When I got engaged, I never thought that figuring out which words to use on our invitation would be harder than figuring out which invitations to use.
Choosing the invite was almost instinctual, whereas figuring out how to word the damn thing became a freaking internal struggle.
It became my tomboy-ish, anti-formal, easy-going ways fighting against the years of Cotillion training and the voices of my old-money-Southern-society family members chiding me about how certain things are "just done" in this family.
If my parents had it their way, the invitations (and the whole wedding in general!) would have been very formal.
According to them, and all the etiquette books, since my parents were paying for the wedding, our invitations should have read:
request the honour of your presence
at the marriage of their daughter,
Mr. Aaron's Full Name
Mr. and Mrs. Aaron's Dads Name
on Friday, the tenth of October
two thousand and eight
…and so on and so forth in way too many words.The thing is… did we somehow turn into British royalty when we became engaged? We don't talk like that! Isn't this invitation supposed to be for a ceremony that is all about our relationship? And I know, for a fact, that our relationship would never "request the honour of your presence" or "cordially invite you," no matter how much we wanted you there. Our relationship would never refer to ourselves by our full names — our relationship rarely ever even uses our first names! And our relationship would certainly never spell out the year 2008. In fact, our relationship is the kind of relationship that gets ANGRY when it sees dates and times spelled out completely in words!
When I first started planning the invites, I found myself actually stressing over the wording of the invitation. I even found myself Googling "the proper way to word a wedding invitation." And then, when I started the first draft, I caught myself actually spelling out "two thousand and…" — wait a minute! What am I doing?
So I changed tactics and wouldn't you know it… I stumbled upon a blog post called "Wedding invitation wording that won't make you barf." Yes! That's exactly what I was looking for! I clicked over to Offbeat Bride and everything changed. That's when I came to terms with the fact that there's no reason why your invitation can't be as personable and as easy-going as your relationship. It's okay to have an informal wedding invitation. In fact, sometimes informal invitations can seem more, well, inviting!
I decided to word our invitation thusly:
Megan & Aaron
as they exchange their marriage vows
Friday, October 10th, 2008
on Keawakapu Beach, Maui
reception & rock 'n' roll to follow
When Aaron saw the last sentence he started shaking his head and said, "You're such a nerd." I stopped dead, "Oh no, do you not like it?" I had totally thought it was something he would appreciate. But then he started laughing and said, "No, it's perfect!" And then we high-fived.
And that, my friends, is why you will never be "cordially invited" to anything we do. But we WILL totally ask you to show up to our rockin' party.
For more invitation wording ideas, check out these posts:
- Wedding invitation wording that won't make you barf
- Reception-only wedding invitations
- Should we mention our registry on invitations to our reception?