TIPS + FAQs
How soon should we start the wedding stationery process?
The sooner, the better. You should begin thinking about your invitations at least nine to eleven months before your wedding. That gives you and your stationer ample time to design, print, assemble, and mail everything. It's also a good idea to make your wedding website at this time.
Your save-the-dates should be sent out six to eight months before you walk down the aisle, and even sooner for a destination wedding. You want to give your guests ample time to make travel and accommadation plans. Invites should be completed four to five months before your big day, and sent out at least eight to ten weeks prior, three months beforehand if you're having a destination wedding.
What kind of information should we include on the save-the-date?
Besides the basic information (names, and the date and place of the wedding), you should also include your wedding website. Some couples even include accomodation details on their save-the-dates if they're having a destination wedding so that guests can get a jumpstart on booking flights and hotels. However, travel information is definitely something that you can include on your wedding website.
What is the best way to supply our guest list if we're having our envelopes addressed for us?
A spreadsheet will always be the most efficient method for organizing your guests and their addresses. If you're not sure what kind of information should be included on the spreadsheet or are uncertain about specific family situations, download this handy guest list template. You'll find four example slots already filled—a married couple, a family, and a married couple with an adult child living at home—just to show you different scenarios, but you can clear those and fill them with your own guests. The numbers in Column A are for numbering the backs of your RSVP cards (delete extra rows if you don't need them). Sometimes people forget to write their names on the response card. By simply giving every guest/party a corresponding number, you can easily match RSVP cards to the number designated on your guest list spreadsheet. Makes everything much easier! This template will also total your guests and the number of invites you need for you. Pretty neat!
Oh that's really helpful! Can we use this template to track our RSVP's, too?
You can. Or you can use this RSVP tracker template. If you're using the above template to organize your guest list, all you have to do is copy and paste the column with the names of your guests into Column B of this RSVP tracker spreadsheet (delete extra rows if you don't need them). Enter responses as you receive them, including how many in a party are attending, and the spreadsheet will total your accepted guests for you. You can also customize Columns F–J if you require your guests to indicate an entrée when they RSVP (delete extra columns if you don't need them). These columns will also total for you, this way you know for certain how many people ordered the salmon (don't forget to add yourself and your intended to that total). Note any dietary restrictions or special circumstances in Column K.
When should we make the deadline for RSVP's?
Make your RSVP date one month before your wedding date. This will allow enough time for you to get a final head count and to finalize your seating chart (if necessary). You should always check with your venue to see if they have a deadline for a head count, and also give your caterer a final count at least a week before. If some of your guests still haven't responded by your deadline, drop them a quick call or email.
How should we word our invites?
The wording of your invitations depends on three things: the formality of your big day, who's hosting, and the family situation. There are a variety of ways you can write your invitations, but the basic outline is as follows:
Proper Names of Those Hosting
List Relationship of the Bride/Groom to the Host
Name of Bride/Groom
Name of Bride/Groom
Day of the Week, Day, and Month of Wedding
Year Fully Written Out (if not on previous line)
Time of Wedding
Name of Wedding Venue/Location
City and State of Wedding Venue/Location
For more help on how to word your invitation, visit The Knot's nifty wording tool!
Can we put registry information on the invitations?
It's still considered poor etiquette to include registry information on invitations or save-the-dates. You should put all of your wedding registry details on your wedding website. This information can also be included on wedding shower invitations, if you choose to have one. Another option is still to include a small card with your invites that directs guests to your wedding website for more information.
Where should return addresses go on the invitation envelopes?
Typically, return addresses go on the back flap of the envelope, and they should be addressed to the person(s) whom you've chosen to receive the response cards. And don't forget to also address and stamp the response envelopes for your guests!
How do we politely let guests know that our wedding is adults-only?
Make sure you address your invitation accordingly—to each guest by name, not “and guest”. Guests should understand that the invitation is meant only for those indicated. If some guests reply with their children's names, feel free to give them a call and explain that you're having an adults-only wedding. It's also not uncommon to put "Adult reception to immediately follow ceremony" on invitations nowadays, if you really want to drive your adults-only point home. If you have a lot of kids in your family, consider offering to hire a sitter for guests who don't want to leave their little ones at home.