Wedding Reception Table Ideas: The Sweetheart Table

Make your wedding day all about YOU by integrating the sweetheart wedding reception table into your intimate outdoor wedding setting.

It’s no secret that your wedding day is all about you and your sweetie. Each aspect of your wedding day should reflect your style, interests, and personality! Are you looking for an alternative to a traditional head table or simply want to snuggle in with your new Mr. or Mrs.? Enter the Sweetheart Wedding Reception Table.

“Holly and Anton, party of two!” Although they chose to sit at a sweetheart table “alone”, H&A still arranged their bridal party near by to distinguish them as guests of honor. Photo Credit: Studio KH

What is a Sweetheart Table?

Sweetheart tables are meant for, well, sweethearts! By Google’s definition, they are smaller tables that solely seat the newlyweds – but that doesn’t mean that’s the only way to incorporate the sweetheart table. Not only can sweetheart tables be on the larger side, they can also be used within the traditional head table line-up for extra leg room and comfort.

A longer sweetheart table is extra dramatic and may provide extra leg room AND wedding gown room (for those extra poofy ball gowns…).

Why Choose a Sweetheart Table?

The sweetheart table makes a cute AND functional head table! Cute on it’s own, but also functional in a traditional head table line up (what newlywed wants to be separated by table legs?). Here are a few more reasons…

You Get a Chance to Be Alone

We know you love your bridal party. You wouldn’t have picked them if you hadn’t, right? It’s okay to hang out with just your new spouse for supper time. Plus, this gives you a chance to wind down after a whirlwind of emotion, pictures, and lots of talking to long, lost relatives. Step away from the chaos for a moment and chat with your best friend!

Your Bridal Party can sit by their Plus-Ones or Family

Have you ever been sent to sit with your date’s Uncle Jack because they were at the head table? Then you probably know where we’re going with this. Let’s just say Uncle Jack’s extensive collection of dad jokes are amusing… but may get tiresome after some time. Also, your bridal party may be looking to take a breather from being in the spotlight. There’s no rule book when it comes to head table arrangements (at least… not here at The Garden’s of Castle Rock!), so there is nothing saying you can’t arrange their seating near by.

Like a cherry on top of a head table sundae, this head table arrangement features the Sweetheart Table at the top and two Cedar Banquet Tables connected at the corners. A perfect layout for larger bridal parties or parties with plus-ones!

They’re Photogenic!

Your photographer is going to want a great view of your reactions to funny, loving, or maybe embarrassing stories told by your family and friends. When displayed on its own, the sweetheart table provides a great view of you for everyone!

You Can Splurge or Get Creative on a Budget!

Splurging on distinguished floral arrangements, notable head table décor, or fancy seating can be super fun with a sweetheart table! Opt for special rental items, such as formal place settings or fancy chairs for just the two of you instead of your entire bridal party.

Consider using the floral display from your ceremony to adorn your sweetheart table! As you can see here, a mountain of florals created a lavish centerpiece. Photo Credit: Sophisticated Grace Photography

How Do I Decorate a Sweetheart Table?

If we had a nickel for every couple that couldn’t enjoy their reception because their head table wasn’t decorated perfectly… Spoiler alert: We have yet to collect a nickel for this… So, enjoy the process! Here are some ideas to get you started…

1) Stick with your theme.

This BOHO, vintage inspired head table décor is very welcoming and it packs a punch of character! Photo Credit: Angela Divine Photography

2) Pick Some Cozy Seating

Choosing a sweetheart table that is wide enough to host your favorite decorative seating is a must! Here at The Gardens, our handcrafted cedar sweetheart tables are 5 ft. long. Photo Credit: Erin Rae Photography 

3) Choose a Linen, Runner, or Garland. (Or don’t!)

Lace and a delicate floral display created the perfect garden wedding scene indoors. Hello, sentimental “something borrowed” on display!

4) Create Your Centerpiece

Minimalist and moody, or maximalist and dramatic? Creating your centerpiece doesn’t have to be complicated. Sometimes less equals more, and sometimes more equals… WOWZA! Photo Credit: Perry James Photography

5) Add Some Twinkle

Pillar…votive…tea light…battery operated. Candles help make your tablescape magical. Otherwise, consider LED twinkle lights. Photo Credit: Kimberly Williams Photography

6) Consider an Interesting Backdrop

A backdrop of varying lumber shapes and colors perfectly complimented this rustic refined reception theme. Other backdrop ideas to consider include lights, draping, a floral installation, or the natural garden scene right outside of the reception tent. 

7) Set The Table

Fancy place settings can get expensive or difficult to provide for a large crowd; however, providing special plates, utensils, napkins for just you and your sweetie (remember – your table settings will be the most documented) creates an extra special space for you to enjoy. Photo Credit: Taryn Christine Photography

8) Add Some Signs

You’re officially Mr. and Mrs. – or Mr. and Mr. – or Mrs. and Mrs.! Why not display your official title?

9) Tell Your Story!

Little hidden gems throughout your reception space illustrate your story, add character, and keep guests intrigued.

10) Enjoy YOUR Day!!

Your day is finally here! The pictures are taken. The ceremony complete. Dinner is about to be served. Sit back, relax, and enjoy your day! Photo Credit: Eric Vest Photography

More Sweetheart Table Decoration Inspiration

That’s all there is to it! Okay, we get it. There’s lots to decide. Keep scrolling for more Sweetheart Table Inspiration!

Add a splash of up-lighting behind your sweetheart table to create a fun, dramatic, and party-ready reception space! Photo Credit: Render Photography

Sweetheart tables used in a traditional head table line-up can still be distinguished. These vintage dining chairs helped set the couple’s seating apart from the rest.

The Garden’s The Rustic Refined™ Head Tables are the perfect addition to any outdoor wedding reception and even have a sweetheart table option!

A square sweetheart head table is fun to decorate and quite functional. You and your love can sit facing each other without sitting across the table from one another. How romantic!

Your bridal party can still be nearby even when you choose a sweetheart for your head table! Photo Credit: Brian Rappold Photography

Cozy seating, twinkle lights, and a table for four. Share your sweetheart head table with your best man and/or maid of honor!

Quiet, intimate moments like these are what every wedding couple hopes for. Photo Credit: Jennifer Sanders Photography

Click here for even more Unforgettable Wedding Reception Table Décor inspiration.

Looking for more head table suggestions? Check out the King’s Harvest Table and The Garden’s Original Rustic Refined™ Head Table!

Unless otherwise noted, all photo credit by The Gardens of Castle Rock.  To see more images of The Gardens, visit our website gallery.

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