How do I address my wedding invitations?
After checking and re-checking your guest list, it's finally finalized! What a relief... right? Now it is time to send the invites off to your calligrapher and get them in the mail. There is proper, formal etiquette in addressing your envelopes to your guests, and we're here to give you a hassle-free guide on how to do it. Here is a list of categories to help you determine what is acceptable when sending invitations:
When sending an invitation to a married couple, its proper to use "Mr. and Mrs." You must spell out the husband's first name. For example the card would read, "Mr. and Mrs. Andrew Ruppert"
Hyphenated Last Name
If your guest is a wife who has chosen to keep her maiden name, then she should be addressed using "Ms." (if you prefer "Mrs." you can choose that option as well). Start with the husbands name, then use "Ms. or Mrs." (your preference) + her first name + maiden name + married name. For example: "Mr. Jim Smith and Ms. Ashley Greene-Smith."
In this situation, age is a determining factor in the way the envelope is addressed. If she is over the age of 16, it is proper to use "Ms"., but if she is younger than 16 "Miss" is the acceptable option.
Same Sex Couple
In this case, you have much more freedom of how to address the card. There is no proper order of the guests, it is your discretion. If you can't chose, then address the guests in alphabetical order. For example: "Mr. Nathan Brown and Mr. Nicholas Crosby."
Generally, a widow keeps her husband's name unless she remarries, but there are cases in which the widow prefers to use her own name. In order to be certain, it is best to ask her personal preference. You could address the card as either "Mrs. John Dunlop or Mrs. Ashley Dunlop."
Married Couple, Both Doctors
Some occupations require a proper introduction to their name, just make sure to be aware of that. In this case of married doctors where the wife took her husbands name, it is the most proper to use "The Doctors Smith". If you don't feel comfortable doing so, another option is "Drs. Ashley and Jim Smith."
Married Couple, One spouse is a doctor
The partner who is the doctor in the couple has a professional title that "outranks" other social titles. With that being said, if the wife is the doctor then address the envelope by writing "Dr. Ashley Smith and Mr. Jim Smith". If the husband is the doctor, then his name should be presented first, "Dr. Jim Smith and Mrs. Ashley Smith."