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Ask Rashana: What Size Tent Will I Need?

Dear Rashana,
My wedding is scheduled for Summer and everything will take place outdoors underneath a tent.  At first I thought planning an outdoor wedding under a tent instead of an indoor wedding at a reception hall would be easier ... but I found out rather quickly, that isn't the case.  Nevertheless, I'm dedicated to having everything outdoors and have begun the process of securing the tent.  We're inviting 175 guests for a sit-down dinner and I've been told I'll need a 30X60 tent.  Honestly, this seems waaaay too big and the 30X30 is closer to my budget.  Am I being duped or will I really need a tent of a larger size?
- Tent Chic Bride

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Dear Tent Chic Bride,
This is an excellent question!  First, you're right in that planning an outdoor event under a tent instead of an indoor banquet hall affair is not necessarily easier.  After all, for an outdoor/tented event, you must provide and account for EVERYTHING ... every chair, every fork, every napkin, and of course the tented apparatus itself.  We always have so much fun planning our tented events, like the all-white birthday extravaganza and the 19th century barn rustic wedding, but it definitely takes lots of organization, know-how and a mastering of logistics.  All of which leads me to answering your primary question, yes, you will need a 30x60 tent.  Here's the breakdown we at THE BRIDAL PARTY use without fail:

While you don't want a tent that'll leave too much space between and around your guests, having one that's too small will really ruin the mood.  Ordering a tent that's too small will possibly force your guests to get a little too close for comfort and/or put some in a position of having to sit out in the sun.  If you were holding a standing cocktail reception, 30x30 would be ideal, but for a sit-down you must account for the tables, chairs, wait-staff, etc.

I hope this helps,


Great practical advice! You learn something new everyday. :-)

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