First, congratulations on your engagement! We love getting to share our love of weddings with the newly engaged, and that probably includes you. Here are two places you'll want to start: our newly engaged page and our Wedding Basics page.
Today we're here now to talk about wedding invitation wording, whether you'll be mailing printed invitations or sending something out electronically. You want to tell your guests how it's all going down and we're here to outline it all for you. Don't forget, we've got a whole archive of invitation wording archive, too!
Who's hosting this thing?
Here's where you'll want to share who is hosting, whether it's you and your partner, your parents, other hosts, or a combination. this often comes down to moolah: who's paying for it? Or sometimes you'll want to include someone as a courtesy. This can get dicey when you're dealing with step-parents, multiple families, and divorced parents. The best advice we have is to just keep it as simple as you can. Most guests will be much more interested in how to RSVP, where it will be held, and other details. We have lots of examples of host wording over here.
You can address this on the envelope, on a response card, on your wedding website. Here are a couple of options for the invitation itself:
“__ of [insert number here] guests will attend,” with invitations to guests without +1s reading “__ of 1 guests will attend.”
Here's a little more help if you're trying to keep +1s to a minimum.
Wedding location and date
Otherwise known as the essentials. Where is it, when is it — these are important. Remember: you are not beholden to traditions like writing out the year long-form (“2017” works just as well as “two thousand seventeen”… or you know, way better!). Let your invitation style lead you in the direction you want — more formal or more casual. Oh, and here are some extra details for a blended family wedding!
You'll want to include the ceremony venue, reception venue if it's different, addresses for both, the date (with year!), and time. You'll include more details about accommodations, parking, etc. elsewhere.
On Saturday, the eleventh of July, two-thousand and nine at half-past five in the evening
Less formal example:
Sunday, 23rd August at 2 o'clock
Saturday, June 27, 2009
What type of event is it?
If you're having a traditional ceremony and reception, this won't be quite as important to note on the invitation. But if you're getting weddinged, having an offbeat ceremony that needs an explanation, crowdsourcing your wedding, or maybe having only a reception, we've covered all of these topics.
- Wording an invitation if you're already married
- How do you make sure guests don't get confused by your offbeat ceremony invitation?
- How we worded the invitations for our crowdsourced wedding
- How to word your reception-only invitations
Another super important element to remember is how to RSVP. These days, couples can choose a few different methods for those anti-mail and phone Millennials. This information can be included on the invitation itself or on a separate response card. Here are the most popular methods:
RSVP via email or website: Include the URL of your wedding website, RSVP website service, RSVP collection app, or the email you intend for guests to use. Whatever the case, be very clear on the method you prefer them to use, especially if it's online.
RSVP by phone: Again, be super clear about who they'll be contacting and what number to call. This can either be a designated person or a phone service specifically for RSVPs.
Response card RSVPs: This card is intended to be mailed back with a pre-stamped (or not) envelope, including the guests' response and probably their meal choice, and any other special requests you may include (like a song request, for example).
Additional information card
Here's where the real details start a-flowin'. Here's the bare bones information you'll want to include on a separate information card or your wedding website, if you'll have one:
- Dress code details: What to wear for the theme, costume wedding, weather, outdoor ceremony, etc. We have some tricks here.
- Invited children: tell your guests if children are allowed and any associated details, like if babysitting will be available.
- Wedding website: This is where you can really get into details about traditions, ceremony plans, your background, your registry, etc. Oh yes, we've got tips.
- Directions: Include a map, directions, parking information, public transit information, contact details of the venue, and a non-you contact with whom they can get in touch.
- Accommodation options: a list of places to stay for out-of-towners. We have some great information on welcome bags, if you're going that route.
- Gift registry or preference: you may hear advice that this information shouldn't be included on the invitation, but we'll buck that trend if needed. Feel free to keep it on your wedding website, if you prefer, or go ahead and include it on this card.
Need more invitation advice?
How will you be inviting guests to your wedding? Tell us about it in the comments!