For most of us, it is hard to believe that we are already well into the autumn months. But here they are, with Halloween coming fast, followed by Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s. Now is the time to begin preparations for all those upcoming parties. Your first step to successful entertaining is a properly extended invitation. Keep these tips in mind if you plan to entertain this autumn and winter.
Send an invitation too late and the guest may already be booked; send it too early and it might be misplaced or forgotten. The following guidelines aren’t set in stone, but will give you an idea of when to
mail various types of invitations.
Casual Party: same day—2 weeks
Cocktail party: 1—4 weeks
Informal lunch/tea: 2 days—2 weeks
Halloween costume party: 2 weeks—1 month
Thanksgiving dinner: 2 weeks—2 months
Christmas party: 1 month (more notice is practical, especially if the party is planned during the busy holiday season.)
Addressing written and printed invitations:
- When addressing invitations, include all the names of the people you’re inviting. For example, if children are allowed, address the invitation to “Mr. and Mrs. Lawrence Rickman and Family.” If children are not allowed, simply exclude the word ‘family’.
- For informal invitations, it’s fine to use first and last names and nicknames. For formal invitations, be sure to use titles and full names.
- If you’re inviting guests to bring a date or guest, note this in the invitation itself, not on the mailing address.
- Are not engraved
- May include reply cards
- Use first-person voice
- Allow abbreviations for months, states, and street addresses
- Are printed or engraved on high-quality paper
- Use classic type styles
- Address guests by full names and courtesy titles
- Are phrased in the third person
- Use written out numbers for dates and times
What to Include in an Invitation
- An opening: Include a short phrase inviting your friends and family to the event.
- A description of occasion: Briefly explain the purpose of the invitation and what the event is about.
- The name of the host (ess): List the full name(s) of the host(s) or hostess (es) throwing the party.
- The date and time: List the day and date of the party, followed by the time. Avoid using any abbreviations if you are hosting a formal event.
Informal Event: Saturday, September 27th 8:00 p.m.
Formal Event: Saturday, the twenty-seventh of September at eight o’clock in the evening
It is perfectly acceptable to include an end time on an invitation. If time is an issue for your gathering, you should include an end time to let guests know when the party will be over.
- The Location: If the party venue has a name, such as a particular restaurant, include it on the invitation along with the address. In either case, the address should only include the street and city names for local guests. If out-of-town guests are invited, you can include the name of the state, but you should still omit the zip code. You can also include a map or driving directions to ensure that your guests arrive without incident.
- Other instructions: Indicate appropriate attire for costume parties, formal dinners and black tie events if you think there may be any ambiguity. If your party requires additional instruction, including what to bring to a potluck, or a secret Santa gift, print that extra info on the invitation as well.
- RSVP: An abbreviation of the French request, “réspondez s’il vous plait,” an RSVP line is a request for guests to indicate whether or not they are attending your event. Include your name, phone number or email address, and an RSVP deadline date.
For informal occasions, guests can RSVP via phone or email. For formal events, however, send a reply card and self-addressed, stamped envelope to encourage guests to respond quickly.
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No matter what the next few months bring in the way of party plans, with your creativity and Rossi1931 products, invitations will be one less thing to stress about this upcoming Holiday season.
For more information go to www.rossi1931.com