How to Word Enclosures for Wedding Invites

Written by christina riopelle
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How to Word Enclosures for Wedding Invites
Include enclosures with wedding invitations. (invitation mariage image by Christophe Thélisson from Fotolia.com)

While the wedding invitation announces the news of the nuptials, invitation enclosures reduce the need for guests to contact the couple to clarify logistical details. Examples of enclosures include reply cards for guests to respond to the invitation, At-home cards to convey the new address of the happy couple, and directions. Resist the temptation to include registry information. According to Martha Stewart Weddings, “It's impolite for you to start the conversation about gifts. Even if some guests find it convenient, others will think it seems greedy.”

Skill level:
Moderate

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Instructions

    Response Card

  1. 1

    Include a line for the guest to write her name on. The blank line traditionally begins with a printed letter “M” to encourage guests to address themselves formally by Mr., Mrs., Ms., or Miss.

  2. 2

    Below the name line, include two lines or boxes for the guest to check. One should indicate acceptance of the invitation, and one should indicate regretful decline. Choose the verbiage “Accept” and “Regret” or “Attending” and “Not Attending.”

    How to Word Enclosures for Wedding Invites
    Include a box or a line to check. (check icon image by Jocky from Fotolia.com)
  3. 3

    List the reply deadline. “The favour of your reply by is requested by July 26,” according to Peggy Post, is a formal example of pressing guests for a response. The British forms of words remains traditional for formal invitations.

    How to Word Enclosures for Wedding Invites
    List the date guests must reply by, (calendar with bow image by Photoeyes from Fotolia.com)
  4. 4

    Include the names of every person invited from the addressed household, including invited children, on the response card return envelope.

    Reception Card

  1. 1

    List the time of the reception. If the reception occurs later in the day, include the exact start time. Otherwise, "Reception immediately following the ceremony" suffices.

    How to Word Enclosures for Wedding Invites
    The reception card informs guests of the time and location. (wedding image by Mat Hayward from Fotolia.com)
  2. 2

    List the reception location and time on the wedding invitation if the invitation extends to the ceremony. "If more people are invited to the ceremony than to the reception," according to Grace Fox, author of Everyday Etiquette, "separate reception cards are inserted in the invitations for those who are invited to attend both." In this case, print the information on a separate enclosure.

  3. 3

    Include the address of the reception location.

  4. 4

    List the dress code if the bride and groom request white tie or formal attire. Accomplish this in one phrase on the last line of text. For example, use "White Tie" for an event requiring white dinner jackets and long gowns or "Black Tie" if guests should wear cocktail dresses and tuxedos or dark suits. Refrain from phrases such as "White Tie Invited," as it implies that underdressed guests may be turned away.

    How to Word Enclosures for Wedding Invites
    List the formality of attire on the reception card. (glamour gowns image by Gina Smith from Fotolia.com)

    Travel Information

  1. 1

    Include addresses and basic directions to the ceremony and reception on an enclosure. Guide guests to the ceremony and reception from the nearest highway. A small map that fits folded inside the invitation suffices, or give the directions in writing.

  2. 2

    List contact information for the hotel where the couple reserved a special rate.

    How to Word Enclosures for Wedding Invites
    Include the hotel phone number. (hotel image by RAMON CAMI from Fotolia.com)
  3. 3

    Inform guests of other activities. If the couple or wedding party plans additional dinners or outings for guests, list them on the enclosure along with a contact name.

    At-home card

  1. 1

    List the names of the bride and groom. Use the bride’s married name if she chooses to take the groom’s name in marriage, even if the wedding has not occurred at the time of the mailing.

    How to Word Enclosures for Wedding Invites
    Use the bride's married name. (bride image by Mat Hayward from Fotolia.com)
  2. 2

    Include the effective date, traditionally the date after the couple returns from their honeymoon. For example, “Mr. John Smith and Mrs. Sally Jones-Smith will be at home after February 22.”

  3. 3

    Follow the date with the address of their marital home. List each part of the address on separate lines, in the same format as an addressed envelope. The phone number or e-mail address may follow on additional lines.

    How to Word Enclosures for Wedding Invites
    An at-home card informs guests of the couple's residence. (house image by dinostock from Fotolia.com)

Tips and warnings

  • On the response card, do not ask the guest to fill in the number of guests. This entices them to invite their own guest or include household members who are not invited.
  • According to Martha Stewart weddings, inviting a guest to the ceremony, but not the reception, or vice verse, is poor etiquette. However, there are certain appropriate circumstances for the practice, such as an adults-only reception. Reception cards now serve the purpose of limiting clutter on the invitation.

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