In the last article we’ve talked about the things you should know about writing a Chinese wedding invitation.
But compared to the Chinese one…
…more to-be-weds would like to choose the western one, especially young couples.
It’s mainly because the western wedding invitation has varied style, not just with red…gold…or purple…
But Vintage… Watercolour… Modern… Whatever you like!
Also, the rules of western wedding invitation are much simpler and straightforward than the Chinese one.
Although you can personalize your wedding invitation, there are still basic elements that should be included no matter what.
The invitation is representing you to give your guest all the must-know-information,
To help guide you, INES WEDDINGS is going to share 8 essentials to write a wedding invitation with you.
1.Format of the Invitation
Before you start wording, have a look on what elements should be included on the invitation.
Don’t miss any of it, and place them in order (from the Top to the Bottom).
A. Monogram: a traditional western wedding pattern.
B. Host Name: who send the invitation?
C. Wedding Activity: you can use the word: Wedding Ceremony, Wedding Banquet, Marriage, etc.
D. The Bride & Groom: Bride’s name always precedes the groom’s name.
E. Time & Date: Day>Date>Time
F. Venue of your wedding: name & address of the venue
G. Post-wedding Activity: if there’s any party after your registration ceremony
H. Others: RSVP, dresscode
Now we will talk about the key elements in details! Don’t miss it!
2. Wedding Monogram
The joint monogram usually combining the bride’s and the groom’s initials, placed on the top of the invitation.
But whose initials go first? And which letter goes in the middle?
Let’s figure it out now!
There’s are usually 3 options for you to create the monogram:
Option 1: If you are taking your groom’s last name.
The monogram consists of your first initial, your groom’s last initial, then his first initial, placed in a line from left to right.
The middle letter is larger than those on the sides.
Or, you can choose for a single initial—the first letter of his last name.
Option 2: If you’ve decided to keep your last name
Feature your first and last initials, followed by your groom’s first and last initials to crate a four-letter monogram.
The middle two letters would be larger than the two on the sides.
Option 3: A simple one
Use the bride’s first initial, followed by an “&”, and the groom’s first initial.
3. Cover of the invitation (the guests’ title)
It will be embarrassed or even rude if you make a mistake on your guests’ title…
So let’s get clear on it:
A. Married Couple
It is proper to use “Mr. and Mrs. (the husband’s first name)”.
B. Single Female
It’s proper to use “Ms XXX” if she is over age 16, while “Miss XXX” is acceptable if she is younger.
C. Unmarried Couple Living Together
In this case, address the male first, followed by the female: Mr. XXX and Ms. XXX.
However, in tradition, the word “and” was used to represent a marriage.
Although this rule is no longer applies, some of you may still want to write it in traditional way, here it is:
First line: Ms. XXX
Second line: Mr. XXX
D. Divorced Female Who Kept Her Married Name
After a divorce, a woman might keep her married name and you can use Mrs. or Ms. to address the guest and use her first name.
E. Divorced Female Who Uses Her Maiden Name
Woman often stops using her husband’s last name after a divorce, so it is proper to use Ms. or Mrs.
F. Same Sex Couple
You can address either guest first or put them in alphabetical order:
Mr./Mrs. XXX and Mr./Mrs. XXX
A widow usually keeps her husband’s name until she is remarried.
However, some of them may prefer to use their own first name so it’s better to ask for her preference.
Mrs. (husband’s/guest’s name)
H. Both the married couple are Doctor/ The wife is Doctor
If both guests are doctors, but the female guest has chosen to keep her last name, it’s prefer to address her first and then her husband.
e.g. Doctor XXX(Female) and Doctor XXX(Male)
If the wife is a doctor but her husband is not, write it in this way: Doctor XXX(female) and Mr. XXX(male).
NOTE: Do Not make it an abbreviation “Dr.”.
4. The Host Line
“Together with their parents, (Bride’s name) and (Groom’s name) request the pleasure of your company…”
However, in the following cases you need to rearrange the wording a bit to make it appropriate.
A. Any parents are deceased and you want to include the name of them
Here is the example:
“Whitney French, daughter of Mr. Elisa French and the late Ivan French,
Swain Mahoney, son of Mr. Andy and Olivia Mahoney, request the honor of your presence at their wedding…”
B. Any parents are divorced and/or remarried
If the bride or groom’s parents are divorced and you want to include them both as the hosts, just put them on a separate line.
And if you want to include the name of stepparent, keep in on the same line.
Here is the example of a bride with divorced and remarried parents’ wedding invitation wording:
“Dr. Avis and Elisa Gregory
and Mr. Jefferson Abner and Josephine Abner
and Mr. Ringo and Clara Hyland
invite you to the wedding of their children
Winnie Abner and Alex Hyland…”
5. The Request Line
There are usually 3 ways to ask for the pleasure of your guests’ company.
A. If you and your spouse are religious (Christian/Catholic)
It is essential to write it in traditional way if you are religious.
i. Must use “request the honour of your presence…” as the request line
ii. Writing in third person, use “They/Their” instead of “We/Our”.
B. If you and your spouse are non-religious-Formal Version
i. Use “request the pleasure of your company“ as the request line.
ii. Writing in third person.
C. If you and your spouse are non-religious-Formal Version
i. No specific word, as long as it is smooth. e.g.. “would love for you to join…”
ii. It’s acceptable to write in either first/third person.
NOTE: if you and your spouse are non-religious but your wedding will be held in a worship place, you have to write the invitation in formal way.
6. Date and Time
- Use “In the morning/ afternoon/ evening” instead of “a.m./ p.m.”
- Time of day is spelled out using “o’clock” or “half after X o’clock”e.g. “Sunday, the twenty-third of March, Two thousand and sixteen at half-past three o’clock in the afternoon.”
For informal invitation, you can write in a casual way:
- Can use numerals
- The use of a.m. and p.m. is optionale.g. “Sunday, 23th March, 2016, 3:30 p.m.”
NOTE: if you and your spouse are religious or your wedding will be held in a worship place, you have to write the invitation in formal way.
7. Reception Information
If the ceremony and reception are held in the same location, you may print
“Reception immediately following” / “Reception to follow” / “Banquet to follow” right under the location.
If the reception is elsewhere, the location and time goes on a different line.
Usually you can print the reception information on the wedding invitation…
But if you are going to make it a very formal invitation, you have to include this information on a separate card.
8. Other Information—RSVP & Dress Code
There are usually 2 options of having people respond to your invitation:
Option 1 is to include a separate response card for guests to fill out and return in the mail.
Option 2 is to have people RSVP via email.
Most couples in Hong Kong chooses the Option 2, in this case…
Just remember to include the following sentence in the end of the invitation
“Please RSVP by e-mail to email@example.com”
If there’s any dress code for your wedding, include on the invitation to tell the guests—
At the lower right hand corner OR middle of the bottom. （After the RSVP line)
Double Check, Make it Perfect, Make it Beautiful
Make it perfect, make it beautiful.
Do you want to receive a wedding invitation with your name spelled wrong?
I bet you don’t.
double check after your final wording,
Did you included all the must-know-information on it? Are the titles of the guests appropriate? Is there any spelling mistakes? …etc.
Just make sure there’s ZERO mistakes.
As once the invite goes out, whatever is in it, is set.