80 of the Best Wedding Reception Essentials | Wedding Ideas Magazine (2023)

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Feeling a little overwhelmed by wedding planning? You’re not alone! That’s why we’re here to help you break down the big decisions into much smaller, less scary steps. We’re talking all things wedding reception, from decor to table plans, to help you work out what you need (and want!). 80 of the Best Wedding Reception Essentials Table Plan Place Cards Table Numbers Flavoured Favours Table Runners Menus Table Linens and Cloths Candelabra Vases Centrepieces Table Confetti Log Slices Manzanita Trees Crystal Candleholders Mirror Plates Chiavari Chairs Lanterns Candles Bunting Honeycombs Sparklers Pom Poms Ribbon Garlands Chair Decorations Ribbon Garlands Photobooth Props Flowers Candy Bar Instagram Sign Welcome Sign Drinks Station Balloons Show-stopping Cake Design Postbox Cards Basket Faux Grass Table Runner Table Trivia Chalkboard Frame-heart Guest Book Calligraphy Signs Craft Beer Cart Fairy Lights Oversized Letter Lights Illuminated Dance Floor Up-lighting Lego Favour Boxes Martini Glass Flower Arrangements Blossom Trees Just Married Sign Decorative Ladder Disposable Cameras Cookie Bar Confetti Basket Floral Chandeliers Garden Games Photo Wall Pimp Your Prosecco Stand Origami Backdrop Advice Coasters Flower Wall Confetti Cones Flip Flops Basket Ceremony Signs Flower Garlands Jigsaw Guestbook Order of The Day Signs Dance Floor Rules Festoon Lighting Wooden Crates Window Sill Pot Plants Wishing Tree Floral Canopy Giant Balloon Balloon Letters Beaded Plate Chargers Creative Cake Toppers Building Blocks Guest Book Wellington Boot Vases Mr & Mrs Game Test Tube Flowers Wooden Name Initial Letters Read More: FAQs Videos

Feeling a little overwhelmed by wedding planning? You’re not alone! That’s why we’re here to help you break down the big decisions into much smaller, less scary steps. We’re talking all things wedding reception, from decor to table plans, to help you work out what you need (and want!).

80 of the Best Wedding Reception Essentials | Wedding Ideas Magazine (1)

80 of the Best Wedding Reception Essentials

Table Plan

Because let’s face it, if it takes that many hours to organise, a table plan to be essential.

Place Cards

Having taken the time to get your seating plan just so, make sure your guests know exactly where they should be.

Table Numbers

You could name your tables, but choosing numbers makes it super simple to signpost. Browse a pretty range of table numbers and holders to suit your theme here.

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Flavoured Favours

Whether you’re creating a candy bar or gifting traditional sugared almonds, edible favours are always a winner.

Table Runners

Continue reading below…

Why not colour and fabric coordinate them with your theme? Try hessian for rustic wedding, rose gold for a trendy take and lace for timeless reception style.

Menus

Get guests talking and their mouths watering with the delicious dinner to come.

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Table Linens and Cloths

A staple at every reception, your venue will often include table cloths in your package.

Candelabra

Nothing evokes romance like softly flickering candlelight…

Vases

Another regular at receptions, vases are essential for displaying your fabulous flowers. You could opt for glass hurricane vases, mercury glass vases or even elegant urns.

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Centrepieces

Whether it comes in the form of flowers, a tree or even a stack of old books, every reception table deserves a centrepiece. This is the perfect opportunity to enhance your theme, too!

Table Confetti

A flurry of table confettimakes for a pretty finishing touch.

Log Slices

Can you really have a rustic wedding without one?

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Manzanita Trees

You probably didn’t know the name for these before you got engaged, but now manzanita trees are racing up the reception wishlists for affordable centrepieces.

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Crystal Candleholders

Ano-brainer for bling-loving brides.

Mirror Plates

Perfect for giving your reception a touch of glam.

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Chiavari Chairs

The perfect seating choice for a romantic or rustic wedding, go for stained wood for real romantic warmth or limewash for a feel of fairytale and whimsy.

Lanterns

Presentyour candles in lanterns for a fairytale feel.

Candles

One of the most popular of all reception essentials, be sure to double check that your venue allows naked flame candles or invest in battery-operated candles for a similar glowing effect.Want to take your candles to the next level? Invest in scented candles to fill your venue with a romantic scent that will forever remind you of your dream day.

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Bunting

Brilliant for barns, marquees and village hall weddings.

Honeycombs

Intermingle hanging honeycombs with strings of fairy lights for Pinterest-worthy effects.

Sparklers

Perfect for a festive Christmas or winter wedding.

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Pom Poms

Get the same effect as honeycombs, but with a more delicate, peony-like ruffled style.

Ribbon Garlands

String one up as a skirt for your sweets table, or hangup ribbon garlands for a funphotobooth backdrop.

Chair Decorations

Those adorable signs have to go somewhere, right?

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Ribbon Garlands

String one up as a skirt for your sweets table, or hangup ribbon garlands for a funphotobooth backdrop.

Photobooth Props

Giant glasses, moustaches and top hats at the ready!

Flowers

Cascading down your cake, climbing around your candelabra or creating adreamy top table backdrop, flowers are a must! On a budget? Silk flowers are the way to go.

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Candy Bar

Pretty up your pick and mix by presenting the sweets in decorative glassware and jars.

Instagram Sign

Create a live feed of photos from your day.

Welcome Sign

Cute and, if you’re crafty, pretty easy to DIY too!

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Drinks Station

Try pimp your Prosecco, gin bar goodness or couple’s cocktails for themes.

Balloons

Go for a confetti-filled version for twice the wedding fun!

Show-stopping Cake Design

Coordinate your cake with your theme and it can be an edible centrepiece in its own right!

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Postbox

Practical and a pretty cool keepsake after the big day.

Cards Basket

Ideal if you’re channeling a travel or vintage theme.

Faux Grass Table Runner

This will bring a rustic vibe to any venue!

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Table Trivia

Take the pressure off your seating plan and add ice breakers to the tables, your family and friends will be socialising in no time.

Chalkboard

Ask your bridesmaid with the prettiest handwriting or learn calligraphy to DIY the dreamiest of chalkboard designs.

Frame-heart Guest Book

For a little bit of interactive fun, a guestbook gets everyone involved.

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Calligraphy Signs

Calligraphy adds a romantic, classic element to every wedding.

Craft Beer Cart

Move over bath tub of beer, we’re getting sophisticated!

Fairy Lights

Canopies of fairy lights can be a cost effective way to add the wow-factor in a flash.

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Oversized Letter Lights

Use giant letters to zone areas and pretty up empty spaces, be that your dance floor or bar.

Illuminated Dance Floor

For a party that really pops!

Up-lighting

Be sure to coordinate the lighting to match or complement your core colour scheme.

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Lego Favour Boxes

Indulge your nostalgia with this quirky favour idea.

Martini Glass Flower Arrangements

Tall and elegant, your florist or venue might have a stash of these iconic vases available to hire.

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Blossom Trees

These decorations are great for adding height (read: wow-factor) and can easily be repositioned from your ceremony to your reception.

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Just Married Sign

Today’s the only day you can use it, so why not?!

Decorative Ladder

Fill it with your favourite trinkets or family photographs from weddings.

Disposable Cameras

Let your guests get snap happy, then enjoy the hoard of happy photos after the day.

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Cookie Bar

Guests of every age are going to love this affordable but delicious treat.

Confetti Basket

This is best positioned by the exit to your ceremony room, so family and friendscan collect confetti in perfect time for your iconic confetti photo.

Floral Chandeliers

Architectural flower installations have taken the wedding scene by storm, adding bags of romance to rustic barns and modern marquees alike.

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Garden Games

Giant Jenga, croquet, chess are great fun for all ages – and gentle on your budget, too.

Photo Wall

This can be as simple as pegging up some Polaroid pictures, sharing your memories and love story with family and friends.

Pimp Your Prosecco Stand

The garnishes may change, but our passion for Prosecco ishere to stay!

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Origami Backdrop

Pretty paper cranes, whether all white or multicoloured, make for a dreamy decoration. Enlist your craftiest bridesmaids to help with all the folding involved!

Advice Coasters

What nuggets of wisdom will your family and friends share?

Flower Wall

Think these have to cost the world? Think again – just check outfaux flower wall panels are the perfect solution.

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Confetti Cones

Worried your guests won’t remember to throw the confetti up and not at you? Confetti cones make nailing your confetti shot a breeze.

Flip Flops Basket

Everyone will be happy to rest their tired feet, so have flip flops ready to slip on and the party doesn’t have to stop.

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Ceremony Signs

Want your guests to pick a seat and not a side? Or maybe you’re going unplugged for the ceremony and want a fun but informal way to let people know? Simply read the signs!

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Flower Garlands

Tie them to the back of ceremony seats, suspend them from beams, entwine them around staircases…

Jigsaw Guestbook

Another fun touch to get your guests involved.

Order of The Day Signs

Happy guests are those who know when they’re going to eat, drink and dance next.

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Dance Floor Rules

There’s no excuse not to be up and dancing with a dance floor sign.

Festoon Lighting

Strung up inside or out, there’s a nostalgic, funfair feel whenever festoon lighting is around.

Wooden Crates

Wooden crates make beautiful rustic replacements for vases, with the benefit of being portable so they can move from ceremony to reception as you do.

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Window Sill Pot Plants

Quirky and super cute, there’s no last-minute flower arranging required when you use blooms that are still growing!

Wishing Tree

Ask each guest to tie a thought or good wish to the tree, then read them and reminisce the next morning with your new spouse.

Floral Canopy

Combine fairy lights, flowers and foliage for breathtakingly beautiful results.

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Giant Balloon

Whimsical props to make your couple’s portraits ultra pretty.

Balloon Letters

A budget-friendly backdrop can be all you need to transform your cake table into a decoration in its own right.

Beaded Plate Chargers

Okay, so people will keep telling you not to obsess about the tiny details, but…

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Creative Cake Toppers

Look for laser-cut designs that can be personalised, then get creative!

Building Blocks Guest Book

Why not use your guest book as a way to surprise your guests? We’re pretty sure a building block book won’t be what they expect!

Wellington Boot Vases

Easy for your florist to fill and perfect for a country theme.

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Mr & Mrs Game

No one will ever call speeches boring again when a is on the cards!

Test Tube Flowers

If you want your big day to be trendy and a touch on the quirky side, you’ll love this way to present your flowers.

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Wooden Name Initial Letters

You could buy plain letters and decorate with glitter, paper flowers or even chalkboard paint!

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  • The Best High Street Wedding Dresses For 2022 Under £1,000
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FAQs

What is the most essential at wedding? ›

The Top 25 Most Important Wedding Details
  • 1.) The Rings. ...
  • 2.) Location of the Ceremony. ...
  • 3.) Location of the Reception. ...
  • 4.) The Bride and Grooms Court. ...
  • 5.) Dresses and attire. ...
  • 6.) Tuxedos and attire. ...
  • 7.) Wedding Planner. ...
  • 8.) Guest List.
Mar 9, 2010

What is the number 1 wedding song? ›

These are the most popular wedding songs in America — and the ones your state loves
  • “Thinking Out Loud” by Ed Sheeran.
  • “Marry You” by Bruno Mars.
  • “All of Me” by John Legend.
  • “Uptown Funk” by Mark Ronson, featuring Bruno Mars.
  • “I Wanna Dance With Somebody (Who Loves Me)” by Whitney Houston.
  • “Don't Stop Believin'” by Journey.
Sep 20, 2017

What are the 5 things a bride needs? ›

The tradition is based on an Old English rhyme that dates back to 19th-century Lancashire. It describes the items a bride should have on her wedding day: "something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue, a sixpence in your shoe."

What are the 3 things a bride needs for her wedding? ›

Today, when women do include the sixpence tradition in their special day, they'll commonly substitute a penny or another small coin. While wearing “something old, something new, something borrowed, and something blue” is a pretty outdated tradition, many brides still have fun with it today.

What makes a wedding classy? ›

Delicate white florals, plenty of lush greenery, light linens, and minimal decor: These tried and true wedding details will never go out of style. And if you're a couple that prefers timelessness over trends, we suggest planning your ceremony and reception in a classic wedding style.

What is the number one wedding song for 2022? ›

To do this, Hitched used Spotify's Playlist Miner to search for the most popular songs from the most popular public playlists that used the terms “weddings” and “first dance” within them and can reveal that the most popular wedding song for 2022 is Perfect Duet by Ed Sheeran featuring Beyoncé.

What is the most popular wedding song in 2022? ›

The most popular first dance songs for 2022
  • Perfect - Ed Sheeran. Play.
  • Better Half of Me - Tom Walker. Play.
  • All of Me - John Legend. Play.
  • A Thousand Years - Christina Perri. Play.
  • Thinking Out Loud - Ed Sheeran. Play.
  • Leave the Door Open - Bruno Mars, Anderson .Paak. Play.
  • Everything – Michael Buble. Play.
  • Marry You - Bruno Mars.
Jul 8, 2022

What songs should not be played at a wedding? ›

50 Songs To Avoid On Your Wedding Day
  • 50 songs you should never play at your wedding – unless you're a hardcore connoisseur of irony! ...
  • You Give Love a Bad Name – Bon Jovi. ...
  • You're So Vain – Carly Simon. ...
  • Fake Love – Drake.
  • Suspicious Minds – Elvis Presley. ...
  • Mother In Law – Ernie K-Doe. ...
  • All My Exes Live in Texas – George Strait.
Jun 15, 2022

What is a common song played a wedding reception? ›

Our Top 10 Wedding Reception Songs
  • I Wanna Dance with Somebody — Whitney Houston.
  • Marry You — Bruno Mars.
  • Crazy in Love — Beyonce and Jay Z.
  • On the Floor — Jennifer Lopez, Pitbull.
  • All of Me — John Legend.
  • We Are Family — Sister Sledge.
  • Dancing Queen — ABBA.
  • Man! I Feel Like a Woman — Shania Twain.
Jul 21, 2021

What is the most popular mother son wedding dance song 2022? ›

“Unforgettable” – Nat and Natalie Cole. “Wind Beneath My Wings” – Bette Midler. “Forever Young” – Joan Baez. “I Just Called To Say I Love You” – Stevie Wonder.

What is a common song played a wedding reception? ›

Our Top 10 Wedding Reception Songs
  • I Wanna Dance with Somebody — Whitney Houston.
  • Marry You — Bruno Mars.
  • Crazy in Love — Beyonce and Jay Z.
  • On the Floor — Jennifer Lopez, Pitbull.
  • All of Me — John Legend.
  • We Are Family — Sister Sledge.
  • Dancing Queen — ABBA.
  • Man! I Feel Like a Woman — Shania Twain.
Jul 21, 2021

What is the most popular wedding hymn? ›

The Alive Network Top 10 Wedding Hymns
  • Amazing Grace.
  • Make Me a Channel of Your Peace.
  • All Things Bright and Beautiful*
  • Love Divine, All Loves Excelling.
  • We Pledge to One Another.
  • Praise My Soul the King Of Heaven.
  • I Danced In The Morning (Lord of the Dance)
  • Give Me Joy In My Heart.

What is the most popular mother son wedding dance song 2022? ›

“Unforgettable” – Nat and Natalie Cole. “Wind Beneath My Wings” – Bette Midler. “Forever Young” – Joan Baez. “I Just Called To Say I Love You” – Stevie Wonder.

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