Wedding Wednesday: Finding the right table decor

Remember those gorgeous trophy cup flower arrangements I was lusting after a few weeks ago? Turns out that finding good-looking trophy cups is an expensive endeavor! They start around $30 on eBay and Etsy; with 15 tables to decorate, that was definitely out of my price range.

My mother suggested I check with a local trophy store on prices for new loving cups; I didn’t bother, as I was certain the cups in my price range would look chintzy and cheap. For good measure, I checked equestrian ribbon and trophy staple Hodges Badge- their silver trophies started at $55!

I’d resigned myself to tasteful vases last week when Johnny’s mother and aunt came to visit. They’ve graciously volunteered to do most of the heavy lifting when it comes to planning. We visited the venue, and Johnny’s aunt asked a few questions about table linens. We were referred to Party Perfect, a local store that the venue uses to rent just about everything.

Party Perfect appeared to be what a Pinterest wedding board looks like in the wild. There was burlap. There were mason jars. Vintage cake stands lurked behind brightly-colored antique glassware. A giant wooden “MR & MRS” cutout adorned a wall. I attempted to leave immediately, but was confused about which door was real and which door was really an upcycled accessory for a rustic and romantic wedding.

A helpful girl escorted us to the table linens section; I never knew there were so many shades of white, or that a bright white tablecloth would seriously clash with cream-colored hydrangeas. After finding a soft ivory table cloth, we tried a few different table runners and decided they all looked hideous. I didn’t want to tables to be stark landscapes, so I went with mint green napkins for a pop of color. (To match the mint juleps, of course.)

I opted for silver chargers, because they reminded me of silver award plates. Somehow, all of the napkin rings were sparkly and hideous; I’d love to find some more of my cool snaffle bit napkin rings, but that kind of thing might get pricey on 150 napkins.
The coolest thing I found at the store were these faux-silver julep cups! The small cups will be serving their intended function: we’ll be serving mint juleps in them. 
I loved the way the big cups looked, but when I sat down at the table, it was difficult to see and talk with someone on the opposite side.
Enter the crazing glaze silver bowl! I promise the bowl is more silver than it appears in this photo; the crazing makes it looked aged, with just the right amount of patina. The bowls are short, pretty, and remind me of these silver award bowls.
I’d like to incorporate some equestrian touches on the table, but I’m not sure where or what would work best. We aren’t planning on assigned seating, so table numbers aren’t necessary. Maybe photos of past Derby winners with a paragraph about them? Johnny’s aunt suggested pictures of Johnny and I, but horses are so much more photogenic and interesting…
Thoughts? Suggestions?

Author: Stephanie

Equestrian, amateur cook, people person.

12 thoughts on “Wedding Wednesday: Finding the right table decor”

  1. With 150 people, you might want to think about not assigning seats. I've been to receptions with open seating, and it doesn't always work. You end up with half full tables and random empty seats and those not seated first wander around looking lost.

    1. Thanks for the input- honestly, I've just thought about it from my perspective as a past wedding guest. It seems like I always get stuck at a table with strangers who don't like jokes or only want to talk to people they know. But I've been told more than once that people like being told what to do at a wedding, so maybe we'll have to re-think the open seating.

  2. This might be far out, but what about using ribbons in your flower arrangements? That might be super fun, if not exactly derby related.

    Also, you might be able to get some lengths of wide leather lacing and use that to tie your napkins. Nothing says horses like leather!

    1. Not far out at all! I've been thinking hard on where I can add ribbons, because ribbons are awesome and the small contingent of horsey people attending will probably be the only ones who realize it isn't Derby-related. I'm just not sure how to incorporate the ribbons. This is a question for a florist, probably…

      I really like the idea of leather lacing for napkins rings/ties!

    1. Emily, that is so nice of you! Thank you for looking around for me! I'm a little afraid of Pinterest (so easy to lose like…3 hours there and then feel like a subpar human because you definitely aren't DIYing your whole wedding for under $1,000 and making the cutest mini pies for it and hand lettering your invitations…); I love the Horse Nation article!

  3. those bowls are pretty! and i definitely lol'd at "but i was confused about which door was real and which door was really an upcycled accessory for a rustic and romantic wedding…."

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