Wedding Invitation Etiquette

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Wedding invitations are essentially one of the most important items used in your entire wedding process. Invitations provide important information about your event. Traditionally, invitations follow a proper form of etiquette. Here are some rules to help answer your common questions:

What Name goes first on the invitation, Save the Date, Etc.?

Traditionally the Bride’s name is placed first on the invitation because historically the bride’s parents paid for the wedding. Unless you have a preference, either partner’s name can be written first.

Do I need to put my parents’ names on the invitation?

This, again, follows the tradition of the bride’s parents paying for the wedding. If your parents are helping to contribute to your wedding expenses, it is a nice tribute to include their names on the invite. If they have specific professional titles they should be included.

What should my RSVP deadline be?

Your RSVP deadline should be 3 weeks – 1 month before you wedding date. This gives you time to reach out to those who haven’t responded, in order to get your final headcount to your vendors. Typical vendor deadlines are about 2 weeks before your wedding date.

Our wedding is adults-only. How can I ensure the guests understand this?

The best way to ensure that your message is clear to your adults is to address your invitations directly. Be sure your invitations include the name of each guest, ex. “Robert and Cameron Smith” not “The Smith Household.” It also helps to include the number of seats reserved for that party on your RSVP response cards, ex.” __ of seats reserved for you.” Also, include this information on your wedding website or detail card. Make sure to communicate this information early so they have time to make arrangements with a babysitter.

What is the typical timeline for sending save the dates and invitations?

Save the Dates are normally sent out 6-8 months before your wedding date. Invitations are typically sent out 6-8 weeks before your date. If you are having a destination wedding, send your invitations out at least 3 months beforehand.


  • Address both your invitation envelopes and response card envelopes.
  • Include the link to your wedding website on your save the dates.
  • Anyone who attends the ceremony, bridal shower, and engagement party should be invited to your reception.

I hope this answers some of your questions!

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