Wedding Invitation Etiquette
Preparation:
A well organized guest list is essential. There are several wedding programs and websites Atlanta Bridal,
TheKnot.com
.....available that help you plan your entire wedding & allow you to build a guest list. Handwritten
lists are fine as long as they are legible. Your guest list should include the guests name as you wish them to
appear on the invitation. Remember to include instructions for the inner envelope.
Everything will be written out in full...space permitting but you can abbreviate on your list.
Below are most answers to questions for invitation addressing etiquette. Here are 2 additional links
for reference.
Crane's (Oldest Paper Co. in America) & Emily Post.

~See an example of a guest list formatted in a
Word Document or Excel Document~

Mr. and Mrs. William John Smith
123 Nowhere Road
Anytown, USA 12345

Mr. and Mrs. Smith
(Informal Inner Only: Uncle Bill and Aunt Sue)

Ms. Jane Doe
123 Nowhere Street
Apartment 1608
Anytown, USA 12345

Ms. Doe
(and Guest -or- Mr. Boyfriend's name)
(Informal Inner: Jane -or- Jane and Guest -or- Jane and Boyfriend's name)

General Rules:
Married Couples
Woman keeps her maiden name
*(outer - Mrs. Jane Doe and Mr. John Smith / inner - Mr. Smith and Mrs. Doe)
*Be sure to note this as the word "and" will be used to show them as a couple
Woman hyphenates her name
*(outer - Mrs. Jane Doe-Smith and Mr. John Smith / inner - Mr. and Mrs. Smith)
Woman is a Doctor, Judge, Clergy...
(outer - Doctor Jane Doe and Mr. John Smith / inner - Mr. and Mrs. Smith)
Both Husband and Wife are Doctors
(outer - Doctors John and Jane Smith / inner - Doctors Smith)

Family with Children
(Outer Envelope)
Mr. and Mrs. John Smith
(Inner Envelope)
Mr. and Mrs Smith
*Christine and Christopher
(Informal: John, Jane, Christine and Christopher -or- John, Jane and Family)
*Small Children are listed in order by age on Inner Envelope Only.

Family with Teen or Adult Children
(Outer Envelope)
Mr. and Mrs. John Smith
*Miss Christine Smith
Mr.Christopher Smith
(Inner Envelope)
Mr. and Mrs. Smith
Miss Smith and Guest (optional)
Mr. Smith and Guest (optional)

*Wedding etiquette states that children over 18 years should receive their own invitation.
Adult children not living at home should also receive their own invitation.

Unmarried Couples Living Together
Female should be listed first.

Dating or Engaged Couples
List invitee first and their guest second,
if known equally list the female first.

Same Sex Couples
List best known person first. They should be listed on separate lines but the word "and"
should be included before second persons name is listed to show them as a couple.

Singles
Woman under 18: Miss Jane Doe
Woman Over 18: Ms. Jane Doe
Widowed Woman: Mrs. John Smith
Divorced and keeps married name: Mrs. Jane Smith
Divorced but returns to maiden name: Ms. Jane Doe


Foreign Countries
Most foreign countries follow a different addressing formats.
Please be sure your list has the accepted format.

Assembling
1. Invitation, 2. Tissue (optional), 3. Reception Card, 4. Response Envelope (Don't forget the postage), 5.
Response card, slipped face up beneath the flap of the response envelope, 6. Place 1-5 inside inner envelope,
7. Place inner envelope inside outer envelope, the front of inner envelope should face the back of outer
envelope.
Click here to see an Assembling Diagram.

Mailing
Wedding invitations should be mailed 6-8 weeks before the wedding. For Summer and Holiday weddings, you
should mail your invitations 8 weeks before the wedding since people are more likely traveling at those times.
This also gives your guests ample time to make travel arrangements and accommodations.
JUST FOR FUN!

Postage
Your invitations size, number of enclosures and even humidity affect the postage.
To determine the correct postage, you should take a completed invitation to the
Post Office you will be mailing from and have it weighed. Standard invitations require a .70 stamp.
Do not forget to buy .49 stamps for your response card envelopes.
Ask to see their beautiful or commemorative stamp choices.
Some Post Offices may offer hand stamping, be sure to ask!!!
See actual example of machine stamped envelope.