What do you mean there's no dinner?!
October 2, 2013 7:47 AM Subscribe
We're in the process of planning out a wedding, and we've decided to go with a full-on cocktail party instead of a sit-down dinner. The caterer we spoke to was very hesitant about this idea. Help us not fuck this up.
posted by backseatpilot to human relations (124 answers total) 8 users marked this as a favorite
In a nutshell, the caterer explained that he's never experienced a wedding in the format that we want that has not gone horribly. Specifically, he mentioned that American weddings have become structured enough that deviating from the norm tends to confuse and anger attendees - without a sit-down dinner, people either won't eat enough and get hungry later, or will mob the tables that do exist and then get mad that there aren't enough chairs, or generally just not understand what's going on and be really surprised that it's suddenly 10 in the evening and the dinner service hasn't started. In fact, he's had such bad experiences with this format that he almost told us to go find another caterer, but since we're looking at a small group and the tail-end of the wedding season he said he'd try to work something out for us.
Other than the issue about format, this caterer seems great, and we'd like to stick with him and keep the cocktail party that we want. So, I am turning to the hive-mind for suggestions on how to keep everyone happy and satisfied that there was not a full sit-down meal.
-Have you attended a wedding like this? What worked, and what didn't?
-Any suggestions on how to set up the venue? They have plenty of chairs we can use, but we need to decide on tables and other rentals. Right now we're leaning towards high-tops with matching chairs for about 30-40 (total guest list is about 75) with the intention that people will not just park themselves at a table for the full evening.
-Would it help to get the ceremony out of the way in advance so that the reception feels less wedding-like?
-Anything else you would suggest would be awesome.