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What to Know About Invitation Wording

Photo courtesy of Vera Wang stationery

We thought we'd take a few minutes to tackle one of the questions we hear most frequently when we’re working with clients on their wedding invitations, and that is: how do we word our invitation? And more specifically, how do we word the first few sentences of the invitation?

I always like to preface my answer to this question by saying this: everything about your wedding day is your personal preference, and at the end of the day, your wedding invitation should say exactly what it is that YOU want it to say!

That being said, if you are interested in etiquette and tradition, there definitely are some guidelines that you might want to at least consider when you’re putting together the wording of your wedding invitation.

Over time, the wedding invitation has traditionally been “issued” by whoever is hosting the party…that is, whoever is paying for it. And in most cases in the past, that was the parents of the bride. This is why, to this day, you'll often see wedding invitations that start out like this,

Mr. and Mrs. John Doe

request the honor of your presence

at the marriage of their daughter

Caroline Marie


Scott Michael Johnson

However, as we all know, there are many different circumstances nowadays that come into play when considering how you want to word your invitation. In this day and age, the couple may be hosting and paying for the wedding themselves,; consequently they might prefer to say something like this:

Together with their families,

James and David

invite you to join them

in celebrating their marriage

Sometimes they might like to include the parents’ names, and sometimes they might just like to stand alone as the couple hosting the party.

You also have cases where both families might be helping out with the wedding, paying for it, planning it, or whatever the case may be. Or, perhaps the couple simply wants to include the groom’s parents’ names on the invitation. All of these are perfectly appropriate and just depend on your situation and your preferences.

In many cases nowadays, we can also get into sensitive issues where there may be a divorce, or divorces, among the parents, and this can get a little sticky depending on your particular situation (believe me, we have seen some doozies)! We can help guide you through it, and figure out the best way to word things so that everybody will be happy.

We also see weddings where one or more than one of the parents may be deceased, and the couple would like to honor the parents by including them in the invitation. Again, this is also perfectly appropriate and lovely, and we can help you figure out just the right way to word that so that everyone is pleased.

So there is the general overview to the answer of one of our most frequently asked questions about wedding invitations. And that’s just the beginning of the invitation! That’s not even getting into the wording of your reply cards, reception cards, web site cards, envelopes and any of the other myriad other enclosures that you might want to include in your invitation.

So why try to muddle through all of that by yourself online in front of your computer, ordering from a web site, when you could come right in and see us here at Shelburne Gift Company? You can sit down in our nice comfy studio, have some bubbly, and let us help make it really easy for you!

If you have engaged couples in your family or your circle of friends, we’d so appreciate it if you’d forward or share this blog with them and invite them to come pay us a visit. And if you’re the engaged couple, congratulations, and we look forward to getting to meet you!


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