15 wedding place cards that do WAY more than just show guests to their seats

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Let's break it down here: Do you need place cards and table settings? Only if you're doing assigned seating. Are they a pain in the ass to deal with? Yes — and they're super time-consuming. So, if you're going to be spending that much time on a wedding project… why not make them as awesome as possible!? Here are some amazing place cards and seating options brought to us by some crafty offbeat brides:

table envolopes
Katie and Clinton used table envelopes instead of cards. On the outside were the names and table numbers, inside were stickers, temporary tattoos, and a card with information on where guests could upload and share their wedding photos with the couple.

Geeky Place Cards
There's always ye olde tent-fold place cards, but Celeste put her own geeky spin on the idea. Each table was named after a different fictional location from TV, movies, books, and video games (Let's see, I can identify the Buffy, Star Wars, Lord of the Rings, Doctor Who, Battlestar and Harry Potter references). She designed them all in Photoshop (four to a page) and printed them on Avery 5820 folding business cards.

Aaron's place settingTribe member Wildwoolf used Scrabble trays and tiles that spelled out each guests' name as her place settings. They only seemed fitting with her Scrabble-themed placemats!

Photo by Darla Photography
Photo by Darla Photography

Amanda used place cards made out of matchbooks from the rock club where she and her husband met. The matchbooks from the 930 Club had the name of the guest on them as well as the corresponding name of their table (the name of a band that she and her husband once saw together).

DIY:  cool place card project
Offbeat sponsor Katie Fischer used hand-written place cards on pieces of paper that resembled antique wall paper. Then she hung them from branches with twine and guests used antique scissors to cut their names free.

little umbrella place settings alternative wedding ideas from Offbeat Wed (formerly Offbeat Bride)
Well aren't these little cocktail umbrella place settings from Tribe member CBelle just the cutest things EVAR for a beach wedding? Answer: hell yes!

I abso-frigging-lutely H.E.A.R.T. these place card coasters that double as wedding favors made by Tribe member Caleigh. And she did them all herself: painting the artwork, adjusting them in Illustrator, printing the artwork with individual names, and then heat pressing them onto the coasters. These will be all set up on a table for their guests to collect with a sticker on the back with their corresponding table numbers.

place setting - cow
Andy and Brandee had some pretty intense and sweetly personalized place settings. They scoured second-hand stores for almost a year to find mugs, choosing each mug specifically for each wedding guest. Then they collected high-quality vintage science fiction pulp novels and gave each person a book under their mug, with their name written on the inside cover. Inside their mugs, each person found their eating utensils wrapped in napkins, held together by hand-beaded napkin rings. And tied to their mug handles with brown ribbon, was each guests name tag, hand calligraphed by the bride.

Favour boxes filled with organic teaStacey used favor boxes filled with organic tea as their place cards. These were all lined up in alphabetical order with each guest's name and table assignment.

place cards
How neat are these place card attached to tiny compasses? Way perfect for a destination wedding!

Place SettingsNick and Carie used this cool hanging place setting display, held in place by clothespins! So countryfied and adorable.

Michelle and Michael Final Images (133)
Having a Halloween or Fall wedding? Utilize all those adorable tiny pumpkins as your place settings, like these from Shell and Mike's Halloween wedding.

Mordicai: black monster
These Dungeons and Dragons mini figurines doubled as wedding favors and place cards at Jennifer and Mordicai's wedding.

28Tribe member Lisa used these '80s rock mixed cassettes and labeled them with the CLASSIC old-school ribbon labels with each person's name and table assignment.

Place Cards: LemonheadsHow's this for easy and awesome place cards: Jordan & Marylyle used candy boxes (Lemonheads, Boston Baked Beans, etc) with a sticker showing the guests' names and table numbers.

DUDE YOU GUYS. We have so many more examples.

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Comments on 15 wedding place cards that do WAY more than just show guests to their seats

  1. Here’s what I am going to do.

    I got these Hollywood prediction cards off of eBay. The idea is that everyone writes a prediction on the back of the cards about where the couple will be in five years, and the couple reads them on their 5th wedding anniversary to see who was right. We’re going to write people’s names on the back of each of the cards so that not only do we get to use it as a place card holder, but we also will know who said what.

  2. I’m doing something similar to the tent-folded geek place cards, except with Mario characters in place of numbers for tables! Mario is table 1, Luigi is table 2, Princess Peach is table 3 etc..

    (PS, my wedding is exactly one year away now!!)

  3. I’m total offbeat lite and I did tent cards with the guest name, table number, then a movie quote that corresponded to the movie screen grab on their table. (e.g. “Jane Doe, Table 1, ‘As you wish.'” was seated at a table with a grab from The Princess Bride). Most people did not even notice it, but it was fun to come up with movie couples and quote with my fiance – an opportunity to focus on US and what WE like and what makes us laugh and smile.

  4. Our theme involves a lot of fabric and books, so we’re looking to make bookmarks, with name and/or table number either embroidered or stickered on. Depending on how far we go, the fabric used will either “just” match the color scheme, or will even determine the table itself (polka dots with red stripe = polka dot table with red as the main color, etc). Trying not to get overcomplicated, but SO MANY IDEAS!

  5. I love the candy idea! My soon-to-be-husband is a Hot Tamales JUNKIE! This would be such a fun way to include little known facts about us at the reception! It also adds to the fun and laid-back vibe we’re going for! Thanks for sharing!!!

  6. Oh man, I did something very similar for our invitations. Each guest’s invitation had a unique quotation about love on it, taken from some of our favorite songs, and they used the quotation to log in to our website to RSVP. Once they logged in, the quotation was displayed again, this time with the song title and author, so that we could share our favorite songs with our guests. 🙂

  7. these are awesome! my favorites are the tiny pumpkins (eee!), the cassette tapes, and the candy boxes. love!

    we’re actually not doing assigned seating – but whenever i see awesome place cards like all of these, a part of me wishes that we were.

  8. I love placecards! I just got 3.5inch floppy disks for my techy-induced wedding!

    I’ll definitely tell OBB about it when its all over 🙂

    • I also love the little compasses. We are having a pirate / renaissance wedding and now I am greatly inspired to come up with something more taylored to our theme. 🙂 I do know we are going to try and find names of enough famous pirate ships for the tables instead of numbers!

  9. Before I ended up doing peeps for my place cards, I found all sorts of great stuff in the Target $1 bin that could be used for place cards. Definitely worth taking a peek whenever you’re in there!

  10. Oh man, John and I decided last week that we were going to do the nerdy fandom locations for our table designations, great minds think alike! Beautiful execution! Did you guys do anything festive with the tables corresponding with the places?

  11. Best wedding table cards/ favors I ever had; each table was named after a sci-fi planet from a book or tv show( I got Magrathea, and felt very cool about it). Each card was a rocket. The rocket had your name, the color rocket represented your meal, and if it had a certain ribbon it meant you had a food allergy. The rockets were attached to sticks, stuck in a bag of candy, and the bag of candy was put in a sake glass. I wish I had pictures. It was so stinking clever, and the bride made them all by hand. Mine was my Christmas Tree topper before it got too crumpled.

  12. We are considering making a “soundtrack” of our wedding with CDs. Featuring key songs/music we used for different things during our wedding. For example, the procession music, my entrance, the recession, introduction of wedding party, introduction of us, first dance, etc. Then having the names and table number on the front of the case. Something we’re toying with… we’ll see. I want it to be classy, not cheesy.

  13. We’re having a pretty down-home country wedding, and my mother-in-law-to-be is growing all of our flowers, so we wanted to continue the do it / grow it yourself theme. Our escort cards are seed packets (aka cheap kraft paper coin envelopes) with herb seeds inside. I bought pretty colored labels at Paper Source and we’re writing each guest’s name and table number on the labels. You can get bulk herb and wildflower seeds lots of places online!

    • Oh I like this idea! We were thinking of having potted herbs as both the centre piece and a take home gift, but I was struggling with the idea of how to tie it in with our theme. Making seed packets may just solve my problem! Thanks for sharing

      • my friend got place cards that were recycled paper with seeds in the paper… you just had to plant your place card and water it!

  14. We’re having bookmarks as place settings i think. But then for the display board of where your sitting we’re making the names detachable and then putting up a big grid next to it with time slots for people to bet on how long the speeches will last. just stick your name in the time slot you want and the closest person wins a prize of some sort. We figured people will probably joke about the length of speeches anyway and we’d rather be in on it!

  15. I love those cassette tapes! The only thought I am having is if the bride (or whoever made them) got a hand cramp after crimping out each one of those letters for each label! LOL!

  16. Those are so cute. We’re planning on having our escort cards double as the guest book. On the back will be a question for guests to answer and space for them to write us a note. This way, they’ll have more time to think about their answer and hopefully something better to say than, “Congratulations.” For our place cards, we’re doing a bride and groom trivia game on the back, and the person who knows most about us will get a prize.

  17. I have seen a fantastic idea somewhere, I don’t recall where, but my plan is now to use paper made from pulp that has flower seeds integrated into it. Then, after the wedding, they can plant it and TaDa! Flowers!

    • It seems like you could even make that yourself, just by following the directions for making paper (blender, anyone?) and pressing in the seeds right before the drying process.

  18. My Guy and I are having a cocktail style dinner reception and as such are toying with the “take a seat” option I read about in a previous Offbeat discussion. Just incase anyone wants to claim a location.
    So anyways, we have a vintage, travel themed wedding and I’m looking into sturdy luggage tags to double as seating cards and guest gifts. Grab the one with your name on it, and take a seat!

  19. I am so in love with the coaster place cards!! I am creating so many things for my wedding, I’m not sure if I could take on yet another project, but if I could this would totally be the next thing on my to do list! 🙂

  20. We’re doing a Camelot-lite theme, and are naming our tables after Knights of the Round Table and a few other major figures in Arthurian legend. Thinking of creating scrolls (and enlisting my very artistic mother to help put them together) for place-cards.

  21. Thanks for featuring our photo/wedding again! We are going to celebrate our 3 year anniversary next month!

  22. My fiance and I are creating snowglobes out of empty (and cleaned) baby food jars. Our wedding is in January 2013 (yup, plenty of time to make 200 snowglobes!) and we wanted something unique for our guests. We are tying ribbons on each globe with the person’s name and table number on it. Filling the jars with costume jewelry or little winter figurines and of course glitter “snow.”

  23. My partner in crime and I are planning an April Fool’s Day wedding and we want it to be fun, so we’re thinking about using playing cards as place cards. I haven’t quite figured it all out yet, but I found some playing cards that are pink, purple, blue and green, great spring colors. I’m thinking about folding them in half, so they’ll stand up and then using the suits (hearts and diamonds) to organize the tables, maybe making poker hands, 10, J, Q, K and A at one table. We could easily attach names using sticky address labels.

  24. I like the seed packet idea. Maybe I can use those as place cards to correspond with the Dahlia/Gerber/Sunflower centerpieces & bouquets. I could add a small pic on the envelope to show what seed are in the packet.

  25. We’ve got twin-attack thing going on – the seating chart will have badges with each guests name one and their table. Kinda like these: http://pinterest.com/pin/112027109451101970/

    And at the table we’re doing clear label names on Lego bricks…kinda like: http://www.brickprinter.com/siteimages/megan%20and%20joe%20wedding%20bricks1%20%282%29.jpg ….but with the guest’s name rather than ours…

    We’re having table equations, rather than table numbers on the chart – table numbers on the tables though – just to make life more interesting 😉 And Lego pots (containing more Lego for playing with) as the table numbers…

  26. I LOVE the tent fold with fictional locations. We are both super into all kind of geeky stuff and I’ve been looking for a great way to incorporate it without it being too confusing for guests who aren’t familiar with it. So excited!

  27. We are cat lovers from way back so each of our table will be a cat we own or a cat we’ve owned from our past. We have an illustrator friend who will illustrate each cat for the table identification. Not sure how we’ll get people there… poster board on an easel? These 10 people at Mollycat, these 10 people at Munciecat, etc. Haven’t figured that out yet. People know we’re crazy cat people, and soon-to-be-hubby and I will have illustrations of all our cats. 🙂

  28. Great ideas, but shouting out the love for the 9:30 club. Excellent concert venue!

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