What to include in your wedding invitations
10 Jan 2022
With so much to communicate ahead of your wedding day, here are the key details to include in your wedding invitations
Following your Save-the-Dates, your wedding invitations are the first glimpse into your big day. As invitations are typically sent three months before the big day, the majority of your wedding plans should be finalised by this point.
Yet while most couples get excited about setting a theme and choosing a design for their wedding stationery suite, they can easily overlook the contents of their invitations.
Of course, wedding stationery suppliers – whether they are based locally or online, are best placed to advise and guide couples in their choices. Having a professional point of contact can prove most useful to ensure all the necessary information is included and correct, as well as sounding off design ideas to ensure the best result for your wedding.
However, there are also options to design and print your wedding stationery online yourself, which means that you and only you are responsible for the content you include.
Whichever way you choose to create your wedding invitations, make sure you have two sets: one for day guests and one for evening guests. Using different colours or designs can help you to ensure guests receive the correct invitation when sending them out.
To remove any room for error and to spare yourself unwanted queries from guests on receipt, take note of these key details to include on your invitations.
Your names, date, time and venue of the wedding
Your full names, the date, time and venue of your wedding should sit front and centre of your wedding invitations.
E.g. You're invited to the wedding of Jennifer Thomas and Chris Elvin at Stradsett Hall, Norfolk on 26th August 2023 at 12pm
Traditionally, wedding invitations featured the full names of the couple's parents requesting the guest's attendance and while this is somewhat outdated, the format is still used:
E.g. Mr Jonathan & Mrs Catherine Thomas together with Mr Graham & Mrs Mary Elvin request the honour of your presence to celebrate the marriage of their children...
The time given should be the exact start time of your ceremony. You may wish to include an arrival time too to prevent unwanted latecomers during the bridal party's entrance.
You can also include an order of the day if using a multi-page design for your invitations. Here, you can specify a more detailed schedule for the day.
Evening invitations should specify the time guests should arrive at the reception venue, which tends to coincide with the couple's first dance and the start of the evening catering.
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Above: Fiona Murray via Unsplash
Venue address and transport details
The address of the wedding and reception venue/s should also be given prominence on your wedding invitations.
Include the full address/es with postcode/s and check with the venue that the postcode, when used in Satellite Navigation or Google Maps, will take the guest directly to the venue and not on an unneccessary diversion. Include transport information where applicable, accounting for those travelling by car or train – or even from abroad.
You could also state what facilities are available at the venue, such as free/chargeable car parking and accessibility for disabled guests. Group transport arrangements and/or contact details of taxi companies should also be included.
Include a sentence in a prominent position on the invitation, which requests that guests respond as soon as possible or RSVP (Répondez s'il vous plaît) to confirm their attendance or unattendance. This can be done via email or post, so specify a deadline date and email address or return address clearly and concisely to avoid any confusion.
Include any important additional information that may benefit guests in advance. For example, let guests know if you wish for them to adhere to a particular dress code so that they can plan their outfit, or advise guests to bring warmer clothing or cover-ups for wedding photographs outside during an autumn/winter wedding.
Should your wedding be a child-free zone, state this so that guests with young families can make childcare arrangements.
If you are offering a choice of dishes for your wedding breakfast and your venue needs to receive orders before the big day, your invitations are the best place to communicate this information ahead of time. Invite guests to send their menu choices by email.
If you have a set menu, with no choices available, clearly state this so that recipients can advise of any dietary requirements at their earliest convenience. You can keep your wedding menu a surprise if you wish, but remind guests to share allergies or intolerances with you as soon as possible.
Guests travelling from afar will likely need to know where they can stay overnight. Even if all guests are local to the area, they may wish to stay closer to the venue, so it is wise to include details of any accommodation available on site or, if limited, B&Bs or hotels nearby.
If you have set up an online wedding gift list or if you're requesting donations for a honeymoon, charity or something else, include a section on your wedding invitations to communicate this. If you feel awkward about asking guests for anything, just include a few sentences or a short poem to summarise your sentiments. For example:
We do not have a wedding gift list, nor a specific list for things
We just ask for your company and the memories the day brings.
By asking for guests' song requests to be sent back with their RSVP, this will give you plenty of music to pass on to your DJ or performer for the evening playlist. By accommodating a range of musical tastes, couples can ensure that all guests are considered and the dance floor remains full all night long.
Covid rules and regulations
Although it is the last thing you want to consider, the Covid rules and regulations that will be in operation at the time of your wedding must always be taken into account and communicated where possible.
As the rules surrounding face masks/coverings and social distancing are subject to change, consult with your venue on the suggested wording to include on your invitations.
It is recommended that Lateral Flow tests are taken before any event to ensure the utmost safety of all in attendance, but you should check gov.uk for the most up to date advice for weddings.