Wedding Invitation Etiquette: Addressing Invitations
Wedding etiquettemay have relaxed in some areas, but the long-held ‘rules’ still hold true with invitations. On this blog, we talked about giving guests a +1, and now we’re focusing on the art, and etiquette, of addressing your invitations.
- The number one rule of wedding invitation etiquette is that it’s a Don’t to print out guests’ names and addresses on labels. Guests are not impressed when they see labels on the formal invitation envelopes, so be sure to hand-write yours out.
- More wedding couples are hiring professional wedding calligraphers to write out their invitation envelopes, for an elegant and impressive creation.
- Use proper titles for guests, such as Captain Mark Smith for a military serviceperson (and be sure you’re updated on their current rank. It is okay to call and ask for this information.)
- Use no abbreviations on your wedding invitation envelope. Mr. and Mrs. are perfectly fine to use, as is Ms., but when it comes to the address, St. is spelled out as Street, and Ave. is spelled out as Avenue. Even the state is spelled out.
- If a couple is invited with their kids, you’ll write Mrs. and Mrs. Mark Smith and Family on the outer envelope, and the inner envelope bears the names:
Mrs. and Mrs. Mark Smith
Miss Emily Smith
Miss Jane Smith
Master Mark Smith, Junior
- Master is used for a boy, on ultra-formal invitations.
- Send separate invitations for guests aged 18 and older; some couples choose to make this you-get-your-own invitation age 16.
- Spell your guests’ names correctly, and double-check the spellings of child guests’ names.
- When a guest is in a long-term relationship, find out their partner’s name so that you can write it on the invitation. It’s considered bad wedding etiquette to write And Guest when that person has been in a serious relationship for a long time, engaged or not.
- It’s been the norm to use a black pen to address invitations, but if your invitations have a deep purple design and font, you can certainly use a deep purple pen to address the invitation envelopes.
- Respect guests’ planning time by mailing out your invitations at least 6-8 weeks prior to a hometown wedding, and at least 12 weeks prior to a destination wedding. A top wedding etiquette practice is sending invitations out 12 weeks prior if the wedding is local to you, but many guests will be traveling in from afar. To them, your New Jersey wedding is a destination wedding.