like orientation. Not only does it look completely cool and original, but this seating arrangement also makes it easier for nearby guests to chat with each other.

06 of 06

Poolside

Photo by Elisa Bricker Photography, Planning by Bella Notte

If your venue happens to include a body of water, work around it (literally). Position your tables poolside, with chairs facing away from the agua so guests have plenty of wiggle room. This is especially perfect for enhancing a smaller indoor venue. Just make sure your seating has enough distance from the pool to avoid any accidental wet falls.

Related Stories