Set the Mood with Tabletop Design

By David Darby, Wedding and Event Specialist at Rent-E-Quip

Wedding décor is a funny thing. Each choice may seem simple but can become overwhelming trying to figure out a way to combine every Pinterest Pin into a cohesive design. But combining individual choices and having them work in tandem will create the feeling you want your guests to experience when they walk into your space.

Typically, your tablescapes are one of the very first elements your guests will notice upon entering the venue. They operate as a canvas that is designed to tell your story. With multiple tables in the room, they can make a large visual impact.

So, with the importance laid out, where do we start? There are three layers to designing a table; theme, color palette, and the actual items that exist on the table.

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Let’s start with the theme.
The theme is the overarching mood that your wedding will portray. It can be modern, rustic, bohemian, or so much more. Themes should be complementary to your venue. Normally, you wouldn’t utilize contemporary stylings in a barn, nor would you use bohemian in a ballroom. Conversely, a tropical theme feels perfectly at home for a beachfront wedding. When choosing a theme, it’s important to consider the season. That same tropical theme might be ideal in spring or summer but if snow is on the ground it can come across as inorganic and forced if done incorrectly.

Think back to significant moments in your relationship to inspire your theme. Do you want to incorporate gothic stylings to tell your story about the first vacation you had together in Europe? Be creative! First, think about what you want the room to tell your guests and work backward to communicate those feelings.

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After you have picked your theme you can begin thinking about what color palette to utilize.
Let your space and theme inspire you. Perhaps you are in a magnificent ballroom with purple and gold textured walls that you can bring into your design. If you are having an outdoor wedding in the spring, ask your venue what flowers will be blooming at that time. If glam is your thing then silvers and golds are going to be a hit!

Now we get to the tabletop itself!
Start by taking an inventory of what you actually need on your table and what will be placed elsewhere. For example, if you are serving a buffet-style dinner, then most likely your plates will be placed by the food station. Or if you are serving dinner family-style, then you may have ramekins, serving bowls, and carafes on the table. Think if you will be using stationary or menu cards as well as any floral centerpieces that are in the works.

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Once you have an idea of everything that will be utilized on the table it’s time to get hands-on. Start by scheduling appointments with the florist and rental companies that stand out to you. It is customary to bring any stationery or reference photos into your appointment so you can match colors and create sample table layouts. Let your event professionals curate a few looks that work within the guidelines you have provided and then get to tweaking! Every wedding design is a custom creation that tells a unique story, so don’t be afraid to mix, match, recombine, and try out new ideas!

Planning your tabletop designs can feel like a huge undertaking, but your event professionals are there at every step of the way to help you narrow down the seemingly limitless options to help you create the feeling that your guests experience.

David Darby is a Wedding and Event Specialist at Rent-E-Quip, an award-winning, full-service rental company based out of Colonial Heights and serving all of Central Virginia. Be sure to visit, Instagram at @rentequipva, or call 804-520-7100 to get in touch!