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Having 2 Receptions? How To Word Your Invitations

What do you do when you and your fiancé are from different states and each side of the family is expecting a reception? It is perfectly acceptable to have multiple  receptions weeks or even months after your wedding, but how do you invite your guests? More importantly, how do you do it without confusion or insulting your guests? Here are some common scenarios and the best way to word your invitations.

Small intimate ceremony, followed by an open house reception in another state

In this situation, you will most likely have all of the people you invite to the ceremony join you afterwards for an intimate reception. The guests are probably your close family and friends and will be invited to your second reception. The rest of your guests will only be invited to the second reception.

Wording the Invitation:

On the main invitation, announce the date you will be married on. You can also include the city and state of your ceremony location. After the announcement, invite your guests to celebrate with you at the second reception. This invitation will go to all of your guests, but the ones invited to your ceremony will also receive an insert card inviting them to the ceremony. If you need guests to RSVP, we recommend doing two separate cards. One for the ceremony and reception guests that includes check boxes for the events they wish to attend. The other RSVP card is for your second reception with an accept/decline option for that date.

Invitation Example:

Mr. and Mrs. Jacob Reed

Are pleased to announce

the marriage of their daughter

Danielle Nicole

to

Howard Martin Turner

Son of Mr. and Mrs. Brad Turner

Saturday, September 20th in Salt Lake City, Utah

Please join us at a reception held in their honor

Friday, October 10th, Two Thousand Fourteen

Reception Venue

Address

Ceremony Insert Example:

Danielle and Howard

Invite you to join them at their wedding ceremony

Saturday, September 20th, Two Thousand Fourteen

Ceremony Venue

Address

Dinner to Follow

Two receptions, hosted by different families

If the bride’s parents are hosting one reception and the groom’s family another, each reception should be treated as if it were its own wedding. There most likely won’t be much overlap in the guest list, so sending two different invitations would be ideal in this scenario.

Wording the Invitation:

In this example, the bride’s family is hosting the ceremony and first reception, the groom’s family the second. The invitation for the ceremony and first reception should be treated as normal. For the second reception, change the host names to be the groom’s parents. This invitation will have an announcement line that lets your guests know when and where you were married and then will invite them to join you at the second reception. Each invitation will have it’s own response card, going to the family collecting the replies for that particular reception.

Invitation 1 Example:

Mr. and Mrs. Jacob Reed

Request the honour of your presence as

Danielle Nicole

and

Howard Martin Turner

Exchange vows of marriage

Saturday, September 20th

Two Thousand Fourteen

Ceremony Venue

Address

Reception to Follow

Invitation 2 Example:

Mr. and Mrs. Brad Turner

Are pleased to announce the marriage of

Howard Martin Turner

and

Danielle Nicole Reed

on Saturday, September 20th in Salt Lake City, Utah

The pleasure of your company is requested at a reception held in their honor

Friday, October 10th, Two Thousand Fourteen

Reception Venue

Address

Two receptions, letting your guest pick the one(s) they attend

The past two examples assume that there isn’t much overlap in the guest list of the two separate receptions. If you would like to let your guests pick the reception that is the best fit for them you can announce both receptions on one invitation. Chances are most of your guests won’t attend both (unless they are close family or friends). Response cards for this type of invitation would have check boxes for the reception location they would like to attend. Note: if you are doing a plated dinner at one or both of your receptions, this may not be the best option for you. The example above with two separate RSVPs will eliminate the confusion on meal choices.

Wording the Invitation:

If you are going to devote your invitation to both receptions, we recommend including a separate insert inviting guests to your ceremony.

Invitation Example:

Mr. and Mrs. Jacob Reed

Invite you to celebrate the marriage of their daughter

Danielle Nicole

to

Howard Martin Turner

Son of Mr. and Mrs. Brad Turner

Reception

Saturday, September 20th

Two Thousand Fourteen

Reception Venue

Address

Open House

Friday, October 10th

Two Thousand Fourteen

Reception Venue

Address

Hopefully this gives you a starting point and there are many other wording options to fit your exact situation. If you are having multiple receptions and need help planning your invitations we would love to sit down and hash out all of the details! Schedule a consult now 🙂

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