LIVE! #317 – Wedding Stationery 411

Understand the various items of wedding stationery that are available and learn which pieces your clients must have for their event.

Is tissue really necessary in a wedding invitation? When should your clients use a pew card? Is it okay to get RSVPs via email?

During this third episode of our “Know Weddings” series, we cover various wedding stationery items that are available for your client’s wedding.

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MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE:

Wedding Stationery Must- Know Info:

  • The correct spelling is stationery, (not stationary) – One means: paper items (think of the letter ‘e’ as in envelopes).  The other means: to remain in one place (which we as wedding planners seldom do!).

Be sure to spell-check your website, marketing materials, email correspondence.  (I think it’s a real embarrassment when a pro in the wedding industry uses the incorrect form of the word stationery.)

  • Marriage license – the most important piece of paper when it comes to weddings!
  • Before ordering wedding stationery, our clients need to consider:
  1. Wedding size
  2. Wedding budget
  3. Wedding location
  4. Their personal preference
  • Order stationery well ahead of time – invitations are typically sent 8 weeks before the wedding date
  • Order more of these items:
  • Envelopes – get them first if you can
  • Seating cards
  • Anything that needs to be handwritten

Typical Wedding Stationery Choices:

  • Save the Date
    • Required: no
    • As the name suggests…
    • Includes date and location
    • Sent 5 – 7 months in advance
    • Can be very creative; reflect style of wedding – sometimes it’s not even paper
    • Despite popularity – not required in many circumstances
    • Ideal for destination wedding – guests need time to travel
    • Ideal for holiday weekend wedding
  • Wedding Invitation
    • Required: Yes
    • Ultra formal or completely casual
    • Date, time, location and indication of wedding style
    • Do not skip!
  • Inner Envelope
    • Required: No
    • Used for formal weddings
    • Use to include words that would look awkward on the outside envelope
      • “and friend”
  • RSVP Card
    • Required: Technically, no
    • Helps ensure a response
    • Traditionally, someone handwrites a letter in response to an invite.
      • NOT likely to happen
    • Pencil numbers on back of card, in case guest forgets to write name
  • Ceremony Card/Reception
    • Required: No  – if everyone is invited to both events
    • Use ceremony card for an intimate ceremony
    • Use reception card if party is somewhere else
      • Make it clear that it’s reception-only
    • Use invitation for both if everyone is invited
  • Pew Card
    • Required: No
    • Used for reserved seating in a church
    • Mailed to family members with space for pew number or ‘within the ribbon’
    • Hands card to usher
    • Great for big weddings and/or formal weddings…with usher
  • Tissue
    • Required: No
    • History: When ink would smudge. Tissue prevents leaving smudge on actual invitation
    • Today: elegant touch
    • Use with engraved invitations
  • Direction Card/Map
    • Required: No
    • Very helpful for out-of-town guests –
    • Don’t use a sloppy-looking photocopy
    • Takes away from the invitation
  • Wedding Ceremony Program
    • Required: No
    • Allows wedding guests to follow along with ceremony
    • Great way to honor participants
    • Great for explaining traditions
    • Great way to thank and remember loved ones
  • Seating Card/Escort Card
    • Required: Yes – 20+ guests
    • Arranged alphabetically at reception entrance
    • Indicates assigned table (not seats)
  • Place Card
    • Required: No
    • Use for assigned seats
    • Use for formal meals
  • Table Sign
    • Required: Yes
    • Identifies table and ties in with seating/escort card
    • Remember to assign tables, not necessarily seats
  • Menu Card
    • Required: No
    • As name suggests
    • Include couple’s names, wedding date
    • Nice keepsake
    • Tip: Frame a few menus for each table or serving station, instead of one per place setting
  • Thank-You Card
    • Required: Yes
    • Doesn’t have to match wedding stationery
    • Tip: embosser with couple’s initials; personalize every and anything!
  • Activities Schedule
    • Required: No
    • Should include for destination wedding
    • Include with invitation, if possible
    • Or, include with guests welcome [gift, basket]

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