Wedding Invitation Etiquette - Tips from a Calgary Wedding Invitation Designer

Updated: Apr 5

Who hasn't had a question about wedding invitation etiquette? There are so many rules - like what to include on the invitation and who gets a plus one. As Calgary elopement photographers, our couples have questions! And quite frankly, so do we. Is it better to send out invitations if there is a risk you might have to uninvite guests later due to government restrictions? What if you want to have a kid-free wedding?




We are so excited to introduce Lilo K Design to the blog today, who helped answer some of the most frequently asked invitation etiquette questions we are asked! As a luxury wedding invitation designer here in Calgary, she sees what people are actually doing now with their wedding invitations. After all, although some etiquette rules remain, a lot has flown out the window with the craziness in the world today. People are ABSOLUTELY still sending out wedding invitations though! And once you take a look at these photos, you are going to see that stunning stationery is worth the splurge. Here is Leila's response to some common questions about stationary.


Custom wedding invitations - laser cut pink wedding invite

First things first: Do we still need invitations if we are unsure if we are going to have a wedding during the pandemic? What is COVID Wedding Invitation Etiquette?


Absolutely! Although there are a lot of unknowns at this time, you must think about how you would have invited your guests if there was no pandemic. There is a risk that you may have to “uninvite” them, but remember, it is better to be uninvited, than to never have been invited in the first place.


I always recommend having a “COVID” insert with your invitations that are designed to match your stationery suite. This way you would have covered all the basics, such as:

1) how you are handling the situation and may have to postpone your wedding

2) advising your guests that plans may change and where they can be on the look out for any updates.





When do we send out our wedding invitations?


As a rule of thumb, your Save the dates should go out 8 to 10 months before the wedding. Aim to order your invitations four to five months out so they are ready to mail 8 to 10 weeks before the wedding. If you are having a destination wedding or marrying over the holidays, send out your invites even earlier (12 weeks before the wedding).



Wedding RSVP Card


Do we need to collect RSVP’s?


I strongly encourage all my clients to have an RSVP date. Although it seems like a daunting task, especially if you are having a bigger wedding, it will help all your vendors out with your final count. Keep in mind that your final count may affect the number of centerpieces and other décor elements, which your vendors will need to finalize a few weeks before the wedding. Make sure that you ask your guest to RSVP to your wedding no later than three or four weeks after guests receive the invitations.


Modern marble and pink wedding invitations with RSVP card


How many invitations should we order?


When ordering invitations, count the number of households that you will need to invite, rather than each person. For example, 100 guests are usually 50 – 60 invitations. As a rule of thumb, always order 10% more than needed, as you may forget to include some people on you guest list, you want a keepsake of your invitation, and you want to give one to your photographer to help capture all the details of your big day.





What does “custom designed” really mean when it comes to wedding invitations?


At Lilo K Design, all our invitations that are created are custom designed to each couple’s style which means no two invitations look alike. We specialize in creating bespoke invitations for our couples and work with our couples to achieve a design that is uniquely there's. Essentially, these invitations are one of a kind that are designed from scratch using inspiration from the couple.





How long do wedding invitation take to complete?


Each style of invitation is different. Some invitations take 4 weeks to complete (from design to delivery) and some invitations take 6 to 8 weeks to complete. It all depends on the style that you like, as well as the complexity of the design and print. I always offer an ETA and will work with you to ensure that we meet your deadline if we are in a time crunch.


clear acrylic wedding invitations

What do we do if we do not want kids invited?


There are a couple of ways you can address this. On the mailing envelope, you list the parents name only (ex. Mr. and Mrs. Sam Smith). If you write “The Smith Family” it is implied that the whole family is invited. Another way is for you to have a line on your RSVP insert that states “We have reserved _____ seats in your honour.”





Who Gets a Plus-One?


Although traditionally, it is common that anyone who is engaged or in a serious relationship will get a plus one. But in my books, we can throw away this tradition and invite who you want and let it be known if they get a plus one or not. Do not feel pressured to have unknown guests at your wedding because your “Cousin Betty” has a new boyfriend. This is your big day, and you should be comfortable with everyone on your guest list. The same way you address the “no kids allowed” is the same way you would address if you were allowing someone to bring a plus one.



Calgary wedding invitations - flat lay


Calgary Wedding Invitations & Stationery


Honestly, is there anything more luxurious feeling than thick paper stock in your hands? Or a stunning hand-written calligraphy envelope with YOUR name on it? Wedding Invitations are a chance to set the tone for the day and get your guests excited for what's to come - whether you have 10 guests or 150 of them (we are kind of big fans of micro weddings over here). If you are looking for the best Calgary wedding invitation designer, make sure to check out Lilo K Designs. And of course, if you are looking for a Calgary wedding photographer, make sure to get in touch and check our availability here. We would love to connect with you!

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