For their May wedding reception in Bourne, Mass., Jason and Amelie Neese turned to their shared love of literature as inspiration for table names and homemade escort cards.

Guests sat at tables named after the couple's favorite books, such as "The Great Gatsby," "A Movable Feast" and "Sophie's World." And the escort cards, which tell guests which table they've been assigned to, were made of old-school library cards and pockets that the Neeses ordered on and decorated with vintage paper.

"We met at a poetry reading in 2007 and fell in love with each other's work, which led to us falling in love with each other, so we wanted to represent that part of ourselves and our relationship in the little details of our wedding day," Amelie Neese said.

Many couples are incorporating homemade themes to help guests navigate seating assignments at wedding receptions. Everything from wine corks and fruit to seed envelopes and clothespins can be repurposed as place cards at individual table settings or escort cards at the front of a reception area.

"Couples are getting increasingly creative," said Christina Friedrichsen, founder and editor of

"For a barn wedding, for instance, they might tie a place card to a pear or apple. For a literary-themed wedding, they might use Scrabble tiles as place cards."

Friedrichsen details a number of playful do-it-yourself ideas on her website.