Your wedding invitation not only gives the first impression of your special day but it sets the tone for your entire wedding.
They also serve an indication on how formal or informal your wedding will be as well as informing the guests about who will be hosting the event and any activities to attend following the wedding.
Here are some wedding invitations wording etiquette rules to use as a guide.
A typical invitation usually includes the following elements: the host line, request line, bride and groom line, date and time lines, location line, and reception and R.S.V.P. lines. Although every invitation should have these lines, however, there are no hard and fast rules about their arrangement and wording, they can be done as you choose, to reflect the style of your wedding.
THE HOST LINE
The first line of the invitation typically starts with the names of the people hosting the wedding, traditionally the bride's parents. This is often the trickiest part of the wording process. In today's world of ever changing family structures and dynamics, it is best to follow the format that best fits your situation.
Here are several invitation wording possibilities available to you to choose from depending on your particular situation.
THE REQUEST LINE
Honour Vs Pleasure
"Request the honour of your presence" traditionally indicates that the ceremony will take place in a house of worship.
However, if the ceremony will be conducted in a non-religious location, the phrase should be "Request the pleasure of your company", even if the service will be officiated by a clergyman.
"Would be delighted by your presence at the marriage of their children can be used for an informal ceremony and if you are having an informal reception only, then the request line should be worded as ...invite you to join them at the wedding reception of...
Be consistent with whatever spelling you choose, traditionally the formal, British spelling is preferred in proper wedding etiquette but whichever form you choose, use it all through your invitation.
BRIDE AND GROOM LINES
The Bride and Groom's names should be on separate lines because they are the focal point of the event. The preposition linking the phrases, as "to" (American formatting) or "and" (Jewish formatting), which in this case are the bridal couples names goes on its own line. Traditionally, the bride's name is listed as only her first and middle names, without any title or surname. This usually works just fine if the bride's last name is her parent's. Professional title's or courtesy title's such as Miss or Ms are not used.
DATE AND TIME
You may omit using a.m. or p.m., or phrases such as "in the evening," or "in the afternoon" unless the wedding will be held at 8, 9, or 10 o'clock. Adding the year is not compulsory, but it is usually included for the invitation's keepsake value.
For a traditional wedding, never abbreviate. Numbers such as the time and date should be completely spelled out, beginning with the day, date, and month, and then followed by the written time.
For a contemporary wedding, you may use numerals.
The final line of the wedding invitation should tell your guests where the ceremony will be held.
Traditionally, street addresses of churches, synagogues, mosques or other places of worship or well-known locations are not included, but this is less common lately. Commas are not used at the ends of lines, and the state is always spelled out.
For contemporary invitations, street addresses may be included, if you are using a street address, numerals are acceptable but no ZIP or postal codes is needed because this is not for mailing.
List the full address, spelling out road types, like Avenue or Boulevard.
For a traditional wedding, never abbreviate. Numbers such as the time and date should be completely spelled out, beginning with the day, date, and month, and then followed by the written time. For a contemporary wedding, you may use numerals.