Inviting people for dinner time means more than just eating. You need to take care of every important factor: family relationships, affinities, precedence… Creating a seating arrangement takes time and can be really complicated. Here some tips to help you set the perfect plan!
First, the master and mistress of the house are placed in the middle, face to face. Then there are different places of honor: on the right of the householder for a woman and on the right of the hostess for a man. If you invite two couples of equal importance, place the woman of the first couple to the right of the master of the house and the husband of the second pair on the right of the mistress. Thus, each couple will feel honored.
If each guest has the same importance, give the place of honor to the people you invite for the first time, to older people or to the people whose function is more important.
Couples are always separated, except in the case of a married couple for less than a year.
Tables of 6, 10, 14 and 18 people allow householders to place one in front of the other. For tables of 8, 12 or 16 people, the hostess will shift one place to respect the alternating rule: one woman, one man.
Finally, avoid placing alongside people without affinities. Do not place people randomly, especially if you are many people. If possible, take the place closest to the kitchen (for obvious stewardship reasons).