To Sit or Stand.... Cocktail Style Receptions vs. Sit Down Dinners

Photography by: David Guenther

Photography by: David Guenther

Photography by: This is Photography

Photography by: This is Photography

2017 has been good to us. Uber eats finally came to Calgary, Mindy Kaling is pregnant (please, please let the father be BJ Novak), and Native Tongues got a take out window (those donuts!). But most importantly, we've seen a huge pick up in cocktail/lounge style wedding receptions.  

We love when non-traditional elements are incorporated into weddings, and we're big fans of making your wedding feel like 'you.' Therefore, if you're looking for a way to make your wedding feel a little more casual - a non-sit down party might be your answer!

As cocktail style is on the rise, we've gotten a lot of questions regarding lounge receptions vs. sit down receptions  - so we thought we'd blog and do a bit of a throw down between the two popular styles.


Will a cocktail style reception feel more informal than a sit down dinner?
Short Answer: Yes!
Long Answer: Cocktail style receptions inherently feel less formal. You mingle, you aren't assigned a seat and there is no prescribed timelines. You can still have speeches + introduce your bridal party, but we'd suggest keeping them short + sweet!

Do I need to adjust timelines if I have a cocktail style reception instead of a sit down dinner?
Short Answer: Slightly
Long Answer: We would suggest holding cocktail style receptions slightly after the dinner hour. That way your guests will be able to sneak dinner in before they come to the reception!

Is a cocktail style reception my budget's best friend?
Short Answer: It's more like Paris Hilton + Nicole Richie, they can be besties, or they can be major frenemies.
Long Answer: If you are cool with limiting passed appies and making it clear to your guests that it's a canapes + cocktails type event, then yes, a cocktail style wedding is your budget's BFF. Having said that, if you're wanting to provide lots of food (and host your wedding over the dinner hour) - cocktail style budgets can definitely creep up and become a similar cost to a sit down dinner.

Do you think one is better than the other?
Short Answer: No!
Long Answer: Each couple and wedding is different. If you think cocktail style is your jam - it's probably the right way to go. If you've imagined your wedding and already pinned a bunch of flatware choices - a sit down dinner is where you should be. Either way, you'll be surrounded by friends + fam on a beautiful day.

XO - L+S