It’s a scavenger hunt really.
Y’all, one of the most difficult wedding planning tasks I experienced was finding the table linens and decor drapery. It seriously took me 6 months and a wild goose chase all over Atlanta to find the right color combo and fabrics. I’m pretty positive JoAnn hates me because I called every one of her Georgia stores trying to find the right shade of taupe.
I was counting on our table linens and drapery to really balance the tone and feel of our reception room. Our bridesmaid dresses, tuxedos, and flowers were on the darker side of the color wheel, while the reception room and chairs were on the lighter side, so I really wanted the linens to warm up the room and tie the colors together. I knew what I wanted, but had the hardest time finding the perfect color and shade!
To prevent you from going on the same linen chase did, here are 10 tips to pick the perfect linens.
TIP: You’ll want to decide on your table linens first, then search for fabric for other drapery. It’s easier to find plain draping fabric to match pre-made table linens than to find table linens to match draping fabric! There are pretty much endless options with draping fabric.
Preparing for the hunt.
1.The first thing you’ll want to do is find out if your venue provides table linens and what colors they have in stock. Most venues that provide linens have a limited color options, so you’ll want to ask about this early. That way you can decide if their options coincide with your wedding colors, or if you need to start your linen search elsewhere.
2. If your venue doesn’t have a color option that you like, you’ll need to start thinking about what you need in a table linen first. For example:
-What size/shape tables will you be using?
-How many tables will you be using?
-Do you want floor-length linens, mid-length, or table overlays?
-Are you looking to rent or purchase the linens?
3. After you have the logistics down, then you can start thinking about your linens from a design standpoint. Here are some great design questions to ask yourself before you embark on your linen hunt:
-Will there be other decor pieces on or near the tables?
-What color are the chairs?
-What color are the walls in the room?
-Do you want the linens to bring a warm tone or a crisp/clean tone to the room?
-Do you want the linens to be textured or an exotic fabric?
-What color are your flowers and bridesmaid dresses?
-What color are the guy’s suits/tuxedos?
4. Now that you have all of the wedding/room colors envisioned, what color do you see the table linens? Hopefully, you can see a picture in your mind to point you in the right direction!
5. The last preparatory step you’ll need to take is to get as many color swatches that you can. Get a color swatch/take a pictures of your bridesmaid dresses, any other linens you are using, the curtains in the room, cloth napkins you are using, etc.
You’re ready to head out
6. Once you’ve done your linen homework and you’re ready to look at linen options, you’ll need to find the linen retailers in your area. We went with BBJ Linen, which has locations in most major cities, but there are a few similar options like Connie Duglin and La Tavola Fine Linens.These companies are great because you can rent the linens and just ship them back after the wedding – super easy!
7. If do plan to visit the bigger companies, it’s a good idea to call ahead and make an appointment. That way you’ll be guaranteed a showroom associate to help you!
8. On the day of your appointment, be sure to have your table logistics, swatches, and decor pictures ready to show the showroom associate. They are super knowledgeable and can help you navigate through the thousands of color options!
9. Before your appointment, it’s important to brace yourself for the cost and have a budget in mind. Some linen rentals can get really expensive, so be prepared. You can definitely find less expensive options, but I was shocked when they started showing us some of the fancier linens.
10. Once you’ve found the perfect table linens, be sure you take or order a color swatch of the linen you chose. That way you can use that when picking out other decor pieces and drapery. Also be sure to review the rental paperwork 2 or 3 times to confirm the shipping/pickup dates so your linens are ready for wedding day!
With a little bit of research and preparation, your linen hunt will be SO much easier than mine was. Table linens are a huge aspect of your decor, but they shouldn’t push your bridal stress to the max. As long as you’re prepared and have a vision, you’ll find the perfect linens to bring your reception decor to life!
If you have any questions or need some extra help finding your linens, please let me know! I learned a lot while trying to find ours!
Happy Wedding Planning!