Tips & FAQ

Helpful Information:

  • Order approximately 15% extra envelopes to cover mistakes, corrections and last minute additions. This is less costly then having to rush order more envelopes later.
  • Alphabetize your guest list as soon as you start compiling it so that you can keep names organized throughout the wedding planning process from the Save the Dates, to Wedding Invitations, Rehearsal Invitations and Thank You notes.
  • Because stationers sometimes insert invitations into inner envelopes as a service to their customers, please request that your invitations arrive unassembled as I cannot write on stuffed envelopes.
  • Take one entire invitation suite (invitation, reply set, inner/outer envelopes, direction card etc.) to the post office to have it weighed ahead of time (rather than waiting until your job is completed from me) so that you can be sure to get the proper postage for your reply envelope and outer envelope. If you don’t like the selection of stamps at your local post office, go online to purchase at www.usps.com. Feel free to be creative and mix and match stamps to add up to the correct amount. The envelopes will look pretty so your stamps should be pretty too!

Guest List Formatting & Etiquette:

  • Lists that are typed in Times Roman (or similar)12pt font and emailed as a Word doc (as .doc format) are preferred; lines should be stacked just as they would appear on an addressed envelope. (See below). I can reformat from an Excel spreadsheet in .xls format (not .xlsx). Extra charges may apply if extra time is needed to reformat or convert a document.
  • Note: Please review your list carefully before sending it to me. I ask that you don’t send me the list too far in advance before I’m ready to start the work, since you’ll probably still be making updates and changes. After sending me your list, please send any changes or additions in a separate email (rather than resending an updated entire guest list) and I can note on my hardcopy. You can continue to update your own master list; but sending me entire updated guest lists can be confusing.
  • If you have inner and outer envelopes, children’s first names only are on 2nd line for inner envelopes. If there are two adults (unmarried couples or the spouse retained her maiden name) names are written on 2 lines, woman’s name first. Unmarried couples are not joined by “and”. If using outer envelopes only, children’s names are written on 2nd line. Adult children over 18 living at home should get their own invitation.
  • Married couples w/different last names have both full names on outer, and both last names on inner (Ms. Jones and Mr. Smith).
  • Guests: “and Guest” will go on the inner envelope only; but if you’re using outer envelopes only, then “and Guest” would be written on the outer.
  • Doctor titles come first, regardless of gender and only medical doctors are listed as Dr. or Doctor. If you would like the title written out as “Doctor”, please write out on your list. PhD’s would be addressed as Dr. and not written out as Doctor.
  • Abbreviations: You can abbreviate states and apartments – I’ll write out; but please write East, West or E., W. so I know what it means. If it’s just E (no period), it could be confused with a unit or apartment number.
  • Here are some examples:
    • Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Smith
      123 New Street
      Columbus, OH 43085
      (inner envelope – optional)
    • Mr. and Mrs. Smith
      Ashley and Katie (children)
    • Mr. and Mrs. Kenneth Wilson
      321 Any Street
      New York, NY 10025
    • Kenneth and Susan
      (more informal – first names only on inner envelope)

Seating Card Etiquette

  • Escort cards are usually one per couple and are placed alphabetically by last name on a table as the guests walk into the event venue. The escort card is often a tented card with the table number inside, or it can be a little envelope with the guest’s names and a card inside indicating the table number.
  • For instance, Ms. Jennifer Stevens and Guest (inside, Table 4). The little envelopes and cards can be very helpful for last minute changes and switching out guests at different tables.
  • Place cards are usually one per person and set at individual place settings. They can be either formal (Ms. Hughes) or informal (Stephanie Hughes).
  • Since escort cards and place cards are fairly small, please don’t use any middle names, or Jr., Sr., II, III, unless this is needed due to duplicate names.
  • Children seated with their parents can be included on the same card:Mr. and Mrs. Hopkins, Kaitlyn and Kristen
  • Table cards are set on each table and can be identified by a numeral (4, 5, 6); or written out (Four, Five, Six); or written by name if you chose table names in lieu of numbers. For example, table names might be significant cities visited by the bride and groom (London, Paris, Aspen) or flowers used in the wedding (Rose, Hydrangea, Lily).

Frequently Asked Questions

  • How long does the envelope addressing process typically take? Approximately 1 week per 100-150 envelopes; but may depend on my workload at the time. I try to accommodate each client the best I can, so I will often do rush jobs when needed.
  • Do you ship nationally? Yes. There are many convenient shipping options that can be tracked online and insured via ground or express methods to ship nationally or internationally.
  • Is there a minimum order? No minimum orders. I can address several hundred envelopes for a large event, or write out just a few place cards for a small dinner party.
  • Do you offer services other than envelope addressing? Yes. Other calligraphy services include place cards, escort cards, table number cards and menu cards. I can also do the calligraphy for the master artwork for an invitation suite which would then be printed. This might include the wedding invitation, envelope and reply set.
  • What do I need to know before ordering invitations? See which size envelope would be most appropriate for the type of guest list you have. If you have many long names and addresses, a small envelope may not be suitable. Some papers are not as ink-friendly as others; but there’s always a solution! If you are unsure, you can send me a sample to test. Extra charges apply for dark papers, envelopes with a dark lining, or papers that are difficult to write on.