The MoBster Diaries

Sunday, March 3, 2013

How to Find Your Place

Finding your assigned seat at a reception is becoming  more interesting. Party hosts are finding very clever ways to sort their guests into table groups, depending on themes or personal experiences to step things up a notch.

Elegant Scribbles hand-writes hundreds of place cards/escort cards every year. Most are traditional white or ivory cards - classic, elegant, and time-tested. But once in a while, we're asked to work with table cards and individual place assignments that are a little more creative. The trick is to find just the right way to express your personality or carry out your party theme.

Need ideas? Definitely check out creative place card ideas on Pinterest and other online sites. The key is to take an idea and make it your own. Sometimes, if's not the specific card that's unique but the way it's displayed. You'll find lots of ideas online for that, too. The two ways our clients use to put a twist on the standard place card most often are:

  • Attach traditional cards or tags to favors - wine glasses, little bottles of Tabasco sauce or sunscreen, key rings, or whatever fits the theme of the reception
  • Postcards of places significant to the hosts or theme - New York City landmarks, cities or attractions that have played a role in their lives, places they'd like to visit
  • Small envelopes with the name written on the outside, table number/name on a card inside the envelope. If you anticipate last-minute seating/table changes, this is the way to go. Simply switch out the cards inside the envelope.
However you choose to get folks seated at a reception, I do have a few guidelines for place cards/escort cards:

  • Remember the reason for a place card: to get the guest to the right table and seat, often in dimly lit rooms. Make sure the name and table number are big enough and clear enough for the person to read. No tiny cards.
  • Don't be so creative that the names are hard to figure out. I've been to a couple of weddings that took a few minutes - usually in the middle of guests crowded around the display - to understand the concept. Please keep the guest in mind while you're creating.
  • Avoid, if possible, place cards supplied by the reception venue. They are usually too small and often have an "M" pre-printed at the start of the writing line. My clients usually ask me to ignore the "M" and write over it. But why use the venue's cards? Plain cards - whether white, ivory, or other color - are inexpensive and will be much, much easier for your guests to read. 
Your guests will appreciate legible, practical place cards, whether you opt for the classic route or go for something more unique.

Have you experienced a creative place card plan at a reception or have ideas of your own? Please share!

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