This wedding stationery timeline is a reference tool of best practices; when to order and mail your wedding stationery. Depending on schedules and budgets there may be some flexibility if you go with a semi-custom design.
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When to Place Your Invitation and Day-of Stationery Orders
Order Eight to Twelve Months Before Your Event
Mail: Destination 8-12 months before, Local 6 months
Save-the-Date cards are very important for destination weddings, or weddings near a major holiday. Some of your out-of-town guests may decide to plan their own romantic getaway around your wedding date. If you are staying local or planning a small intimate wedding, save-the-dates may not be necessary.
WHAT TO INCLUDE: Name of Bride and Groom, Date of the Wedding, Location: City and State, “Invitation to Follow”, optional website url.
You should book your stationery designer (AKA – ME!!!) by the time you have booked your venue. If you haven’t already, click here to book a consultation.
Wedding Stationery Order Timeline for INVITATIONS
Order Four to Six Months Before Your Event
Mail: Destination 3-4 months, Local 6-8 weeks
There is such a thing as too early! You want to give your guests enough time to get excited but not so much time that they totally forget. While invitations for a destination wedding should be sent far enough in advance for your guests to make travel plans.
The style and theme of your wedding should be reflected in the invitations to help set the tone for the big day. If you haven’t already, click here to purchase my creative planning workbook.
When ordering, remember to count households and couples as one.
RESPONSE CARD: You can use this to collect more than just names and head count.
DETAILS CARDS: Make it easy on your guests by providing a map/directions (your out-of-towners will thank you). You may also want to include your wedding website and other relevant details.
THANK YOU CARDS
Order: 6 months before or with your invitations, Mail: as you receive gifts or within one month of your wedding.
Believe it or not, you’ll start receiving gifts before you even walk down the aisle! Friends and family who are unable to attend may send their gift in advance. Send their “TY” immediately to minimize your workload after the wedding. Once you’re back from your honeymoon, kick into high gear to get them out no later than four weeks after the wedding.
Wedding Stationery Order Timeline for Day-of Paper Goods
Wedding Stationery: Order Two Months Before
Order: 2 months before, Delivered 1-2 weeks prior
VOWS | You definitely don’t want to forget you’re vows, if you will be reciting your own. Have them written on a pretty piece of paper or in a card to have your maid of honor hold until you’re ready for them at the altar. As your creative designer I could create a frameable keepsake of your vows.
PROGRAMS | As with most big events, you want to know what’s happening and when? YOUR wedding is no different, especially if you are having a traditional Catholic or Jewish ceremony.
RESERVED SEATING/IN HONOR OF | Signage to identifies seating for those who want to have the best seat in the house/church. Mark an empty seat to honor loved ones who have past away.
TABLE NUMBER CARDS | Make sure your guests know where to sit by having each table labeled with a number or name.
ESCORT CARDS | Escort cards are important for guests to know which table they will be sitting at. It will have their name and table number on it for them to find.
MENU | Creating a menu for guests to review as they take their seats will get them excited for the dishes to come.
PLACE CARDS | If there will be assigned seating at your wedding ensure guests know where to sit by placing a name card at the top of the plate setting. This helps with organizing and making sure there are enough seats for everyone. These cards can also be used to indicate meal preferences.
PHOTO PROPS | His and Her, Mr. and Mrs. OR Thank Your signs are a fun way to label your seats as newlyweds. This is definitely optional but always makes for a great photo-op.
SIGNAGE | This includes seating charts, guest book alternatives (poster, faux certificate), tables signs (buffet, dessert, cocktails), banners and any other large format signs/posters.
OTHER | dance floor, napkins, stir sticks, favor packaging, etc.
If you don’t see what you are looking for, please ask, I would love to work together to create something amazing and unique.