Wedding Invitation Wording: How to make your invitation sound less stuffy

I googled "wedding invitation wording" like a gajillion times and looked at countless websites when I was writing my own invitation. There are a lot of etiquettes associated with the wedding invitation suite because it's one of those traditions we still hold onto from the good 'ole days of correspondence and word smithing. 

At the same time, in the modern world there's a lot more wiggle room. If you know your family won't bat an eye for breaking some rules and having a little fun (a wedding is a party, after all), here are some ways to add personality to your words so it sounds less pinkies-up and more like YOU.

Invitation

The formality and etiquette of the invitation wording surrounds giving credit to the host of the party (i.e. the person with the wallet) who is inviting the guests to the wedding. Today, a lot more couples are paying for the bulk of their own wedding, but still receive some help from family members, making this "giving credit" a little trickier because it’s more of a team effort. Some examples of how to address the host, depending on who's hosting:

Together with their families/parents

Together with Mr. and Mrs. [BRIDE'S] And Mr. and Mrs. [GROOM'S]

Mr. and Mrs. [BRIDE'S]

After introducing the host of the party, the invitation should also do its real job—do the actual inviting, and list the couples' names. This is a fine line to straddle, because if you're too cutesy or clever, you could leave the guests wondering if the instructions are more complex than it needs to be. I mean, you're just asking them to come, so no need to get too frilly with it.

If the couple is part of the host party, the name would go before the inviting line, and if there’s another host, the couples’ names would go after.

Couple not hosting:

request the pleasure of your company at the marriage of their children/daughter
request the honor of your presence at the marriage of their children/daughter
invite you to celebrate the marriage of
invite you to celebrate the love and friendship of

[BRIDE] and [GROOM]

Couple hosting:

[BRIDE] and [GROOM]

invite you to witness two families become one
invite you to celebrate their
marriage / love and friendship / union
invite you to enjoy free food and booze
invite you to witness two families become one

Extra: if the parents aren’t hosting but you’d still like to honor them by mentioning them on the invitation, you can address the couple as daughter/son of the parents like so

[BRIDE] daughter of [PARENTS’ NAMES] and [GROOM] son of [PARENTS’ NAMES]

Another tricky part of invitations is the start time. You want them to get there on time, but putting a start time WAY earlier than when you would walk down the aisle could miff those early-bird guests who will plan on getting there much earlier than the time indicated. Anything before 4pm would be considered afternoon, and after 5pm should be evening. Make sure to talk to your wedding coordinator about what to list here! (while we’re on the topic, if you don’t have a wedding coordinator, GET ONE, even if it’s just for the month-of. Trust me, you’ll thank me later. Ok back to invitation wording. But seriously, get one.)

on [DATE - spell out date, month, year]
at [TIME - four in the afternoon, four o'clock,
4:00pm, etc.]

Then of course, the venue. I tend to like to put the address too, but in a more formal/pretty way which means no zip code and the state spelled out:

[VENUE NAME]
[VENUE STREET ADDRESS]
[VENUE CITY], [VENUE
STATE]

Last but not least, it's always good practice to include that there is a reception after the ceremony—even though most will assume that it's there. Some fun ways to say that:

Reception to follow
Dinner and Dancing to follow
Merriment to follow

So say a couple is hosting but still want to mention their parents and want to do something fun with the inviting and the reception line, it might go like this:

Together with their families

Eleanor Astrid Williams Daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Daniel Wiliams
and
Nicholas Oliver Colt Son of Dr. and Mrs. Jason Colt

invite you to enjoy free food and booze
on the third of November two-thousand and eighteen at half past four in the afternoon

Huron Substation
2640 Huron Street
Los Angeles, California

Merriment to follow


RSVP

Another place you can have fun with wording is your RSVP Yes/No options. The "accepts with pleasure / declines with regret" could sometimes feel overly formal, and make your guest feel super guilty for saying no (which isn't to your favor if you're secretly hoping that you know, the guest count is lower. Like, OF COURSE you would be sad they weren't there but wouldn't cry about one less head to be charged for cake cutting. Just sayin'). Set the tone with wording like below:

Delighted to join
Sending good wishes

We'll meet you at the desert/on the beach/garden
We'll celebrate from afar

Let's do this
Sad to miss it

Ready to party
Sitting it out

Save me a seat
Let's chat another time

See you down the aisle crocodile
Catch you later alligator


Details

The details enclosure card can get tricky because this is the area where there's a bit of finesse that is required for some delicate info and requests, like a potentially freezing outdoor reception, adult-only reception, we want money not gifts—the list goes on. The trick is to be very honest about why you're doing it, instead of trying to spin it as a positive (no "my greatest weakness is that I'm just TOO organized!" here). Here are some ways to be crystal clear, but still classy about some common details.

Dress warm 

Weather can be quite tricky out on the (insert environment here) and we will be dining outdoors to enjoy the view. We'll try our best to heat the area, but please make sure to dress warm in case the temperature dips as the night heats up.

Adult-only

So that every guest can enjoy the evening and take some time off letting loose, we ask that your little ones stay behind for the night. We hope that the advanced notice allows you time to make arrangements as needed.

Give us money

We are so fortunate to have everything we need in our home to start our life together, and you giving us your time to celebrate with us is gift enough. However, if you still wish to honor us with a gift, we have listed a small select items on our registry, or we ask you consider making a contribution to our savings fund for [INSERT LIFE GOAL HERE - buying a new home, remodeling home, trip of a lifetime for honeymoon, etc.]


Hope that helps as you craft your wedding invitation wording! Remember, a wedding is a party that you're throwing for your loved ones, so they should see YOU reflected in it—in both design and wording!

If you're looking to get custom wedding invitations designed, shoot us a note and say hi!

FiberandDyeWeddingInvitationWording

Wedding Invitation Timing: How to figure out when to send what

FiberandDye_WeddingStationeryTiming

Knowing when to send out your wedding stationery could be tricky. There are lots of "rules of thumbs" out there and etiquette, but every wedding, guest list, and couple are different... how is one to know when the right timing is? I like to approach it by backing out of the wedding date with the understanding of what needs to happen to get there, instead of starting from the beginning.

The table to the right is the quick cheatsheet for the formula that I use with my wedding clients.

So let’s break down why this works the way it does.

 

RSVP Due Date

The RSVP due date depends on a few things, but is typically 2-3 weeks before the wedding. I always recommend talking to your wedding coordinator and caterer to see when final headcounts are due, as well as allow yourself enough time to figure out the seating chart. And of course, you may need to give yourself some time to track down stragglers if you KNOW that your guests are prone to forgetting things like, I don’t know, letting you know whether they’re coming to the most stressful dinner party of your life (people, right?). This means that in some scenario, you may even need 4-6 weeks before the day to get the RSVPs in.

Wedding Invitation

Now that you have the RSVP due date (which will go on your invitation so make sure that’s nailed down!) you want to figure out then in-home delivery date for your wedding invitation. This is one that people tend to forget, but just because you SEND your invitation on a certain date, doesn’t mean all guests are going to receive it on that date. To allow for the post office to deliver, as well as for guests to actually check their mail (I mean, I can tell you right now that I only check my mail like every 3-5 days), account for a week between actually sending and delivering the invitation.

So, between the invitation getting into the guests’ hands and the RSVP due date, you should give folks 4 weeks. This tends to be the sweet spot—any longer and guests think, “Oh I have SO MUCH TIME, don’t need to do it now!” but any less and guests can feel overwhelmed by the looming deadline.

In other words, the invitation should arrive at folks’ mailboxes 4 weeks before the due date, which means you want them at the post office 5 weeks before the due date. Make sense?

Save the date - 6-8 months

Last but not least is the Save the Dates. The rule of thumb here is that when you have a venue and date confirmed, you’re ready to send out these suckers—which usually happen 8-12 months prior to the wedding day. No need to be really structured with this guy, it’s by definition just a heads up. You don’t even need to send to your entire guest list, just folks you couldn’t live without if they weren’t there. And these days, between you and your excited relatives, the word of your date permeates pretty quickly. It could, however, serve as a great “filter” to let members of big families know who should expect an invite and who shouldn’t, so it’s not a surprise later.

Extra credit: Are you planning destination wedding?

The timeline can shift a bit if you’re planning a destination wedding, or more than half of your guests will be traveling in. Allow more time for both yourself and your guest, because arranging travel could be tough, and you may have to make more calls to see if Grandma from across the country will be able to make the trip over.

You can also use this extended timeline if you know your caterer/coordinator needs the RSVP earlier, you’re planning a wedding around the holidays (again, travel is tough), or your wedding invitation send out date falls near a holiday.

Extended Timeline

RSVP due date: WD - 6 weeks
Wedding invitation in-home date: RSVP - 4 weeks, or WD - 10 weeks
Wedding invitation send date: RSVP - 6 weeks, or WD - 12 weeks
Save the Date: WD - 8 months

FiberandDye_InvitationTiming

Seasonal Brand Personality: Using Color Psychology to Identify Your Brand Aesthetic

When we’re talking about business branding design, one concept helps to put into focus the direction and visual aesthetic that you're going for. I love using the seasonal brand personality to guide my design and to communicate to clients how to implement the new visual identity, because it makes it so easy!

Following color psychology, the seasonal brand personality help to guide not only the hues but the texture, shapes, pattern, and other visual elements that should be used in the branding. Borrowing cues from nature, the seasonal personality serve to make design elements feel cohesive and on-brand.

Below is a quick breakdown of each of the personality, its attributes, keywords, and characteristics. Can you find your brand in one of them?


The spring personality is bright, delightful, fun, and simple. Think light, fresh colors that are youthful and bounding with energy. When you're styling photos for spring, itch items can make a whimsical statement that doesn't take itself too seriously, and adds personality and a human touch that is perfect! I see this personality a lot with sweets shops, and lifestyle/gifting product lines (psst, we're a spring personality!)

FiberandDyeSeasonalBrandPersonality_Spring.jpg

The summer personality is all about timeless beauty, elegance, romanticism, and grace. Cool colors that are subtle and muted and lighting that's hazy and dreamy. Keywords here are pretty, formal, proper, and pretty (oh did I say it twice? that's how important it is!) I tend to see summer a lot in the wedding industry, with photographers and stationers.

FiberandDyeSeasonalBrandPersonality_Summer

The autumn personality is warm, full of energy and richness, and always authentic. Warm tones that are bold and intense but muted, with a feeling of substance and weight is what you want to go for. Look for elements that feel natural, like kraft paper, brick, and raw wood. I think a lot of restaurants really embrace the autumn personality, as do artisinal brands that focus on the handmade/craftsman aspect of their business.

FiberandDyeSeasonalBrandPersonality_Autumn.jpg

The winter personality is edgy, intense, glamourous, and no-fuss. This is the only color palette that has black and white, so think contrast and minimalism. Sparkling metallics or neon gives the palette that understated confidence that looks so good on winter. Making bold statements through touches of luxury is where this personality shines. I feel like a lot of influencers and groups tailored toward female entrepreneurs fall under winter.

FiberandDyeSeasonalBrandPersonality_Winter.jpg
 

What did you think? Did you find a personality that really resonates with you? When building your mood board, brand color, brand photography and even your logo, think about the concept to help guide your decisions regarding all things branding design!

And if you're curious about getting a branding analysis from us to see where you stand and where you should go, we'd be happy to put together our recommendation and build a visual strategy that'll really move you forward and grow your business!

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On Year Two & Beyond

It was my birthday this past Monday (well into my thirties now!), which means that we also had our 2 year anniversary. Oh how I love sharing my birthday with my biz, it really does make things a lot easier to remember.

Starting as a sanity project to fuel my creative outlet while I was at my 9-5 corporate job, to a way to escape that said 9-5 job, to a full time business...Fiber & Dye has molded, changed, and grown into what it is today, and is about to go through yet another transformation this year. As we welcome our first baby into the family, it's not just a solopreneur business, but a mompreneur one for a working-at-home mom. How crazy is it that time goes by so fast and so much could change in what feels like an instant?

From the 16 greeting cards we started out with, the card line has grown to SKUs of well over 80, and 10 new ones that launched on our site this week. Not only that, but Fiber & Dye grew into a full-blown design studio with client offering for wedding invitations and business branding, which has allowed me to work with the most creative couples and visionary entrepreneurs that I'd ever met.

The struggle is real, and the name of the game is always the imposter syndrome. One thing I'd been working on this year was getting used to talk about what I do as a REAL thing. That no, I'm not just in between jobs or pursuing a hobby while I'm taking it easy and baking a baby—this was a business, MY business, that I own and control and run and grow. No one else was going to do that for me, I had to. And while I thought that maybe the way I talked about it could be different from the way I worked it, that wasn't true. It wasn't until I could say those words out loud that I really believed it and actioned on it. So that was a great learning experience.

Something that helped this transition was meeting other business owners. Whether as clients or partners on a project or colleagues discussing biz topics, both the internet and my community in the South Bay are filled with entrepreneurs that I admire. Lucky for me, many have been doing this for a lot longer than I have so I was inspired by how far they've come, and was fortunate to have people who were open to sharing their journey with me. Even luckier, I've also met folks who are right where I am—just starting out, or ready to pivot and grow their business in a way that's in that weird, awkward, teenage Simba phase. So thank you to my muses and my fellow warriors for pushing me and fighting alongside me.

We have some exciting things in the works for this year (like the super secret one I might sneak peek this week) and can't wait to see how the third year is going to shape up. I can't thank you enough for letting me go on this crazy venture, because without the support of the folks like you who do things like, I don't know, read my little blog posts like this one here, I would've given up a long time ago like I'd always done before (it's my MO, not that I'm proud of it, but it's true). It's nothing short of a miracle that the lights are still on, the gears are still grinding, and the passion is still well and alive.

So let's fucking do this dye-hards.