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No chairs at the ceremony?

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So_happy

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Nov 12, 2006
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1,084
Please don''t flog me!! As I definitley recognize the etiquette of this subject. I HATE that this is a question I have right now.

I also just know that at $4/chair here in the Northeast (not counting setup and breakdown fees) I would have to buy the chairs in lieu of other things. And since our wedding is on the BIG DIY track anyway, there isn''t any place else to cut on costs
We even already cut our guest list from 125 to 75 (80 tops) to be able to even do it DIY!

The wedding right now will be as lovely as I can make it within the budget I have but if I have to spend $300 on chairs for 30 minutes (!) I''ll have to nix something pretty important completely out.

Have any of you ever been to a wedding whose ceremony had you standing? How horrible was it? Was it not that bad? Did you think the bride and groom a pair of sadistic monsters?? Including pro- and re-cessional, ceremony, and a little congratuation time, the whole ceremony part will take at most 1 hour but probably more along the lines of 45 minutes. Its in the end of August we already planned on having water bottles there (been buying them when they go on sale) but will the standing thing really be painful?

We do have a maybe 4 "older" people there........our grandparents........but that''s it for the truly older folks. Can we get away with providing a row of chairs for these guests with a few extra for whomever?

Please let me know of your experience with this as a guest or as a plannning bride!
Thank you!
 

JulieN

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jul 25, 2005
Messages
13,321
It is very difficult to stand still for 45 minutes.

Mass is an hour, and I can never stand even halfway through it when there is only standing room. And many women will wear heels?
 

WTNLVR

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Jan 30, 2005
Messages
623
Sorry, but chairs are not optional in my opinion. Many people are infirm or will wear heals, etc... If I went to a ceremony and there were no chairs, I''d have to leave. And in August? No way. Nevermind that the guests won''t be able to see a thing. There must be other areas you can cut back in or maybe a family member can help pay for chair rental? Can you borrow some from one of your employers or know anyone that can?
 

E B

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Aug 31, 2005
Messages
9,488
I would be uncomfortable standing for 45 minutes to an hour (especially in August!), and I'm a healthy 23 year old woman. If you made the ceremony short and sweet, like 10 minutes, I'd say you could get away without chairs for most (for the elderly, you should provide chairs no matter how long).

If you're unwilling to shorten the ceremony, then it's important to shell out the $ for the chairs. You don't have to cut an entire section of your wedding, just cut back a little in several areas. Cheaper flowers, a less "decorated" cake, cheaper invitations.

Remember, you're the host of a rather large party. Do what you can to make your guests comfortable.

ETA: If you need help finding ways to cut here and there, please don't hesitate to ask! We can be a pretty helpful bunch.
 

qtiekiki

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Nov 14, 2004
Messages
3,876
I agree that chairs aren''t one of those thing that can be cut out. It''s kind of tacky (for the lack of better words) to have your guests stand for the whole ceremony.
 

JulieN

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jul 25, 2005
Messages
13,321
Actuallt, I have been to weddings where it is mostly standing, but it is not Western style wedding. Also, I was a child, so it might have actually been shorter than I remember.

People will walk around/be shifty/restless because as I already said, it is very hard to stand still for that long, but of course it is no big deal to go shopping on your feet for thrice that time.
 

So_happy

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Nov 12, 2006
Messages
1,084
Something one of you said struck me..............

our actually vow-taking-part-of-the-ceremony will be 15 minutes max. However, I thought that with all the filing in and out etc that I would add an other 1/2 hour for that to be realisitc.


Is it possible to actually have a 15 miunute ceremony from soup to nuts????


(I picture the bridal party marching triple-time and me sprinting down the aisle a jazzed up wedding march lol)



???????
 

indecisive

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Dec 9, 2005
Messages
1,240
I still think that is way too long to have your guests stand. They will probably arrive 15-20 minutes early and be standing the whole time and it is not a good idea to plan on rushing through the ceremony. You really need to provide something for your guests to sit on or expect some very negative/uncomfortable energy while you say your vows. Do you have a theme? I have seen hay bales as seating for country weddings that can be cute. Or could you make benches for people to sit on? Either that or cut the list some more so you aren''t putting your loved ones in such an uncomfortable situation!
 

moremoremore

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Mar 15, 2004
Messages
6,825
Uh, no. Chairs are not optional! Cut elsewhere...
 

anchor31

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Oct 18, 2005
Messages
7,074
I really wouldn''t be comfortable with having to stand at a wedding ceremony, or with making my guests stand... The best thing to do would look to look for alternatives, try to bargain (I think 4$ a chair is pretty ridiculous) or cut somewhere else in the budget.
 

Maria D

Brilliant_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jan 24, 2003
Messages
1,684
I have been to one wedding where we stood during the ceremony. It was a super informal ceremony in the bride''s backyard overlooking a river. Before the ceremony, the guests were in the tent (where there were chairs & tables) eating hors d''oeuvres and drinking cocktails. We came out into the garden for the ceremony which took all of ten minutes (if that). There were enough chairs for guests that really needed them and those that had to stand (most of us) didn''t mind standing. I think it was fine in that situation because the guests didn''t have to stand around waiting for the ceremony to begin.

I would definitely, definitely, cut back on other areas before foregoing chairs if you think your guests will have to stand longer than a few minutes *and* you get married in a venue where it will be tacky to have chairs for some and not other guests. Because some of your guests may not be comfortable standing even 10 minutes. No one is going to remember if the cake wasn''t the fanciest or what your bouquet looks like. But if they have to stand, your guests will always remember your wedding as the one with no chairs!
 

TravelingGal

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Dec 29, 2004
Messages
17,193
Standing is harder than walking for some (tougher on the back). I agree with the others. Hopefully you can cut out $300 somewhere, but asking guests to stand is not an option. They are your guests, and should be treated as such.
 

Jas12

Ideal_Rock
Joined
May 16, 2006
Messages
2,330
Can you not find ANY chairs under $4 a piece? that''s really high. I looked into having a DIY wedding and white plastic chairs were around 1.50 each to rent, but i guesss it''s totally dependent on your location. Try renting from non-wedding places (like a legion or a conference centre--and don''t tell them it''s for a wedding, just say it''s for a back yard party or something). Someone must know someone else that can lend you 80ish chairs, or have a connection to a place that could.

or, what about renting benches from the city? I know someone who did that for a staff BBQ. It''s kinda rustic looking, but may work with your decor...not sure, just throwing some options your way. good luck!
 

So_happy

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Nov 12, 2006
Messages
1,084
Jas12~ thank you so much for your suggestions! This really helps me think of different ideas. I really want chairs and, as you agreed, $4 a chair is horrendous for a half hour of use. I will look into those ideas first thing tomorrow or Monday morning.

To all who answered~ I have figured out a plan B if we can''t find chairs in the manner suggested by Jas12. We will take pre-ceremony photos at this park that I''m in love with (I''d like to have the ceremony there but....well.....there''s the chair issue) so we''ll get wonderful pics there while in our bridal garb :) Then, we''ll have the ceremony in our reception site where we''ve already rented very nice (typical) white folding chairs anyway for the reception (at........yes......$4/chair!!).Then, we''ll take more pics after the ceremony as our reception site in on the ocean :). It should be wonderful.

And if the other ideas pan out.........who knows........maybe I''ll get my ceremony in the park as I am dreaming of :)



Thank you all for your honest appraisals of my dilemma.
 

Tacori E-ring

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Aug 15, 2005
Messages
20,009
I could not (would not want to) stand longer than 15 minutes (think of all the ladies and their heels? Older relatives? Children?) I think you should reconsider.
 

aussiegirl23

Shiny_Rock
Joined
May 25, 2006
Messages
465
Date: 12/1/2006 7:19:09 PM
Author:So_happy
Please don''t flog me!! As I definitley recognize the etiquette of this subject. I HATE that this is a question I have right now.

I also just know that at $4/chair here in the Northeast (not counting setup and breakdown fees) I would have to buy the chairs in lieu of other things. And since our wedding is on the BIG DIY track anyway, there isn''t any place else to cut on costs
We even already cut our guest list from 125 to 75 (80 tops) to be able to even do it DIY!

The wedding right now will be as lovely as I can make it within the budget I have but if I have to spend $300 on chairs for 30 minutes (!) I''ll have to nix something pretty important completely out.

Have any of you ever been to a wedding whose ceremony had you standing? How horrible was it? Was it not that bad? Did you think the bride and groom a pair of sadistic monsters?? Including pro- and re-cessional, ceremony, and a little congratuation time, the whole ceremony part will take at most 1 hour but probably more along the lines of 45 minutes. Its in the end of August we already planned on having water bottles there (been buying them when they go on sale) but will the standing thing really be painful?

We do have a maybe 4 ''older'' people there........our grandparents........but that''s it for the truly older folks. Can we get away with providing a row of chairs for these guests with a few extra for whomever?

Please let me know of your experience with this as a guest or as a plannning bride!
Thank you!
um, i''d rather cheaper cake, smaller flower bouquets, worse music, etc... just about ANYTHING but standing for a 45 minute ceremony. i''m healthy, 23, and fit. I''m just NOT going to be happy standing through a ceremony, no matter how short. ESPECIALLY in heels.

don''t torture your guests... cut costs elsewhere. it CAN be done : )
 

aljdewey

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Nov 25, 2002
Messages
9,143
Honestly, I think that chairs have to be a priority. I''d even cut out wedding cake before chairs! It''s just not right to invite people to an event and not provide a place to sit.

I had park wedding with only 25 guests, and we provided seating.

Incidentally, what park are you wanting to marry in, SH? And what is the oceanside reception location? I ask because I married on the North Shore, and I was able to rent chairs in July for $1.50 each plus the flat set up/dely chg.
 

Kaleigh

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Nov 18, 2004
Messages
29,570
Oh I''d cut back elsewhere and provide seating for your guests during the ceremony. I think you can find them cheaper, $4 a chair seems kind of high to me?? But the comfort of your guests during the wedding ceremony key. Really.
 

CrownJewel

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Sep 26, 2006
Messages
1,895
This is interesting. I looked into having my ceremony in Central Park in Manhattan, and I'm assuming lots of people have their ceremonies in Central Park because there's a big reservation process and a giant list of rules. One rule is, "no chairs allowed." So I guess it has been done.

Maybe you can rent benches instead? I've seen in bridal magazines where it's just a simple loooooooooooong bench and a giant pillar candle at the end or flowers and it looks really pretty!!! Or maybe you can have just a few people at the ceremony and then invite everyone else to the reception?
 

sumbride

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Feb 17, 2006
Messages
3,867
Are there churches that might be willing to loan you chairs?

My parents'' company has about 300 folding chairs in their warehouse that they use for parties and I know they''ve lent them to people before... Maybe you can find something like that? Do you know anybody that works for a large company that might have a connection?

A fraternal association like the Masons or the Lions maybe?

You''ve got to know somebody with access to less expensive chairs... And no, I would not be comfortable standing that long. My FI literally gets lightheaded if he stands for more than 10 minutes at a time. Me, my back just starts to hurt. Also, you may have more than just the elderly that are disabled... many disabilities and illnesses are hidden. My friend with MS couldn''t handle it and you''d never know she needed a chair.
 

CrownJewel

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Sep 26, 2006
Messages
1,895
Good idea sumbride! So_happy, do you live in your hometown? Maybe your old high school might lend you chairs? I know my high school orchestra used to have racks of folding chairs for our concerts.
 

diamondfan

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jun 17, 2005
Messages
11,016
I agree this is the time to call in favors and be creative. I do not think in the heat you want people standing, and how do you graciously steer people away from the seats you will have to have out for the eldery guests? It just is going to be a logistical nightmare.

Can you have a "fundraiser" for your wedding? A garage sale? A bake sale? I would just really wrack my brain trying to come up with something so I could have the chairs and not give up too much elsewhere...
 

monarch64

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Aug 12, 2005
Messages
17,744
Standing and hot, and ladies in dresses? You are ASKING for people to PASS OUT during your ceremony unless YOU cut it down to 5 minutes. 45 minutes worth of standing in the heat? Forget it. I hate to be so harsh, but seriously, you cannot expect all your friends and loved ones to stand there for 45 minutes and sweat it out while you get married. That, to me, is the epitome of a bridezilla. If I had to go through a ceremony like that, I think I would leave immediately afterward (granted I was still standing), take my gift, and go on my merry way.

Now, give me a chair and a fan, and a STD card letting me know how to plan my attire so I didn''t sweat to deat, or at least let me plan my extra insulin shots, and I''m all good. Party central.
But if you didn''t give me a chair, then hell yes I would be calling you all kinds of "sadistic monsters!"
 

basil

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Jun 27, 2006
Messages
1,526
I just went to my cousin''s wedding about a month ago where there were 10 chairs for 40 guests or so for the ceremony. I don''t remember it being a problem for me, but it was October and wasn''t hot, I wasn''t wearing very high heels, and her ceremony was probably about 20 minutes tops. They asked the guests to all stand in a line forming an aisle for her to walk down, and then everyone sort of filled in around the chairs for the ceremony. Since it wasn''t a long aisle with that few chairs and people, it didn''t take very long to walk down it. There were only 2 bridesmaids, and the groomsmen were already standing in the front when we arrived. It definitely gave the ceremony an informal feel, though, which may or may not be what you''re looking for.
 
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