Tag Archives: Etiquette

March 25

Ask Etta: Wedding Day Details to Include for Guests

Angie asks…

I am ready to order my wedding invitations, but I am not sure what details to include for my guests. Other than the date, time, and place, what other information should be on the invitation? Our wedding venue is a little tricky to find so I would like to give detailed directions to my guests, but I don’t want the invitation to look cluttered.

Etta says…

I’m going to let you in on a little secret that will help to keep your wedding invitation chic and stylish, and still get all of the information to your guests: Enclosure cards! Enclosure cards are the perfect way to share wedding day details like directions, special requests, and your wedding website with guests. While much of this information should be listed on your wedding website, it should be remembered that not all guests will be internet-savvy. Here are a few ways you can use this handy stationery trick.

Wedding Paper Divas Map Enclosure Card

Directions

Including directions with your wedding invitation is absolutely necessary if you have a difficult-to-find location. After all, you invited your guests – you want to make sure they can find the venue! However, your wedding invitation is not the place to include these directions. Simply list the directions on an enclosure card that accompanies the wedding invitation. Enclosure cards can even be customized to include a map of your location.

Wedding Paper Divas Information Enclosure Card

Special Instructions and Details

Listing nearby accommodation options is also helpful for out-of-town guests. Be sure to note if you have reserved a block of rooms for your wedding. Sometimes a bride will want to share useful information with her guests, like “The reception will be outdoors, so please bring something warm”, or “Shuttles will provided to and from the reception venue.” An enclosure card is the perfect place to convey these messages, and will save you multiple calls or emails to your guests.

Wedding Paper Divas Mini Enclosure Cards Effervescent Sparkle

Wedding Website and Social Media

Include your wedding website information on an enclosure card, so that guests know where to find these details, and more. For couples who are encouraging guests to use Instagram or Twitter to share photos during their wedding, including a personalized hashtag on your enclosure card is a fun touch. Alternately, you could include a request for no sharing of photos on social media sites. Our new Mini Enclosure Cards are the perfect size for any extra-special details!

Wedding Paper Divas Mini Enclosure Cards Donation

Gift Preferences

Your wedding registry should never be listed on your invitation. Instead, an enclosure card can be a simple way to announce your registry, or to direct guests to your wedding website for more information. You may prefer that guests do not send or bring gifts, but instead send a donation to a chosen charity. Use an enclosure card to be specific about your preferences.

Wedding Paper Divas Enclosure Card

I hope this helps, Angie! There are so many fun ways to customize enclosure cards, and to share the details of your wedding day.

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Have an etiquette question for Etta? Email us at blog@weddingpaperdivas.com and she’ll post an answer for you.

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January 14

Ask Etta: Choosing Bridesmaids

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Stephanie asks…

I have been very torn with the decision of picking bridesmaids. I am lucky to have many wonderful friends, plus a big family. I have been in several weddings, and many of my friends are recently also just getting engaged. I would like to have a smaller wedding party, but I also don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings.

If I was in a friend’s wedding or if a friend asks me to be in her wedding, am I obligated to ask her to be a bridesmaid? If I end up picking everyone, how many is too many?

Etta says…

Choosing your attendants can be tough when you are lucky enough to have a large group of friends and close family members. But you are never – and I mean never! – obligated to ask someone to be a bridesmaid, even if you were part of their wedding. Remember, relationships evolve over time. When selecting your bridal party, the best advice is to follow your heart. Choose the friends and family members that will make you feel the most comfortable on what is sure to be a very nerve-wracking day.

There is no hard and fast rule for how many bridesmaids are too many. Past etiquette called for one attendant per fifty guests, but adherence to that number has declined. Instead, think about the number that you couldn’t do without. You should have no regrets about your bridal party, both for who you choose to be a part of it, and who is not.

If you think that a friend may be hurt to not be asked to be a bridesmaid, I suggest that you be upfront with telling her the news. Let her know, carefully, that you are keeping the bridal party small. Try to find another role for your friend. Perhaps she could do a reading during the ceremony, or give a toast at the rehearsal dinner. This way, you are still incorporating her into your special day while also having a bridal party that feels comfortable to you.

I hope this helps, Stephanie!

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Have an etiquette question for Etta? Email us at blog@weddingpaperdivas.com and she’ll post an answer for you.

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August 16

Post Wedding Checklist

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Photo Credit: Jihan Cerda Photography

The post-wedding to-do list can seem almost as long as your wedding planning list! Today we’re highlighting the top duties a newlywed must check off her list. And don’t worry; we’ve included a longer list below.
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Photo Credit: Foot Candles Photography

1. Organize Your Photos

You will likely have more photos from this one day than any other day in your life. Take the time now to organize, compile, store, and share these photographs – you’ll be thankful later.

The first step is to gather together these images. Find out from your photographer when and how you will receive your photos. Most often it will be digitally, which is the best way to save your special shots. A photo Share Site is a fantastic way to gather any candid shots friends and family may have snapped during your wedding. Post a call out to friends on your social profiles to see what they can share. Often, you’ll laugh at the silly moments your guests were able to capture that the professional photographer may have missed.

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Next, decide how you will share and display these photos. From hanging prints in your home to creating personalized stationery, the possibilities are endless. Our favorite way to gather together wedding day memories is with a gorgeous wedding photo book. Pull together images, add in quotes or memories, and you have a keepsake you’ll treasure forever. A photo book is a fantastic anniversary gift, if you can’t find the time to make one just after your wedding.

2. Send Thank You Cards

Thank you cards are a must for any bride, and should be one of the first items tackled after the big day. If you have a wedding registry, you can often get a head start on this by writing thank you notes as gifts are delivered in advance of the wedding.

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Etiquette asks that brides wait no more than 6-8 weeks after the wedding ceremony to send thank you cards. If you are planning to send a photo thank you card with a special shot from your reception, ask your photographer to give you one or two options the day after your wedding. That way, you can order your thank you stationery as soon as possible.

Every person who attends your wedding should receive a thank you note – even if they did not bring a gift. Their presence at your wedding took time and cost, and should be recognized. It’s also a great idea to send thank you notes to your vendors.

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Photo Credit: Renee Brock

3. Change Your Name and/or Update Marital Status

If you are changing your name after your wedding, be sure to think through all of the possible accounts you’ll need to update. Start first with your Social Security card, your driver’s license, and your major bank accounts. Then move on to your employer, insurance companies, and other major accounts. You’ll also need to update your marital status in many of the same places, as well as beneficiary for life insurance. See our Ask Etta feature Do I Really Need to Change My Last Name?

4. Preserve Your Wedding Day Memories

Beyond photos and videos, there are other mementos from your big day that you will want to save. Start with your bridal bouquet the day after your wedding, whether you plan to preserve the entire bouquet or just dry out a handful of petals (a great keepsake to tuck into your wedding album). Hint: many brides have a special “toss” bouquet to throw to guests, and keep their bridal bouquet for themselves.

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Photo Credit: Foot Candles Photography

Take proper care to clean your wedding dress and veil. Find a trusted dry cleaners (with experience in cleaning wedding dresses) to take on this task for you. Then, carefully store your dress. You likely won’t be taking it out of storage too often, so limit exposure to sunlight, heat, and other damaging factors.

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Need a few more ideas of what might be left to check off? See below.

The Days After

  • Return all rented clothing
  • Return all borrowed accessories
  • Return all rented equipment
  • Contact your gift registry to have gifts delivered
  • Send your picture to the newspaper

For the Honeymoon

  • Put your mail on hold, or resume your mail service if you have already returned from your honeymoon
  • Turn on/ off your out of office / away message on your email

Upon Your Return

  • Contact your videographer for a viewing
  • Put any wedding photos taken personally on the internet for friends and family to see
  • Get an official registered copy of your marriage certificate
  • Change your address (if applicable)
  • Create a wedding memento box
  • Update your Will
  • Get (or change) a life insurance policy
  • Update your beneficiary for life insurance / superannuation

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July 15

Infographic: Digital Wedding Etiquette

Wedding Paper Divas conducted a survey* to find out just how prevalent sharing wedding details has become in the online social space. From “checking in” on Facebook to uploading snapshots of the bride and groom to Instagram, the survey found that guests are taking an active part in putting a wedding on a social channel.

While it is always fun to share photos of a good time, take your cue from the bride and groom when it comes to sharing their wedding day on your social accounts. 65 percent of recent wedding guests agree that it is important to ask the couple’s permission before posting wedding photos online. So, before you break out the photo filters and dream up the perfect hashtag, take a moment to look over the infographic and see what the digital trends are for weddings.

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• 4 in 10 recent wedding guests say social media use was encouraged, and a specific wedding hashtag was provided
• 5 in 10 recent wedding guests “checked in” to a wedding using Facebook, Foursquare, or another social channel
• 7 in 10 Twitter-using guests report tweeting about a wedding while in attendance
• 80% of guests used at least one digital channel to RSVP to a wedding invitation
• 76% of guests posted wedding pictures to Facebook

*An online survey of 1,005 adults, age 18 to 54, who attended at least one wedding in the past 12 months was conducted April 3 to 6, 2013. Results have a margin of error of +/- 3 ppt. The survey was administered by Decipher, Inc.

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June 25

Etiquette Chat Recap

Thank you to all participants of our Facebook etiquette chat this morning. We had a wonderful time answering your questions with our wedding etiquette expert, Amber Harrison.

We’ll update with a few top questions (and their answers!) shortly.

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As a thank you to all participants, we are offering ten free samples AND 10% off your next Wedding Paper Divas order. Please see below for exclusions.

 

* Enjoy 10% off your order using the code at FBCHAT10 checkout. There is no minimum purchase required for this promotion. Offer is not applicable to previously placed orders, shipping, taxes, rush processing charges, and excludes photo books, calendars, and gift certificates. This promotion code cannot be combined with other offers and is valid for one-time use only. Offer is only valid on Wedding Paper Divas and is not applicable on third party or partner websites. To prevent abuse, we reserve the right to discontinue or modify this offer at any time without notice. We reserve the right to cancel any order at any time. Offer expires 7/31/13 at 11:59 pm (PT).

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May 21

Ask Etta: Guest List Etiquette

Kimberly asks…

Help! With large families on both sides, high school friends, college friends, work friends, and now my fiancé’s graduate school friends, the guest list for our wedding has gotten out of control. I’ve been told there is a certain percent you can expect to not show up – should I send more wedding invitations to guests than our wedding venue can handle?

Etta says…

This question seems to always confuse brides. While it may seem like a science to create the perfect guest list that keeps everyone happy, there is no hard and fast formula for guest attendance. You’ll hear some experts say to invite 10% over your venue limit, while others claim 20%– and I’ve even seen some pretty complicated math problems put forward! (Hint: if your guest list plans start to resemble your eleventh grade calculus homework, you’re making things too difficult).

Wedding Paper Divas Blog - Air of Affection Wedding Invitation

Remember, you might end up accountable for every person on your guest list. After all, if they are important enough to be on your guest list, you may be (and hopefully are!) important enough to them to warrant the travel. Keeping that in mind, I suggest you create two guest lists. The first will be the definitive list of must-invite guests. The second list will be backup guests, listed in prioritized order (think co-workers, club friends, or friends of parents).

Send invitations out to your first list over eight weeks in advance of your wedding date, and ask for RSVP response cards to be returned within just two weeks. This ensures that you receive responses in a timely manner – allowing you to start inviting those from the second list without cutting it too close to the wedding date.

Wedding Paper Divas Blog - Response Card

At the end of the day, you and your fiancé know your friends and family the best. If you know that Great Aunt Mary won’t make the travel to your wedding, but still wants an invite, then by all means, send her an invitation. On the other hand, if you know your groom’s graduate school friends will travel anywhere in the world for a good party, I suggest you make sure you really want them at your wedding.

I hope this helps, Kimberly!
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Have an etiquette question for Etta? Email us at blog@weddingpaperdivas.com and she’ll post an answer for you.

 

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February 27

Ask Etta: Joint Hosting Etiquette

Anne Asks…

I know that it is tradition to have the wedding invitation addressed from the bride’s parents, as they traditionally host the reception. But I find myself in an unusual reception situation. My fiancé and I are paying for the majority of our wedding cost, but both of our parents are helping us out with small financial contributions. I don’t want to make my future in-laws feel left out, because they are contributing just as much as my parents. How do I appropriately say this in an invitation?

Etta Says…

Thanks for writing in, Anne.

It is now quite common for couples to take on the financial load for their own wedding reception. Often, a bride and groom will pay for the wedding entirely on their own. Sometimes it is the groom’s family hosting, instead of the bride’s, and in other situations, like yours, the wedding is a shared cost between the couple and the two families.

With so many different options, crafting perfect wedding invitations can be difficult. But whichever your situation, there is certainly etiquette in place to make sure all members of the family feel acknowledged for their special part in your wedding.

I can think of several wedding invitation templates that would be perfectly acceptable and recognize both sets of parents.

With this formal template, it is clear that the bride and groom are the hosting the wedding, and yet still acknowledges the parents:

wedding-paper-divas-wedding-invitation-template-parents

A similar, but less formal, format uses the parents’ first names, for a modern touch:

wedding-paper-divas-wedding-invitation-template-parents-first-names

This invitation template uses a clean layout to convey a similar message:

wedding-paper-divas-wedding-invitation-template-parents-unique

Another option is to simply note that the parents are a part of the wedding, but not mention by name:

wedding-paper-divas-wedding-invitation-template-parents-casual

Most of all, it is important to keep in mind how this applies to your personal situation. Are your parents, or your fiancé’s parents, likely to be offended if their names are not on the invitation? If so, I strongly suggest including their names. This is such a simple gesture of goodwill that can mean a lot to your family.

I hope this helps, Anne!

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Have an etiquette question for Etta? Email us at etta@weddingpaperdivas.com and she’ll post an answer for you.

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February 12

Holding a Pre-Destination Wedding Reception: Ask Etta

While we dish about the hottest trends and latest designs, we also know how stressful prepping for the big day can be. Meet Etta, our expert in all things etiquette. She’s ready to delve into your every dilemma.

Debbie Asks…

My husband and I have a very large group of friends that have been a part of my son’s life, and we want to have a celebration before the destination wedding (definitely not after). We are inviting all the people that will be invited to the destination wedding, plus all our other close friends.  What do I call this type of celebration? And do I have to state “no gifts’? Should I stick an insert with the invitation explaining that we are having a small destination affair?

destination invite

Etta Says…

Thanks for writing in, Debbie.

Holding an “at-home” or local celebration is quite common for couples who chose to have a destination wedding. But usually these receptions take place two to six weeks after the marriage ceremony (and thus celebrate the newlyweds).

With no marriage completed, hosting a wedding reception may be a bit misleading for your guests, particularly since the ceremony will still be over half a year away.

Since you are planning the celebration prior to the destination wedding, I suggest that you host a send-off celebration for the engaged couple. I also recommend that your celebration be a casual affair – which it sounds like you are planning.

An engagement party invitation or couples shower invitation can easily be modified to fit this unique celebration. Simply alter the wording along these lines: “Please join us to celebrate the upcoming marriage, and send off the happy couple with your best wishes.”

Destination pre reception

It can feel awkward to host a second reception, when attendees have not been invited to the destination ceremony. But remember that you are making an effort to include all loved ones in the celebration of your son’s marriage. It is widely understood that destination weddings are smaller, more intimate events – and your guests will be happy to be included in this larger celebration.

Formal etiquette calls for no mention of gifts on the invitation, even in the case of requesting no gifts. It is appropriate, however, for you to share this information yourself, in casual conversation.

If you do hold the reception after the wedding, a wonderful way to notify guests is through a wedding announcement, along with a photograph from the destination wedding, which requests their attendance at the reception.

I hope this helps, Debbie!

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Have an etiquette question for Etta? Email us at etta@weddingpaperdivas.com and she’ll post an answer for you.

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October 9

Ask Etta: Thank You Card Etiquette for Bridal Showers

While we dish about the hottest trends and latest designs, we also know how stressful prepping for the big day can be. Meet Etta, our expert in all things etiquette. She’s ready to delve into your every dilemma.

Jana Asks…

My bridal shower was a few weeks ago and I am not sure when I should send thank you cards. Is there a time frame and what should be included in the notes?

Etta Says…

You should always try to send your thank you cards for your bridal shower within two weeks. If it has already been a few weeks I would definitely get started as soon as you can. You don’t want your guests to think you forgot about them and that they were not appreciated. We know this is a very busy and stressful time for brides but try not to wait too much longer.

Usually bridal showers are more of an intimate event so it should not take you more than a few hours to write your bridal shower thank you cards.

If you are planning your bridal shower now make sure to have one of your bridesmaids or someone close to you take note of the gifts and who gave them to you. This will make the thank you card process go much smoother. You should also have all of the addresses by now since you have sent your save the date card and bridal shower invitations!

What’s Inside?

This is definitely a challenging part for some people, the contents. The basic things to include are greeting the guest, expressing your genuine gratitude, be specific and mention the gift, and thank them for attending (or if they didn’t, thank them for thinking of you).

When you make a specific reference to the gift, talk about how you are using it and how much you like it. Such as, “I am using the new robe and slippers every morning when I make my coffee. They are both so comfy!” If it is not something you extremely like you can say “I will be thinking of you every time I use it.”

Before you send the card make sure to double check you have the right person to the right gift. Besides misspelling their name, nothing is worse than addressing a gift to the wrong person.

If you are thanking someone for a monetary gift you can thank them for their generosity without mentioning an exact amount.

If you want to go a little farther you can mention how the “generosity will help with the down payment of our new house.”

Remember to also send bridal shower thank you notes and wedding thank you notes separately. Do not try to combine them into one note. If you follow etiquette you should be sending the bridal shower thank you notes before the wedding, so this should not be a problem.

Here are a couple sample thank you notes for your bridal shower:

  • “Thank you for not only attending my bridal shower, but for the lovely gift as well. You are a great friend. I will think of you every time I use my coffee maker. Thanks again.”
  • “Thank you for the lovely crystal picture frame and for coming to the shower. With friends like you, every day is truly a celebration.”
  • “Thank you for coming to the bridal shower and for the beautiful flower vase. It is such a beautiful color and will match our home perfectly. Your generosity is truly appreciated. Thanks again.
  •  “Thank you for coming to the bridal shower and for your generous gift. We are putting it toward the honeymoon. Your thoughtfulness and friendship means so much to me. Thanks again.”

 

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Have an etiquette question for Etta? Email us at etta@weddingpaperdivas.com and she’ll post an answer for you.

Posted by Brittany Welby

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July 31

Ask Etta: How to Make Custom Wedding Invitations

While we dish about the hottest trends and latest designs, we also know how stressful prepping for the big day can be. Meet Etta, our expert in all things etiquette. She’s ready to delve into your every dilemma.

Lily Asks…

I’m visiting your site for the first time and feeling a little overwhelmed about how to make wedding invitations. Where do I start?

Etta Says…

We all know the wedding planning process can be a bit overwhelming and at times pretty stressful. The wedding is quickly approaching and another big task needs to be accomplished: your wedding invitations. Wedding invitations from Wedding Paper Divas are easy and enjoyable to create with many personalization and customization tools.

There is an abundance of stunning wedding invitations at Wedding Paper Divas and finding the perfect one is simple. First, you want to make sure you have your wedding theme and style nailed down. Since wedding invitations should be mailed out 6-8 weeks prior to the wedding you most likely have a clear picture of your wedding and finding the perfect wedding invitation shouldn’t be hard at all.

Say you are having a vintage outdoor wedding at beautiful ranch and want the perfect wedding invitation to match. You could easily find what you are looking for at Wedding Paper Divas with our innovative filter options.

With the filter buttons you can narrow down your search by theme, color, design styles and even shapes. For this type of wedding I would select Vintage, Nature, and Rounded Corners because I am set on these design elements. Instead of browsing through hundreds of gorgeous wedding invitations I now have 27 options and I know my dream invitation is in this group. If you are still a little unsure and can’t decide between a couple different options, Wedding Paper Divas offers 8 free samples so feel free to order a few and ask your future hubby or maid of honor for input.

Once you have selected your invitation you will go through the customization process adding the text to the invitation. Each step has a guide that will help you put your text in the order you would like. Wedding Paper Divas even provides options such as “Bride’s Parents Hosting, Formal vs. Casual Wording,” and much more.

After you have completed the fields you will be asked to review everything before being taken to the envelope page. Here you can add a printed return address, inner envelopes and liners if you wish. You will then be brought to your shopping cart to check out. Once you have submitted your order a professional designer will review your invitations making sure every last detail from the text to special requests is perfect. If there are no issues you will receive an email with your digital proof where you can make any changes or updates before your invitations go to print. Once you approve the proof, your order will go to print. Depending on the shipping option you choose, turnaround and delivery time could take anywhere from 4-8 days. Here are my two favorite wedding invitations from the group! Which one do you like best?

Hopefully this information will help you relax a bit and know the next step in your wedding planning is easier than you imagined. Good luck and remember to have fun!

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Have an etiquette question for Etta? Email us at etta@weddingpaperdivas.com and she’ll post an answer for you.

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