Place Cards and Escort Cards - you've probably heard these terms used a lot while planning your wedding. You've probably even heard them reference the same thing! But I assure you, they are not the same, and its okay if you didn't know that - you're busy planning a wedding and you only have so much room in your life for wedding lingo.
These are used in more formal settings where you want your guests to sit in a specific seat at the table they are assigned to. Usually, they are paired with a seating chart that informs the guest which table they are sitting at, and once they have made their way to the table, the place cards are there to tell them which seat is theirs.
This is useful for plated service where the caterer needs to know who is eating what and where they will be seated so they can bring food to your guests in a timely manner.
Custom place cards can be anything from a simple piece of hand calligraphed paper on their place setting to a mason jar filled with homemade jam that also serves as their party favor. If your guests are picking from a set menu, you can use the actual menu as the place card, and have their names hand-calligraphed on the top!
This is also a great opportunity to help make your catering staff's life easier by color coding your place cards to indicate meal preferences (green for vegetarian, red for meat, yellow for gluten-free).
Custom Escort Cards are used to tell a guest what table they are going to sit at, but not what specific seat they will be sitting in. Escort cards are great if you don't want to deal with making sure Aunt Susie is going to be okay sitting next to Cousin Adam. Guests can pick which seat at that specified table they want to sit in.
Escort cards can also double as custom wedding favors too! You can have a custom camping mug designed and have their names & table written on a piece of flannel and tie it to the handle with some twine. Custom Escort Card AND party favor - two birds - one stone!
Generally speaking, they work best for buffet or station style dining, but can easily be used with a less formal plated meal. They are not used with seating charts since they include the guest's full name and table assignment.
I feel so smart!
Great! I’m so glad you’ll go to your next cocktail hour with a new set of trivia to drop on your future bride-to-be friends! I'd be happy to be your wedding calligrapher and get you set up with the Escort or Place Cards of your dreams. I would love to chat with you and hear your ideas on how to make your wedding the best day of your life.