We remind our brides that getting the guest list ready and the invitations order placed is a big job, but is not the only part of your wedding paper trousseau. In addition to personalized thank you cards, reply cards and envelopes, napkins and programs – there are other paper items to choose. For a sit-down dinner, select table and place cards. Use paper and ribbons to match your invitations. Calligraphy will add an elegant and personal touch to each card. For an evening reception we suggest that you use bright and rich coloured inks since the room is likely to be dimly lit. Menu cards tell your guests that you took time to carefully select a well planned menu for their enjoyment. Use vellum paper stock as it will look special. Smaller cards can be placed at each plate, or if you are planning a buffet, a framed menu card at each end of the table works well.
We offer a gentle reminder that once home from the honeymoon, it is time to write thank you notes. Proper etiquette suggests that you respond within three months after the wedding, thanking people for their presence as well as their generosity.
Â Happy Planning…Kay
It is always amazing to me when seemingly well-educated people donâ€™t get why they should RSVP when the invitation clearly requests it.Â Knowing the total number of expected guests is critical at weddings and other large events because of the costs and deadlines involved in meal planning and preparation.Â But even for smaller social events, I lament the fact that people either donâ€™t know what RSVP means or worse, choose to ignore it. When working with brides, coordinators and planners are expected to know the social â€œrulesâ€ and to helpÂ our clients incorporate them into the celebration planning.Â Here are a few criteria from us to keep in mind.
As Emily Post says, â€œNo one is obligated to accept an invitation or to explain their reasons for not accepting.Â However, when someone is kind enough to extend an invitation, one should be just as kind and reply to the invitation.â€Â Unfortunately, this is not always done.
Ask for help.Â If you have invited someone to your wedding and have included a reply card with a return by requested date and you still havenâ€™t heard back, the best solution is to press bridesmaids or family relatives into helping you contact all those persons who have yet to reply.Â If a phone call is in order, helpers can say something like this:Â â€œHi _______, this is _________.Â Iâ€™m calling to make sure that you have received the invitation to __________â€™s wedding.Â The bride hasnâ€™t heard from you yet and needs to know if you plan to attend.Â The count needs to be in by ________. Everyone is looking forward to seeing you.â€Â If you are leaving a voice mail message, add â€œ Please call me back at ________â€.
Respond in the same manner that the invitation was issued. If an invitation to an event has come via e-mail then an e-mail response is in order.
Reply as soon as possible.Â Donâ€™t put the invitation in the â€œto doâ€ pile unless you need to ask the availability of the other person whose name may be on the invitation with yours.
Keep replies brief.Â You donâ€™t need to go into great detail about why you canâ€™t attend.
If a reply is not requested, it is not necessary to respond.Â However, it is nice to acknowledge the invitation and let the host know when you cannot attend.
Because the invitations reflect the tone of your wedding they should be considered early on in your planning activities. Once you have developed your guest list, selected your ceremony and reception venues and decided on the degree of formality you wish to express throughout your wedding, you can comfortably begin to search for your invitations and other printed materials. Do not be overwhelmed by the myriad of choices that are available for you. At one time, there were few options in paper and print styles. Todayâ€™s bride has a wide range of both from which to select. Consider these points as you shop for your paper trousseau. Take your business to a store that specializes in wedding papers. The staff there will have the expertise and experience to help you with paper selections and correct wordings. Their advice can end up saving you time and often money as well.
You will likely be ordering more than just invitations so consider these other items as well: save the date cards, insert cards (directions or other information) RSVP cards, place cards and assignment charts, menus, thank you cards, programs and of course the invitations. Figure in all of the options as you look at pricing. When you place your order, be sure to order extras of every item. Make sure that you send one of everything to yourself when the rest go out so you can monitor the delivery dates. Be sure that you allow enough time to order, address and send the invitation packages. Double check with your print specialist on the time frame required for satisfactory order completion. Most experts agree that invitations should go out 6-8 weeks prior to the ceremony. However for a destination wedding more advanced notice should be given, therefore 3-4 months is appropriate.
Consider purchasing special issue postage stamps rather than just ordinary stamps. Check with your local postal service for the options that may work for you. Be sure to check on delivery times if you select a personalized stamp pattern. Always, always double check the proofs of the invitation copy. Have someone else double check for you as well. It is easy to skip over and not notice errors in copy with which you are so familiar. A misspelt name can cause unnecessary delays and expense. If children are being invited to the wedding and reception, their names are usually included on the envelope, clearly letting the parents know that the children are invited. If children are not to be included, just the invited are listed.
Many couples are choosing a morning wedding ceremony that is then followed by a wedding breakfast. Technically, a celebration following a ceremony held before one oâ€™clock is called a breakfast. After one oâ€™clock it is called a reception. What to serve? A breakfast following an early morning ceremony should be a substantial meal, while a breakfast held after a later morning wedding can be a lighter meal. If the ceremony is held near noon, serve the same kind of food you would offer at a light luncheon. Whatever type of meal you select â€“ donâ€™t forget the wedding cake. Afternoon or evening weddings offer couples a wide range of reception choices. You will pick the format that best suits your wedding style. You can offer buffets, wine and cheese receptions, cocktail receptions or formal sit down dinners.
Frequently, organizing the reception seating plans are the trickiest part of the dinner. Some of the easiest to use are those that follow through on themes that work with the wedding. Use a floral theme and plan a centerpiece of different blossoms for each table. Then you simply assign guests to the â€œdaisy,â€ â€œroseâ€, â€œtulipâ€ whatever flower is use at that table instead of boring numbers.
If your reception is informal and you are both sports fans, name tables for your favorite sports â€“ football, tennis, baseball etc. You might name tables for your favorite teams. Consider using framed photos from both of your childhood days at each table. Those pictures and the careful positioning of at least one outgoing person at each table should ensure lively conversation.
You have said yes. You are engaged to be married. Now itâ€™s time to celebrate. Who should host the party to share the happy news?Â Planning the party is usually left to the bride and her parents. If possible, it is usually held at a time to coincide with the newspaper announcement. Other relatives and/or friends may give the party if your parents are not able or available to do so.Â
Any type of gathering – a cocktail party, buffet, brunch or barbecue is appropriate. You may also wish to have a sit down dinner and serve food that reflects your heritage. An international hors dâ€™oeuvres, wine and cheese party or an elegant candlelight dessert party – all have appeal. If itâ€™s a wintertime affair, have a Sunday afternoon open house and serve hearty stew, chilli or thick soup along with a variety of breads.Â During the party your father may propose a toast to the two of you. Remain seated and do not raise your glass to drink. Your fiancÃ© then rises and proposes a toast to you and your parents. After that, you toast the groom to be, your parents and the assembled guests. Be sure to invite everyone to the wedding who has been invited to the engagement party. While engagement party gifts are not necessary nor are they expected, be aware that some guests may choose to give an appropriate gift for the occasion. You will of course, send a prompt and sincere thank you.Â
Let the celebration begin!