Wedding Invitation Ideas

What Is Written On A Wedding Invitation?

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    Have no idea what to say in your wedding invitations? While coming up with the ideal wording for wedding invitations may appear easy at first, you may find that it is more challenging than you had anticipated. There are norms of behaviour to observe and potentially some difficult circumstances to resolve. In a nutshell, your wedding's mood should be reflected in the invitation's text.

    The invitations to your wedding are a crucial part of the preparations. Your wedding invitations will be one of the first things your guests will see, touch, and feel, and they will also play a crucial role in relaying key information. It's important to use proper grammar and vocabulary when writing your wedding invites so that everyone can understand the message you're trying to convey and the level of formality you're aiming for.

    Worried that you lack the linguistic skills or knowledge of the "rules" necessary to write the perfect wedding invitation? To learn all the ins and options of wedding invitation wording etiquette, please refer to our detailed guide below.

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    Goals For Wedding Invitation Writing

    For a wedding invitation to be considered successful, the wording must do the following:

    • You should tell your guests of the wedding's essentials, such as the bride and groom's names, the wedding date, and the venue.
    • Give thanks to the wedding hosts.
    • Give guests an idea of the level of formality expected from them during the wedding.
    • If no response cards or other enclosures are given, please instruct your visitors on how to respond.
    • Thank the parents of the couple if they are not also hosting. (Optional)

    All marriages, whether formal or casual, or any variation thereof, are subject to this rule. Whatever your wedding's aesthetic, you should aim for clarity in the invitations.

    Are you prepared to launch? Here is some advice on how to properly word your wedding invitations.

    Wedding Invitation Ideas

    Where Should I Begin?

    Invitations for weddings can be stressful to write. In terms of wedding invitation etiquette, many couples are a little lost. There are a lot of choices and a lot of rules, and it might be confusing to figure out what is expected of you. But you needn't fear; helping in situations like this is why we exist.

    Before finalising the text for your wedding invitations, you should consider the following two questions:

    • Is your big day going to be super traditional and stuffy, or will it be a relaxed celebration?
    • Is it only you and your fiancé footing the tab, or are your parents chipping in as well? Maybe the day will be paid for by both you and your parents.

    You should base the wording of your wedding invitations on the theme of your wedding. Traditional events call for more formal terminology, whereas a more relaxed occasion leaves room for some playful or original wordplay.

    Not sure how you want your wedding stationery to look? Check out our list of 28 Wedding Invitation Ideas to help you choose.

    Contents Of Wedding Invitations

    This line-by-line language template can be helpful if you are composing your own wedding invitations from scratch. It specifies the required elements and their proper placement on a classic wedding invitation. Once you know the specifics of the invitation wording, you may add your own flair by choosing the words that are meaningful to you and your partner.

    Host Line

    Whoever is hosting the wedding should be listed on the first line of the invitation (a.k.a. who is paying for the wedding). Typically, the parents of the bride would pay for the event, so including them on the host line was a nice way to show appreciation. However, many modern couples foot the bill for their nuptials, in which case the host line is unnecessary; or the bride and groom are receiving financial support from both sets of parents, in which case the host line should read "Together with their parents" or something similar.

    The most crucial aspect of the host line is that it be written in a way that is agreeable to both of you as a pair. If you're trying to figure out how to word your host line, here are a few guidelines to follow:

    • When two names are connected by a "and," it is commonly understood that the two people are married.
    • Each parent should be listed on their own line if they are divorced and both are to be considered hosts.
    • Include a step parent's name on the same line as the biological parent's if you must.
    • If the hosts are not married, they must stand in different queues.
    • All names should be listed equally, regardless of how much they contributed.
    • You'll have to make some adjustments if you wish to honour a parent who has passed away, as they cannot act in the role of host after they have passed away. 

    The Couple's Name

    The focus should still be on them even if their names aren't in the host line. Of course, no one would forget to include this on the wedding invitation, but you may be wondering: Whose name comes first? According to convention, the bride's name comes first and then the groom's. When the bride's parents send out invitations, they use the bride's complete name (first and middle) and the groom's full name (first and last) and title (if applicable); if the pair is hosting themselves, titles are not used.

    Traditional gender roles of woman-first and man-second do not apply in same-sex relationships. You may call it "Emily and Zara" or "Zara and Emily," and it will still be beautiful.

    Same-sex couples have the option of writing their names either alphabetically or based on how they sound to them.

    Request Line

    The request line is where you invite folks to your wedding (a.k.a. "Please come!"), so use it to set the tone for the rest of the ceremony. If your wedding is formal, use more formal language to represent the occasion (e.g., "request the honour of your attendance..."); if your wedding is casual, use less formal language (e.g., "Would love for you to join them..." or "Would love for you to come party with us..."). Here are a few more things to consider:

    • The phrase "the honour of your presence" is commonly associated with religious services. The British spelling of "honour" is prefered by some couples; while either version is valid, there is something more official and conventional about using the one with a u. (Note: if "honour" is used on the invitation, "favour," as in "in favour of your reply," should be used on the RSVP card.)
    • Locations that begin with "the pleasure of your company" (or similar phrases) indicate a secular event.

    Action Line

    In this section, you'll describe the experience you're offering others. Here are some illustrations:

    • This sentence typically reads, "At the wedding of their daughter," since the bride's parents traditionally host the wedding.
    • The sentence might read, "At the marriage of their offspring," if both sets of parents are present.
    • Alternatively, you may say, "As they tie the knot" or "At the celebrations of their union" if you are the host.

    The Location

    If your wedding is being held at the home of the host, or if omitting the street address might cause confusion, then you should include it. In either situation, it is necessary to provide the full name of the location and state.

    • Wedding venues are listed as "Venue Name" on one line and "City, State" on the next; at formal ceremonies, the state name is typically written out (instead of abbreviations).
    • Unless the venue is a private home, the street address is usually left out (though you may want to mention it).
    • Location details such as zip codes are typically omitted.

    The Time And Date

    Everything is planned out in detail in writing for formal weddings (no numerals). If you don't provide a year, it will be assumed that your wedding will take place on the next available day. O'clock or "half past five o'clock" are used to specify the time of day. A.M. and P.M. can be used interchangeably. A casual wedding is an appropriate setting for the use of numerals.

    • Dates and times should always be written out completely. Say your ceremony is on a Saturday, September 15, 2021, at 4:30 p.m.; the invitation should read, "Saturday, the 15 of September, two thousand twenty-one, at quarter after four in the afternoon."
    • Capitalization is required for both the weekday and the month. The year must be written in lowercase.
    • The year is written without a "and" between the digits.
    • You should use phrases like "four o'clock" or "half after four o'clock" to indicate the time of day. The phrase "half after" is the standard manner of expressing the passage of time. However, "half-past four o'clock" or "four-thirty" can be used in less formal invitations.
    • Unless the event takes place between the hours of 8 and 10, it is not necessary to specify that it will take place in the afternoon or evening. In this case, specifying "in the morning" or "in the evening" will help avoid confusion. Some stationery designers, however, will use such words to pad out a line in an effort to make the invitation look better in its entirety. You and your designer can decide.
    • A new day begins at 5 o'clock in the evening. Time between 12 and 4 o'clock is considered the afternoon unless otherwise specified.
    • It's worth noting that current invitation designs commonly deviate from these formal date and time guidelines by listing the date and time using digits; using a number system is also preferable for more casual weddings.

    To learn more, check out our post on What is a traditional wedding invitation?

    Reception Information

    This information is typically printed on a separate card and included with formal invitations. If there isn't any extra space on the RSVP card, you can always write "and afterward at the reception" or  if the ceremony and reception are being held at the same place. Reception moves to a new point on the map.

    With this statement, you can let your guest know exactly what to expect immediately following the ceremony.

    • A simple "Dinner and dancing to follow" or "Reception to follow"  will do if both events are happening in the same place.
    • If the reception will be held elsewhere, the location can be written on the following line, or a special insert card (a reception card) might be sent to inform guests of the location and time.
    • Cake, punch, and merriment to follow" or "Come us once ceremony for cocktails, hors d'oeuvres, and dancing" might be fantastic ways to let visitors know that a full meal will not be served.
    • Create the mood for the reception by adding a sentence like, "Join us for an intimate meal after..." or "Drinks, dancing, and antics to follow."

    Other Considerations

    Dress code:If your wedding is formal or requires formal attire, such as black tie, make sure to specify that on the invitation. Guests will assume a formal event based on the formality of the wedding invitation, so it's best to avoid mentioning a dress code if you don't want to. One line after the reception's address is where you should put the dress code.

    Specify if guests should wear black tie, semi-formal clothes, summer suits, cocktail attire, or something else. If there is no requirement for formal attire, you may state that fact (or omit it entirely).

    Wedding website: Your wedding website should not be printed on the invitation itself, but rather on a separate card, such as a reception card or supplementary information card. You should also include the address of your wedding website on the save the date card.

    Either the wedding website address or a designated hashtag for guests to use when posting images from the event can be included. Having a wedding website is especially helpful for destination weddings since it allows you to provide guests with relevant travel information such as the nearest airport and reasonably priced hotels in the area.

    Preferences in social media: Just let your guests know that you'd like it if they didn't take any photos or videos at all during the ceremony or the wedding itself. Until we've uploaded your first photo to Facebook, for instance, we ask that you refrain from sharing any photos.

    A line to indicate whether your wedding is for adults only or without children. Possible explanations for this include, "In order to give everyone, parents included, a chance to kick back and relax on our wedding day, we have decided to limit attendance to those over the age of 18, therefore please respect this request when responding to our invitation. With any luck, you'll still be able to celebrate our big day with us thanks to this advanced warning and will appreciate the free evening." You can say something like, "Wedding ceremony to be followed by adult-only reception" if you want to invite kids to the ceremony but not the reception.

    Transport information: Tell your guests when and where they will be picked up and dropped off if you are organising a bus or other transportation for them.

    Separate Rsvp Card

    Most newlyweds opt to have guests fill out a separate card and mail it back. Your guests can also use your wedding website to respond to the invitation. Put the web link on a separate card and tell visitors to let them know if they can make it by visiting the site rather than sending an RSVP card if that's the case.

    Even though they aren't required by traditional etiquette, modern brides often include envelopes, paper, and stamps with their wedding invitations in the hopes that guests would respond quickly. It's not impolite to leave them out, but it could backfire.

    The invitation's "RSVP Line" should be located in the bottom left corner and should offer a way for the recipient to get in touch with you, whether via snail mail, phone, e-mail, or website.

    On a separate card, you can use a fill-in-the-blank format (Mr. or Mrs., for example) or a simpler format (Please let us know whether you will join us), both of which give room for handwritten responses.

    Etiquette For Wedding Invitation Wording

    Wording for wedding invitations is a source of anxiety for many. What if you misspell a word or forget to include important information by mistake? What about if you do not even know the “rules' ' and make a social error because of it?

    Note:  We know that each wedding is special in its own way. The two of you will need to work together to determine the communication style that best suits you. These "laws" of etiquette serve as additional guidelines for crafting the most formal and classic invitations possible. Your wedding invitations can be as simple as elaborate as you like if you are having a casual wedding and/or choose a more modern approach.

    We've seen many creative and unique invitations from our real weddings, as couples continue to push the envelope with each passing year. For a plethora of unique ways to personalise your wedding invites, consider the latest paper-inspired features and the most popular stationery trends.


    Making wedding invitations is a significant element of the wedding planning process. It's likely that they'll be among the first items visitors notice and interact with. If you want your message to be understood by everyone, utilise correct grammar and language. Wording for wedding invitations should reflect the vibe you want to set for the big day. More serious language is appropriate for formal events, while casual gatherings can benefit from some clever wordplay.

    Find some inspiration from this collection of 28 different wedding invitations. Even if the couple's names aren't listed as hosts, the event should still centre on them. Inviting guests to your wedding ceremony by saying "Please come!" is a great way to get things started. The u-spelled version of "honour" is seen by some to be more proper, and this is one reason why some couples choose it. When having a wedding at the home of the host, or if leaving out the street address could lead to confusion, it is important to include it.

    If you want to have a more relaxed ceremony, you might use terms like "half past five o'clock" or "o'clock" to indicate the time. The use of a numerical system is also prefered for weddings with a more relaxed atmosphere. The phrase "and then at the reception" might be omitted if both the ceremony and the reception will be held in the same location. A space to specify whether or not children are welcome at the wedding. If you are arranging a bus or other mode of transportation, let your visitors know when and where they will be picked up and dropped off.

    There will be a separate RsVP card for any visitors who would prefer to fill one out and return it via snail mail. The majority of today's brides will supply their guests with RSVP envelopes, paper, and stamps along with their wedding invitations. Leaving them out is not rude, but it may have unintended consequences. Include the web address on a separate card and ask guests to let you know if they will be able to attend.

    Content Summary

    1. Finding the perfect words for wedding invitations may seem simple at first, but it can prove to be more difficult than you'd expect.
    2. The tone of your wedding should be conveyed in the invitation wording.
    3. A wedding's invites are a significant element of the planning process.
    4. Your wedding invitations will be more effective if you take the time to utilise correct grammar and vocabulary to ensure that your guests comprehend the tone you wish to set.
    5. Follow our comprehensive guide below to understand the dos and don'ts of wedding invitation wording etiquette.
    6. The wording of a wedding invitation needs to achieve the following goals.
    7. Guests need to know the names of the bride and groom, the wedding day, and the location of the ceremony.
    8. Gratitude is due to the wedding hosts.
    9. No of the style of your wedding, the invites should convey the event clearly.
    10. Many engaged couples feel at sea when it comes to the proper way to send out wedding invitations.
    11. It's possible that you and your folks will split the cost of the outing equally.
    12. The invitation language for your wedding should reflect the style of your big day.
    13. Have no idea what you want your wedding invitations to look like?
    14. If you want to write your own wedding invitations from scratch, this line-by-line language template can help.
    15. After you've figured out the finer points of the invitation wording, you and your partner can personalise it by picking phrases that signify something to you both.
    16. The invitation's opening phrase should identify the wedding's host (i.e., who is paying for the ceremony and reception).
    17. Writing the host line in a way that's suitable to both of you as a couple is the most important part.
    18. Name of the Lovebirds
    19. Even if they aren't listed in the host line, they should still be the main attraction.
    20. Tradition dictates that the bride's name comes first and the groom's name comes second.
    21. Bride's full name (first, middle), groom's full name (first, last), and title (if relevant) are included on invitations sent by the bride's parents; if the couple is hosting themselves, titles are not used.
    22. When two people of the same gender are involved in a relationship, the conventional gender norms of woman as primary caregiver and male as secondary caregiver do not apply.
    23. line to play at the opening of your wedding ceremony to set the tone for the entire event.
    24. Words are important, so be sure to use them correctly for the wedding's level of formality.
    25. When having a wedding at the home of the host, or if leaving out the street address could lead to confusion, it is important to include it.
    26. In either case, you'll need to give the whole city and state.
    27. Indicating Both Time and Date
    28. In the case of a traditional wedding, everything is planned to the last detail and documented in writing (no numerals).
    29. In the absence of a specific year, the next available date will be presumed to be the wedding date.
    30. The usage of numbers is fine for a casual wedding.
    31. Always use the full date and time when writing anything.
    32. It's important to remember that modern invitation layouts typically break from these official date and time rules by listing the time and date using numbers; employing a number system is also prefered for more casual weddings.
    33. However, if both the ceremony and reception will be held at the same location, you can simply add "and thereafter at the reception" on the RSVP card.
    34. You can prepare your guests on what to do after the ceremony by making this announcement.
    35. "The location of the reception can be noted on the following line, or a separate insert card (a reception card) can be given to tell guests of the venue and time.
    36. Put a personal touch on the reception by including a statement like "Join us for an intimate lunch following..." or "Please join us for a champagne toast as we toast to..." "Next up: booze, beats, and shenanigans.
    37. It is recommended not to specify a dress code on a wedding invitation, as guests will presume it is a formal event based on the invitation's formality.
    38. The dress code should be included on the next line after the reception's address.
    39. One option is to include a hashtag for guests to use when posting photos from the wedding on social media, while another is to include the wedding website link.
    40. Social media platform preferences
    41. Just make sure everyone knows that you prefer they not take any pictures or recordings at all during the ceremony and the reception.
    42. A space to specify whether or not children are welcome at the wedding.
    43. If you want to invite children to the ceremony but not the reception, you can say something like, "Wedding ceremony to be followed by adult-only reception."
    44. If you are arranging a bus or other mode of transportation for your guests, make sure they know when and where they will be picked up and dropped off.
    45. Most couples choose to have guests fill out a separate rsvp card and send it back to the couple after the wedding.
    46. In addition to traditional mail, guests can use your wedding website to RSVP.
    47. If an RSVP card is unnecessary, a web address can be included on a separate card and guests asked to let the host know their attendance status online.
    48. Modern brides typically provide envelopes, paper, and stamps with their wedding invites in the hopes that guests would react immediately, even if doing so isn't necessary by traditional etiquette.
    49. The "RSVP Line" should be printed in the lower left corner of the invitation, and it should provide contact information (your address, phone number, email address, and/or website) enabling the invitee to get in touch with you.
    50. Use a fill-in-the-blank format (Mr. or Mrs., for instance) or a simpler one (Please let us know whether you will join us) on a separate card to allow for handwritten responses.
    51. How to Properly Address a Wedding Invitation Many people get stressed out when thinking of the right words to use for their wedding invitations.
    52. You and your partner will need to figure out jointly what kind of communication works best for the two of you.
    53. Following these "rules" of politeness can help you create the most elegant and timeless invites possible.
    54. If you're having a laid-back ceremony and/or opting for a more contemporary vibe, you're free to get as creative as you'd like with your wedding invitations.
    55. There are a myriad of creative options for customising your wedding invitations if you look to the newest paper-inspired details and trendiest stationery options.

    Frequently Asked Questions

    You can use any photo you want  just make sure it's good quality. A nice shot from your friend's wedding last summer or a pic your dad took with his fancy new camera over the holidays will do just fine. Wedding Invitations: Photo wedding invitations allow all of your guests a look at who you are as a couple.

    The name of the bride always precedes the groom's name. Formal invitations issued by the bride's parents refer to her by her first and middle names, the groom by his full name and title; if the couple is hosting by themselves, their titles are optional.

    Save the date cards can be sent out as early as a year from your wedding date. Invitations should be sent to your guests six to eight weeks in advance of your wedding. Invitations for destination weddings should be sent to your guests three months in advance of your wedding.

    For a heterosexual couple, use "Mr." and "Mrs." and spell out the husband's first and last name. For a same-sex couple, either name can go first. Many modern women may have a strong aversion to having their name left out and lumped in with their husbands.

    How should you list those names? Last names aren't needed for the bride or groom if their parents are listed on the invitation. Typically, wedding invitations include the first and middle names of both the bride and groom, and the first, middle and last names of the bride and groom if parents aren't listed.

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