After picking the stationery, it’s time to plan how to communicate with the guests through invitations. Whether you want something traditional or whimsical, there are basic elements you need to include in an invite. We’re sharing tips on how to word a wedding invitation to announce your big day.
How to Word a Wedding Invitation
When writing an invitation, you must tell crucial information about the wedding, including the couple’s name, wedding date, time, locations of the ceremony and reception, and dress code. You also have to recognize the wedding host. In addition, you must convey a tone, whether traditional or casual.
Crafting an invitation also means considering etiquette rules while ensuring the words reflect your wedding day’s overall vibe. As I design your one-of-a-kind stationery at Laura Damiano Designs, you can start writing what information to include in a wedding invitation.
Among the best parts of creating a wedding invitation is personalizing it with monograms, symbols, and phrases. Such elements add fun to the overall design of your invites. You can use phrases like “getting hitched”, “we do”, always and forever”, or “to love and to cherish”.
Traditional weddings have the couple’s parents as the hosts, putting their names at the top of the invitation. In some cases, couples can also host the wedding together with their parents.
If you follow this, it’s imperative to list the person hosting or paying for the wedding on the first line. These are some ways to word this part.
- Use the word “and” between the names to imply the persons are married.
- Keep the names of separated parents on different lines.
- Include the word “late” before the deceased parent’s name.
The Request to Attend
The request line invites people to attend the wedding. This also sets the tone for the celebration, so decide whether to use formal or casual language. There are several ways to request the pleasure of your guests’ company.
- Religious service: “Request the honor of your presence.”
- Formal: “Request the pleasure of your company.”
- Less formal: “Would love for you to join them.”
- Casual: “Invite you to celebrate with them.”
The Names of the Couple
For some religious and common wedding traditions, the bride’s name comes before the groom’s name. For same-sex couples, you can choose to go alphabetical or with what sounds lovelier. Whether you want to include middle names or not, do whatever feels comfortable to you both.
- The most common would be to use the couple’s first and middle names, followed by the line, “son/daughter of Mr. & Mrs. Smith”.
- If you prefer a less formal one, you may only use first names.
- Use courtesy titles, especially military and professional titles, like Major, Captain, The Reverend, or The Honorable.
The Date and Time
State everything the guests need to show up at the right date and time.
- For formal weddings, write the date and time in full. For instance, if the wedding is on February 28, 2025, at 5:30 PM, the wording should read, “Friday, the twenty-eight of February, two thousand twenty-five, at half after five in the afternoon.”
- Numerals are fine for casual ceremonies.
- Spell the time of the day using “o’clock”. It’s optional to use AM or PM.
- Capitalize the day and month, whereas the year should be lowercase.
It’s essential to list the ceremony location clearly to avoid confusion. Write the venue name on one line, with the city and state following on the line below. You may omit the street address unless you’re holding the ceremony at a private residence.
Traditionally, invitations should list the ceremony venue with the venue name on one line, then the city and state on another line. If you hold the ceremony and reception in the same location, you may use “reception immediately following”.
List the dress code after the reception location. Setting a clear wedding dress code or guidelines helps guests understand what’s expected of them in terms of wardrobe.
Simply indicate if the wedding requires a black tie, semi-formal, or smart casual. You can also consider the season of the wedding, like winter formal attire or summer cocktail attire.
Examples of Invitation Wordings
Here are templates of wedding invitation wordings you can use and adjust to fit your invite’s tone.
Traditional Religious Wording if Both Parents Are Hosting
List your parents’ names on separate lines, starting with the bride’s parents.
Mr. and Mrs. Grace Cartwright
and Mr. and Mrs. Roberto Lopez
request the honor of your presence
at the marriage of their children
Saturday, the Seventh of May
Two thousand twenty-two
half past five o’clock in the evening
Saint Michael Parish
Black tie required
Traditional Secular if the Couple Is Hosting
If you’re paying for the wedding yourselves, skip the host line and start with a request line.
Shiella Mae and
invite you to their wedding
July 30, 2023
Sunday at four o’clock in the afternoon
Dinner and dancing to follow
Summer cocktail attire
Casual Informal if Both Families and the Couple Are Hosting
If multiple parties host the wedding, start with the bride’s name and then the groom’s name.
Hosted by both families and the couple
Please join us
in the joy of celebrating
the wedding of
Friday, October Fourth
at six o’clock in the evening
Margaritaville Lake Resort
Osage Beach, Missouri
Reception immediately following
Casual Formal to Include a Deceased Parent
A meaningful way to commemorate a deceased parent is to include the word “late” before the family member’s name.
Together with their families,
Jennifer Kirsten Kim,
daughter of Christopher Kim and the late Lorna Kim,
and Geoffrey Arthur Danvers
son of Mr. and Mrs. James Harrison Danvers,
request the honor of your presence at their marriage
Saturday, the seventeenth of December
two thousand and twenty-two
At six o’clock in the evening
Bear Creek Lodge
Reception immediately after
Winter formal attire
Aside from choosing a custom wedding invitation, creating your own words for the wedding invitation is an exciting and personal part of the wedding planning process. Don’t forget to include vital details like your name, host’s name, wedding date, time, location, and dress code.