With the strict etiquette of the past laid aside, your wedding can be a true reflection of who you are and who you aspire to be as you move forward as a couple. One way to demonstrate your identity and the style of your celebrations lies in the wedding invitation wording you use…


Some things aren’t optional!

Assuming that you want your friends and family turn up on the day, some things have to be included. Just as in a traditional invite, your modern wedding invitation wording should include:

Wedding Invitations

  • The hosts
  • The invitation itself
  • Who’s getting married
  • When, where, and at what time
  • Dress codes and what the celebrations will involve
  • Instructions on how to reply



The hosts – The costs and the honours may be split among families, or maybe you’re hosting your own wedding. If you want to list all parents and any new partners, that’s fine. It’s not necessary to restrict the named hosts to those paying for the event.

Strictly speaking, deceased parents can’t host a party but you may want to see their name in the invitation just the same. It’s usual to accommodate this by rearranging the wording so that the parents are listed along with their child, as in ‘Lily Harrison, daughter of Jack Harrison and the late Eileen Harrison’.

The invitation – Traditional options include ‘the honour of your presence’ (for a religious ceremony) or ‘the pleasure of your company’ (for a non-religious wedding), or you can choose non-traditional wedding invitation wording. Something simple….’We really hope you can join us’ is fine.

This is an opportunity to inject some fun wedding invitation wording. ‘When we finally do the deed’, if you’ve been together a while, or phrases that reflect the theme of your wedding, or your occupations.

Who’s getting married

– Traditionally the bride is listed first, then the groom, titles and surnames are used for a formal invite but either can be missed out for a more relaxed feel. The ‘ladies first’ rule breaks down in a same-sex wedding. Some couples opt for an alphabetical listing, for others, it’s simply about what sounds best.

bouquet with wedding cards

When what time and where

– The date comes first, you don’t need the year unless you’re sending out invitations more than a year in advance. Time and date are written in full on a formal invitation, numerals are perfectly acceptable for an informal one. The name of the venue may be sufficient if it’s a well-known place. If you need to add an address or directions it’s often best to do that in a separate insert.

Dress codes and what’s involved

– Your guests will appreciate being given guidelines on how you’d like them to dress. It’s also kind to let them know if you’re planning to offer them a meal. If there’s a break or change or venue between the ceremony and a later celebration it’s a good idea to mention this. Again, this is an area where you can play with the wording to choose something that reflects yourselves and the day.
RSVP – You want an idea of numbers, so make it clear to your prospective guests how to reply, who to, and by when.

One Card for All?

If you’re splitting the day and inviting your nearest and dearest to the ceremony itself, while your wider circle of friends come to the evening party, you’ll need two different invites. This could seem like a pain but can actually be an opportunity. Your wedding invitation wording for friends can be far more informal than something you’d send to a rather stuffy elderly aunt.
The only real rule is that your guests have the information they need to plan their attendance and be comfortable at the event. Apart from that, all options are open. The best way to choose unique wedding invitation wording is to browse the web for inspiration then play with your own ideas. Give yourself lots of time and don’t forget to have fun!