Wedding invitation etiquette
The cards you choose, even the envelopes, will reflect the mood and theme of your wedding, from the very beginning. Selecting your invites is almost as much fun as buying the dress: this is a part where you get to display your personality, your style, be it rustic, romantic or sophisticated, your stationary will speak for you. It is also one thing that you get to keep as souvenir from the big day, when the flowers, cake and manicure are long gone and forgotten.
What and when to send
Save the Dates
Save the Dates are the first official communication of your wedding and they should be according to your style, theme and invitation look. Usually all invitation designs have a matching Save the Date, so your guests can have the first sneak peek into the look and feel of your wedding, before they get to see anything else. Be sure to include in your Save the Date cards the city, so your out-of-town guests will know that travel will be in order. It is advisable to send them up to eight months before the big day.
Contains the invitation, response card and any other enclosure cards you want to add. On the outside you should have the name and address of your guest. It is ideal to write them by hand. You can hire a calligrapher or do them yourself. The return address should be included on the back flap of the envelope on a label or it can be handwritten.
The rule of thumb is to send invites six to eight weeks before the wedding. For destination weddings, since there is
travel involved and people need more notice, they should go three to four months in advance, although six months
is also acceptable. It gives people plenty of time to save money and clear their schedule. The invitation must contain basic information such as who is hosting the event, who’s getting married, the date, time and place of the ceremony and reception. It is best to keep the text to a minimum. Writing too many details will make the invite look cluttered and take away from the design. The wording of your invitation will vary depending on your culture, parents and the mood you want to convey. It may be casual, formal or semi-formal, depending on the type of wedding you are planning.
Provide additional information, such as directions, map, dress code, and other details. They should match the style and look of your invitations to ensure consistency. If you have several enclosure cards or RSVPs, a bellyband, ribbon or string is always a nice feature to hold it all together.
Your RSVP should always include a “reply by” date allowing enough time for you to get a final head count to the caterer and to finalize your seating chart. 2 to 3 weeks is suggested, but you may want to allow some extra time to hunt down a response from those procrastinators who have not yet replied. If the invite is addressed to multiple people, like a family of four, you may want to add a line for the number of people attending. If there are menu options, include an RSVP for each invitee or a line to initial who is having what to ensure there are no mix ups.
Thank You Cards
Your friends and family made your wedding special with their presence, so it’s important to thank them for taking part. You should order these before the wedding and have them ready to send within the first two months after the big day. Don’t wait too long or you’ll put it off forever! Remember you have to write these by hand, so you’ll need to set some time aside to get to it.
Other things to include in your suite
Details make your event perfect and the more details you have the more carefully organized it seems. So complete the production with accessories such as menus, name cards, escort cards, welcome signs, directions signs, day programmes, table numbers, food labels and pretty much anything your heart desires.