Your wedding invitations play a crucial role in your big day! Keep in mind they are the first contact your guests will have about your wedding. And while they should definitely look great, it is also important that you stick to certain basic rules of invitation etiquette when creating them. Not sure where to begin?
I have gathered some tips for you – on some of the most important basic things to remember about your wedding stationery and the essential things that should be included with the wedding invitation suite.
This card is the very foundation of the entire invitation suite. Remember to use the correct wording, with the hosts’ names at the beginning, followed by the full names of the bride and groom and then the date, time, venue, where it is located, and so on). REMEMBER: NO ABBREVIATIONS!
This is the envelope used for the wedding invitation suite – so it should make a great first impression. Hand-calligraphy looks great on envelopes, so if you want to add elegance to your invitations, this would be a great way to do it! PLUS it saves you a lot time and hand cramps so you don't have to address them all yourself ;)
The response card
Your RSVPs are really important because that’s how you know how many guests will actually attend the wedding. Talk to your caterer and to the other vendors and see when they need their final headcount for the event (usually 2-3 weeks before the wedding date) – then, ask your guests to send their RSVPs back before that.
The RSVPs can be sent back on actual paper, or online (on the wedding website). Also, some couples choose to have response cards where guests can simply check boxes if they attend (or don’t attend the wedding), as well as check boxes if they have a specific menu option they would like at the wedding.
In general, the RSVPs are sent back in an self addressed stamped envelope (which will also be included with the invitation suite). Ashley Elizabeth Designs can take care of this envelope for you, so that you save yourself the time and headache – so don’t worry too much about it!
This is a card will help guests find your wedding venue. Maps are very frequently included here too, but if you don’t want to do this, simply ask your venue for some clear directions that will be helpful for your guests. If your ceremony and reception venues are different, you might want to create double-sided cards (one side for the ceremony site directions and the other one for the reception venue directions). I like creating cards for these because then people can just take them along when they are ready to head to your wedding! Easy and convenient even though people have GPS' it's still nice to have!
If you plan on having your wedding reception at a different location than that of the ceremony, a reception card is more than welcome (either as a separate card, or, as mentioned above, as a double-sided card). In general, the reception card provides information about the wedding reception (time, location, etc) – but if the ceremony and reception are at the same venue, you can simply include “Dinner and Dancing to follow” on the actual invitation card. You can also include your registry information on this enclosure.
Do you have out-of-town guests, or are you planning a destination wedding?
If so, including an accommodations card will be really useful for your guests. The card should contain information about hotels and other types of accommodations in the area, so that it is as easy as possible for the guests to find a place to stay at. Also, if you set up a room block at a hotel - this is where you would include this information!
Having a wedding website is a truly great option because you can add to as you go and it can keep guests up-to-date with the latest developments in the wedding planning process. Many of the wedding websites can be built for free (see The Knot, for example) and they can be extremely helpful both for the couple and for their guests
If you want to create a wedding website, the reception, accommodations and directions cards can be skipped (or they can simply offer less information than what is posted on the website). As long as your guests are fairly tech-savvy, a wedding website should do.
Before mailing out the invitations, make sure to weigh one of the wedding invitation suites at the post office and see exactly how many stamps you will need and how much they cost. This will help you avoid any unpleasant surprises later on so you can budget appropriately.
Also, when ordering your wedding invitations, think of the day-of and post-wedding stationery too.
Some of the stationery you might want to consider ordering with the invitations are ceremony programs, menu cards, placed cards, table numbers and “Thank You” notes.
If you need help creating your custom invitation suite, contact me today!
Searching for a talented, reliable and knowledgeable wedding stationery designer? Contact Ashley Elizabeth Designs and you will not be disappointed by my services :)
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