Top 5 Types of Long Wedding Reception Tables

Head table with garland and lanterns.

The luxurious long head table.


Long, rectangular tables have become increasingly popular at wedding receptions.

There are 5 popular types of long tables. Call them what you want- farm tables, vineyard tables, king’s tables, royal tables, banquet tables, classroom tables, console tables but they are all some type of long, rectangle table used at a wedding reception.

They can be used for all of the guest seating or utilized only for the wedding party, sometimes called the head table.  When we begin to select centerpieces it is helpful to know what type and size of long tables you are using.

 What are they and what are the sizes?

1.Banquet table: Traditional folding table. It can either be 8 foot (96inches)  or 6 foot (72inches) long and  30 inches wide. They are 30 inches high.   The 8-foot table seats 4 persons on each side – seating on the end is optional. The 6-foot table seats 3 on each side, and seating on the end is optional. This type of table requires linen to be placed on them because they are usually either plastic or wood tops.

One strategy to make this table a little wider, some places will add a classroom table to add 18 more inches to the width. These are available for rent or at most hotel venues.

2.Farm or vineyard table:

This type of table has a variety of sizes.  A lot of venues and rental companies have made custom tables and the sizes tend to vary from place to place. Generally speaking they are 6-8 feet long and about 36- 42 inches wide. These tables have a lot of custom finishes, whitewashes, gray washes, many different tones of wood finishes. The size of the table will help you decide how many people will fit at each table. Advantages of these tables: usually don’t require linen because the finish of the table is the star. They can either have benches or individual chairs at each table or even a combination of both chairs and benches.

Head table at wedding reception

Head table- Barr Mansion farm tables

3.California king, Conference, or Royal tables:

These tables are usually folding banquet tables that are 8 feet (96 inches) long and 42 inches wide and 30 inches high. They require linen and are usually only available through rental companies.  These are my favorite tables for luxurious head tables. If you are seating guests or the wedding party on both sides, it still leaves a generous amount of room down the center for a beautiful floral display without getting too crowded.

Head Table on Driskill Mezzanine with pink and white flowers

 4.Console tables.

Another type of table is console tables. Again, usually 6- 8 feet long but only 18 inches wide and 42 inches tall.  They do not require linen. Most often used in a cocktail reception setting. Guests can either stand around these or you can add some type of bar stool for extra seating.


5. Specialty tables.

Specialty tables are usually custom made pieces that are specifically included to meet a design perspective. We have recently worked with square tables, serpentine tables, and X shaped tables.  These are usually rented and used in a very specific space.

Which tables will you be using at your reception?

Some things to keep in mind about long tables, they are usually more expensive to decorate than round tables.  There is simply more real estate on a long table than round.  We must know the type of tables you are working with to help guide you to the correct centerpiece selection.  There are several factors to help with this process- what size table, linen or no linen, place setting, or no place setting, type of foodservice.  When we sit down at our consultation these are some of the things we discuss and take into consideration.  You must know what types of tables and how many you are anticipating? Does the venue have them available or will you be renting? Will you be renting linens or does the caterer provide? Another set of decisions that will affect the types of centerpieces we will help you select.