A Guide on How to Address Wedding Invitations

Sending out wedding invitations is not just about conveying information; it’s an art that reflects the elegance and respect you hold for your guests. From addressing envelopes to assembling the invitations, here’s a comprehensive guide on wedding invitation etiquette. When crafting the wording for a wedding invitation, it’s essential to strike the right balance of formality, clarity, and warmth. 

Let’s first start with when wedding invitations should be sent out. While Save-the-Dates are typically sent out six to twelve months before the wedding day, invitations are sent out two to four months ahead of the wedding date. Be sure to put an “RSVP by” date, which is typically three to four weeks ahead of the wedding so the couple have enough time to turn in catering numbers and plan seating charts. 

Having a destination wedding? If you are planning a destination wedding, your guests will need more time to plan travel and time off. Therefore, with destination weddings, we recommend sending Save-the-Dates out eight to twelve months in advance. Wedding invitations would then be sent out three months in advance. 

Addressing Outer Envelopes:

Married Couples:

  • Heterosexual Couples (written traditionally): 

-Outer envelope: “Mr. and Mrs. John Boe” 

-Inner envelope: “Mr. and Mrs. Boe” or “John and Natalie”

  • Note: Some women may prefer to keep their last name included too (modern): 

-Outer envelope: “Mr. John Boe and Mrs. Natalie Boe”

-Inner envelope: “Mr. Boe and Mrs. Boe” or “John and Natalie”

Married Couples (same sex): 

  • For same-gender couples, either name can go first 

-Outer envelope: “Mr. Eric Smith and Mr. Trevor Sharp”

-Inner envelope: “Mr. Smith and Mr. Sharp” or “Eric and Trevor”

  • Unmarried Couples Living Together:
    • List both names alphabetically exterior invitation: Jane Doe and John Smith
    • Interior invitation you should list both names: Jane and John
  • Families with Children:
    • Traditional exterior invitation: The Smith Family
    • Specify children exterior invitation: Mr. and Mrs. John Smith and Family
  • Interior invitation:
    • List children’s names in age order, so if Jane and John are the parents but have a daughter (9) Emily and a son Max (4) : Jane, John, Emily and Max
  • Adding a Guest:
    • Address the exterior invitation to the invited guest: Ms. Jane Doe and Guest
    • Inner invitation: Jane Doe and Guest

            Addressing a Single Male:

  • Use “Mr.” if he is over 18 only. 

            Addressing a Single Female: 

  •  Use “Ms.” if she is over 18 only. Under 18 “Miss”

Invitation Wording:

  • Formal Invitations:
  • Begin with a request line: “Request the pleasure of your company…”
  • Include names, date, time, and venue.
  • Casual Invitations:
  • Use a more relaxed tone: “Join us for the wedding of…”


With Great Joy

Mr. and Mrs. Shea

Request the honor of your presence 

at the wedding of their daughter  

Jessica to David 

Son of Dr. and Mrs. Adrian Faber

On June 27, 2025

Gasparilla Inn

Boca Grande, Florida

Ceremony at 5:00 pm

Reception to follow 

Image: Credit: Invitation by Papier

Postage Etiquette:


Include a return envelope for the RSVP and add postage in advance to make it easy for your guest to easily return their RSVP card

  • Ensure sufficient postage on each invitation.
  • RSVP Postage:
  • Include a stamped, addressed RSVP envelope for guests’ convenience.

Evite Etiquette:

  • Evites, while not traditional for weddings, are becoming more popular due to many reasons including budget, environmental reasons and ease of RSVP

Assembling Invitations:

  • Order of Inserts:
  • Place the invitation on the bottom, followed by additional cards in size order.
  • Response Cards:
  • Insert the response card under its envelope flap with the printed side facing up.
  • Map and Accommodation Cards:
  • Arrange these in the order of importance.
  • Facing Upwards:
  • Ensure that all text faces up when inserting cards into the envelope.
  • Sealing and Mailing:
  • Use a moist sponge or glue stick to seal the envelope securely.
  • Hand off to the post office or a reputable courier service.

Remember, attention to detail and respect for your guests are paramount. Following these guidelines will not only ensure a smooth invitation process but also set the tone for a memorable wedding celebration. Click here for The 3 Most Common Wedding Invitation Etiquette Mistakes.

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