ProBride: Save The Date and Wedding Invitation Etiquette
You’ve probably received several adorable save the date notices, as well as wedding invitations from your friends. But, what is proper etiquette, and when should they be sent out??
As a bride:
The designing aspect of both these pieces of stationary wasn’t the tough part for me. It was the actual act of sending them out that was the most difficult. As a bride, I knew I had to get them out, and as a planner I kept pushing them aside and putting my clients’ weddings first. My save the dates were sent out in late July and I have hopes to be sending out my invites in early November – both of which are late according to the rules.
As a planner:
The common rules are that you send a save the date out 6-9 months before the wedding and the invite will go out 6-8 weeks before the RSVP date, and even earlier to those who are out of town- 10-12 weeks in advance. Please notice that I say the RSVP date and not the wedding date. A RSVP date is a date that is chosen about two or three weeks before the wedding date. For instance, my wedding date is Wednesday, 12/31. My RSVP date is Wednesday, 12/10. This then leaves a lot of room for those late RSVPs to arrive, hopefully, in time for your final guest count that is due to the venue one week before the wedding date. Your RSVP date can also reflect the date that your hotel block is released. This way guests know that they have to send their RSVP, as well as, reserve their room at the same time.
Here are just a few other notes on save the dates and invites:
- Save the dates are optional and don’t have to be sent to everyone. Your closest family members and bridal party members should know about the date already. However, if you do a photo save the date, some close relatives may have mixed feelings if they don’t receive the cute picture in the mail.
- Save the dates are simple and include a heading, names, date, city/state of wedding, and a short statement saying “formal invite to follow”.
- All stationary, including menus, programs, etc. should be about 4-5% of your wedding budget.
- Don’t forget that the more layers you add, ribbon you wrap, and rhinestones you stick will all add up to a higher cost stamp at the post office.
- The designs are endless with stationary. Have fun with it! However, it is the guests’ first impression of your wedding so make sure it’s a good one!
- Finally, have the stationary reflect your wedding theme and personality.
Farrah is a Certified Professional Wedding and Event Planner (CPWEP).
Her company Simply Azure Events helps brides create stress free breath taking weddings.