Traditionally wedding invitations have required two envelopes – an inner envelope that contains the actual invitations and inserts and an outer envelope to hold the inner envelope. While many brides continue to follow this tradition, it is acceptable to omit the inner envelope.
The inner envelope only bears the names of the guests. No address is necessary. The inner envelopes should be addressed as follows:
Mr. & Mrs. James Martin
Unmarried Woman and Guest:
Miss Allison Wright and Guest
Unmarried Gentleman and Guest:
Mr. Dustin Chase and Guest
Miss Allison Wright and Mr. Dustin Chase
Unmarried Couple who lives together:
Ms. Allison Wright and Mr. Dustin Chase
Several Young Children:
Braxton, Levi, and Lisa
Parents and a Young Child:
Miss Brook Chase should be written underneath Mr. & Mrs. Dustin Chase
Aunt Darlene and Uncle James
No abbreviations are made on outer envelopes. Words naming roads such as Street and the names of states must be written out. Wedding invitations are always addressed to both members of a married couple.
If you are allowing single guests to bring dates, the proper thing to do is to simply write your friend’s name on the outer invitation and add the “and Guest” part to the inner envelope.
With so many unmarried couples living together nowadays, you may be confused as to how you should address the envelope. The proper thing to do is to address it to both of them even if you are really only friends with one of them.
You need to include a return address on your wedding invitation. For one thing it allows the guest to know where to send the wedding gift. In addition, it lets the postal service know where to return it if it is undeliverable for some reason. The return address is usually printed on the back flap of the envelope.
When to Order and Mail Invitations
Ordering your invitations 6 months before the wedding is not too soon. Keep in mind that it can take anywhere from two weeks to two months to receive your invitations depending on the stationer. You should allow yourself a month to address them, and they’ll need to be in the mail 6 to 8 weeks before the wedding.
You should mail the invitations to out-of-town guests at least 8 weeks in advance so that they can make travel arrangements. Mail invitations to local guests at least 6 weeks in advance.
How many invitations will you need? Consider your guest list. Count one invitation per couple, one for single guests, and one for children over age 18 in a family. Then add an extra 25 for mementos, and 25 to 50 extra envelopes for mistakes.
Invitation Shopping and Savings Tips
Saving Tips: Invitations & Stationery
Here are some suggestions of ways to save money on your invitations and
· Choose response postcards instead of regular cards to save on postage.
· Don’t buy oversized invitations that cost more to mail.
· Skip response cards all together and just pay for a certain predetermined number of people.
· Choose thermographed invitations.
· Don’t buy all the extras such as the linings and reception cards.
· Hand-address the envelopes rather than paying for calligraphy or printing.
· Order extra invitations up front because it is cheaper than having to place a separate smaller order later on.
Invitation Shopping Tips
· Before you visit the stationer, determine your budget for the invitations and stationery.
· Before you visit the stationer, make sure you have the correct spelling of all names and venues that you will be including on the invitation.
· Before you visit the stationer, decide on the exact number of invitations you will be ordering. Keep in mind that you will need to order extra invitations and even more envelopes in case you make any mistakes while addressing them.
· Before you choose an invitation style, consider the style of your wedding. If your wedding is formal you will need a formal invitation and if your wedding is informal you will need a less formal invitation.
· When choosing an invitation, decide on the type of paper first, then the printing style. From these two items you should be able to choose an invitation that fits your budget.
· When ordering the invitations, order at least 25 extra invitations and 10% more envelopes.
· When the order comes in, proofread and count the order while you are still at the store to make sure that you received everything. Don’t leave the store until you are sure!
· Don’t buy stamps for the invitations until after they have come in. Stuff an envelope with everything that will be included, response cards, maps, etc. and then take it to the post office to be weighed.