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How to word your wedding invitations | Invitation Wording and Etiquette

Wedding PlanningMadeline KellyComment

Figuring out the wording for your wedding invitations can feel like a puzzle at times. Whose name goes where? Are guests going to know where to go? I've created the following list to help simplify the invitation wording process!

Ultimately, it is up to you to decide on the final wording and I recommend talking to your invitation designer for their advice as well. If you'd like to read more about how we can help with your wedding invitations, click here.

 

Here are my tips for how to word wedding invitations:

1. Who is hosting the wedding? (i.e. paying for the event) This is how you determine how to word the beginning of the wedding invitation

  • Invitation wording if bride's parents are hosting:

Mr. and Mrs. Travis Smith

  • Invitation wording if both sets of parents are hosting: 

Mr. and Mrs. Travis Smith and Mr. and Mrs. Steve Anderson

  • Invitation wording if the couple is hosting:

Linnea Anne Smith and Jordan Steve Anderson

  • Invitation wording if the couple and their parents are hosting:

Together with their Parents Linnea Anne Smith and Jordan Steve Anderson

  • Invitation wording if the host is widowed:

    • If the parent is not remarried: 
      • Mrs. Deana Smith and the late Mr. Travis Smith
    • If the parent is remarried:
      • Mr. and Mrs. Jacob Jones (new wedded name)
      • You can mention your father or mother after you and your fiance's names are written on the wedding invitation like this: "daughter of the late Mr. Travis Smith/Mrs. Deana Smith")

 

  • Invitation wording if parents are divorced:

    • Put names on separate lines. An "and" between names signifies that they are married
    • Usually, parents are only listed on wedding invitations but you can include step-parents if you want to honor them in that way or have a close relationship with them
    • The mother is always listed first, even if remarried. Use Ms. if single, Mrs. if remarried
    • The following are examples, case by case:

 

  • Divorced with neither parent remarried, invitation wording:

Ms. Deana Smith

Mr. Travis Smith

  • Divorced, remarried invitation wording, not including step-parents:

Mrs. Jacob Jones (Mother, new married name)

Mr. Travis Smith (Father)

*make sure to include the bride's last name in invitation

  • Divorced, remarried invitation wording, including step-parents:

Mr. and Mrs. Jacob Jones (Mother and Step-Father)

Mr. and Mrs. Travis Smith (Father and Step-Mother)

*make sure to include the bride's last name in invitation

 

Photo by Niki Rhodes

Photo by Niki Rhodes

 

2. Where are you getting married? This is how you determine how to word the location portion of the wedding invitation. 

  • In a place of worship

request the honor of your company

  • In any other place

request the pleasure of your company

*the text that follows this line depends on the wording of who is hosting the wedding.

  • If it is the bride's parents:
    • at the marriage of their daughter
  • If it is the couple:
    • at the celebration of their marriage

 

3. When are you getting married? This is how you determine how to word the date and time portion of the wedding invitation. 

  • The date and time of the wedding are typically written out on wedding invitations. Obviously, if you are having your wedding invitations custom designed, it is up to you to choose how you will ultimately word your wedding invites.
  • Here are some examples of how to write the date and time of your wedding invitation:

Saturday the twenty-seventh of June, two thousand seventeen at three o'clock

Saturday the thirtieth of August, two thousand eighteen at half after two o'clock

 

Example of How to Word Wedding Invitations

 

More tips on wedding time wording for your invitations:

  • You do not need to write out "in the afternoon" or "in the evening" unless the wedding is between 9:00 and 11:00.

  • Only capitalize proper nouns, places, and new thoughts, such as "Dinner and dancing to follow" 

  • It is proper to write "half after" rather than "half past" when wording your wedding invitation.

 

4. Where are you getting married? This is how you determine how to word the location portion of the wedding invitation. 

  • Some choose to include only the city where the wedding is being held (then including the address on an insert card).

Lake Oswego

  • Others include the name of the wedding venue and city

The Foundry

Lake Oswego, Oregon

  • Lastly, some include the name of the wedding venue, street address, and city

The Foundry

320 Oswego Pointe Drive

Lake Oswego, Oregon

More tips on wedding location wording for your invitations:

  • Zip codes are typically not included
  • Always spell out the name of the state in which you are hosting your wedding

5. How to word what guests can expect after the wedding ceremony

  • Capitalize the first word of the phrase and don't use any punctuation
  • Include events for guests to expect and feel free to get a little creative here!
    • Popular:
      • Dinner and dancing to follow
      • Reception immediately following
    • More creative:
      • Merriment to follow
      • Dancing under the stars to follow
      • etc.

Whew! Wedding invitation wording can sure be complicated. I hope this list helps you simply word your wedding invitations.

If you have further questions I would love to hear from you! This is something I work closely with each of my couple's to create wording for their invitations that is perfect for their event and personalities.

 

Best,

Maddy Kelly

Golden Hour Paper

 

 

How to Word Wedding Invitations