Wedding Invitation Etiquette

Contemporary Wedding Invitation

Wedding invitations are an often overlooked, yet important detail in your wedding process because they give much needed information to your guests. Although some aspects of your wedding do not adhere to specific rules, invitations need to be used in the correct way. The following FAQ’s on the etiquette of weddings will highlight the most important of wedding invitation questions.

1. How far in advance should we mail out our wedding invitations?

Invitations are generally sent out six to eight weeks prior to the wedding, this allows family and friends to acquire sitters or make out of town reservations. Three months are recommended for weddings that take place resorts or other countries. If you have selected save-the-date cards, be sure to mail them out six to eight months before your wedding. All of these options allow for plenty of time to create a seating chart.

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2. When should the deadline be for RSVPs?

The RSVP date should be no later than two to three weeks prior to your wedding. This will give you ample time to fill in the seating chart and give a final head count to your caterer. You may have to contact those guests who haven’t responded promptly and as inquire if they plan on attending.

3. How can we emphasize a no kids policy?

The proper etiquette of wedding invitations stipulates that you write each guests name on the wedding invitation, excluding the plus one choice. If invitations are returned with children’s names added, call and explain the situation. Be sure to tell them that you hope they will still attend. In the event that you anticipate problems with guests obtaining sitters you can always offer a local service to them, on of off site of your reception.

4. How do we let guests know our dress code?

The appropriate etiquette of wedding invitations is to place dress code suggestions in the lower right-hand corner. Use the following terms,black tie, casual or vintage wedding inspiration, to inform the guests of your wedding dress code. Invitations will give your guests additional clues as to the type of wedding you’re having, such traditional with calligraphy for formal, bold colors and playful fonts for casual and sepia with an antiqued look will indicate a vintage wedding. A website can inform guests about a vintage wedding inspiration theme, the wedding dress code and serve as save-the-date cards.

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5. How can we encourage our single friends to come solo?

If a guest is not married or in a serious relationship, it is perfectly acceptable to address the invitation to just them. Generally guests will know that excluding a “plus-one” on the invitation means they should come alone. Family and friends should understand and respect the fact that you are working with a budget. What if a guest adds someone on their RSVP? Phone them and explain your reason for a short wedding list. If you realize most of your guests are couples, you can expand your list to include additional guests for single friends and family as long as the seating chart allows for these accommodations.

6. Where should the return address be placed?

The back flap of the invitation envelope and RSVP envelope should include your return address or the person who has been designated to receive your response cards. Postage should also be affixed to the return envelope.

7. Can we invite people to the ceremony and not the reception?

It is not recommended that you invite guests to just the ceremony, you’re sending the message that they are not important or maybe you just invited them for the gift.

8. I invited my friend and her boyfriend (by name on the invite) to the wedding, but they recently broke up. Now she wants to bring a friend I don’t like that person, can I tell her no?

Yes, the invitation was not addressed as “and guest” and you can use that stipulation to decline her request. Let her know that your guest list is limited to close friends and family members. If she’s worried about attending the wedding alone, let the fact that you have other guests coming solo be an inspiration for her to do the same.

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