Throughout your planning process you’re going to have millions of decisions to make, planner and vendor jargon to decipher and new things that come up that make you say, wait, what are you asking me!?! Here is a quick guide to all terms, definitions and phrases that will help you along the way and make you an expert in wedding lingo.

The Glossary

Bridal Party

  • BM – Best Man
  • FOB – Father for the Bride
  • FOG – Father of the Groom
  • MOB – Mother of the Bride
  • MOG – Mother of the Groom
  • MOH – Maid of Honor

Ceremony Setup – photo by: Charlotte Carey Photography


  • Ceremony Rehearsal – A run through of the wedding ceremony with all participants in attendance – typically usually happens the day before the wedding
  • Prelude – An elegant term for background music typically played while guest arrive
  • Processional – The music that begins the ceremony starting as the bridal party walks down the aisle ending with the bride
  • Recessional – The music that plays as the ceremony ends and the newly weds and bridal party walk out to


  • Floor Plan – A layout of the reception noting table layouts
  • Seating Chart – A complete list of all guests attending the event and where they will be sitting
  • Timeline – A list of times, locations and details for the wedding weekend’s activities
  • Wedding Website – a site that couples use to communicate the details and aid in planning for their wedding


  • Filler Flower – A cost-effective way to fill in the gaps in your floral arrangements
  • Posy  – A small round flower bouquet that is made up of tightly bound stems typically given as a gift…  Think your Mother walking down the aisle with a small posy in hand

Food & Beverage

  • Consumption Bar – You are billed based on the number of drinks consumed. Good if you do not have a large drinking crowd
  • Flat Rate Bar – You are billed on price per person aka $25 per guest per hour. Great for if you have a large drinking crowd
  • Food Station – A style of dinner service consisting of multiple buffets set up at stations throughout the wedding reception. Food stations allow wedding guests to mingle with others and sample a variety of menu items.
  • Grooms Cake – A small cake of the grooms liking often served at the rehearsal dinner
  • Menu Tasting – Generally this will occur at your venue a month prior to your actual wedding in order to get a look and feel for the food being produced at your wedding
  • Signature Cocktail – A unique or original drink that expresses the couple – they can be fashioned to represent a theme, color or mix in local culture

Signature Cocktail – photo by: Charlotte Carey Photography


  • Cake Cutting – An old wedding tradition where the bride and groom cut into the cake together and share a small bite symbolizing commitment
  • First Dance – Typically, this is the first dance shared between the bride and groom that then opens the dance floor for the rest of the guests
  • Introductions – “And now for the first time, let’s give it up for the new Mr. and Mrs. Smith”
  • Parent Dances – Typically, once the first dance has occurred the bride and her father will then dance followed by the groom and his mother
  • Send-Off – A way which people can express good wishes and say goodbye to the couple as they leave the reception


  • Gobo – Love seeing a monogram lit up on a dance floor… want to create a cool pattern projected on the ceiling of the tent – this is a gobo
  • Up lighting – Light placed around the perimeter of a tent or venue to illuminate walls or the ceiling, sometimes by using various colors to create “a vibe”


  • First Look – A moment staged and set up by a weddingphotographer for the couple to see each other before the ceremony
  • Shot List – A list of all family and friends you would like photographed

Paper Suite – photo by: Zofia & Co. Photography


  • Escort Card – Printed cards that inform guests of what table they’ll be seated at – typically displayed as guests enter the reception or during the cocktail hour
  • Paper Suite – All stationary needs for your wedding: the save-the-dates, invitations, reply cards, reception cards, and any other invitation enclosures.
  • Place Card – Printed cards that inform guests where they will be sitting at their assigned table – these would be placed at each table setting
  • Signature Signs – These are specialty sign you can create for you signature cocktail, your wedding hashtag or bar menus. You can have a lot of fun with these
  • Table Number or Names – A number or name (typically framed) assigned to each table showcasing where guests as sitting as it coincides with their escort card


  • 60s – A 60 inch round dinner table that seats 8-10 people
  • 72s – A 72 inch round dinner table that seats 10-12 people
  • Farm Table – A wooden rectangular table that seats 8-10 people
  • High Top – A high table typically used during cocktail hours
  • Low Top – A low table typically used during cocktail hours
  • Sweetheart Table – A table set for two, which the newlyweds would sit at
  • Royal Table – A rectangular folding table that seats 8-10 people
    • *Tables are always dressed in linens except Farm Tables


  • B&B Plate – Bread and butter plate
  • Charger – A decorative plate that is set at each place setting that is usually taken away before the meal is served
  • Overlay – A directive cloth extending halfway down the table to add color or texture
  • Place Setting – Flatware, glassware, napkin, china (salad plate, dinner plate and bread and butter plate)
  • Underlay – Full-length linen that falls to the floor found under the overlay
  • Votive – Small accent candles

Completed Tablescape – photo by: Zofia & Co. Photography