The escort card is typically the first item your guests will see as they move from your cocktail hour space to your reception space. It sets the precedence for your theme and aesthetic and, of course, informs your guest of their table assignment! If you choose to do place cards as well, they should coordinate and (pro-planner tip) names should be listed in alphabetical order by either first or last name so that your guests can locate their name quickly. Escort cards are not limited to printed tent cards anymore, in fact, the more creative and unique the better! Work with your wedding planner to create an inspiration board and then reference the inspiration during your consultations and meetings with calligraphers and florists. If you’ve hired a wedding stylist or full planner have them sketch out your ideas and take them with you.
We’ve highlighted some of our favorite displays and detail what makes each one exceptional!
The Basic Card Display
The basic card display is the most common; either your invitation vendor or a local calligrapher can assist you here. It’s always nice to draw attention to these displays by keeping them either on a table or at eye level for your guests. Spice them up with floral arrangements, candles, or other props that enhance your wedding theme and colors. Hang them or stand them up with little trinkets. Whatever you do, make it pop!
The Board Display
Displaying names on a board is also fairly common; whether it be on rustic windows, planks of wood, or on a mirror you can work with sign artists, calligraphers, or a print shop to achieve the final result. Signs need to be propped at guest eye level and should be arranged alphabetically. It’s also nice to have more than one displayed in different areas so that guests don’t forget where they’re sitting!
The Escort Card + The Favor Combo
A neat thing to do is combine your escort cards and your favors. You can work with your florist to print names on mini-potted flowers, order custom chocolates with guest names, or attach name cards to mini-bottles filled with BBQ sauce, syrup, flavored oils, or your favorite liqueur. This method ensures that your guests actually see your favors and take them home!
Themed Escort Cards
Themed escort cards can be used when there is a strong premise to your wedding aesthetic. Have your calligrapher write names on seashells for a beachy theme or enlist a graphic artist to do comic book illustrations with guests’ names; then display them in fun and creative ways. This creates an easy segue while your guests transition spaces and keeps your ideas consistent.
The Totally Unique Display
Totally unique escort card displays are ones that are out-of-the box artistic installations. You can work with your florist, event stylist, and other vendors to create show-stopping spaces that wow guests. You can hang escort cards from faux or real trees, have a wood burner put names into rustic wood discs, or make the escort cards a part of an artistic painting. The sky is the limit here!