All About Invitations
We heard you just got engaged—congrats, girl! Now you’ve got a dozen Pinterest boards, you’re bookmarking ten wedding-related links a day, and you booked the venue the day after that ring slid onto your finger. Now it’s time to start planning your invitations.
Not only do the aesthetics of invites set the tone for the theme or vibe of your wedding, but they also communicate all of the essential details that every guest needs to know in advance. Consider wedding invitations to be the teaser to the main event and an important step in building anticipation for your special day.
When you have the option to turn your invite into a meaningful keepsake for your guests to hold onto forever rather than just another scrap of paper that gets taken out with the recycling once the party is over, why not embrace the opportunity to stand out?
And look, we get it. Between planning your guest list, budget constraints, and dodging proofing mishaps, this step in the process of planning a wedding can come with its own unique set of stressors. If you’re feeling intimidated, we’re here to tell you not to be. We’ve put together some key considerations to keep in mind while you’re planning your wedding invitations. Ready to nail it? Let’s go!
What To Include On The Invite
Forgetting to include important information on your invite is nightmare material. Luckily we’ve got this list down to a science.
The name of the couple: it may sound obvious, but you want to make it clear to each of your guests whose wedding this is. That doesn’t mean you can’t refer to yourselves by your couple name—go off Brangelina—but some guests might not get the inside joke. Full names are essential!
The date and time of the wedding and reception: before you ask, yes, you have to include the year. This is all the more important after a few years of rescheduled dates thanks to the pandemic. You’ll also want to be sure that the time is clearly stated so that your chronically late friends are warned!
The location of the ceremony and reception: want to go the extra mile? Add directions, parking guides, and venue accessibility information to ensure that everyone invited has the details they need to attend.
Dress code and wedding theme: so that uncle Dave doesn’t show up in his Tommy Bahamas shirt to your Bridgerton themed wedding.
Plus ones: this can be a contentious one, but it’s still necessary to include. To keep it as neutral as possible, we suggest saying, “we have reserved x seats in your name” so that it’s obvious how many guests can come, rather than focusing on who can’t.
Wedding gift information: whether you have a registry at your favorite furniture store, or want guests to leave a donation in your name with a charity that’s meaningful to you, be sure to highlight it on your invite!
RSVP card and return envelope with paid postage: this should include a space for the guest to note who they’re bringing if they have a plus one, an RSVP by date, and the return address.
When To Send
You want to send your invitations with enough time so that your guests can plan ahead and book accommodation early, but not early enough that they forget about your event entirely. While there’s no hard-and-fast rule, there is a bit of a sweet spot in determining when to send your invitations.
If your wedding lands during peak summer wedding season, you want to keep in mind that your wedding might not be the only one your guests will be invited to that day, and it also means that you’ll be competing with existing summer plans. This is a great opportunity to send out save-the-date cards roughly 6 months ahead of the wedding so that guests can plan ahead. Full detailed invitations can then be sent out 8-12 weeks beforehand.
Traditional Paper Or Paperless Invitations?
Deciding between paper and paperless invitations is really a personal decision. While paperless invitations have the advantage of being eco-friendly, easy on tight budgets, and provides you with the immediate gratification of receiving RSVPs right away, there are some benefits to a tried-and-true paper invite. First, you don’t run the risk of ending up in a junk folder, leaving you chasing after the recipient when the deadline comes around. There’s also something special and novel about receiving a physical letter in the mail—and after all, isn’t this a special occasion?
The important point is that there are benefits and drawbacks of each form of invitation, so go with the one that makes the most sense for your values and your guests.
What About Wedding Websites?
Whether you decide to go paperless or not, a wedding website can help keep your guests easily updated on any changes, and provide them with any additional information they may find valuable. Here you can keep all of the information you’ve included on your invitations and additional things like Google Maps links with directions to the venue, registry information, local accommodation recommendations, and a virtual guestbook.
And there you have it! We hope this guide has provided some useful insight into the wedding invitation process. If you’re looking to plan a unique and unconventional wedding, Neon River Weddings will connect you with the creative wedding planner of your dreams. Send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and let’s get started!