Here is a general invitation guideline to make sure you stay on schedule as you plan your wedding. The entire process from start to finish can take six to eight months so please don’t wait until the last minute to order your invitations. Use this guide while planning!
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- 1 Year – Your engaged! Set a wedding date and then start to gather your list of potential guests you would like to invite (the “A & B” list). This is important so you know the size of the venue you need to book. You would hate to book a venue for only 150 guests and then at the last minute you forgot to add guests and then the venue becomes too small. Plan ahead!
- 9 Months – Start searching websites, Pinterest and magazines for invitation style ideas and start narrowing down the style/look/feel you are wanting. Depending on the formality of the wedding you will want to start thinking about all the enclosures you intend on including as well. Think about hotel accommodation cards, direction cards, reception cards, etc.
- 7 to 8 Months – Decide on how you want to create your invitations. If you decide upon creating a custom invitation from a stationer this is the time to collect your ideas for it. You’ll want to order your save the date cards (from “A List”). Be sure you’ve gathered all your guest’s addresses!
- 6 Months – If creating your own invitation you’ll want to meet with the stationer and start the process. Be sure to mail the save the date cards by now!
- 5 Months – If ordering your invitation by templates this is the time you’ll want to meet with a stationer and decide on your invitation. You can view invitations through online storefronts or in-person so you can actually see them. You’ll finalize the wording and enclosures as well. A stationer can recommend calligraphers as well at this time. You’ll want to call them and make sure they know you’ll be using them to address the envelopes.
- 4 Months – Invitations should be ordered and received during this month. Be sure to always request a proof for your invitation, this is a tip I always recommend! Also, order extra invitations for the “B List” and/or envelopes for accidental mess ups. Once invitations come in you’ll want to get the envelopes to the calligrapher to address or you’ll need to address yourself at this time. Be sure to have a typed out list of guest’s names/addresses so mistakes aren’t made for not being able to read someone’s handwriting.
- 3 Months – Address the envelopes (allow 3-4 weeks). Go to the post office and weigh everything and purchase the postage needed.
- 10-8 Weeks – Assemble and seal invitations, apply postage. Request hand-cancelling at the post office so the invitations do not go through their machines and mail. Be sure to mail out from the “B List” as regrets start coming in. Place your rehearsal dinner invitation order.
- 4 Weeks – Last chance to mail out the “B List”. Mail out the rehearsal dinner invitations (or inform responsible party) and post wedding brunch invitations if applicable.
- 2 Weeks – Contact guests that have not rsvp’d. Normally, caterers need 10 business days prior to the wedding for the final count so get that to them as well. If you are using a seating chart be sure to get this to your wedding coordinator and caterer as well.
- THE BIG DAY – Try and relax and have a great time!!
Please use this as a guide as you plan your wedding. If you have any further questions please contact Trudy Scott, Professional Wedding Consultant, and I will be more than happy to help you. You can also contact me to make a personal one-on-one appointment to view invitations in person. I also can help you with bridal shower, save the dates, rehearsal dinner, bachelorette, thank you cards, programs, menu cards and more! 210-595-9263, email@example.com.