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Wedding Invitation Mistakes You Don't Want to Make—Plus Tips on How to Avoid Them!

We're not just talking about typos.

Contributing Writer
stationery suite
Photography by: Kate Headley

You probably already know to proofread your wedding invitations for misspelled words and poor syntax. But there are plenty of other errors brides often make regarding their invites, whether it's about people or postage. Here are the ones to look out for.

 

Wedding Invitation Etiquette Tips

 

Putting on too little postage.

Weigh a sample invitation with all its enclosures—things like a reply card and envelope, directions card, and map—to find out how much postage it requires. Though it costs 49 cents to mail a standard first-class, one-ounce wedding invitation, many invites actually weigh more than two ounces. And if yours is an odd shape, like a square or has a string closure, it'll cost more because they can't be processed at the post office by machine.

 

Not sending an invite to someone you know can't come.

Maybe your elderly aunt in Texas isn't physically able to travel to your wedding in Maine. Or your mom's best friend already booked a cruise to Alaska. Both have told you as soon as you got engaged that they're sorry they'll miss your wedding, so why bother sending an invitation? You should still mail out a formal invitation to acknowledge their importance in your life and on your guest list. Furthermore, travel plans could change or health improve.

 

Not listing a friend's long-time partner on the invitation.

Just as a guest's spouse should always be included on an invitation, so should someone's longtime significant other; write their names on two separate lines. If you're letting single guests bring a date, get the plus-one's name and address and send them a separate invitation. Try to avoid the impersonal, somewhat mysterious "and Guest."

 

Addressing a guest with a medical degree incorrectly.

It gets tricky when a person's professional title needs to be used on the envelope. If the husband or wife is a doctor, their title goes first—either "Dr. and Mrs. James Smith" or "Dr. and Mr. James Smith."

 

Not adding postage to the reply cards.

It may be a significant expense you hadn't budgeted for but it pays to put a stamp on every reply card. Your chances of getting the cards back sooner rather than later will increase significantly.

 

Ordering one invitation per person.

Couples and families with young kids should receive just one invitation. If you ordered too many, you'll recognize your error as soon as you sit down to address the envelopes, but by then it's too late to change the order. And of course there are no refunds.

 

Including registry information with the invitation.

This will come across as tacky, so don't do it. It's acceptable, however, to put your registry details on your wedding website or asking family members to spread the word.

 

Not having someone else proofread the invitation.

It's smart to have another pair of eyes reading the invite not just for typos or poor grammar but for common-sense omissions like the wedding date or ceremony address. Ask a friend who's very detail-oriented—if there are any mistakes, she'll catch them!

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About the Author

Nancy Mattia

Though Nancy has been writing about weddings for years, she admits that watching a bride walk down the aisle—even on TV—still makes her tear up. The New York-area writer's other favorite wedding moments are when the groom sees the bride for the first time, hearing the toasts, and when she sees a waiter with a tray full of hors d'oeuvres walking towards her. 

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