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Etiquette, Rules and Tips for Wedding Invitations

Posted November 28, 2012

 
 
For your special day, you want nothing but the best. It takes time, and you want to make sure everything is perfect. Wedding invitations are just one of many things to prepare for before your wedding. It’s the announcement of the date, time and place of your wedding and can be just that simple, or it could include a map, response request, directions, or even a photo. But it doesn’t have to be an unpleasant experience. Whether you plan on having an invitation designer prepare and order your invitations or if you plan to do them yourself, we have some etiquette rules to ensure you get your perfect wedding invitations.
 
#1: Don’t waste time to prepare your invitations. Once you figure out how many people you want at your wedding, make a list of the potential guests, and get the addresses and correct spelling and titles of their names. Give at least 6-8 weeks prior to the wedding so people can mark their calendars and request to off of work. For a destination wedding, about 3 months prior to the wedding is recommended.
 
#2: Will you do your own invitations or hire someone else to do them for you? Decide early on if you want to have them designed, customized and done for you or if you want to do them yourself. If you are a busy bride (or groom) if can definitely be worth your while to have one less problem to worry about if you can find a trusted invitation designer to take care of the invitations for you. They will know how to do the next tip for you. All you have to do is simply provide the information.
 
#3: What to include: Answer these questions in your invitation:  
 
Q: Who is giving the wedding or who’s doing the inviting? You and your fiancé? You parents? Your fiancé’s parents?
 
Q: Phrasing, formally one or the other: “Together with their families” or “The honour of your presence is requested at the marriage of” are the most common and appropriate announcement for a wedding invitation.
 
Q: Who is getting married? Bride’s name first, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. ____, to Groom’s name, son of Mr. and Mrs. _____. It’s perfectly fine to include a deceased parent’s name on the invitation. Here are two options: The invitation can be issued by you and your fiancé to read this way:
 
The honour of your presence is requested at the marriage of
Brenda Maxwell,
daughter of the late Henry Maxwell and Ruby Maxwell,
to
Greg Fields,
son of the late Mr. and Mrs. Fields.
 
Here, the bride’s father and both of the groom’s parents are included in the invitation as deceased, or the “late” so and so.
 
Then include the date, time and place.
 
The following are Optional Details:
Dress attire.
Reception information.
Directions. (Can be on a separate page from wedding invitation)
RSVP/Regrets information. However, you can have your RSVP card separate from your invitation.
 
#4: How to properly address your guests:
 
Outer envelope should appropriately and properly address your guests with Mr. for any man married, not married or widower, and Mrs. for a married woman or widow, Ms. for an unmarried woman or woman over 18, and Miss for a young woman. If you are sending an invitation to a married couple, you always say Mr. and Mrs. (husband’s full name).
Unmarried couple invitations can be made out like: “Ms. Linda Jones” and “Mr. Fred Perry” each on a separate line.
If you decide to include a middle name, it must be written out in full.
If possible, any adult 18 or over should receive a separate invitation.
 
#5: Do’s and Don’ts to Doing It Yourself
 
Do organize. If you have more than one page to fit into your envelope form a line in which they will be assembled or inserted.
Do ask for help, especially if it gets overwhelming. Preparing, sorting, choosing colors and patterns can be hard to do believe it or not! Your friends, parents or future in-laws may be happy to help.
Do allow yourself plenty of time. Allow time to assemble the invitations and to send them out early, like we said earlier, 6-8 weeks before the wedding.
Do not use address labels. Names and addresses should be made out by hand.
 
#6: Have it your way!
 
The entire reason you want an invitation is to share with your loved ones the great news of your big day. You want everything to evolve around you. Invitations can be a big deal, which is why it's a good idea to have an idea of what you want before you get started, before you order paper, etc. You can get anything from traditional to non-traditional yet classy and elegant or non-traditional and fun. All the rules above still apply for any wedding invitation but the one thing to keep in mind is to have it your way: "it" being style, class, color and texture. Gather ideas by walking into a wedding invitations shop to get a feel for all your options. Don't rush into making a decision you may regret but yet give yourself time to allow everything to get prepared and ready in enough time that won't interfere with sending your guests their invitations. 
 
I know there's a lot of information here, but do take it all in, consider these tips, and don't get overwhelmed by the idea of doing invitations. It can be as simple or as different or specific as you want them to be. Your special day is approaching and you want as much time to prepare for it as possible. If you want more information about wedding invitations, feel free to contact us