How To: Address Your Wedding Invitations

April 24, 2018

 

When planning your wedding, you would think that sending out invitations would be one of the easier parts of the ordeal. After all, once the invitations are made, it's just a matter of sliding them into envelopes and slapping names and stamps on, right? 

 

Well, it's not that simple. How you address those envelopes depends on who you are inviting, and with so many different preferences and relationship dynamics, it can be tricky to know how to word each address.

 

What do you write when you aren't sure if Jessica is bringing her new beau? Or when Lindsey and Carla aren't married but are sorta...co-habitating? Or when you aren't sure if it's too old-fashioned to call someone Mrs. (their husband's name)? The questions that come up are endless.

 

That's why we have put together a helpful guide to addressing your invitations for every situation: 

 

Married, same last name

Mr. and Mrs. John Smith

123 Address Lane

City, State 12345


Married, wife prefers Ms.

Correct: Mr. John Kelly and Ms. Jane Kelly

Incorrect: Mr. and Ms. John Kelly


Married, different last name

Mr. John Holt and Mrs. Samantha Thuente


Married, wife is doctor

  • If the woman uses her husband’s name socially:
    Dr. Barbara and Mr. James Werner
     

  • If she uses her maiden name both professionally and socially:
    Dr. Barbara Hanson and Mr. James Werner


Married, wife outranks her husband (elected office, military rank, etc)

The Honorable Jane Kelly and Mr. John Kelly

Dr. Jane Kelly and Mr. John Kelly


Married, both are doctors (PhD or medical) and use the same last name

The Doctors Kelly (omit first names)

Drs. John and Jane Kelly / Drs. Jane and John Kelly

Dr. John Kelly and Dr. Jane Kelly / Dr. Jane Kelly and Dr. John Kelly

 

Married, both are doctors (PhD or medical), she uses her maiden name

Dr. Jane Johnson and Dr. John Kelly

Dr. John Kelly and Dr. Jane Johnson


*Same-sex couples follow same rules


Unmarried couple living together

Ms. Nancy Fellows and Mr. Scott Dunn

123 Address Lane

City, State 12345


Single woman

Ms. Jane Johnson

Miss Jane Johnson (Usually ‘Miss’ is for girls under 18)


Single, plus one

Mr. James Smith and Guest


Family, with children under 18 living at home

Mr. and Mrs. Michael Abraham

Daniel, Jeffrey, Miss Brittany and Miss Kelly

  • Childrens’ names appear on second line below parents, first names only, oldest to youngest

  • Boys under 18 don’t necessarily need title

  • Girls under 18 are Miss


Family, with children over 18 living at home

Mr. and Mrs. Michael Abraham

Ms. Kelly Abraham


Children over 18 not living at home should receive their own invitation

 


TIPS FROM THEKNOT.COM

 

If you don't include each child's name, you're implying that children are not invited. That

said, don't be surprised if some guests still mistakenly assume their children are welcome. If you're concerned this will happen with your guests, ask your immediate family and bridal party to help spread the word that the wedding will be adults only and add the message to your wedding website. In the end, you may have to follow up with guests who don't get the message via phone to gently explain the situation.


TIPS FROM MARTHA STEWART WEDDING

 

-There is no need to have the husband’s middle name, but if you do, write it out in full rather than using an initial.

 

-Using the word “and” implies marriage when used with adults’ names.

 

-Spouses of attendees should always be invited. When it comes to your pals’ significant others or dates, to add or not to add becomes a question. Use your discretion depending on your budget and how long the couple have been together (six months is a good gauge).

 

-If you are inviting someone with a plus-one, try to find out the name and address of his or her date and send two separate invitations. If that’s not possible, address the outside envelope to the primary invitee, with the inside envelope reading “Ms. Jane Doe and Guest.” If you know whom he or she will be bringing, it’s more personal to include that person’s name on a separate line.


Still have questions? Feel free to CONTACT ME.


 

 

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