Sep 29, 2009

Etiquette Schmetiquette

*I wrote this last night and, at the time, I realllllly needed to vent*

Oh yeah, I said it, "etiquette schmetiquette." I'm working on the invitation phase of the wedding right now and had to take a break. There are just too many darn "rules" to follow.

Check out some of these "rules/guidelines" I found (feel free to skim over, I did the first couple times):

*Numbers
Numbers in the date are spelled out, but numerals may be used for street addresses.

*Punctuation
Punctuation is not used at the ends of lines (commas, periods, colons, etc.); However, commas are used within lines to separate the day from the date, the city from the state and a man’s surname from “Jr./junior/II/III”, etc.

*Writing The Time
• Since the abbreviations “a.m.” and “p.m.” should not be used, the phrases “in the morning” or “in the evening” should be used (if it’s likely there would be confusion).
• The proper reference to a half hour is “half after,” not “half past.” So 7:30 would be written as “ half after seven o’clock”.
• Quarter hours are not typically used on a wedding invitation.
• Traditionally, times between 12 noon and 5:30 pm are considered the afternoon. 6:00 pm or later is considered the evening.

*Writing The Date
When writing the date, all days and numbers should be spelled out. The day is written first, then the date and month. The year is written on the following line. Example:
Saturday the fourth of September
two thousand and ten

When writing the year, the tradition is to use the British wording (example: two thousand and ten) but it is also acceptable to use the American wording (two thousand ten).

*Capitalization
Only those words that would normally be capitalized (proper nouns) should be capitalized on the invitation (for example, couple’s names, church name, etc).
exception to the rule:
The beginning of a new sentence or thought: e.g. “T” in “The favour of a reply is requested” or “Reception to follow”

*Mentioning Gifts
It is considered extremely socially incorrect to make any mention of gifts on invitations or in any part of your invitation suite, based on the theory that we should expect nothing from our friends except their presence. Never list where you are registered, the name of a charity for donations or your desire for money rather than presents.

It is best to share this information word of mouth via family members or members of the bridal party.
source

I mean, WHOA! So basically I have to throw out all of my grammar knowledge and consult with a guide to help me write this thing out? Ack! Not to mention that since I write for a living I want these to be fantastic and error free, whatever that means in the language of invitations.

And then there's the whole dilemma over making people happy. When I started working on invites I picked out a few invitation/rsvp wording versions that were somewhat formal and traditional. For some people this may be fine, but it just wasn't doing it for me, but the more I looked for something I liked the more I got overwhelmed with how many invitation verses were out there.

Right before I decided to write this post I was debating whether or not to include a one-line sentence on a separate insert within our invitation about where we are registering. (I know some of you may be shaking your heads right now...) This is where I start laughing, because I highly doubt that anyone besides my immediate family (if that) will even remember our invitations after they receive them. I certainly hope that won't be the case (obviously since Kenny and I are going to put a lot of time into making them), but honestly, I don't remember a single wedding invitation I've received even since I've been engaged. So will anyone actually remember if we make the faux pas of including our registry info? I highly doubt it.

My point is that it doesn't really matter. If one of my third aunts twice removed is going to get upset because our RSVP is a little nontraditional and funky, I'm pretty sure she'll get over it.

*About to get off my ranting soap box soon, I promise*

I finally found an invitation verse that I like and not only that, but Kenny said he liked it, too. (Now if he was just telling me he liked it because he's seen about 10 different versions, and didn't want to see another one, I don't care - he said he liked it!)

I also think I found a response card wording I like as well, so the next step is to go over it a few more times and make sure I didn't make any glaring spelling mistakes. On a happy note, I think I may have even come up with a way to get around the whole registry fiasco, but you'll have to wait till our invites are out and in the hot little hands of our guests before I reveal our plan.

Thanks for letting me get my etiquette schmetiquette rant off my chest. Did anyone else put this much thought and energy towards the words on your invitation?

AND! As a side note, this is my 500th post :)

4 comments:

  1. Well Happy 500th friend!!!

    We were a bit overwhelmed by all the rules also. Since we made the invatations ourselves, we had a little more time to 'get it right'. We ended up using some of the rules, and the ones we thought were dumb we threw out the window. It's you're wedding right!! And honestly, unless someone you are sending it to is planning thier own wedding, they probably don't even know 1/2 the rules.

    And as for the gifts- Pave and I had lived on our own before we were married, and the only things we 'registerd' for were really expensive (like $100.00 plus) so we were told it was appropriate to put 'Money Tree' at the very bottom of the invitation. We still got some presents, a gorgous Nambe dish, some great saled serving spoons (made out of silver with inlaid mother of pearl) and fluffy robes. (and a crazy little tree that had printed off 100.00 bills that were customized "holy state of matrimoney" and had our pictures and the date on in... from his crazy aunt). Honestly, everyone that came to the wedding understood that I was about to have knee surgery, he was about to go tdy, and then we were moving. No one cared.
    Sorry this got REALLY long!

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  2. We have 300 guests. Do they not think it would be even more rude to be like "Hey, how you doin'? We're registered at bed bath and beyond" than to add in a little insert that has the places on it? I do. Plus, I don't want to end up with 30 pots and no spoons. They'll be getting the insert :)

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  3. I have put a lot of thought about the wording on the invitations, it will be a DIY project! So, I have been reading the rules and trying to get an idea of what I want. I still haven't decided what to do as far the registry part. Everyone has been asking me about that too, I better figure it out!

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