Did you know that there is an etiquette to structuring wedding invitations? There is a lot of information on this topic, and we are here to narrow down the basics for you.
Let’s first talk about the basics of the overall structure and formality of the information on your invitation.
Do not abbreviate any information on the invitation, including the address.
Do not include the zip code of your venue on the invitation. Only the city and state should be included when listing the address.
Spell out the full date and time on the invitation. For example:
Saturday, the eighth of June
Two thousand seventeen
At one o’clock in the afternoon
Do not include the word and or the symbol & while spelling out the year of your event. For example: two thousand seventeen
In terms of formality, the parents of the bride should always be listed first. Make sure to list the bride first instead of the groom, until after married.
Traditionally, there is a general layout for how the bride and groom’s parents are listed on the invitation.
Typically, this implies that the bride’s parents are hosting the wedding. Commonly, both parents are listed at the top.
The term “request the honor of your presence” should only be used when the wedding ceremony is held in a place of worship, e.i. a church.
If the wedding ceremony is held in any other location other than a church, use the terms like what are listed below. These are just a few examples of wording to use.
Request the pleasure of your company
Invite you to join them in a celebration of marriage.
Next, let’s talk about the basics of the overall structure and formality of the envelope in which your invitation is mailed in.
Formal titles should be used to address individuals. For example: Mr., Mrs., Ms, Miss, Dr, Judge, etc.
Distinguishing titles should always come first. For example: Doctor, Judge, Professor, etc. Make sure to list the highest ranking title first.
If the couple you are addressing the invite to is not married, the primary guest should be listed first with their guest following after.
Do not abbreviate the address in any way on the envelope. For example, use words like:
Street instead of St.
Drive instead of Dr.
Apartment instead of Apt.
Avenue instead of Ave.
Ohio instead of OH for state.
Make sure to include a stamp on each reply envelope.
Guests should receive the invitation within a minimum time frame of 6-8 weeks prior to the wedding date. Make sure to account time for delivery to out of state and country guests.
Gives guests 3-4 weeks to return reply cards, no more than that. Keep in mind that guests will forget which could hold up the planning process. In this case, make sure to allow time to have other items printed for the wedding. An example of these items include:
Lastly, here are some common mistakes that are made while creating and mailing the invitation.
Weigh a sample before purchasing postage. You will need postage for each mailing envelope and also for each reply envelope.
Order at least 5 extras of each item in your invitation suite. For example, things tend to get lost in the mail, people move, or someone can be forgotten. It’s always a good idea to have a backup just in case.
Proofread everything! Try to have at least 3 family members check everything before sending it to the printer and mailing! This include checking for spelling, grammar, punctuation, and in this case etiquette, if applicable.
To avoid rush fees, out of stock, or shipment delays, finalize your stationer and/or calligrapher at least 3 months in advance before sending out invitations.
Do not lick your envelopes! Ask your stationer to provide and envelope sealer or purchase them yourself. This will save a lot of licking in the long run.