The wedding table design I’d always dreamt of
I can’t even begin to tell you how in love I was with my wedding table design. They really were everything that I’d ever dreamt of. Exactly how I’d hoped they would be and more. I just wish I could have spent longer sat in that room. But I can’t, so this post telling you all about them is going to have to do!
My wedding table design was one of the biggest creative details of our wedding. And so I thought they deserved a post alone. It was also the room that I was most looking forward to seeing come to life. And I couldn’t help myself but join everyone working the wedding in my robe, and with my hair and makeup half done, to get involved with the set up.
As most of you might know, it was always a dream of mine to get married at Babington House. I planned a wedding there back in 2015, and it was then that I knew I always wanted to get married there too. The venue is a gorgeous venue alone, and there is so much potential to make the Orangery AMAZING. Which is where you sit throughout the wedding breakfast.
Slightly off topic – but its called a wedding breakfast because it’s the first meal you have together after getting married. And given it’s such a big part of the day, I wanted our wedding table design to just blow everyone away, so that’s exactly what I set out to create!
Wedding Breakfast sounds like a weird description. But it's called this, because it's the first meal you have together as a married couple.
Babington don’t really offer any options for your wedding tablescapes. It’s just simple white linen, white plates, their standard glassware and cutlery. Which don’t get me wrong, once dressed with flowers still looks amazing. But it just isn’t really my style. It’s too simple. So we decided to change EVERYTHING!
Starting with the table linen. I definitely didn’t want white linen. Of course as someone who loves grey, I’d always imagined a light grey tablecloth with a little more texture. And that’s why we chose to use Urban Pearl Grey from Just 4 Linen. As we had five long tables, we needed 2 x 70″x144″ to cover each table. But I also wanted it to drape all the way to the floor on either end too.
On top of the tables, to add a little more interest and also a little more grey we added a runner. The runner was made from a beautiful grey silk and softened the centre of the tables, giving it more of a romantic look. Again, due to the length of the tables, we had to use two for each table. I bought these from Kate Cullen in 4m lengths and grey silk chiffon.
Of course a big part of the wedding table design are the plates and cutlery, as these take up most of the space on the table. We had 8 people sat down each side of the table. With a table that was just over 5 metres long, that left about 60cm in width for each person including their place setting.
The Wedding Table Design
At Babington House, the food is served in BMF style. Which stands for Bring me Food! This means that all of the food is served on platter style plates down the middle of the table, and you serve yourself what you would like from each of the platters. It’s literally amazing, as it means no choosing what you want in advance.
What it did mean though, is that all plates needed to already be on the table. Aesthetically this looks better anyway. In my opinion, the more plates stacked the better! So we opted for three. Starting with the silver beaded charger plate at the bottom. This could have been used for the dessert, but it was actually just for show and to give more texture.
We then had the Grigio grey dinner plate, which again was to give another pop of grey on the table. And then on top of that, the natural stoneware starter plate. I initially wanted the same grey starter plate. But our stationery design wouldn’t have popped so well on the grey, hence the chosen white.
I did however decide to add a Grigio grey side plate, which was for nothing other than to fill the space and add more grey to the aesthetic! All of our plates were from Classic Crockery, along with our water glasses too.
I'd dreamt up this space for a very long time, and so walking into it for the first time was a dream come true.
The water glasses were our something blue! And also just to break up the amount of grey on the table too. I love the shade of blue and the pop of colour that the room so desperately deserved. I honestly think without those blue water glasses, the wedding table design wouldn’t have had that wow!
The Tablescape Details
The rest of the glassware and the cutlery were Babington’s own. As I actually love their wine glasses and the silver cutlery complimented the rest of the design. The set up was then finished off with the napkins and the menus.
I always wanted the napkins to have a little more detail, and decided that I’d like them to showcase our wedding date. To me, it’s these tiny creative details that make all the difference. So I bought a box of 100 wholesale white cotton napkins. In fact I actually got two packs! Because we messed up some of the first!
But of course I didn’t want white napkins, so my mum and I decided that we’d dye them! Half of them we dyed using Rit dye mix to get the perfect shade of light blue. We actually had to hand dye these, which was such an effort! But worth it in the end. The second half were the darker grey and these were a Dylon Machine dye in Smoke Grey.
My mum then has a very clever sewing machine that sews anything on to fabric that you programme into it. So she programmed in our wedding date as designed by Lisa of Paperknots that was used throughout our stationery. And speaking of stationery, that brings me on to our menus.
Our napkins were popped underneath the starter plate, and our menus were placed on top of the starter plate. Lisa, just as she did with everything else, designed our wedding breakfast menus to perfection. They were almost like a little book. Acting as both a menu and a place setting.
A little tag on top of the first page held the guests name, and just underneath explained the concept of the dinner. The second page held the details of the starter and main courses. And the third page listed the desserts and a little thank you from the both of us for coming. It was all beautifully finished with a light blue ribbon.
It was so lovely to see so many of our guests flicking through their menus to see what was coming up next. So not only did they look beautiful in the wedding table design, they were also incredibly useful.
We went massively over budget on the flowers. And I even threw in a few more at the last minute. But not looking back on everything, I'm so glad I did.
Of course our guests also needed a way to find their way to the table. There is more coming on the table plan in our next post. But we essentially told our guests which table to find, and then they were to search for their name on that table number.
We had five long tables, and I just wanted a simple one to five system. I hate table names, as so many are so cheesy. So keeping it classy we just stuck to the numbers. These were one of the only parts of the wedding that I actually DIY’d. Although I hope they didn’t look DIY!
I got my dad to make me certain sized wooden blocks, and then went about filler’ing them. Not because they needed filling, but almost to create a concrete effect pattern. I then finished these by painting them in Craig and Rose Steel Pole. And we added the numbers using wire words from Grey Fox Design. (The same we used for the table plan).
The tables were then also adorned with candles from Ester and Erik. We chose the shades 71, 37, 59 and 75. My dad then made every single candlestick out of wood and stained them in Ebony. We had 4 different heights for the four different candle colours.
And last but not least, the flowers
This room would not have looked the same without the flowers. They really did make it. We went so over budget on the flowers, and when I say over budget, by £1,750! But it was so so worth it. Erin and her team at Flowers By Passion executed my vision to perfection, and it was exactly what I wanted it to be and more.
Having 5 tables, I wanted to have a variety of heights. So tables one, three and five all had low meadow like arrangements running all the way across the table. With table three’s flowers spilling onto the floor in a puddle like arrangement. And then tables two and four had tall plinth foliage arrangements for height.
At the last minute, I actually added smaller bottle arrangements for the two tables with the taller arrangements just so the tables didn’t look so stark in comparison to the other three. And I’m so glad I did, because it really did work so much better. The only reason I didn’t add them from the beginning was cost!
It really was the room of my dreams…
This room was my favourite room in the whole world, and I only wish it could have lasted forever. I’m still totally and completely in love with my wedding table design and I only hope that mine can inspire yours.
Images – All Photographs throughout this post were taken by Benjamin Wheeler or Stories by Chloe. Ben was our wedding photographer. And Chloe shot all of our behind the scenes photos. To me the set up is just as important as everything set. So to ensure we captured everything, I hired two photographers to capture very different things.
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