Planning a wedding can be a hectic affair. Trying to remember everything that must be done and how you should do it can be not only time consuming, but may also feel close to impossible at times. Wedding invitations and the time line that they should follow often stump many couples and this results in invitations being sent out incorrectly, late or even much too early. Below are some basic rules that every couple should follow when it comes to invitations for their wedding.
When to Order
Knowing when to order your invitations is a big deal. Ordering them too early is not necessarily a problem, but many people order them too late, which results in a rush to get them addressed and sent out. The basic rule of thumb is that wedding invitations should be ordered 4-6 months in advance. This allows for plenty of time in case there is a problem or mistake with the original printing and gives couples a while to address and label them before they must be sent out to guests.
What Should Be Included
Another confusing part of wedding invitations is understanding what should be included in the formal invitation that is mailed out. Most standard formal invites include both wedding and reception invitations as well as a response card and map to the wedding location if needed.
Even though the invitations that you order may arrive months before your wedding, they are not supposed to be mailed out until 4-6 weeks in advance. If you want to send an announcement before that date, then a save the date card would be acceptable. Sending the invitations too early could result in some guests forgetting the event by the time it arrived and sending them too late could not give some guests enough time to respond or make arrangements to be at the wedding.
This also allows you plenty of time to wait on response cards to come back. If you have not heard from certain guests after several weeks, you can then call to make sure the invitation was received and to check on the status of their response card.
It is acceptable for a bride to take up to three months after the date of the wedding to send out thank-you cards. You do not have to wait that long, but thank-you notes sent after that time period has passed are considered late and may offend your guests. It is important to send a note to anyone who helped you with your wedding as well as those who sent a gift of any kind.
Keeping all of the rules and time lines straight for wedding invitations can be difficult. The information above can be quite helpful in making sure you get everything done and that it is done at the appropriate time in preparation for your big day.