The Shoe Game Is Still a Wedding Reception Favorite—Here's How to Play

If you have some time to spare at your wedding reception, why not play this fun newlywed game?
by The Knot
Bride and groom holding up a shoe at their wedding reception
Michael Kaal Photography

Though it's common to play wedding games during the shower or engagement party, you may not have thought to play a game during your wedding reception—but tons of couples are starting to add fun wedding games to their reception timeline to help break the ice and keep guests entertained. The Shoe Game is one of the most popular wedding reception games to play because it's not just hilarious for the couple and guests—it's also simple in concept and suitable for all ages. All you need to play are two chairs, a list of questions, the couple and their shoes. Intrigued? Learn the shoe game rules here, plus read a few example questions to see how it's done.

The Shoe Game Rules

The Setup

Ask a member of your wedding party to place two chairs back to back in the middle of the dance floor. You sit in one chair and your partner sits in the other (you shouldn't be able to see each other). Both of you then take off your shoes—give one of your shoes to your partner and vice versa. You should each have one of your own shoes and one of your partner's shoes in your hands.

The MC

Designate a "caller" who will come prepared with a list of questions to ask you and your new spouse (we'll get to those in a second). If you don't want to put any of your guests to work, your DJ or bandleader can act as MC of this game. Otherwise, it's a great job for any loved one who isn't in your wedding party or didn't get to do a reading at the ceremony, but whom you still want to be involved. Just first make sure they're comfortable speaking in front of a crowd.

The Questions

Each question the couple is asked should start with "Who…?," as in "Who is the pickier eater?," or "Who has the better shower singing voice?" You can even get your guests involved by asking them to write their own questions for the caller to read come game time. The caller should start with simple questions and gradually move to more personal ones (as long as both you and your spouse are comfortable answering them—and letting your friends and family hear them).

The Shoes

Once you're asked a question, raise your partner's shoe if it describes their tendencies and your own shoe if it represents yours. Your partner should do the same. The trick is you can't see your spouse, so you'll have no idea if they're answering the same way you are—although you'll probably be able to tell by your guests' reactions. Of course, after a few drinks, you and your partner's answers might get a little unpredictable. But those surprise moments are what make the shoe game so entertaining—especially if you both don't know the questions ahead of time.

When's the Best Time to Play?

The shoe game is the perfect activity to get both you and your guests in the mood to party. Play once dinner's wrapped up, right before the dance party picks up and while the musicians are still prepping—or use this crowd-pleaser as a fun filler to keep energy high while the musicians take a quick break. The only times we'd suggest you avoid playing are during dinner, when you and your guests should focus on actually eating and listening to toasts, or at the very end of the night when sleepy guests have left and the drinks have been flowing for a few hours. And you don't have to wait until your wedding reception to play the shoe game, either. It's the perfect icebreaker for your engagement party or wedding shower too.

30 Sample Shoe Game Questions

The questions can be as general or customized to the couple as you'd like. And word to the wise, know your audience before asking super-personal or raunchy questions. (In other words, don't ask anything you wouldn't want to be asked in front of your family and friends.) Use these sample questions below as a good jumping-off point for ideas.

1. Who makes the better breakfast?

2. Who has the better shower singing voice?

3. Who's more likely to make the bedroom floor their personal laundry basket?

4. Who will want kids first?

5. Who is the pickier eater?

6. Who's more likely to fill the house with gear from their favorite college sports team?

7. Who chose the honeymoon location?

8. Who fell in love first?

9. Who's more likely to leave dishes in the sink?

10. Who's afraid of heights?

11. Who controls the credit cards?

12. Who's a night owl?

13. Who's more likely to burn the house down when they're cooking dinner?

14. Who's more of a dog person?

15. Who spends a longer amount of time getting ready for a night out?

16. Who's more likely to spend all their money at a Bed Bath & Beyond (or insert couple's favorite store) sale?

17. Who would rather be outdoors?

18. Who's an early riser?

19. Who's more of a party animal?

20. Who's more likely to fall asleep in front of the TV?

21. Who do you trust more behind the wheel?

22. Who's more of a daredevil?

23. Who's more stubborn?

24. Who takes up more than their half of the bed?

25. Who takes the longest showers? 

26. Who's "the responsible one"?

27. Who made the first move?

28. Who would be the first to lose their keys?

29. Who's the most likely to cry at a movie?

30. Who eats the most junk food?


Not sure where to begin with your wedding planning? Take our Style Quiz and we'll pull together a custom wedding vision and vendors to match, just for you. After that, create a free, personalized wedding website to keep your guests informed (and excited!) about your plans, and a time-saving Guest List Manager to organize your attendees. Even better? You can sync your Guest List Manager and wedding website to update everything at once. 

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