Wedding invitations speak volumes of your creativity and the honest effort put in inviting family and friends. It creates an impression on the invitee, about your style and functionality, and gives them an idea about what to expect. So, you must make an effort to send all the right signals and make your guests feel welcome. Most of this is achieved if you use or select the appropriate words for a wedding card. While every wedding is different and special for the concerned people, there is a certain etiquette for invitations, that can help you invite your guests in the best possible manner.
Use complete forms of date, names, and titles. For instance, a doctor must be addressed as a 'doctor' followed by his or her last name in complete letters. The host's name should be mentioned in the beginning. Mention the parents just below the name of the bride and the groom, if the marrying couple is hosting the wedding. Mention the names of the parents in the beginning if they are hosting the ceremony, starting with the bride's parents. Avoid using R.S.V.P. or P.S. and similar such abbreviations. Make a list of all the general guidelines you wish to include in your invitation.
It is essential that you don't fret too much about getting the exact words. If you have a collection of wedding cards or you get a chance to browse through many of these, you will notice the most pleasing ones are not necessarily the most articulate ones. The idea of an invitation is to make a personalized request or an invitation to share a momentous occasion. In your quest to make a perfect card, the originality shouldn't be compromised upon. Humans usually accept others and cherish their company only if they accept others limitations. In fact, that adds an element of sincerity to your card. Therefore, present words with a hint of originality.
It is a good practice to include a separate invitation card if the venue for the reception and the wedding ceremony are different. You can enclose a small card along with the invitation for the ceremony, stating the venue and the time of the reception. Be precise in your wedding reception invitations, and tag them along with the ceremony invitations. Finally, if your guest list varies for both these occasions, ensure right cards are mailed to the concerned people or you might end up embarrassing yourself and the guests!
If the person is a really close relative or a best friend, it is okay if you address them by their pet name or the way you always refer to them. Granny or sissy is acceptable usage, provided they are really close to you and would love the personalization.
If you want the guests to dress formally for the occasion, include a black tie sign in the corner on the lower side. Never have preconceived notions that since your party is in the evening, or in the presence of dignitaries, your guests will all turn up wearing formal attire.
'Mr. and Mrs. Smith and Family', is not a desirable way of addressing a family. If the children are not living with their parents or are over eighteen years of age, make an effort to send them individually addressed cards. If the family has children less than eighteen years, make a cheerful mention like, 'Little Miss Smith'.
Always send invitations 7-8 weeks before the wedding day and avoid any last moment forgetting and omissions or unnecessary fuss.
The most important tip is to remember that a wedding card is a card for a personal occasion and when it comes to personal events, the host knows best. While this etiquette is important, don't forget to be simple, original, and creative. This will ensure that you design the perfect wedding invitation.