Wedding Reception Etiquette: Should We Mix Our Reception Tables?

Q: How are we supposed to seat our wedding guests at the various reception tables? Should they be all from one side or the other, or should we mix them?

A: There are no hard-and-fast rules when it comes to wedding reception seating , but most people like to mix it up a bit. After all, as good hosts you want your wedding guests to meet and mingle, right? The dance floor is no guarantee, so during dinner is the time to do it. While it might seem obvious to seat friends and family who all already know each other at each table since it's guaranteed they'll get along, it may be more fun to split them down the middle. That way, not only will your aunts, uncles, and cousins come together, you can also use it as an opportunity for friends you don't share to meet each other -- plenty of "I've heard so much about you!" moments guaranteed. Some to-be-weds even use their seating charts to play matchmaker -- and success is not unheard of in that regard. No matter what, there's no set formula, so feel free to play around with your chart. The only caveat: Separate any guests that you know do not get along. Any pairings whose last meeting ended with bad blood need to be at different tables -- and maybe kept away from the bar, but that's a different story.

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What's the Basic Wedding Reception Timeline?

I'm not certain about the order of events at the wedding reception. Could you please give a rough timeline of the following events: receiving line, cocktail hour, first dance, champagne toast, best man's and maid of honor's speeches, dinner and cake cutting? I'm so clueless!

by The Knot