Wedding Planning Tips

Wedding Industry Lingo | Part 2 of 8: Decor and Tabletop

In this 8 part blog series, we are here to break down the details for you! You can check out part one here that covers all things floral. This post is all about the Decor and Tabletop lingo!


When creating a beautiful wedding tablescape, the end goal is to curate a tabletop that conveys an experience, mood or theme that cohesively matching the whole event down to the stationery. Tablescapes can include florals, candlesticks, accent pieces, charger plates, napkins, menu cards, salt and pepper vessels, custom stemware, etc. It’s quite literally everything on the tabletop that aesthetically adds value to the overall design.

Bell Isle Boat House Wedding Table

Planning & Design: Festoons and Flourishes with Photos by: Niki Marie Photography

Place Setting

A traditional place setting (shown below from left to right) includes a salad fork, dinner fork, charger plate, dinner plate, napkin, salad plate, dinner menu, knife, spoon, and bread fork. Additional pieces include a butter plate as well as a wine glass, water goblet, and champagne flute.

Wedding Table Place Setting

Wedding Table Place Setting

Planning & Design: Festoons and Flourishes with Photos by: Niki Marie Photography


A charger, or charger plate, can be shown in this photo as the gold plate under the napkin. This plate is not to be eaten off (please don’t!) but simply a decor piece at each setting. This is ideal when you are serving your guests with a plated meal. Since the meal will be served on a plate brought to the table, without a changer, the napkin will be the only thing at the place setting if you don’t have a charger. It’s a plate for your plate that will make the place setting look whole upon guests being seated.

Photo: K.R. Moreno Photography 

The dinner service below was also a plated meal. This couple chose to skip the charger but dress up the table with a beautiful dusty blue silk ribbon tied to the napkins. This is a great way to dress up the place setting at a less expensive cost than a charger plate.

Guest Tables - Tented Michigan Wedding

Photo: Stephanie Kaslly Photography

The dinner service below was a buffet meal. This couple chose to have their buffet plates already at the tables. This also dresses up the tables and allows more room on the buffet table for food. This is also a great way to save on space at the reception in lieu of having stacks of plates at the buffet table, you could save a whole 6 foot worth of space!

Guest Table at Bay Pointe Inn

Photo: Samantha James Photography

We always recommend having at least a charger plate for plated meals or the dinner plate for buffet meals at each place setting. This will elevate the table design!

Sweetheart Table

A Sweetheart table shown below is perfect for the couple who want to enjoy their first dinner as a married couple, with just the two of them!

Sweetheart Table at Cornman Farms

Photo: K.R. Moreno Photography 

Traditional Head Table

A traditional head table is one where all members of the wedding party site on one side of a banquet table. The Bride sits to the left of the groom. The Brides’ attendants will sit on her side with the grooms’ attendants on his side.

Traditional Wedding Head Table

Photo: Kathy Davies Photography

Kings Table

A King’s table (or family-style table) is where the wedding party will sit on both sides of the table. Typically the couple will sit at the head of the table or in the middle. We typically recommend the middle. These tables are great for focal room pieces or to incorporate wedding party dates at the table.

Detroit Wedding Head Table

Photo: Me and Him Photography 


Mockups are perfect for the person who lists design as a top priority to their event. The benefits of a floral mockup will allow you to gain a visual on the size and shape of specific items in your order. Additionally, to make sure your expectations are met prior to the event day. Please keep in mind, that every single stem and bloom grows differently. Weather, seasons, etc. will result in the exact same flower from the exact same grower to be different from one order to the next. So, exact replication isn’t possible as blooms will vary. Please also keep in mind, mockups will be more expensive than the cost of a single centerpiece due to the requirement of ordering blooms in bulk that would normally allow for more than 1 centerpiece to be designed per bunch of blooms. We offer centerpiece mockups as an additional cost to your event order.

East Lansing Florist

Looking for more planning tips? Check out these blog posts below!

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2233 W Grand River Ave. Okemos, MI 48864

All Grand Events + Floral is a luxury wedding planner in Michigan offering floral, event design, and full service wedding + event planning. Based in Okemos and serving Michigan from Grand Rapids to Metro Detroit.