Sunday, December 5, 2010

Invitation ettiquette

Sending invitations is a tradition that has continued from early civilization. Throughout the years, it has been customary to send some form of paper to each other to mark an important event. To find out more about the history of invitations, click here.

Your invitations should set the tone for your event. It's purpose is to provide the details of what to expect at the party. Is it a small backyard barbecue, an intimate black tie gathering, or a business expo for 1,000? WIll there be a meal prepared, or should your guests eat before they come to the party?

Custom invitations make it easy to set the tone for any event. The example shown is for a baby shower for an expecting mother of a baby girl. The white linen pocket with pink accents was designed to match the baby's bedroom, which is decorated with Piccadilly Bedding and Accessories by JC Penney.

Technological advancements are modifying our traditions, and since the inception of e-greeting and e-invites, this process has been made even simpler. Although these forms of communication are more modern, they can still be an informal way to make a statement about your upcoming event.

Some social media networks, such as Facebook, have also made it easier to notify guests and receive responses regarding informal events. The downside to using such social media is that this information is limited to those within your group. Friends and relatives who do not have accounts with social networking sites are often left out of the loop, and should be supplemented with printed invitations. Read more about text messaging etiquette here.

Although communications services have improved vastly over the last decade, Text messaging is one format that should be avoided for communicating plans for important events.  These forms of communication are casual, and should not be used for anything formal, such as an invitation or initial contact. 

What to include in your invitations:

Is it a baby shower, bridal shower, graduation, birthday or holiday party?

Sometimes there is more than one person to be honored, or perhaps the party is a surprise. Either way, your guests need to be informed of who they are celebrating.

the date should always include the day of the week, the numerical date and the year in order to alleviate any confusion.

The address is very important to ensure your guests arrive at the right spot for your event. 

It is best to indicate who is hosting the party, in order to allow for responses or communication regarding the party.

Event attire can include, but is not limited to costumes, formal wear, swimming and other sports that require rackets, clubs, cleats or other gear.

It is good to have someone else look over your final draft before printing, to double check any mistakes or missing information. It is best to send your event invitations at least 8 weeks prior to the date of the event. This provides your guests the right amount of time to plan to attend, respond and make travel arrangements.