The choice of wedding stationery available can be over-whelming when you start planning your wedding! In this article, I will break it down into the different categories to help you, whether you are making your own stationery or choosing from the many ranges of handcrafted or printed stationery available! You may not need to order all of the detailed wedding stationery as it may not be applicable to your style of wedding. Or you may choose to order some of your wedding stationery and handcraft some of your own items!
Save the date
Save the date cards are particularly useful if you are getting married at a popular time of year, such as bank holiday weekends, or Summer, Easter or Christmas when people tend to book their holidays. Save the date cards can be sent out when you have your wedding booked, but ordinarily up to year before the wedding so that people can put your date in their diary. These cards come in many forms, including magnets, postcards and tags. Make sure if you are sending a Save the date card to someone, that you are going to want them to attend your wedding in the future!
Wedding Invitations come in many different shapes and sizes from scrolls to invitations printed on balloons!!!! Enjoy browsing the range of invitations available, both printed and handmade before you make your selection. Most stationery companies will offer you a sample either free of charge or for a small fee. If you can not find anything you like, some places will offer a bespoke design service where they will discuss your wedding themes and colour scheme with you and then design a wedding invitation or set of stationery especially for you. If you like a set of wedding stationery but it is in the wrong colour scheme or you would like something changing, email the company and ask! Most will be happy to make their wedding stationery in different colours or adapt an aspect for you.
Remember to allow one invitation per household and a few extra for mistakes or last minute invitations!!! Wedding Invitations are normally sent out three months before the wedding to allow guests time to reply and the couple time to finalise arrangements. Some couples choose to send their invitations earlier than this if their wedding falls during a busy time of year.
These invitations are for those people who you are not inviting to your ceremony but are coming to your evening celebrations. Most evening celebrations begin after the speeches and you can choose whether to cut your cake during the day or save that for the arrival of your evening guests.
Again, allow one invitation per household and a few extra for mistakes or last minute invitations!
Most couples choose to send an information sheet or card with their wedding invitations to assist their guests in the planning of their day. This information normally includes hotel, bed and breakfast choices, taxi numbers and so on. Some couples choose to place all this information on a website and just include the URL in their invitations so they can have a minimalist look to their invitations. If you choose to do this, remember that Great Grandad Bob might not have access to the internet so make sure the older generation are allowed for! The information sheet may or may not also contain details about the order of the day, whether confetti is permitted, any particular dress code (e.g. if wedding is black tie, fancy dress!), details of any organised transport, directions and what time the event will finish. Some couples also choose to acknowledge details of their gift list here.
You may choose to put an RSVP card in with your wedding invitation where guests can state their intention to attend your wedding and any vegetarian or other dietary requirements. Some couples even put in a stamped addressed envelope for their guests although this is not entirely necessary. Remember to clearly state your RSVP date so that you can finalise arrangements with your wedding venue and with your suppliers.
Order of service/Order of the day
Order of Service cards are most popular when a religious ceremony is taking place and will list the Hymns (and the words), The Entrance of the Bride, Readings, The Marriage, Signing of the Register, The Address, The Benediction and The Recessional.
Order of the Day cards are sometimes used at civil ceremonies to detail what is going to be happening during the day and the timings e.g wedding ceremony, welcome drinks/canapes, photographs, wedding breakfast, cake cutting, speeches, first dance, end of celebrations so the guests are aware of what is happening1
Table cards/Menu cards
Table cards are positioned on the centre of the wedding breakfast tables so guests can find their seat easily. Tables may be numbered or named and guests use the table or seating plan to find their name and which table they have been seated at. This is not always necessary at a very small wedding. Sometimes the table card will also feature the menu of the wedding breakfast or this may be on a separate card.
Some brides and grooms decide to have disposable cameras on their wedding breakfast tables so they can later catch up on all the fun that they did not see! Camera cards can be attached to remind guests to use the flash (and wind the camera on!) and with instructions on where to leave the camera when it has been used.
Place cards are used so a guest can locate on their table whereabouts they will be sitting. These vary from a tent fold card to a personalised key-ring! Allow one place card per guest.
Table plan/Seating plan
A seating plan shows the layout of the room and details which guest is sat where! These vary in size and can be made on card and framed or on artists canvas block. Check with your venue that they have facilities to display a table plan.
Favours range from the traditional five sugared almonds symbolising Health, Wealth, Happiness, Long Life and Fertility to miniature perfumes, chocolate truffles and shot glasses!
Favour boxes are normally available to match your wedding stationery or some companies will make you something to co-ordinate. You can combine your favours with place cards by adding a tag with the guests name!
Thank you cards (Bridal Party)
You can order Thank You cards for your bridal party from most wedding stationery companies. Most places will personalise them to add the name of the recipient and the date of your wedding. These cards can be given to Bridesmaids, Parents of the Bride and Groom, Best Men, Ushers, Flower Girls, Readers and so on.
To my Husband/Wife on Our wedding day card
You could send a card on the morning of your wedding to your future husband or wife to tell them how much you are looking forward to your special day. Most companies will personalise these cards with names and dates for you!
Thank you cards
Thank you cards are sent after the big day to thank guests for attending your wedding and for any cards and gifts you may have received. These may co-ordinate with your wedding stationery or you could get a card printed with a wedding photograph on!