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How to Coordinate your Wedding Ceremony Aisle and Structure. Wedding Planning how to How to plan your weddingSo now we get to the goods! You’ve been waiting for this part… that beautiful aisle you’ve been dreaming about. Let’s talk about Ceremony Structure and the aisle you get to walk up on your Big Day! Ceremony Structure includes the mechanics, math and even seating assignments for the ceremony.

How to Coordinate Ceremony Structure

To get started we need to ‘build’ your aisle and for that we need a few numbers, which come from your guest list. Ideally, you want your aisle to be a bit symmetric {we’ll think outside the box a bit later, I specifically mean this one tiny part} and by that I mean the first few rows. Once you get everyone up there you can totally think outside the box! I want you to visualize your first few rows on either side of the aisle, left side and right side. Who is sitting there? Or, who is missing and needs to be honored?
Think About: How many seats are in your front row? Which reads, “who needs to be sitting up there?” Since you could put 10 people up there if you wanted! Ideally, you’ll have your closet loved ones in the front 2 rows. Maybe that is immediate family, cousins, siblings, your boss… whoever it is, do a count. These people are what I call your WITHIN THE RIBBON. Perhaps one of you has 12 WTR and the other only has 5. How does that build you aisle? You make your rows with 6 seats. WTR is 2 rows deep for one and only the front row for the other. Easy right? Let’s get deeper….

Front Rows:

Typically, based on my most common experiences and age ranges of my couples we still have quite a few family members that need honored seating. Moms are usually sat in the front aisle side seat so that they actually have the absolute best seat in the house. Dads {or Mom’s Spouse} are then sat in the second seat, and next we have grandparents. Siblings (sorry) usually get the second row, unless, sadly there are no grandparents. However, you really should consider one of the many ways to honor loved ones who can’t be there with you on your special day, which may require taking up a front row seat.

Second Rows:

This becomes helpful if you have step parents or a very large family. Dad can be in the second row right behind mom so that he gets a good seat too, especially if he is civil with mom. More on the WITHIN THE RIBBON System to come!
Now the beauty of building your aisle is that really, after all of your family is seated you can do whatever you want! Your aisle from here, doesn’t even have to be straight! You can circle it around the Chuppa or even make it zig-zag provided that you can walk down it.


You don’t have to be totally exact. One side can have 7 and the other 8. So long as everyone is accounted for. Plus, you might need that chair elsewhere instead of just leaving it there knowing it will be empty just for aesthetics.

Remember wheelchairs and strollers!

Do a head count here too and leave out a chair spot if you have a wheelchair coming. Don’t banish parents with strollers to the back either! If they’re in the VIP crowd and they have a baby you risk offending them by excluding them. If needed they’ll stand up and walk a crying baby out… no need to micromanage their parenting. I know it’s hard not to….trust me.

Comfort & Visibility

You obviously want everyone who comes to your wedding to enjoy it. There are a few simple things to avoid so that they have a better experience:

Keep rows a reasonable number

Once they get to be 15 chairs or more you start losing visibility of the couple, it also gets harder to hear. You also want to avoid rows that are too small because then you risk making a REALLY long aisle with guests in the last row needing binoculars.
Back Support
. I know that hay bales are totally affordable and give that adorable country look, but let’s be honest… there are some people who really need a chair. Go through your guest list and identify those people who include elderly, and recent injuries {remember, these people are your friends and you are showing how well you can host} check in on guests and their kids
and keep up on anyone who is in a leg cast or just had a recent surgery. Trust me, they’ll be impressed that you cared! Then of course, you must consider the pregnant and nursing mommas! As a recent one myself, I know how important it is to find a good chair! So if you have a long ceremony, please do reserve a few special seats for those who really need them. 

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