Wedding Invitations: The Right Wording

Posted by csancho on Jan 23, 2013

More couples fret over the wording of their invitations than they do over any other detail of their day. Wedding advice columns and message boards are always overflowing with headlines like: “How should I word invitations if I have divorced parents?” or “How should invitations for vow renewals look?” The honest answer is that not much changes in each of these invitation scenarios. Guests expect invitations to look a certain way, and subtle changes in wording will keep the look and feel of traditional invites while cluing guests in to the specifics of your day. Take the following invite wording, which we’ve come to know and love from decades of cream-colored envelopes and pretty satin ribbons:


Mr. John Doe and Mrs. Jane Doe

Request the honor of your presence
at the ceremony uniting their daughter

Ms. Jenny Doe


Mr. Jonathan Soe

In the bonds of holy matrimony

On Saturday the Fourteenth of September
Two Thousand and Thirteen
At Two O’ Clock in the Afternoon

Reception to Follow


Here are the changes you might want to make if:

The hosting of your wedding is iffy

Weddings used to be fully-funded by the family of the bride. There are many reasons why this isn’t the case any more, but the biggest is that couples want to make their own way in the world and are hosting the shebang themselves. No one is giving anyone away anymore, and the hosting of the wedding isn’t set in stone. If you still choose to word your invites so that the hosting situation is clear, that’s completely fine. If not, think about changing:

Mr. John Doe and Mrs. Jane Doe

Request the honor of your Presence


Together with their families

Ms. Jenny Doe


Mr. Jonathan Soe

Request the honor of your presence…


Your wedding is actually a vow renewal

Vow renewals, like weddings, happen when they do for a variety of reasons. You have every right to a fun day of celebrating your unity with your family, but you have to keep in mind that a vow renewal isn’t a wedding. Whether you put off the party for financial, religious or other reasons, if you said vows and signed the paperwork already, you’re married. The invitation wording should reflect that. Also, if you’ve changed your name since you were officially married, note your new name on your invitations as well. Think about changing:


At the ceremony uniting

Ms. Jenny Doe


Mr. Jonathan Soe

In the bonds of holy matrimony




At the vow renewal ceremony of

Mrs. Jenny Soe


Mr. Jonathan Soe


Stay tuned: More suggestions for the tricky territory of invitation wording are coming soon!

Engaged: A Gift of Another at Christmas

Posted by mmaxfield on Dec 24, 2012

All those new family-to-be members waiting in the wings of Christmas Eve to welcome you into the family, at last! Hark! What better symbol of family heirlooms and traditions, than a chorus of Steinbach's German nutcrackers! Photo: Marjorie Maxfield


A Christmas engagement!

Is it not one of the most romantic times of the year? A time of gifting. And, a time to pause, (gasp, not in the middle aisle of Bloomingdale’s in NYC, Apple Store in Houston’s Galleria, or  the cosmetic counter at Neiman Marcus, LA) and reflect on “just what does my engagement mean?”

If you suspect a ringing in the near future or, after the 1st; read on.

To be engaged is to receive a gift of another, and, likewise, be that gift to another.

Nothing tops this! All eyes will be on your ring; however, you know that a gift of another is the most magnificent gift that you will receive and give this, or any other Yule!

With this ring, more Christmas gifts abound– a new family! New traditions, new names and faces, along with all those family stories that need to be remembered and retold. They, the in-laws, sisters, brothers, children, aunts, uncles, cousins to the third  line of relatives, are, too, a gift! All to shine brightly on your tree of life!

Perhaps, a word or two of a practical matter!

What to do first after the blush of yes has faded and needs to be enhanced with a sweep of Chanel Joules Contraste pink powder. Make a list, and check it twice. Here’s mine, a national wedding etiquette expert:

Formal vs. Informal Invitations

Posted by Caitlin on Oct 31, 2012

Invitations (from top to bottom): Minted and Jessica Lam 

Wedding invitations can be worded both, formally and informally, and should clearly state the location of the wedding, time and date. However, invitations should also show who is hosting the wedding. Don’t know the difference between a formal vs. an informal invitation?  Well, a formal invitation is used for large weddings and honors the bride’s parents by including, “Mr. and Mrs.” at the top whereas informal invitations are used for smaller, more intimate weddings and do not honor the bride’s parents. Instead, informal invitations include, “Together with their families.” Which invitation do you prefer? Let us know in the poll below. 

Which type of invitation did/will you use for your wedding?

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Guest Post by: Sandy MaloneWeddings in Vieques

Invitation Designer: The Pink Orange 

Every bride ends up doing an  “A” list,” a “B” list and sometimes even a “C” list when they find themselves budget-challenged with their wedding invitation list the size of Rhode Island.  To be fair, it can be a very good way to narrow down the number of folks you’re going to have to feed and water – but you can’t get caught!  For a destination wedding, this is even trickier than navigating the same problem in your hometown.

Backing up a little, let me tell you about my own wedding guest list.  My fiancé proposed on Dec. 20, 2003, and on Dec. 22, my mother emailed me a near-completed Excel spreadsheet with 150 “must-invite” guests, who were either relatives (regardless of how distant) or close friends of the family, who had invited my parents (and sometimes me) to all of their own children’s weddings. So, it was time for reciprocity.

However, nowadays most parents aren’t picking up the bulk of the wedding tab, and as a result, many engaged couples no longer consider their parents on the “A” list. Time for compromise.

If the bride and groom can afford a maximum of 50 guests at their wedding, odds are they don’t want to invite a bunch of people they haven’t seen in ten years. So, what’s a bride or groom to do?  Here are 10 steps to help cut the guest list without losing friends:

1)    Make your own list of “must-invites” before you and your fiancé do ANYTHING ELSE.  The size of that list will indicate how many slots you can give to each set of parents to invite.  Occasionally, the reality of the numbers set in and parents, who are able to contribute more, will so that they can invite their own friends.

2)    If you’re getting married in your hometown, you can have two lists more easily than for a destination wedding – although you still have to be careful.  You must remember that in order to do staggered invites, you must have guests broken up into categories.  Focus on the personal list first.  For example, you cannot invite your first cousin and her husband, but ignore her parents and your other 13 first cousins (unless, of course, you are hoping for long-term family drama that will bite you in the butt at every future holiday for the duration of your marriage).  If you don’t have room on the list for the cousins, you can’t invite them.

3)    Same rules with work colleagues.  Set a limit for each of you (of course, this can be different based on your careers – if the bride works for a huge corporation, but the groom runs his own small real estate office with only four employees – for obvious reasons, that may decide his list is more critical) and stick to it.  Don’t let the nosy 20-something girls from your office make you feel guilty that they haven’t been invited.  When they get married, they’ll understand.

4)    Manage guest list expectations with your parents from day one.  Make your own “must-invite” list, compare notes and talk with your parents so that you can demonstrate that you’ve cut your own list and are in complete agreement with each other.

5)    Before you start inviting anybody, you can do some elimination on the front end of the list by simply talking to your closest friends to find out if they can come.  Work commitments, tiny babies or those, who are working on getting pregnant, will probably be able to give you an honest heads up allowing you to shave some numbers from the very beginning.  Already married friends are the most honest and understanding.

Wedding Invitations Done!

Posted by apple on Aug 06, 2012

Phew, one more thing to cross off the ever growing wedding checklist – the invitations!  If you guys haven’t checked out Wedding Paper Divas yet, you should!  They have a fabulous selection and they’re prices are super reasonable.  Here’s a few rough drafts of our wedding suite, what do you think?  I especially love the back of the invitation itself.