Wedding Invitation Etiquette + Tips

So, you’re engaged (yay!), you’ve come up with the guest list and you’ve even spotted the perfect wedding invitation suite at the stationery boutique downtown. What now? Here are few helpful recommendations for sending out your wedding stationery.

When to send? Save-the-Dates are typically sent out 6-12 months prior to the wedding, giving your guests ample time to mark their calendars. Wedding Invitations should be sent out 6-8 weeks in advance if you’re planning a local wedding and 2-3 months for destination weddings.

Addressing your envelopes. The formality of your wedding will determine how you address your envelopes. Check out The Knot and Crane for formal addressing guidelines.

Calligraphy. Nothing says romance more than beautiful calligraphy. Your envelopes deserve calligraphy! If you’re willing to splurge on the details, this is one I wouldn’t skip out on. A short list of favorites include The Left Handed Calligrapher, Meant To Be, Grace Edmands, Love*Jenna, Betsy Dunlap, Kathryn Murray, Plurabelle, Paperfinger, Neither Snow and you can find more calligraphy ideas from Martha Stewart Weddings.

Return Address. It is most common to see the return address on the back flap of the envelope. If you are going to be writing your addresses out by hand, you might as well save yourself some time on the return addresses and look into purchasing a stamp! (Yours Truly offers custom designs if you’re looking to add a motif or specific design style. Contact us at hello@yourstrulypaper.com.)

Invitation Assembly. Once you have all of your printed pieces ready, its time to stuff envelopes. Make this daunting task a fun one—throw some bubbly on ice and invite your maid of honor over for an assembly party! Smock has a helpful video on assembly instruction—because they’re awesome.

Postage. You’ll want to bring a finished invitation to your post office to have it weighed. A first class stamp only covers up to one ounce and if you’re including many pieces you’ll need to make sure you have the correct postage. Do the same for your response card too. Remember that square sizes require additional postage. Also, when you’re ready to mail your invitations you can request that they be hand-canceled. Normally a machine is used to cancel the stamp with a bar code but they can be damaging to the envelope. Hand-canceling is gentler and the marking has a more traditional look.

Stamps. When you’ve calculated what you’ll need for postage, it’s time to choose your stamps. Your post office will have the most current styles available but for a broader selection visit usps.com. Maybe you have a photo from your engagement shoot that you want to use on a stamp? Or a custom monogram? Zazzle.com offers custom stamps. And if you want to be fancy pants, you can go for vintage stamps. These can be hard to find and costly as they usually run double the original value, but they are sooo pretty. This post on vintage stamps from 100 Layer Cake is a great resource for how to find them.

{Image above courtesy of Alee & Press: Vintage Style}

One thought on “Wedding Invitation Etiquette + Tips

  1. Very helpful, thanks for all the tips! Is there a site I can visit to see sample invitations to get an idea of what I like and don't like? Thanks for your help!

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