Properly wording wedding invitations
will help spotlight the mood and tone of your wedding for guests. If you plan a
formal ceremony with multi-course dining at the reception, your invitations and
related material should be formal. But if you dream of a casual garden wedding
with wildflowers and a cloud-dappled sky, your stationery should reflect that
invitation etiquette is clarity, consistency and good taste.
Your invitation often is the first signal that prospective guests get about
your wedding plans. Properly shaping the message and its tone is important.
Your first priority in wording wedding invitations is to provide
information—the who, what, where, when and why; so beloved by journalists. Make
sure these details are clear. All the fancy designs and color accents won’t
make up for not communicating your message.
invitation etiquette is more than a sentimental request for
someone to share in your happiness. It’s also the result of engineering, design
and technology. Here are some of the processes and technology that can be used
to make your request an irresistible invitation:
1. Calligraphy. Handwritten calligraphy is still the most elegant way to
prepare your wedding invitations wording, but it’s usually very costly. Many
stationery stores now provide calligraphy machines that can inscribe your
invitations at lower cost. If you really want handwritten calligraphy, but
can’t afford it for your entire invitation and related materials, hire a
calligrapher to hand-address the envelopes only.
2. Computer Printing. Best for informal invitations, computer printing costs
the least. You can, however, select from a wide range of paper and typefaces,
and use specialized software to create elegant borders and decorative accents.
3. Engraving. The most formal process in wedding
invitation etiquette is engraving. It is also the most
expensive. The paper is pressed against a metal plate, which causes the letters
to be raised on the paper. Once you create an engraving template, or “die,” it’s
yours, and your stationer usually will keep it filed for your later use.
4. Handwritten. If you have beautiful penmanship and time to burn, buy
beautiful paper and envelopes, then write your personal invitations by hand, a
process highly recommended by wedding
invitation etiquette purists. You can set the tone for your celebration by
choosing from among a plethora of stationery, pens and ink colors.
5. Offset Printing. In offset printing, the ink lays atop the paper. It’s less
expensive than engraving or thermography, and creates a less formal look that’s
appropriate for an informal wedding.
6. Thermography. The thermography process infuses ink and powder together on
the paper to create raised lettering. Because the letters aren’t pushed from
behind and no metal plate is used, thermography costs about half as much as
Remember, the look of your wedding stationery is not the only way to convey the
formality or casualness of your wedding. Planning
to properly word wedding invitations can also represent your desired tone to
help guests plan accordingly.