Wedding Stationery Etiquette

Wondering when to send out your wedding invitations or if you need save the dates? Well, we have gathered a few of our best Wedding Stationery Tips of advice below. Enjoy!

When should we send out Save the Dates? 6 Months prior to the wedding.

Where do we include information about our wedding website?
The Save the Date is a great place to include the information on your wedding website. Simply including the website url is great.

PRO TIP: If you do not send out Save the Dates, you can include this information on your formal invite as well.

Is it acceptable to invite guests to the ceremony only?

No, it is not acceptable to do this. Anyone invited to the ceremony should always be invited to the cocktail hour, reception, and dance. Essentially the full day of wedding events.

PRO TIP: If you invite someone to your bridal shower or bachelorette party, they should definitely be invited to your full day of wedding events. The only exception I would make to this rule is to invite children who are not invited to the reception (see question about “adult only” wedding for more details).

Do we include our registry info on our invitations or save-the-dates?

Etiquette-wise, the short answer is no. It is considered impolite to include your registry information on Save the Dates or Formal Invitations.

PRO TIP: It is acceptable to include this information on your wedding website.

When should we send out our wedding invitations?

3 Months prior to the wedding for destination weddings.
6 to 8 weeks prior to the wedding for most weddings.

PRO TIP: Some Catering companies require early meal choice information sent to them 30 days prior to the wedding. Therefore you will need your rsvp date set before then.

Where do you put the return address on wedding invitations?

The back flap of the envelope is the typical placement of the return address. The return address should be the address of the person who is responsible for receiving these rsvp’s.

PRO TIP: Please remember to also address the rsvp envelope with that same return address, and definitely DO NOT FORGET to include postage on the rsvp.

When should we make the deadline for RSVPs?
RSVP date should be 4 weeks prior to the wedding.

PRO TIP: Typically FINAL guest count and meal choices are required 14 days before the wedding, so allow yourself 2 weeks wiggle room to gather any non rsvp responder’s attendance or nonattendance as well as meal choices.

PRO TIP: This also gives you 2 weeks to finalize your seating chart before it is due to catering.

Do we have to invite every guest with a date or a “plus-one"?

Etiquette- wise it is acceptable to only include a “plus-one” for those who are married or in serious relationships. Though it is nice to allow guest’s for everyone, if possible.

PRO TIP: Be prepared to make phone calls if you receive an rsvp with a guest added where you weren’t planning for one, and also be prepared to ruffle feathers. This is often times a pain-point when dealing with guest attendance.

We're having an adults-only wedding (no kids). How can we make sure this is clear to our guests?

Include your guest’s names on the invitations versus only including “guest”. Should you receive an rsvp with the children’s names added, you will want to make a call to those family members and explain that you are having an “adult only reception”.
PRO TIP: If you have a lot of children in your family you may want to consider hiring an event sitter (babysitter), and reserving a fun room for them to play, and also consider providing fun activities for them. Here are a couple event sitters we recommend:  (remember to include this information on your wedding website).

PRO TIP #2: Don’t make it more complicated by allowing children of a certain age and older, it should be cut and dry all kids are welcome or none at all. Inviting children to the ceremony only is a nice gesture but can also complicate things for the parents having to arrange sitters and go back and forth from your wedding locations to bring the children home.

How do we let guests know our dress code?
Add a note to the effect of: “black-tie," “cocktail attire" or “casual attire" onto your wedding invitations or an insert card with your invitations.  

PRO TIP: Include this information on your wedding website as well. This will give you an opportunity to go into more detail.

Is it acceptable to invite guests to the dance only?
No, just as you should not invite guests to the ceremony only, you should not invite guests to the dance only. This indicates they are not important enough for you to spend money on them. If that’s the case- they shouldn’t be invited at all.

PRO TIP: If you are trying to make cuts into you guest list. Start with the people who always have been and always will be in your life. Such as family and close friends. Anyone who has only been in your life for a short time such as a co-worker or boss, you might want to consider cutting from the list. Also, if you have family members such as Mother and Father adding their co-workers to the list or friends whom do not even know the bride and groom, which leaves room for discussion with them on possibly cutting those individuals from the list as well.


-JW | Events@jessicawonders | 651.245.8536 | Jessica Wonders, LLC