Invitations are a vital component of wedding planning. In addition to informing guests about the details of the ceremony and reception, wedding invitations convey the tone and style of the day.
While there are no rules governing wedding invitations, there are some ways for couples to ensure they stay on schedule when mailing invitations.
• Order invitations early. Couples can start to consider their invitation options once the wedding date and venue have been chosen. The wedding stationery industry has changed a lot over the years. Couples can now order invitations from local retailers, use online printers, or design and print their own invitations from home. Invitations should be worded carefully and proofed several times before printing, so expect the process to take a couple of weeks from start to finish. Plan for this time so you will have the invitations ready for mailing roughly three months before your wedding day. Always remember to order extra invitations so you have spares in case you make a mistake or make last-minute additions to your guest list.
• Get organised before mailing. Start preparing invitations about a month before you plan to ship them, as this gives you ample time to write envelopes so you do not have to write them all on the same day. Keep the guest list handy and double-check the spelling of names and the addresses. Traditional etiquette suggests addresses should be handwritten, but computer-produced calligraphy on envelopes is now just as acceptable. Avoid printed labels. Be sure to have the complete invitation weighed at the post office so you will know exactly how much postage is required. Purchase stamps for both the invitation and the response cards.
• Coordinate mailing time and RSVP deadlines. Mail invitations roughly eight weeks before the wedding. This gives guests time to make room in their schedules and arrange for travel, if necessary. Set the response date for three weeks before the wedding date so guests will have the time to make a decision and mail back the response. Many caterers require a final head count one week before the wedding, so make sure your RSVP date is at least two weeks before the big day so you can account for late responders.
• Don’t let responses linger. Check off who is coming and who cannot make it as you receive each response. This way you’ll know just how many responses are still outstanding and you can follow up if necessary.
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