wedding planning

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First Things First

Wedding Planning Timeline
How Are We Going to Pay for All This?


Spreading the Word

Choosing Wedding Invitations
Wedding Invitation Wording
Wedding Invitation Etiquette


Keeping Your Sanity

Avoiding the Guilt Trap
Advice from the Bride
Top 10 Wedding Stress Busters



Setting the Mood

Finding a Wedding Location
A Guide to Wedding Flowers
Wedding Centerpiece Ideas


Shaping Up

Get in Shape for the Big Day
Online Personal Training


Dressing the Part

Wedding Gown Guide
Proper Groom's Attire
Shop for Wedding Shoes


Oh, Behave!

Wedding Etiquette Tips
Bachelorette Party Ideas
Bachelor Party Ideas


Eat, Drink and Be Married

Wedding Catering Options
A Guide to Wedding Cakes


'Tis Better to Give...

Wedding Favor Ideas
Bridesmaid Gift Ideas
Groomsman Gift Ideas


Making Your Getaway

Destination Weddings
Honeymoon Planning Tips


Beyond the Big Day

Newlywed Cooking Tips
Financial Advice for Newlyweds


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Wedding Invitation Etiquette


The deeper you descend into wedding planning land, the more you come to realize that certain things are expected of you. For example, it's expected that you'll take your husband's name. It's expected that your bridesmaids will wear matching dresses. It's expected that you'll serve liquor to your guests. At Weddings That Work, we like to think that you have the right to do things your way at your wedding, and if that means bucking tradition (and possibly even saving a few bucks in the meantime), you should go for it. But for those of you who prefer to do things the old-fashioned way, here are some tips on traditional wedding invitation etiquette.


Double Envelopes

The idea behind this custom is that including an outer envelope ensures that every guest will receive a pristine envelope for their wedding invitation, regardless of how tattered the exterior envelope may have become in transit. Keep in mind that including two envelopes will increase paper costs, calligraphy costs (if you use a calligrapher), and maybe postage costs. It's also a wee bit wasteful. The good news is, it's becoming more and more common and acceptable to forego the two-envelope tradition.


Social and Professional Titles
Always include titles such as "Doctor" and "Lieutenant" and spell them out completely. Tradition holds that you should also include titles such as "Mr." and "Mrs." before each name.
Formal invitations: Mr. and Mrs. Frederick Jones
Informal invitations: Mr. Frederick and Mrs. Sally Jones

If the wife has kept her maiden name, her name should come first and be joined with her husband's name with the word "and."
Ms. Sally Holden and Mr. Frederick Jones

For unwed couples, you can forego the "and" and include each name on its own line.
Ms. Susana Tipsett
Mr. Declan Lennon


In both recipient and return addresses, all words should be spelled out, including "Street," "North," "Apartment," "Post Office Box." This goes for state names, as well. If you give your envelopes to a professional calligrapher, be sure to provide a neatly printed list of all addresses written exactly as they should appear on the wedding invitations. It's best not to assume that even a professional wedding calligrapher will follow proper addressing etiquette.


Tip: If your desired guest list exceeds the wedding or reception venue's maximum capacity, relegate the less crucial people to a "B" list. Send out the invitations to the rest of the invitees a little earlier than usual (ten weeks before the wedding date as opposed to eight weeks ahead of time). You may find that within the next two to three weeks enough people have RSVPed "no" that you'll be able to send out the remaining invitations. If you decide to do this, remember to have all envelopes addressed at the same time so that your "B" list invites are ready to go out as soon as you know you can send them.



Top 5 Planning Tips

1. Get a dedicated credit card for all of your wedding expenses so that you can dispute the charge if a deal falls though.

2 Earn miles toward your honeymoon with a frequent flyer miles credit card from

3. Get the best deal on airfare, hotel and rental cars for your honeymoon through any travel site of your choice.

4. Create your own web page at with information about your wedding date, location, gift registries, and hotels for out-of-town guests.

5. If you plan to take your spouse's name, get a Name Change Kit to ensure you cover everything.

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