While you might be inclined to group your escort cards by table assignment instead of name, this can actually make things harder and creates bottle neck at your escort table. Provide your calligrapher with a list of names and tables sorted by last name so your cards come back in as close to alphabetical order as possible. This will make it much easier to arrange the cards on your wedding day! Also having larger seating charts organized by last name, it will be much easier for them to find their table if they can spot their name alphabetically instead of trying to read who is seated at each table.
One card per couple
Escort cards are typically per couple or per family. Plan on the number of cards being approximately half your total guest count, plus a few extras for guests that were invited solo. If you’re having a calligrapher write the names and table numbers on each card, order 10=15% extra cards to cover smudged cards or spelling errors.
You should also have some blank cards on-hand for any last-minute changes, such as a guest whose date can no longer attend or a change in table number.
Easy to read
When you’re choosing a font or calligraphy style, make sure the writing on the escort cards is easy to read. You don’t want to end up with everyone crowded around the table, trying to find their name written in tiny, overly-decorative script! Choose a card design where the names are easily viewable, so guests can swing by the table and grab their card.