Sending A Wedding Announcement — After The Fact
Our question is about how to word our wedding announcement after the fact.
We were recently married in a very small private ceremony in our friends’ garden a few weeks ago. We would like to send out an announcement to friends and family, many of whom live abroad and are my husband’s relatives. We’re certainly not asking for gifts because we’ve been together for over seven years and have everything we really need, so we won’t be mentioning a bridal registry.
My first marriage ended in divorce, but I’ve gone by my first husband’s last name professionally for twelve years.
How does one word the announcement?
–newlyweds, Newport, RI
Congratulations to the newlyweds! Thank you for coming to Newport Manners & Etiquette.
Include the basic information that you wish to have known centered on an elegant announcement card:
joyfully announce their marriage
which occurred on
Elizabeth Bennett Winthrop
William Norman Livingston
are pleased to announce
Saturday the first of September
two thousand eighteen
What you'll need to consider when planning and designing your wedding announcement:
- Will the bride be using her maiden name and/or her professional name plus her new husband's last name? Consider how she is best known.
- If the bride is not changing her last name to her husband's last name, or hyphenating it to his, does she include her middle name and/or maiden name, with her professional last name? Her choice.
- In printing out the names, are both middle names spelled out? Or are both middle names represented simply by an initial with a period after it? Both middle names should be represented in the same fashion: spelled out or represented with the first initial followed by a period. Elizabeth B. Livingston and William N. Livingston or Elizabeth Bennett Livingston and William Norman Livingston. Follow style.
- Since some of the wedding announcements are being sent overseas, do you need to make the location Newport, Rhode Island, United States? If they know you live in Newport, Rhode Island, United States, then just the city, Newport, is perfect. Especially when Newport, Rhode Island, United States, already appears on the envelope's return address
When designing your announcement you will need to choose the size (dimensions) and the weight of the paper, the color of the card and envelope (for instance white or ecru), the type face font and ink color, as well as the printing method.
- The big decision of whether to use thermography or engraving may be decided by your budget.
- Embossing is no longer an option since the US Post Office now has a band on blind embossing and will not return an envelope that is mistakenly addressed when the return address is embossed.
- Should the envelopes be lined? Not necessarily.
- Do you need a loose sheet of tissue over the card? Perhaps, if the card is engraved. Follow formality.
- Would you like to focus attention on the the weight of the card and its information by having rounded edges with colorful beveling that create a subtle frame for your announcement? It is a lovely option.
- Are you planning on using an eye-catching motif in the heading, such as a family crest or a monogram that combines your first and last name initials. Or perhaps a delightful decoration?
The quality of the paper of your wedding announcement card should be on par with a beautiful wedding invitation. Ideally the paper would be on fairly heavy stock that is a hundred percent cotton -- to create a rich texture for the typesetting and engraving or thermography.
- A brilliant type color and/or boarder/beveling add a memorable touch.
- A motif of a crest or monogram as a heading are also attractive focus point.
- Or are just your names enough?
When addressing envelopes with an engraved return address, it is lovely to have them exquisitely penned by a professional calligrapher, otherwise, computer calligraphy can look spectacular on those that were thermographed.
- When addressing the envelopes yourself by hand, use a really good felt tipped pen or fountain pen instead of a ballpoint.
Photograph courtesy of Dempsey & Carroll.