Mr. and Mrs. Bob Simpson, Cathy and John
Mr. and Mrs. Bob Simpson and Family
* If the children are older teenagers (say 16 years of age or older), you may wish to send them an individual invitation, just like you would an adult.
* If you don't wish to include children at the ceremony, do not include their names or "and family" on the outside of the envelope. It's suggested you add "Sorry, but children are not invited", "adults only" or something similar somewhere on the invitation to make it clear. If you wish to include them at the reception, but not at the ceremony, you could note this information on the response card...or on the invitation itself at the bottom in some fashion.
* When issuing invitations to a guest who is single, it is polite to put "and Guest" on the outside of the envelope so that they have the option to bring along a companion. For example:
Mr. Ralph Jones and Guest
Miss Sarah Campbell and Guest
* Be forewarned. Usually 7% to 10% of the guests who respond with a yes will not actually attend the wedding. In addition, 20% to 30% won't make it to the reception. This can wreak havoc when budgeting for a sit down dinner. You may want to consider a buffet style dinner instead.
* In some cases, you'll want to invite people to the ceremony, but not the reception or vice versa. If so, then you will need two sets of invitations printed. One that includes reception information and one that doesn't.
* If you don't receive a reply from some guests by your reply date, do not hesitate to call them. It is important that you know how many are attending so you budget accordingly.
* If you decide to order invitations, be sure to do so at least 4 to 6 weeks before they are scheduled to be mailed. If you plan on mailing your invitations around the 15th of March, order them between February 1st and 15th.
* Double, even triple check everything before it gets printed. This includes invitations, response cards, envelopes, wedding programs, etc. whether you're doing them yourself or your having them professionally printed. Check for spelling errors especially.
* You should mail your invitations at least 6 weeks before the wedding date and indicate that you would like a response at least 3 weeks before the wedding date. So if your wedding date is July 1st, mail your invitations by May 15th and ask that they respond by June 7th. This will give guests time to receive their invitations and reply by mail, which in turn, gives you time to firm up catering plans, seating arrangements, etc.
* If your wedding is going to actually be held on a beach or other outdoor area, be sure that you let your guests know this, so they can dress appropriately.