Wedding planning is an undeniably all-consuming process. With plenty of milestones and deadlines to adhere to, your schedule becomes more and more hectic as the date draws closer. In the midst of planning, it's easy to forget that your guests have their own schedules and plans, at that their calendars need to be accommodated.
It's common to plan vacations, business trips, family outings and church events four to six months in advance. To ensure your guests include your wedding on their calendars, they'll need ample warning. If your wedding invitations don't go out with enough time to spare, you may be disappointed when a few important guests can't attend the festivities. Make sure your wedding date is secure on your loved ones calendars with customized save the dates!
Save the dates (also called Save the Date Invitations) are usually sent 6-8 months before the wedding. Save the dates are a courteous way to let recipients know the date and location of your wedding so they plan ahead and make necessary accommodations. As save the dates are relatively new to the wedding lexicon, etiquette around creating and sending save the dates can be a little unclear. Clearly, everyone who gets a save the date card also should also receive a formal invitations, and wedding professionals recommend sending save the date cards to as many of the guests on your list as possible. If your budget doesn't allow it, you can save some by making sure everyone who you know will be traveling to attend receives a save the date. Although your closest friends and family members probably don't need the reminder, it is good etiquette to include them on your save the date send list, if at all possible.
Save the dates come in a variety of formats and styles. Save the date postcards, save the date photo cards, save the date magnets, or traditional save the date cards with matching formal invitations can all be mixed and matched to set the right tone and style for your big day. If you're planning a more informal celebration, a photo card or low-key style will help set the tone for your celebration. If you're planning a destination wedding, stir up some excitement with a custom magnet or save the date postcard. If your big day will be a grand, traditional soiree, match your save the dates to your formal invitation suite for a classy and coordinated effect.
Informal save the dates could feature your favorite couples snapshot, or a cute play on words to introduce your guests to your wedding celebration. Bright colors, fun fonts, and plenty of opportunities for personality are the hallmarks of informal save the dates.
If you're planning a more formal event, your save the dates should simply announce the date and location of your wedding. You could also decide to provide out-of-town invitees with early accommodation, transportation, and other practical information on your formal correspondence.
Whichever direction you decide to go, be sure to include the standard "formal invitation to follow" at the bottom of the save the date. This sentence is crucial, as you don't want guests to start contacting you for further information you may not even know yourself!
If you're unsure how to convey your particular personality and style in a save the date, never fear! Simply follow the lead on your chosen design, or replicate one of our three basic styles below.
Save the date!
July 17th, 2016
For the wedding celebration of Thomas and Sydney
Formal invitation to follow
Rebecca Franklin Stuart and John Bailey Ingram
Are getting married in New York City
May 30th, 2015
Formal invitation to follow
We're spreading the news!
Jack and Diane are getting hitched!
Please save the date: 9/15/15 in Chicago, Illinois
Invitation to follow
For a stylish and synchronized effect, match your save the dates to your formal invitations and to the theme and décor of the event itself. While that may take some planning to pull off six months out, presenting a coordinated style will inspire your guests and ensure your wedding is a stand out event.
If you're unsure how to perfectly match your save the dates with your wedding's overall style, skip the planning ahead and simply choose a style that suits you and your partner. It's important to make sure your special day is authentic as possible, and choosing a design or style that doesn't suit you won't get your process off on the right foot. From classy and formal to whimsical and fun, there's something to suit the personality of every married couple-to-be.