There are many dining seating options for the bride and groom on their wedding day. You can choose to sit at a head table, harvest table, sweetheart table, or neither! We’ve outlined a few options and the pros and cons of each.
A head table is the most traditional option. It is usually a rectangular table facing the rest of the dining room. The bride and groom normally sit in the middle of the table with their wedding party on either side.
Pros: You enjoy dinner with your wedding party, which are some of the most important people at your wedding. If you need anything, your Maid of Honor or Best Man are sitting right next to you. Because it’s long, it comes a focal point of the room.
Cons: You will have a lot of people talking around you during dinner, which can make it difficult to speak with your new husband/wife. It can also distract from eating. Depending on the number of people you have in your wedding party, this table can become quite long. If your wedding party does not know each other well, it can be a little awkward especially if their significant others have to sit alone at other tables. Some may also feel “on display” as they eat.
The harvest table is a variation of the head table and can be also called a king’s table. Usually the harvest table is a rectangular table that is larger than other tables in the room. The bride and groom normally sit at the head of table in the middle of the table. The wedding party is seated around the table, instead of one side like the head table.
Pros: The harvest table can be situated in different locations, such as in the middle of the room or on the perimeter of the room. Since this table can seat people on both sides, it might be able to accommodate wedding party dates. The harvest table is usually twice the width of a head table, allowing for more dramatic tablescapes. Also becomes focal point of room.
Cons: It may not provide the opportunity for a dramatic backdrop, like a head table. Depending on the size of the harvest table, the wedding party might not be able to sit with their dates.
A sweetheart table is a small table that only the bride and groom sit at during dinner. It has become more popular over the past few years. This table is usually situated on the perimeter of the room (but we have also seen in in the center of the room).
Pros: The sweetheart table allows you to spent time with your new groom or bride. Surprisingly, you don’t get a lot of alone time with each other during the day because you’ll be talking with guests, smiling for photos, and dancing the night away! Your wedding party will be able to sit with their dates and other friends/family.
Cons: Some couples would rather spend more time with their bridal party and guests during their wedding day since they have a lifetime with their new husband or wife!
Another option is to sit with your guests! Whether round, square, or family seating, insert the bride and groom into a table and chair of their choice!
Pros: If you don’t want as much attention drawn to you, this could be a good option. It allows you to sit with the most important people to you – could be your family or your friends. This might make sense if you don’t have a bridal party and don’t want a sweetheart table. This option gives dinner a more casual feel.
Cons: Since this is a more casual option, it doesn’t give the room a focal point. Being in the middle of all your guests may create a deterrent from eating and speaking with your new husband or wife.
Each of these options can be designed so that it fits the bride and groom’s style. For example, at a head table you could separate the bride and groom from the wedding party by using different seating/chairs or table. There is no right or wrong type of dining set up. If you are between two options, you could always do one option for your rehearsal dinner and the other on your wedding day. Do what feels right for you!