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Anatomy of a Wedding Invitation

You thought you were looking for a wedding invitation but what you’re really looking for is an entire ensemble customized to fit your wedding needs. Take a look at all the parts and pieces involved in the typical wedding invitation ensemble and you’ll have no problem deciding what’s right for you.

Anatomy of a Wedding Invitation

Save-the-Date
Save the dates aren’t shown here because they aren’t a part of the wedding invitation ensemble but they are an important part of the stationery timeline. They should be sent 9-12 months before the wedding date, and all they have to include is names and wedding date. You can also choose to include the wedding location (city, state) and your wedding website. Wondering when to send save the dates, invitations and thank yous? Take a look at this wedding stationery timeline.

MUST HAVES
The Invitation
Wedding invitations provide guests with all the details they’ll need to attend your wedding. Invitation wording includes your names, the hosts’ names, the date (day, month, year), the time and the location (with address). The invite may also include a note about attire, food, adults only, etc. We recommend including a note as corner copy.

The Response Card
Response cards allow you to track who will be attending the wedding. The response card wording includes a blank space for the guest’s name(s), a respond-by date and a blank space for filling in the number of people attending. You may also include menu options and song requests on this enclosure card. Envelopes are needed for traditional response cards but some couples choose to use an online response service instead. Ann’s Bridal Bargains offers a line of invitations designed for this purpose. Shop Invitations with Online Reply.

HELPFUL ADDITIONS
The Reception/Information Card
Reception cards provide guests with the details they’ll need to attend the wedding reception. The reception wording includes the location, time and address of the reception venue. You may also include other bits of information like a wedding website or any notes about attire, food, adults only, etc. Information cards are also common for creating miscellaneous enclosures to communicate important information like accommodations and lodging, wedding itinerary, brunch details, etc.

The Map Card
Map cards and direction cards are often included in the wedding invitation ensemble to help recipients reach your wedding venue. Direction cards usually feature directions written out while map cards often feature both a map and directions. These are extremely helpful, especially if you want guests to take a specific route rather than letting a map engine choose the route. Read What is a map card? for more information.

THE FINAL STEP
The Invitation Envelope
Envelopes come with your wedding invitations, and you can have them printed with your return address for no additional cost. You can also have them printed with your guests’ addresses if you choose our envelope addressing service for an additional fee. Be sure to have one wedding invitation ensemble assembled and weighed at the post office before you purchase postage.

Thank You Card
Thank you cards are also not shown here because they aren’t a part of the wedding invitation ensemble but they are an important part of your wedding stationery. Sending thank you cards is the couple’s opportunity to share their appreciation with friends and family who attended the wedding. The thank you card wording includes “Thank You” on the front or the couple’s first and last names (a.k.a. a note card). The thank you message should be handwritten inside the card although the option to have a message printed inside is available.