The Mega Guide to Wedding Invitation Wording

The Mega Guide to Wedding Invitation Wording
The Mega Guide to Wedding Invitation Wording

It's no secret that coming up with the proper wedding invitation wording, erring on the side of traditional etiquette, but still infusing your personality, can cause a headache for even the most laid-back couple.

While these rules are certainly not set in stone,this provides you with a strong backbone for beginning your wedding invitations. If you're in doubt about your wording at all, just ask your stationer, they will likely have the answers for even the toughest wording etiquette questions!

So get cozy - you'll want to grab a cup of coffee and a comfy chair - this is going to be a long one!

General Etiquette Tips for Wedding Invitation Wording:

  1. The hosts of the event should be named on your invitations.
  2. If there are two sets of hosts, or the bride's parents are divorced, each host should be on its own line.
  3. Do not include registry information on any portion of your invitation suite.
  4. If you are having a formal wedding, dates and times should be spelled out. For informal events, this is not always necessary.
  5. Punctuation at the end of a line is unnecessary if the next phrase of text is on it's own line.
  6. "The honor of your presence...." should only be used if your ceremony takes place in a church or house of worship.
  7. The bride's last name is not necessary to include if her parents are listed on the invitation, and she has the same last name as her parents.
  8. The state in the location should be spelled out. A zip code and address are not necessary.
  9. It is not necessary to include a dress code.
  10. When in doubt, stick with traditional wording.

And now for the mega list of invitation wording:

Formal Wedding, Bride's Married Parents Hosting (Ceremony in a church)

Mr. and Mrs. John Smith request the honor of your presence at the marriage of their daughter Mary Jane to Mr. Matthew Ryan Taylor Saturday, the fifth of December two thousand fifteen at five o'clock St. John's Catholic Church Richmond, Virginia

Formal Wedding, Bride's Married Parents Hosting (Ceremony not in a church)

Mr. and Mrs. John Smith request the pleasure of your company at the marriage of their daughter Mary Jane to Mr. Matthew Ryan Taylor Saturday, the fifth of December two thousand fifteen at five o'clock Tuckahoe Plantation Goochland, Virginia

Formal Wedding, Bride's Divorced Parents Hosting (Ceremony in a church)

Mr. John Smith and Ms. Melinda Davis request the honor of your presence at the marriage of their daughter Mary Jane Smith to Mr. Matthew Ryan Taylor Saturday, the fifth of December two thousand fifteen at five o'clock St. John's Catholic Church Richmond, Virginia

Formal Wedding, Bride's Divorced Parents Hosting (Ceremony not in a church)

Mr. John Smith and Ms. Melinda Davis request the pleasure of your company at the marriage of their daughter Mary Jane to Mr. Matthew Ryan Taylor Saturday, the fifth of December two thousand fifteen at five o'clock Tuckahoe Plantation Goochland, Virginia

Formal Wedding, Bride's Divorced & Remarried Parents Hosting (Ceremony not in a church)

Mr. and Mrs. John Smith request the pleasure of your company at the marriage of their daughter Mary Jane to Mr. Matthew Ryan Taylor Saturday, the fifth of December two thousand fifteen at five o'clock Tuckahoe Plantation Goochland, Virginia

Formal Wedding, Bride & Groom's Married Parents Hosting (Ceremony in a church)

Mr. and Mrs. John Smith and Mr. and Mrs. Michael Taylor request the honor of your presence at the marriage of their children Mary Jane to Matthew Ryan Saturday, the fifth of December two thousand fifteen at five o'clock St. John's Catholic Church Richmond, Virginia

Formal Wedding, Bride & Groom's Married Parents Hosting (Ceremony not in a church)

Mr. and Mrs. John Smith and Mr. and Mrs. Michael Taylor request the pleasure of your company at the marriage of their children Mary Jane to Matthew Ryan Saturday, the fifth of December two thousand fifteen at five o'clock Tuckahoe Plantation Goochland, Virginia

Formal Wedding, Bride's Parents Hosting, Groom's Parents Recognized (Ceremony in a church)

Mr. and Mrs. John Smith request the honor of your presence at the marriage of their daughter Mary Jane to Mr. Matthew Ryan Taylor son of Mr. and Mrs. Michael Taylor Saturday, the fifth of December two thousand fifteen at five o'clock St. John's Catholic Church Goochland, Virginia

Formal Wedding, Bride's Parents Hosting, Groom's Parents Recognized (Ceremony not in a church)

Mr. and Mrs. John Smith request the pleasure of your company at the marriage of their daughter Mary Jane to Mr. Matthew Ryan Taylor son of Mr. and Mrs. Michael Taylor Saturday, the fifth of December two thousand fifteen at five o'clock Lewis Ginter Botanical Gardens Richmond, Virginia

Formal Wedding, Groom's Parents Hosting (Ceremony in a church)

Mr. and Mrs. Taylor request the honor of your presence at the marriage of Mary Jane Smith to Matthew Ryan Taylor Saturday, the fifth of December two thousand fifteen at five o'clock Central Baptist Church Midlothian, Virginia

Formal Wedding, Groom's Parents Hosting (Ceremony not in a church)

Mr. and Mrs. Taylor request the pleasure of your company at the marriage of Mary Jane Smith to Matthew Ryan Taylor Saturday, the fifth of December two thousand fifteen at five o'clock Lewis Ginter Botanical Gardens Richmond, Virginia

Formal Wedding, Families of the Bride and Groom Hosting Along with Bride and Groom (Ceremony in a church)

Together with their families Mary Jane Smith and Matthew Ryan Taylor request the honor of your presence at their marriage Saturday, the fifth of December two thousand fifteen at five o'clock Central Baptist Church Midlothian, Virginia

Formal Wedding, Families of the Bride and Groom Hosting Along with Bride and Groom (Ceremony not in a church)

Together with their families Mary Jane Smith and Matthew Ryan Taylor request the pleasure of your company at their marriage Saturday, the fifth of December two thousand fifteen at five o'clock Lewis Ginter Botanical Gardens Richmond, Virginia

Formal Wedding, Bride and Groom Hosting (Ceremony in a church)

Mary Jane Smith and Matthew Ryan Taylor request the honor of your presence at their marriage Saturday, the fifth of December two thousand fifteen at five o'clock Central Baptist Church Richmond, Virginia

Formal Wedding, Bride and Groom Hosting (Ceremony not in a church)

Mary Jane Smith and Matthew Ryan Taylor request the pleasure of your company at their marriage Saturday, the fifth of December two thousand fifteen at five o'clock Lewis Ginter Botanical Gardens Richmond, Virginia

Contemporary Wording Suggestions (use etiquette rules applied above and...)

Mary Jane Smith and Matthew Ryan Taylor invite you to celebrate their marriage Saturday, the fifth of December two thousand fifteen at five o'clock Lewis Ginter Botanical Gardens Richmond, Virginia

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Mary Jane Smith and Matthew Ryan Taylor invite you to sail away with us as we join hands in marriage along the sea Saturday, the sixth of June two thousand fifteen at five o'clock Milepost 5 Myrtle Beach, South Carolina

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Mary Jane Smith and Matthew Ryan Taylor are tying the knot! Please join  them at a seaside ceremony Saturday, the sixth of June two thousand fifteen at five o'clock Milepost 5 Myrtle Beach, South Carolina

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[Insert a favorite quote here] Mary Jane Smith and Matthew Ryan Taylor invite you to join them at their wedding celebration Saturday, the sixth of June two thousand fifteen at five o'clock Milepost 5 Myrtle Beach, South Carolina

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Mary Jane Smith and Matthew Ryan Taylor invite you to a weekend of love and laughter as they join hands in marriage Saturday, the sixth of June two thousand fifteen at five o'clock Milepost 5 Myrtle Beach, South Carolina

RSVP Card Due Date Wording Recommendations:

  • The favor of your reply is requested by (date)
  • Kindly reply by (date)
  • The favor of your response is requested by (date)
  • Please say you'll join us by (date)

RSVP Card Yes/No Wording Recommendations:

  • Graciously accepts/Regretfully declines
  • Accepts with pleasure/Declines with regret
  • Can't wait to celebrate!/Will be there in spirit.
  • Will be there/Will toast from afar
  • Can't wait!/Can't make it.

RSVP Card Tips:

  • You may include a line such as, "We have reserved ____ seats in your honor".
  • Include meal options if your caterer needs these ahead of time. You may do this in the form of illustrations of words - things like, chicken, beef, and vegetarian are acceptable.
  • If you're not having a traditional event and are worried your guests will not know what the "M______________" is for, you may instead use, "Name(s)____________".
  • You may include a section for guests to request a song, write a piece of advice, or share a special memory with you.

Additional Enclosure Cards to Consider:

  • Directions cards/maps
  • Accommodations
  • Weekend activities
  • Website link and resources

Whew! Got questions? I've got answers! Did I miss something here? Still unsure about your specific situation? Leave questions in the comments and I'll be happy to answer them for you!

Photography: Ivona Dixon