Uno, Dos, Tres, Quatro Cinco Cinco Seis

Since Mr. Wallaby and I had assigned seating at our reception, we needed to devise some kind of table number scheme. I always gravitate toward soft floral decor, and I was lusting after these table numbers:


Photo by Our Labor of Love / Image via Style Me Pretty

But those are pretty girly, right? And after painting our DIY save the dates, invites, and out-of-town bags, I have retired my painting supplies. So I consulted with Mr. W, and we dreamed up the idea of a famous scientist theme. We are both big science lovers (remember, we’re engineers!), and we thought it would be really cool to place a tiny portrait of a well-known, influential scientist on each table in lieu of table numbers. I envisioned something like this (but substitute a black-and-white portrait of a scientist for the herb drawing):


Photo by Gia Canali / Image via

But once I started doing Google image searches of our favorite innovators, I struggled to find nice hand-drawn portraits of a lot of them. If I’d had some more time between then and the wedding to do a more exhaustive search, I’d really have liked to complete that project. But since time was running out, and we needed table numbers, I went back to the drawing board.

I’ve had a long-time crush on BHLDN’s cashier’s key stakes for table numbers:


Photo via BHLDN

They look really pretty sticking out of a boho flower arrangement on the center of a table. Here’s the stakes in action at real weddings:


Photo by Max Wanger / Image via Cupcakes and Cashmere


Photo by Joshua Behan Photography / Image via Style Me Pretty

Unfortunately, those stakes are a little out of our budget. When I spotted some similar paper stakes on a wedding blog, I devised a plan to make my own table-number stakes.


Beautiful DIY table-number stakes at a Queens wedding / Photo by Minnow Park / Image via Style Me Pretty

I designed a very simple template in Microsoft Word. I was able to group a lot of numbers onto each page, so the project only required four sheets of kraft paper. (I’ve been on a kraft paper kick, and the loose-leaf kraft paper I used for this project matched our A7 and 4-bar envelopes for the invitations. Winning! I purchased all of the paper goods at the wonderful, amazing Paper-Source.)

I cut each number into a square, leaving as much space as I could on each side to cut the square down to my “template.” I cut out two copies of each number, so the stakes can be double-sided:


Personal photo

Using the inspiration photo as guidance, I cut one number down to the same whimsical shape, with a pointed top and bottom. Then I used my “stencil” to cut all of the other squares down to the exact shape.


Personal photo

I assembled the stakes by duct-taping the ends of 10-inch bamboo skewers to the back of each number, and gluing the matching number to the other side (i.e., gluing the ones together, twos together, etc.). And voila!—the finished table numbers:


Our completed table numbers / Personal photo

The total cost of the project was around $2.00, since I already had the supplies. It was a simple and stress-free project, and I’m glad I strayed away from a more complicated table-number scheme, since time was of the essence. I dropped off the stakes along with my massive collection of vases at the florist’s house in late October (she volunteered to store everything centerpiece related a couple weeks before the wedding—what a lifesaver!) so I wouldn’t see these pretties again until the wedding. I couldn’t wait to see my table numbers in action!

Are you making your own table numbers? Which DIY projects have given you the most grief?


Mrs. Wallaby

Wedding Date:
November 2012
The Siren Call of Milk Glass
And If We Do, Where?
Add a comment


  1. Member
    cicijapan 263 posts, Helper bee @ 3:21 pm

    Wow! You have such a nice florist. How lucky that you get to store things in her house!

  2. manatee Member
    manatee 31 posts, Newbee @ 5:01 pm

    This is such a great tutorial! I’ve been really wondering what to do for table numbers that wont end up being like, 200 dollars. Two dollars! You just cant beat that.

  3. Member
    hma812 368 posts, Helper bee @ 5:26 am

    I’m not planning on too many diy projects but my table numbers are a super simple project that I’m looking forward to. I’m going to glue wooden numbers from the craft store to a wooden stand and then spray them with metallic paint. Alot of people sell them on Etsy but why spend $100 for something you can easily do yourself for a little less money?

  4. Member
    alyssa719 32 posts, Newbee @ 5:54 am

    Those are so cute (and easy)!

    I *think* we’ve decided on our table numbers, but ideas are still swimming around. I love the idea of using the pictures of the scientists, but think maybe the same issue with us using binary (my idea that was denied) – of not everyone knowing who is who… I said it would be easy enough to match number to number for people, but I can understand why he feels like it’s too complicated for some. 😉

  5. mspony Member
    mspony 9265 posts, Buzzing Beekeeper @ 4:33 pm

    These are so simple, but so pretty! Love them!

  6. Guest Icon Guest
    Melissa, Guest @ 11:00 am

    These are cute!!!! Is there anyway I can get you to share your Microsoft Word Template?

  7. mswallaby Member
    mswallaby 2070 posts, Buzzing bee @ 8:44 am

    @Melissa: Hmm not sure if I kept it, I’ll take a look! I didn’t have a template for the shape – I just cut the table numbers out free-hand using those photos above as inspiration. I can’t remember which font I used, I think it might have even been Times New Roman, in bold – I’ll take a look tonight!

  8. Guest Icon Guest
    Melissa, Guest @ 6:36 am

    @Mrs. Wallaby. Totally made a quick templete myself.. you are right.. super simple. These are going to look great.. thanks so much!

  9. mswallaby Member
    mswallaby 2070 posts, Buzzing bee @ 6:38 am

    @Melissa: You’re welcome!! Hope it all works out, such a cheap, easy DIY project that photographs so nicely :)

  10. Guest Icon Guest
    Amanda, Guest @ 11:00 am

    @Mrs. Wallaby–

    How did you make the “o” in No. be raised up like that?

  11. Member
    mooavs 1 posts, Wannabee @ 11:08 am

    Hello! @Mrs. Wallaby or @Melissa : How do you get the o in No. to be smaller and raised up like that??

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