Stationery 101, Volume 13: Who To Include On Your Invitation

Last week for Stationery 101 I went over the basic anatomy of an invitation. Today we're going to start our deep dive and spend a bit more time talking about who to include on your wedding invitation.

When we're talking about who to include on your invitation, we are usually talking about the host lines. Traditionally, those who are paying for the celebration are the hosts, and they are actually inviting guests to the celebration. Historically, the bride's parents pay for, and host, the wedding celebration. This is why you often see "Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Smith" followed by "invite you to celebrate the marriage of their daughter...".

There are certainly a large number of couples who find themselves in the above situation. However, more often than not, there are unique circumstances that may lead to couples wondering who to include on their invitations. Invitations have become more than just a statement of financial contribution and may be more about inclusion, blending, or honoring parents who have passed away.

Here are some of the most common situations to consider when including names in your invitation.

1: BRIDE AND GROOM PARENTS BOTH PAYING. There are a lot of reasons why the grooms parents may help financially with the wedding. Whatever the reason, be sure to include their names on the invitation if they are hosting. I've often worded it as "Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Smith together with Mr. and Mrs. Andrew Taleppo invite you to celebrate the marriage of their children....".

2: EVERYBODY IS PAYING, INCUDING PARENTS AND BRIDE AND GROOM: There are a lot of ways to convey that everybody is contributing towards the big day. The most common being the wording "together with their families...".

3: DIVORCED PARENTS or BLENDED FAMILIES:Sometimes there is literally a small army of people who are helping make your big day happen. Maybe your parents are divorced and/or remarried, grandparents or other family members are contributing, or there are just too many names to list on the invitation. This is another situation where I find "together with their families" to come in handy. While I don't have any photos to share, I have also created an invitation that says "with love and happiness, the families of {insert couple names} invite you to celebrate their marriage".

4: SKIPPING THE HOST LINE COMPLETELY: There's no rule that says you HAVE to have a host line on your invitation. There are so many circumstances that may just make it easier to skip it completely. Maybe the couple is footing the entire bill, or maybe the design itself doesn't lend well to extra verbiage/host lines.

5: INCLUDING PARENTS AS NON-HOSTS, and INCLUDING PARENTS WHO HAVE PASSED AWAY: Sadly, I have worked with a lot of couples who have lost a parent. Dealing with a loss is hard enough, so I'm always happy to find a way to include that parent in the wedding invitation. You may also be in a situation where your parents aren't technically hosting the celebration, but you want their names included anyway.

Here are some examples of invitations without host lines, and ways to include parents as non-hosts.

I'm sure there are a lot of other unique situations that require creative solutions for including names on your invitations, but these are the ones I've come across the most. I always try to remind my couples that it's their wedding day, and if there is something they really want to see included in their stationery design, it's my job to make it happen in a lovely way.

Thank you for joining me in another Stationery 101 post! Don't forget to catch up on past Stationery 101 topics here, such as Letterpress 101, Foil Stamping 101, and Engraving 101.