Singaporebrides | Essentials

January 2015

Wedding Invitation Etiquette for the Singapore Couple

With endless possibilities for creative wedding invitation designs these days, the modern Singaporean couple might get confused about the wedding invitation wording, and other do’s and don’ts of wedding invitation etiquette. Here’s our guide.

As bearers of good news, your wedding invitations should give your wedding guests the first insight into your unique wedding celebration. Your wedding invites are your opportunity to let family and friends know you as a couple a little better before the wedding, by showcasing your personalities. With all the contemporary and creative invitation suite design options these days, from gorgeous watercolour prints to gold foil to quirky old vinyl record save-the-dates, the modern Singaporean couple is spoilt for choice. But regardless of the creative license you can take to express your fun and unique wedding personality, wedding invitation etiquette should not be forgotten. Respect your wedding guests, friends and elderly relatives alike, with these tips on and examples of wedding invitation wording, timelines to note, and information to include.

Include important information

Have all the creative fun you like with your wedding invitation design; the invites will introduce your personalities, and give your guests an idea of what to expect at your wedding. For example, you can include tropical prints for a funky beach wedding, or use fancy lasercuts to set the tone for an elegant affair. Whether you choose calligraphy or letterpress for your invites, do remember to present your wedding information clearly. You should include the bride’s and groom’s names, the names of the hosting parents, the date and time, the venues of the ceremony and reception or dinner, and RSVP details.

Clue your guests in on whether you’re serving food by adding a line like “with cocktails and dancing to follow” instead of “with reception to follow.” Include your dress code and your wedding website if you have one, and list the times for your matrimonial ceremony and your lunch or dinner reception. Give the full address details, and you can even provide a map. Ask guests to RSVP their attendance by a certain date, and provide one or two contact numbers for them to do so easily.

wedding invitation etiquette 4 Pearlyn and Paper

Word your wedding invitations

You are no longer restricted to traditional wedding phrases when writing your invitation, though some rules still apply. The full names of the hosts, usually the couple’s parents, come first. When both the couple and their families are hosting the wedding, many couples add “Together with their families” at the beginning of the host line. This is followed by the request for the guest to attend and share in the celebrations. The host will introduce their relationship to the couple, followed by the names of the bride and groom, the date and time, and the venue address and reception line. Here are some wedding invitation wording examples that you can adapt to suit your own scenario:

Formal wedding invitation with both parents hosting:

Mr. & Mrs. John Lee and Doctor & Mrs. Anthony Tan [proper names of those hosting] request the honour of your presence [request line]
at the marriage of their children [relationship of the couple to the host]
Belinda Lee [bride’s name]
Aaron Tan [groom’s name]
Saturday the fifth of May, two thousand and fifteen [day of the week, day and month of wedding]
at five o’clock in the afternoon [time of wedding and time of day]
St Andrews Cathedral [name of the location of wedding]
11 St. Andrew’s Road, Singapore 178959 [venue address]
Reception to follow [reception line]
at seven o’clock in the evening [time of reception and time of day]
at Masons at Gillman Barracks [name of the location of reception]
8 Lock Road, 108936 [reception venue address]
RSVP by the tenth of April to Anne Lee, 90123456 [RSVP line]
Black Tie [dress code, usually placed at bottom right of the card]

Casual wedding invitation with couple and parents hosting:

Together with their families [joint hosting line]
Mr. & Mrs. John Lee and Doctor & Mrs. Anthony Tan [proper names of those hosting]
Belinda Lee [bride’s name]
Aaron Tan [groom’s name]
joyfully invite you to celebrate their marriage [request line]
at Shangri-La Rasa Sentosa, Singapore [name of wedding venue]
101 Siloso Road, Sentosa, 098970 [venue address]
on 7.7.17 [date of wedding]
at seven o’clock in the evening [time of wedding]
with dinner and dancing to follow [reception line]
RSVP by the tenth of April to Anne Lee to [email protected] [RSVP line] [wedding website line]

Samantha and Jarred’s Love You to the Moon and Back Minimony at Open Farm Community by Justrealle Photography

Chinese Wedding Invitation Wording

If Chinese isn’t your forte, you might be feeling clueless when it comes to your Chinese wedding invitation wording. Stationer Nineteen Design Studio has put together a great guide that explains the anatomy of a Chinese wedding invitation. They’ve used a typical family scenario where the wedding banquet is co-hosted by both the bride and groom’s parents.

Chinese wedding invitation wording:

1. Gregorian calendar dates
2. Chinese calendar dates
3. Order of birth of the bride and groom
4. Names of the bride and groom [If the invitation is co-hosted by both parents, the surnames of the bride and groom are excluded]
5. Names of the parents
6. Names of paternal grandparents [If the grandparents of the bride and groom are present, they will be mentioned above the names of the parent stated as 奉严慈命. If only the grandfather is present, the wording will state 奉严命, and 奉慈命 when only the grandmother is present]
7. Banquet venue
8. Time of cocktail reception
9. Time of banquet
10. RSVP information, if this is different from English invitation

Nineteen Design Studio

Sending out the invitations

Always spell out the full names of your guests, and include the appropriate social titles, when addressing your invitations. Write out addresses in full as well, spell out words like ‘Street’ and ‘Road,’ and spell out house numbers below 20. Remember to include a return address on the back of your envelopes, so that you won’t miss any guests who have changed addresses. Let your guests know whether they’re invited to bring along their children, or a date, with how you address their invitations. “Mr. and Mrs. Elijah Wong and family” invites their children to come along, whereas “Mr. and Mrs. Elijah Wong” would imply that the children aren’t invited.

Send out your Save the Dates six to eight months in advance, and follow with your wedding invitations six to eight weeks before the wedding. Allow your guests plenty of time to avail themselves for your celebration, and give yourself leeway for collating the final head count too. If you’re holding a destination wedding, give your guests ample time to prepare by sending invites three months before the wedding. You might also like to personally deliver invitations to your elder relatives, as a mark of respect, and invite your loved family and friends in person.

Ask for RSVPs two to three weeks before your wedding to make sure you have enough time to finalise the head count and create seating plans. Pass all the guest list information to a sibling or a friend and get him or her to handle the guest list, to free yourself up for the many other things you will have to juggle a few days before the wedding. Finally, remember the bigger picture as you work through the little details of wedding planning — that you’re going to celebrate your marriage surrounded by the people you love!

Credits: Feature image by The Paper Bunny / cropped from original.

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