When planning your wedding, there are several essential stationery items you will need and many more nice to haves. Your specific stationery items will vary depending on personal preference and cultural traditions, here is a helpful list (who doesn't love a list?!) with the most popular wedding stationery.
Save the Date Cards:
Send out up to a year before the wedding date. Save the date cards inform guests of the upcoming event, allowing them to mark their calendars and make any necessary arrangements. A save the date is often the first insight into your day and can showcase your wedding colours and styling.
Send 4-8 months in advance of your wedding. Your wedding invitation is your chance to tell your guests all about your day and will be personalised to each guest, usually posted to their home address. The invitation will provide detailed information about the date, time and location of the wedding. Invitations can also have a details card with useful additional information such as the dress code, travel and accommodation details, gift list and your wedding planners contact details. Your wedding invitation will set the tone of your wedding and you can carry this design through your wedding.
These cards are included with the wedding invitation and allow guests to indicate whether they will attend the wedding or not. They often include a pre-addressed and stamped envelope for easy response. It's also a good idea to include dietary requirements or if you have a multiple choice menu the options for guests to fill in their options.
Order of Service:
An order of service outlines the order of events during the ceremony, be this in church or a celebrant ceremony. It includes music that is part of the ceremony, any readings and your vows plus the names of the wedding party. You can also include meaningful messages or explanations of rituals or traditions. If you are planning an unplugged ceremony this can also be noted.
Reserved Seating Signage:
You may wish to reserve some seating in your ceremony for key family members and the wedding party, these can be individually named or refer to the person's role within the wedding.
Your table plan will be displayed during your drinks reception and show guests where they will be sitting for the wedding breakfast. Table plans can take on many design formats (I have a whole Pinterest board of different ideas) Most of your guests will be unaware of how much hard work has gone into organising the table plan, deciding who to sit where is a time consuming task! Ensure your table plan is at least A1 size and your font clear to read.
Table Numbers or Names:
Table numbers or names will help guests easily locate their assigned tables and will compliment the table plan. I have seen names of places visited as a couple, walks hiked together, favourite drinks, links to hobbies, special dates… the list goes on, make it personal and a reflection of you as a couple and if you are struggling with ideas simply use numbers.
These small cards are placed on each guest's assigned seat at the reception, indicating where they should sit.
If you're having a sit-down dinner with multiple meal options, menu cards can be placed on each guest's setting to indicate the available choices.
Thank You Cards:
Send within two months of the wedding. After the wedding, send thank you cards to express gratitude to your guests for attending and for any gifts they may have given.
Nice to haves:
Welcome sign, order of the day, guest book, cards and gifts, wedding favour tags, bar or cocktail menu, cake flavours, directional signage, hashtag. The list could go on.
So now you have an insight into what wedding stationery you will need, I asked two stationery legends for some top tips and points to consider:
When should you book your wedding stationery?
The earlier the better but at least 6 months prior to the wedding. The design and printing process takes around 8 weeks. Allow yourself plenty of time to enjoy the whole stationery process – it’s a fun and enjoyable experience, one that makes wedding planning feel real, especially once your invites are posted and responses begin to land.
How do I choose my wedding colour palette?
Your wedding colour palette is often inspired by the season your wedding falls in or your venue or location itself.
Spring: light, bright and warm colours
Summer: cool, delicate and muted colours
Autumn, warm and intense colours
Winter: bright and opulent colours
What special touches can I add?
Embellishments can further enhance your style, from textured torn-edge invites to hand finished gold leaf detailing. To collate your stationery suite you could use a monogram printed band or ribbon in your wedding colours - from fine modern satin ribbon to raw-edge organza and silk.
When it comes to print finishing, your invites can be personalised with your guest names and your envelopes can be addressed in-keeping with your stationery type style and colour with printed liners to match. Venue illustrations or line illustrations with bespoke wax seals give a classic look or use printed vellum wraps for invitations for a touch of luxury.
Couples can get confused with their guest list numbers. You don’t need to order one save the date/invite for every guest, it’s one per household/family/couple.
A HUGE thank you to the stationery experts:
Based on Oxfordshire, Laura creates natural, elegant and meaningful wedding stationery and signage.
Based in the heart of creative Sheffield, Leanne and her family create modern and bespoke stationery.