Wednesday, January 21, 2015

All about RSVP



Welcome to our very first Blog Hop for 2015!
This month we want to help you start the year off by getting organized as you’re planning your wedding or event. Get ready for some great ideas to help you reduce stress and enjoy the planning process as you move along through the blog hop.

You may just be starting the blog hop or may have come from Nikki Michel at Ciao Bella Weddings on Natalie’s Blog Hop.

If you get off track at any time, the full lineup below will help you move along from blog to blog so you make sure to see and learn from all of the articles featured here today.

All About RSVP

One of the most important parts of planning your wedding is the RSVP process. For many, it can become stressful when guests don't respond, or respond incorrectly. Try these tips below to help reduce stress and stay organized while planning your wedding and reception.

1. Make it Easy

Let your guests know exactly how you need their responses and be sure to include a deadline.  If you are requesting RSVPs by mail, be sure to include a pre-addressed return envelope with the correct postage stamp. Set your deadline at least 2 weeks before your caterer and venue need the final headcount to allow extra time for postal stragglers. If space is limited, you can easily avoid some uninvited add-ons by including a line to notify guests how many seats are reserved for each household.

Example Postcard RSVP
Money Saving Tip: Choosing RSVP Postcards saves postage and the cost of printing extra envelopes. On average, a postcard saves 15¢ per piece. Combine that with envelopes and printing fees and the savings really add up!

2. Plan Ahead.

The wording of your RSVP is determined by the type of reception you are hosting. Plated meals may require an option to initial their entree selections. Do you need to notify your caterer of any food allergies? Do you need the names of guests to establish a firm seating plan, or simply a headcount for a buffet-style reception? When collecting your address list, be sure you have an email or phone number for each guest, in case they forget or their RSVP is lost in the mail.

Example RSVP with meal selections
Stress Saving Tip: While assembling your invitations, number each response card lightly on the back in pencil or use a black light pen to mark each card to track the corresponding guest or household on your spreadsheet. Many RSVPs get returned without a name on them, and this simple trick makes it easier to figure out who the RSVP came from.

3. Keep it Organized.

As you begin to receive your responses, keep track of all the information in one place. It will be easier to keep track of who has or has not replied, as well what the responses are. Choose an online service, like the planning tools available on weddingwire.com and theknot.com, or create your own Excel spreadsheet to keep RSVPs organized. Whether you choose to track responses online or manually, be sure to mark the responses immediately upon receiving them, so they don't get lost, overlooked or forgotten.

4. Follow Up

Some guests may forget to RSVP, or the response cards may have been lost. The weekend following your deadline, start calling or emailing a polite reminder to gather any last minute add-ons. Don't wait until the week of the wedding to get started on this, as it can become an unnecessary stress. If you don't get a response after 2 (gentle) attempts, only count the guests you have firm responses from. If additional guests reply after your numbers are turned in to your vendors, don't sweat it.

5. Keep Calm.

Consider that some guests who RSVPd may be unable to make it, and other guests may show up who failed to respond in time. Talk with your caterer and venue staff ahead of time to establish an action plan, just in case a few extra guests show up the day of the event. Most experienced professionals have dealt with this and know exactly how to accommodate extra guests.

The next stop is Christine Ringuette at Down The Aisle Wedding Planning & Design on Natalie’s Blog Hop! Thanks for visiting and I hope to see you again next month!

Blog Hop Line-up

  1. Natalie Bradley at Natalie Bradley Events
  2. Katherine Shorter at Creating Awesomenessity
  3. Kristi Richardson at Bloomed To Last
  4. Chantal Benoit at Chantal Benoit Photographer
  5. Elizabeth Batte at plainjane designs
  6. Andie Freeman  at Andie Freeman Photography
  7. Brenna Fields Taylor at An Elegant Affair LLC
  8. Irene Tyndale at Irene Tyndale Events
  9. Tessa Marie at Tessa Marie Weddings
  10. Peter Merkle at Chicago Wedding DJs
  11. Anshwa Lewis at SwaLaRue Events
  12. Deborah Ashe at Rev. Deborah Ashe
  13. Angela Christoforo at Elite Wedding and Event Planning
  14. Liz Coopersmith at Silver Charm Events
  15. Amber Peterson at Cheers Wedding & Event Planning
  16. Maggie Evans at Maggie Evans Designs :: handmade bridal couture
  17. N’neka Scruggs at Images by N’neka
  18. Kelly Snyder at Southern Charm Weddings
  19. Cindy Clearwater at Something Blue Virgin Islands
  20. Kimberly Parks at KP Photography
  21. Simone R. Ross at Lil’ Tux N Tiara’s Event Sitters & Entertainment
  22. David Osborne at Sound Insight Productions
  23. Nicole Hill at Flora Bond
  24. Shaun Cox at A D.I.Y. Affair Weddings and Events
  25. Katrina McCullum at Made of Honor Weddings
  26. Sandy Salle at Hills of Africa Travel
  27. Rachel Huntoon  at Ashford Manor Bed & Breakfast
  28. Daphne Simpson at Elite Design
  29. Kishana Highgate at Kishana Highgate Photography
  30. Loraine McCall at Mojica Photography
  31. Teresa Rhodes at Nearly Nesters 
  32. Andrea Freeman at Andrea Freeman Events
  33. Nikki Michel at Ciao Bella Weddings
  34. Kelly King at Affordable Wedding Invites by Gossett Printing  << You are Here
  35. Christine Ringuette at Down The Aisle Wedding Planning & Design
  36. Myiesha Antwine at Kiss and Tell Weddings
  37. Ashley Rae at Ashley Rae Events
  38. Laurie Kuerlemann at Platinum Party Events Entertainment, Inc
  39. Lydia Wells at Writer Mom
  40. Melissa Pepin at Melissa Pepin Photography


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