Dear Abby
I am trying out a new format for posting...2-3 smaller posts a day, rather than one long one. Today, we are going to start with a Q & A session. Later, we will some really gorgeous pictorial posts, so...

I am trying out a new format for posting...2-3 smaller posts a day, rather than one long one. Today, we are going to start with a Q & A session. Later, we will some really gorgeous pictorial posts, so stay tuned!

I would LOVE to hear your input on these questions and I am sure that our "brides in need" would as well...

Question 1: I'm having our guests arrive at 1:00pm for a Victorian Garden party. We'll have our ceremony on the steps of a historic home. After the ceremony, we'll invite guests to have tea & scones on the lawn while my fiance and I take pictures. When we come back, we plan to have everyone take their seat at a table. We'll do toasts, first dance etc. then. After that, we'll invite people to begin dancing, talking & eating. We'll serve appetizers until 5pm, when we'll cut the cake. The sun sets at around 6pm so the party will be over by 6:30pm at the latest.

My Question is whether it's necessary to get enough tables for each person, or if there may be a better idea. We'll have a big brass band playing, so we'll need a dance floor, but I whether people will ever take their seats if we're having stationed appetizers???

My answer follows suit with many of those who posted below. I think that it's important to have almost enough seats for people (maybe 2/3) so that guests do have a place to park it if they need to. With that said, I think that incorporating cocktail tables, perhaps with stools tucked neatly under them, is a good way to ensure that guests are up on their feet enjoying the evening. If you are serving heavy appetizers, it's important that people at least have a place to eat, otherwise the food will (like someone else said), go to waste.

Question 2: I am getting married on June 14, 2008. I am thinking about having blue and green as my colors, however, the curtains and chairs at my reception site are maroon! The curtains also have some kind of design on it, which I could get over...but I can't stop thinking about those chairs. Obviously this color scheme might be nice for fall, but not for my June wedding!! Do you have any suggestions as to what I could do to disguise these chairs, preferably somewhat low budget?

Cover those chairs!! Sacrifice somewhere else. An ugly chair will put such a damper on your efforts to create a beautiful, cohesive look and feel. There are so many other places that you can cut costs to allow for spending room here. If you try to cover them in a different way, say with a lovely flower arrangement on the backs of some of them or a cute strand of greenery, you will end up spending just as much. With that said, aim to get the most tailored, simple cover you can find...some of the options can be pretty bad.

Question 3: I am planning a wedding and I would love to do something other than the standard sit down dinner as we would really like a relaxed and social fete. I wonder if you have heard from anyone who has had a cocktail reception with food stations, champagne etc and wait staff - something posh. Or, I LOVE the idea of having a dessert reception - lots of sweets etc etc to follow a simple service at the same venue. It seems like it would add a lot of sweetness to the event and assuming that guests would eat before coming - it could be a nice after dinner treat! Your thoughts would be so greatly appreciated - ps I am a fellow blogger and you have been on my list of faves since I started!!

I love the idea of HEAVY hor'dourves...shrimp and grits in shot glasses (so cute), miniature goat cheese tarts, chicken lollipops, YUM. With a champagne bar...over the top. Love it. I also like the idea of a dessert reception and think that if you are on a budget, this is probably one of the best options.

Thanks so much, ladies, for these great questions!!