06 November 13  |  Living   |  

Sweetheart Table vs. Head Table: Which is Best for Your Wedding?

Written by Julianne Cuomo, our Director of Celebrations.

Photo courtesy of DJAMEL Photography

You’re getting close to the big day and your venue coordinator has asked you if you and your fiancé will be sitting at a sweetheart table or a head table at your wedding reception… Does this sound like you?

Every couple has their own vision for their wedding, and sometimes, you just need to know what your options are. Deciding which type of table will work best for your wedding depends on several different factors like the number of people in your bridal party and the layout of the reception venue. Let’s explore your table options so that you can feel confident about making the right choice for your wedding.

What is a Sweetheart Table?

A sweetheart table is a small (usually circular) table set up for just the bride and groom at their wedding reception. The bride and groom will sit together, facing their guests, with their bridal party and families at the adjacent tables. Many couples prefer this option because you get to spend some alone time together on your special day. Also, if most of your bridal party is married or came with someone special, they may enjoy sitting with their significant other during the reception.

Photo Source: Flickr by Monica Benavidez

What is a Head Table?

Couples who want to be with their wedding party during the reception, may prefer a head table. Your head table can be similar to the other reception tables or it can be elevated to be more of a focal point – it’s your choice. Either way, the head table usually consists of the entire wedding party with the bride and groom in the center and the rest of the bridal party sitting on the appropriate sides. The bride (and her bridesmaids) will be seated on the left and the groom (and his groomsmen) will be seated on the right, just like at the ceremony. Also, you can choose to include the parents, siblings, grandparents if you have a two sided or larger head table.

Photo courtesy of DJAMEL Photography

Both Have Their Pros and Cons

Sweetheart Table Pros

  • If decorated right, sweetheart tables can look extremely sweet and romantic.
  • They give the happy couple a chance to have a more intimate setting shared between just the two of them.

Sweetheart Table Cons

  • The bride and groom may feel a bit removed from their wedding guests.
  • It can look a little unbalanced to have such a small table as the focal point of the reception venue.

Head Table Pros

  • A head table seats more people and takes less space than round tables.
  • When set up right, a head table can be very visually appealing as the center focus of the reception decor.

Head Table Cons

  • People are limited in terms of who they can talk to – they can only comfortably talk to the people sitting to their immediate right or left.
  • If the amount of people seated at the head table exceeds 10 or 12, it can look cluttered and may drown out the bride and groom.

Whichever option you choose for your table, it will be special for you and your new spouse. After all, you’ll remember your wedding day for the rest of your life!