Wedding Vocabulary 101: The Ultimate Guide to Understanding Wedding Lingo

When you start to plan a wedding, you will quickly learn that the wedding industry is truly a different world! And in this different world, we speak our own language- one that is foreign to those who have never planned a wedding before! So to make things easier, here is a quick vocabulary lesson on all the wedding lingo you will hear and what it all means!

wedding vocabulary guide 101


We vendors in the wedding world are all about efficiency, therefor we love us some acronyms! Here are some of the most common acronyms you will see throughout wedding planning:

FOB/MOB: Father and Mother of the Bride

BM/MOH: Best Man and Maid of Honor

BEO: Banquet Event Order (essentially a timeline from your venue/caterer)

STD: Save the Dates (although I try to refrain from using this acronym for obvious reasons)

Sistered States ultimate wedding vocabulary guide


Here are some of the common industry terms you will definitely run into when designing your reception:

Facade: cover typically rented for the front of stages and bars

Charger: Large decorative plate to go underneath the dinner plate, no food is actually served on the charger

Escort Card vs Place Card: an Escort card (usually displayed during cocktail hour) tells the guest what table they are assigned to, while a place card is placed at the table to tell the guest which seat they are assigned

ultimate wedding invitation wording guide


Honestly, invitations are a whole other world inside with wedding world and I could go on forever about the terms you might see, but here are the ones you are likely to run into:

Belly Band: Decorative layer/wrap that goes around your invitations to keep the cards in place

Deckled Edge: Hand torn edges on paper to give a more romantic/organic look

Vellum: a translucent paper made from cotton and wood. (The kind of clear paper you are seeing all over pinterest!)

Gatefold: An invitation made with two panels that meet in the center and unfold like a door revealing the invitation

ultimate wedding flower guide


For those flower newbies out there, here are some popular vocabulary terms you might here coming from your florist:

Halo: Floral hoop suspended from the ceiling (not to be confused with flower crowns!)

Nosegay: a small bunch of flowers (think miniature bouquet), typically given to the mothers and grandmothers to hold

Toss: the bouquet the bride will use for the bouquet toss (she doesn’t throw her actual bouquet)

Pomander: a ball of flowers typically carried by flower girls as an alternative to petals



Pinspotting: specialty lighting where lights are hung from the ceiling and create a ‘spotlight’; typically used for head tables, cake tables, etc.

Shot list: the list of events/photographs your photographer will capture on your wedding day

Cake riser/plateau: basically a fancy word for a cake stand

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