In order for a wedding to happen you need guests, its a legal requirement to have at least two witnesses, but I’m going to assume for the purposes of this blog posts that you’re wanting to have more. You can’t have guests at your wedding if you don’t tell them when you’re getting married and that is exactly why invites are so important. It’s because they are so important that makes so many people stress about what to include on their invites, so in this post I am going to go over all the must haves on your wedding invitation, plus a couple other “nice to haves” if space allows.
Name of the couple
The first cab off the rank is the Name of the lovely couple getting married. It goes without saying but you have to tell people who is getting married. Your friends may be going to a few different weddings this year so make sure to make your invite unique by adding your names to the front.
Who is invited
This is more important than you may think as it will save a lot of drama later on. Be sure to address every single wedding invitation to exactly who you want to be there. If it is at all confusing then you may end up with people at your wedding who you didn’t plan on like Partners & Children. If you are giving people the option to bring a plus one, make that very clear and leave room for them to specify on the RSVP.
Date & Time
The date of the Wedding goes without saying but make sure you include clear timings as well. If you are having a 2pm Wedding Ceremony consider writing 1:30pm for a 2pm start. You may assume that people know the etiquette of turning up early to a wedding but this may be the first wedding for a lot of your guests. Also don’t be afraid to include Reception Start and Finish times if you have the space on your invite. This will allow guests to plan their way to and from the venue, or in work out what to do in between.
Just as important as the Time is the place. Where is your Wedding happening. If you have a separate location for your Wedding Reception be sure to include that as well so guests can find accommodation around that area. If your venue has multiple rooms or is outside in a large garden or field, make sure you include a specific location so guests don’t get lost, or worse, walk in on someone else’s ceremony.
This is often overlooked on Wedding Invitations but it is just as important as the last few. Leaving off a Dress Code will not only prompt hundreds of messages from your guests but it will also have them panicking about being under or overdressed. Make sure you are specific about your dress code and use examples if you think your guests will be confused. Trust me, as a guest, a specific dress code is much better than none at all.
This may be an old tradition but trust me it will not stop guests from asking the question about what gifts you would like. Its totally fine to not want gifts but just make sure you state that clearly on the invite. Alternatively, if you would like gifts to help you start your new life, it’s best practice to include a registry (or a link to one) on your invitation so you don’t get a lot of junk you don’t want or need. Perhaps you are going for a Wishing Well instead where guests can give you cards and money on your wedding night — this too must be explicitly stated otherwise guests will turn up with gifts and you won’t have a place to put them.
By this point your invitation is getting pretty crammed but I promise this is the last thing that you need to include. A way for people to tell you if they’re coming to your wedding. Whether your going old school with a prepaid envelope & RSVP card included in your Invitation or moving to the 21st century with an online form, an email address or just a text message response. This is super important for keeping track of who’s coming, who they are bringing with them and what dietary requirements they may have.
BONUS: A wedding Website
One big trend in recent years is having a Wedding Website to accompany your physical Wedding Invitations. These are great because not only do they allow people to RSVP online but they also give you so much more room for extra information about your big day. Some possible things to include could be:
Your Wedding Day Timeline
Stories about the Bride & Groom to be
Facts about the Wedding Party
Wedding Registry with Links
Dress Code Examples
Websites are also the perfect place to put updates and changes to your day if anything happens after your invites go out. This has become increasingly common over the last few years with Covid forced isolation and Severe Weather causing a lot of Wedding Day plans to change.
As you can see Wedding Invitations are pretty complex but if you include all of these details mentioned above you are sure to leave everyone feeling certain about your Wedding Day. If you are interested in hearing more about the ‘ins and outs’ of Wedding Invitations, I recently spoke all about it on Episode 6 of the To Be Wed Podcast which you can listen to down below.