Fifteen years ago, Liz Richmond did what most stationery lovers only dream of doing: She bought a stationery boutique. Situated across from an amusement park in Allentown, PA, The Paper Bag has been in business since 1982 (30 years if you’re counting). Richmond joined its staff two years later and has been there ever since. Here, she talks with us about celebratory stamps, Old Money and why she thinks classic correspondence isn’t going anywhere.
You have the occasion to celebrate, now let’s make sure everyone shows up to join you, shall we?
Save the Date Cards
Also known as hold-the-date cards, these cards are sent to guests who might need advance notification of an event so that they can make special arrangements. They are generally sent when an event is being held at a time when guests might otherwise make plans, such as holiday weekends.
Save-the-date cards ask your guests to set aside that date for your event and are generally sent three to four months before the event. They do not take the place of invitations. The actual invitations are sent at a later date, usually four to six weeks before the event.
Wedding ceremonies and receptions do not necessarily have the same number of guests.
Many couples, especially those in which the bride is a second-time bride, have small, intimate ceremonies with larger receptions afterwards. Since more people are invited to the reception than the ceremony, the invitations are for the reception. Guests invited to the ceremony are sent ceremony cards with their reception invitations.
Reception invitations always “request the pleasure of your company,” since the reception is not being held in a house of worship. The word “and” is used to join the names of the bride and groom. The phrases “marriage reception” and “wedding reception” are both correct. “Marriage reception” is the more traditional of the two. However, many brides prefer “wedding reception” on the grounds that a wedding is the act of getting married while marriage is the result of that decision.
The Victorians, with their penchant for classifying everything, created a list of symbolic wedding anniversary gifts that is still very much in vogue today.
Here are the traditional anniversary gifts for each year:
You love a good party, which is probably why you get invited to so many. (That and your incredible charm and wit). Here’s how to accept — or decline — an invitation.
Filling in Reply Cards
Reply cards are sent with invitations in order to give recipients an easy and convenient way to respond. They should be returned promptly. Your name, preceded by your title is written in following the “M” in the space provided (that is what the “M” is for). If you will be attending the event, the space between “will” and “attend” is left blank. If you will not be attending, write “not” in that space.
Mr. President. Madam Ambassador. Your Excellency. A guide to sending impeccably addressed correspondence.
From formal dinners to Bar Mitzvahs, every party comes with its own invitation etiquette. Here’s how to make sure your soiree is properly presented to potential guests.
Instagram. Hipstamatic. Twitpic. Sharing. Posting. Tagging. We’ve become (for better or worse) a society of sharers. Instant sharers at that. And thanks to smartphones touting cameras as good as most point-and-shoots, pictures of our meals, cats with books and celebrities on the subway actually look pretty darn good.
That said, shooting close-up details still requires the hand — and eye — of a professional. So we asked photographer David Nicholas, who recently shot some of our new wedding stationery collection, what exactly goes into capturing the incredible detail of an engraved monogram.
This is what David had to say about shooting the monogram seen below:
The Groom’s Name
City & State
THE INVITATIONAL LINE
The tradition of the bride’s parents sending out the wedding invitations (along with the tradition of the bride’s father giving away the bride) have their origins in the days when the bride’s father made the marriage arrangements for his daughter by negotiating the size of her dowry.
Today, the traditions continue with the bride’s family customarily hosting the wedding. But it’s not as easy as “Mr. and Mrs.”
How to present who is issuing the wedding invitations can be complex, which is why we have an entire section dedicated to the Invitational Line.
You’re engaged: Mazel Tov! Felicidades! Congratulations! Now, let’s celebrate. Though your wedding day will undoubtedly be the crowning event of much anticipation and planning, a day you and your future husband will never forget, the events leading up to it can be just as exciting. Well, almost.
Meeting Your Fiancé
Save the Date Cards
The Bridal Shower
He proposed. You said yes. Let’s get down to business. Quite appropriately, you may want to share your excitement with others by officially announcing it (and we don’t mean via Facebook & Twitter). The announcement is traditionally made by your parents as soon after the engagement as possible. While there are no strict rules regarding the wording of engagement announcements, they are usually pretty straightforward.
While you may think of calling it a day after including an announcement in the local newspaper, note that they only reach those people who subscribe to that paper. If you want to make sure all of your friends and family members find out about your engagement, you need to send announcements — or make a lot of phone calls.
Similarly, while updating your Facebook status to “engaged” is easy and an efficient way to share the big news, you’re announcing your upcoming marriage, not what you had for lunch. Such a huge milestone certainly deserves a proper and formal announcement.
If you are worried sending an engagement announcement will make people think you are soliciting presents, know that the announcement not a request for a gift. It’s simply intended to announce an event — your engagement. Those receiving an announcement should not feel obligated to send a gift.