What To Include In Your Wedding Invitation Bundles

Look, I am all for adjusting my life to protect the environment, which is why I guzzle my iced coffee through a soggy paper straw and yell at my roommate for leaving every single light in our apartment on, but some things are just too damn precious to go green for. One such thing is wedding invitations. As much as you can personalize an evite, and you def can, there’s something about tangible wedding invitations—or wedding invitation bundles, as the professionals call them—that make the whole thing feel that much more special. Being able to design a beautiful bundle that your friends and family can stick on their refrigerators and admire until your special day is a nice feeling that you just don’t get from digital invites. If you absolutely need to make yourself feel better about having printed invitation bundles, send a digital save the date. Done.

Now, if you’re feeling slightly overwhelmed about wedding invitation bundles, worry not! Jessica Terrell, Creative Designer and Marketer at Shine Wedding Invitations, is here to help. So…

What Are Wedding Invitation Bundles?

Glad you asked! So if you’re inviting people to, like, a birthday party, chances are there’s one piece of paper inside an envelope and people will just text/email/DM that they’re coming or, alternatively, are too busy to celebrate you. Wedding invitations are obv different. Terrell says, “Each wedding is different, and therefore requires various amounts of stationery pieces to be included. When all the pieces are stacked together and wrapped in beautiful silk ribbon or a personalized belly band, it’s commonly referred to as an invitation suite.” She’s right in that all weddings are different, so what you include in your bundle may be different than what your bestie included in hers. Don’t worry! That is normal and 100% okay! More on this in a bit.

What Should You Include In A Wedding Invitation Bundle?

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Create a polished suite with our belly bands, complete with a monogram.⠀ .⠀ .⠀ .⠀ ⠀ #weddinginvitations #weddinginvite #weddingaccessories #luxurywedding #simplewedding #neutralwedding #silkribbon #luxuryweddinginvitations #classicwedding #minimalwedding #seekthesimplicity #weddinginspiration #weddinginspo #wedding #2019bride #bridetobe #engaged #dailydoseofpaper #designshouldshine

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Like I said just a hot second ago, every wedding is different, so only include what you need in your bundle. For instance, if you are having a small wedding of 75 à la Carrie Bradshaw, don’t have a two-inch thick wedding bundle full of random cards and notes that people don’t need because that’s annoying and also, #savethetrees. Terrell explains, “In addition to the invitation itself, you have the option to also include a large or small enclosure, for the extra details needed to further explain the importance of your wedding day.” Large enclosures are usually for out-of-town guests because it includes sh*t like hotel discount codes, Uber codes…etc. Small enclosures aren’t super necessary, but they usually explain a little bit more about the reception if it’s at a different location than the ceremony. One thing all invitation bundles have, though, are response cards. Hope this is self-explanatory, but if you’re not the brightest star in the sky, a response card is the enclosure that guests use to let you know whether or not they’re coming.

How Can You Customize Your Bundle?

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Custom stamps and guest addressing for a seamless experience. . . . . #weddinginvitations #weddinginvites #guestaddressing #weddingaccessories #luxurywedding #simplewedding #neutralwedding #silkribbon #luxurystationery #classicwedding #calligraphy #moderncalligraphy #seekthesimplicity #weddinginspiration #weddinginspo #wedding #2020bride #bridetobe #engaged #customstamps #designshouldshine

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Ok, “customize your bundle” is my new favorite phrase. “There are absolutely different ways to customize your wedding invitation suite!” Terell says. “From the uniqueness of your wording, to the colors you choose, and the enclosures you bundle together, no one invitation suite will be the same. Some other ways to make it yours, is to add a patterned envelope liner and matching belly band with your names.” Again, self-explanatory! Yay, things that are easy to understand! After spending a few hours minutes on Shine’s Instagram, I have discovered that my favorite look is the Cecilia Letterpress invitation wrapped in pale gray vellum and closed with a silver florette wax stamp. So if anyone wants to marry me and make my dream wedding invitation bundle a reality, hmu in the comments. My point is that there are so many options and therefore limitless ways that you can make your invitation bundle really special.

What Else Can You Do To Design A Standout Invitation Bundle?

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“When we began to look for wedding invitations I felt a little overwhelmed and unsure of the route that we wanted to go. I had heard about Shine Wedding Invitations and when I began looking online at the options I immediately found so many that I loved and it made my stress so much less to just narrow down to your options and pick something that complimented our vision stylistically. We wanted something simple yet classic and we loved that through Shine we could jazz up our simple white invitation with the liner in the envelope as well as our own personalized stamps to match. The process was easy and simple and the designers were so helpful in walking us through the process. We were so happy we went with Shine and have recommended them to other friends and family who are planning weddings!” – #shinebride, @slamp⁠ .⁠ .⁠ Photography @elizabethladuca ⁠ Florals @wilddahlia_⁠ Wedding Planner @alwaysyoursevents⁠ Rings – DaSilva Jewelry Design⁠ ⁠ #shinelovestory #realwedding #weddinginvitations #weddinginvite #weddingstationery #stationery #luxurywedding #simplewedding #neutralwedding #luxuryweddinginvitations #classicwedding #minimalwedding #simplicity #weddinginspiration #weddinginspo #wedding #dailydoseofpaper #designshouldshine #classic #elegant #floral #blushwedding

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Well, there are lots of things. For starters, you can make things easier on your guests by not asking them to address their own response cards. You can also make the tough choice between single and double envelopes. Terrell says, “Although single is a beautiful choice, we highly recommend our double envelope style for all wedding invitation suites, as they will better protect your stationery throughout the mailing process.” Think about all the times your Amazon bag arrived in the mail with holes in it. Do you want your wedding invitation bundles to suffer the same fate? Terrell explains, “Double envelopes are the most traditional of the two styles. The outer envelope would have the name of the household printed on the front, while the inner envelope would have the names of the guests actually invited to the wedding. Once the mail was delivered, the outer envelope would be removed, and then the spotless inner envelope would be presented to the family member it addressed. The double envelope style is the best way to present your wedding invitations, so your guests can fully experience them from start to finish.”

Images: Shine Wedding Invitations

This Is How You Word A Wedding Invitation

You’ve got the ring. You’ve got the guy. Now you have to spend the next year (or whatever) of your life planning the perfect wedding day. From the dress to the food to the band, each detail counts, and you’ll want to ensure they’re all perfectly aligned with your vision.

One of the biggest parts (if not THE biggest part) of this vision is making sure your guest show up and know wtf is going on. How does that happen? Your invitations need to be spot-f*cking-on, that’s how. It doesn’t matter if you’re getting married at a courthouse or having a black tie affair at the Met (can you even do that?); your wedding won’t count for sh*t if nobody knows how to get there, what to wear, or wtf is happening at any given time.

We reached out to the experts at Shine Wedding Invitations to give their best advice on wedding invitation wording and general etiquette, so there’s no excuse for you to have anything but an amazing invitation ramping up your big day.

Choose A Style That Fits You (And Your Wedding)

Omg, your wedding—the biggest day of your life. Literally, everything’s been leading up to this. And, even though everyone knows it’s all about you, the wedding should reflect both your and your fiancé’s style. So, how do you select a luxe and classy wedding invite that can encompass your styles AND provide the super important info that your guests, like, need?

Time to ask yourself the tough stuff: are you adventurous? Just hungry? Mean-spirited? Bold? Modern?

“Understanding who you are and what style you would like to encapsulate is essential in choosing the perfect invitation design for your big day,” says Jessica Terrell at Shine. There are tons of fonts, scripts, serifs (those are fonts with the little line thingies underneath the letters) and sans serifs (fonts without those lines). Terrell advises, “When looking at invitation designs, focus on the structure—the body copy is the foundation of your stationery. For those of you who are clean and simple with a modern twist, a thin sans serif will work the best. If you’re more traditional, we highly recommend a serif for its timeless look and feel.”

From there, choose the color, background, and feel of your invites based on your wedding itself. If you’re going for a more Art Deco look and feel, opt for geometric designs. Having your reception at an art gallery? Go for sleek and modern. Wanna get married in a barn? Just skip the whole thing and send invitations in Mason jars, you animal. (Just kidding, not really.) You get the idea.

Get The Wording Right

Once you’ve got your font and overall designed picked out, it’s time to put all those Hooked On Phonics lessons to good use and communicate the actual purpose of said invitation. Most wedding invitation design sites will have the correct “guide” in place to go along with traditional wedding etiquette, so you won’t be shooting in the dark as far as setting up the wording. And thank God, honestly, cause watching some of you try to spell is truly painful.

The Host Line

No, a host line isn’t a creepy phone sex app (brb, I have an idea for a new invention that’s going to make me a millionaire). It’s actually the first line listed on the wedding invitation. Traditionally, it’s meant to announce the parents or family of the bride, since they’re usually the ones paying for the whole thing (thanks Mommy and Daddy—love you). However, the host line can vary based on the couple’s situation, i.e., if the bride’s parents are all, “hey, we’re not paying for jack sh*t” or the groom’s parents are all “here’s $100k and a house, enjoy”. Other host lines may include the groom’s parents, both sets of parents on the bride and groom’s side, neither sets of parents, or other loved ones hosting the event. Here are a few common examples etiquette-approps provided by Shine:

Bride’s Parents Hosting:
Mr. and Mrs. William Arthur Jones
request the honor of your presence
at the marriage of their daughter

Bride and Groom Hosting:
The honor of your presence is requested
at the marriage celebration of

Both Sets of Parents Hosting:
Mr. and Mrs. William Arthur Jones
along with Mr. and Mrs. John Quincy Adams
request the honor of your presence
at the marriage of their children

Bride’s Divorced Parents Hosting:
Ms. Jennifer (Maiden Name) (Married Name)
Mr. William Arthur Jones
request the honor of your presence
at the marriage of their daughter

Obviously, there are tons of different situations since all family dynamics are super special and unique (yay). From divorced parents with remarriages to special parental titles, such as military, medical, or religious, digging around online or dealing with an easy-to-navigate wedding invitation design site will make your life easier. You can find more details and specific wording examples here, at Shine Wording Guide.

The Request Line

Again, this sounds more complicated than it actually is. The request line directly follows the host line with wording that invites your guest to your big, super special party. A few examples include:
Request Line—Option 1:
Mr. and Mrs. William Arthur Jones
request the pleasure of your company
at the marriage of their daughter
Request Line—Option 2:
Mr. and Mrs. William Arthur Jones
cordially invite you to attend
the wedding of their daughter

The Bride

Time to move on to you and your almost-hubs. Traditionally, the bride’s name is always presented first, because we’re better and cooler. Really, though, it’s because the father is giving his daughter away to a v nice boy, i.e., she doesn’t have to ask dad for money anymore (extrapolating from my own experience here). It’s proper wedding etiquette to include the first, middle, and last name of the bride unless her parents (of the same last name) are also listed on the invitation. In that case, the bride doesn’t need to include her last name, because space issues.

Bride’s Parents Not Listed:
Together with their families/parents
Poppy Jane Jones
Landon Parker Adams
request the honor of your presence
at their marriage celebration

Bride’s Parents Listed:
Mr. and Mrs. William Arthur Jones
request the honor of your presence
at the marriage of their daughter
Poppy Jane
Landon Parker Adams

However, in the case that the groom’s parents are hosting the wedding (which can happen if the bride’s parents are deceased, live in a foreign country, or are just being lame and not part of the wedding), their relation to the groom can be mentioned on the joining line, between the bride and groom’s name:

Groom’s Parents Hosting:
Mr. and Mrs. John Quincy Adams
request the honor of your presence
at the marriage of
Poppy Jane Jones
to their son
Landon Parker

The Groom

Because he totally f*cking gets it already, the groom is usually listed under the bride’s name. And, just like the bride’s name, the groom doesn’t need to include his last name if his parents (of the same last name) are also mentioned on the invite.

Date And Time

The day and time are probably the most important parts of your entire invitation. Like, how else will people know when to show up with gifts? The phrasing of the day and time is based on the desired style of the wedding invitation. According to traditional wedding etiquette, spelling out the month, day, year and time is required, so don’t try to get fancy with weirdo number situations, you guys.

Option 1:
Saturday, the second of August
two thousand twenty-one
at three o’clock in the afternoon

Option 2:
Saturday, August second
two thousand twenty-one
half after/past three in the afternoon

Ceremony Location

Obv, you’ll need to solidify where tf guests are going for like, the actual wedding. The invite should include the venue name and location for where the wedding ceremony will take place. Don’t assume people know where literally anything is cause, newsflash, they won’t.


Time for the party line. The info about your reception should be last on your invite and shouldn’t be more than a single line with a few words telling your guests that yes, there will be booze if they sit through your f*cking wedding ceremony. By the way, if the reception is located at the same venue and immediately follows the ceremony, you’d go with Option 1. However, if your reception takes place at a different time and either at the same venue or at another location, you’d go with Option 2.

Option 1:
Reception immediately following

Option 2:
Reception to follow

If you need to give more details about your reception, whether it be the time or the place, a separate small enclosure or stationery piece should be included in your wedding invitation suite. That card can provide all the extra info that your guests would otherwise be tempted to text you about during your actual wedding. Although not traditionally proper, if you want to opt out of the small enclosure, you can list the time and address directly beneath the reception line on the invitation. As each invitation will consist of different wording, the additional reception information will need to remain brief. Does that sparkle with everyone? Good.

Drown Them In Information

OK so not, like literally, but when your guests get their invitations in the mail, you’ll want to ensure they have every bit of information they could possibly need. They know which hotels to stay in. They have directions to the venue in hand. They know that the reception will not include children and will include a 6-hour open bar (maybe not that last bit, but whatever).

There are a lot of details that go into planning a wedding. Whether it be a tricky location for the venue or accommodation block, your guests need to be informed of f*cking everything so they can plan their lives accordingly. Enclosures are a great way to allow your invitation to remain simple and clean. Depending on the type of information and how much of it you have, different sized enclosures are available nine times out of ten (and if you’re using a good wedding invite design site).

The Large Enclosure

Jessica says, “there are two enclosures we typically recommend for brides to include in their wedding invitation suites. For the larger of the two, there are a few different ways it can be utilized. Typically, this enclosure is used for accommodations. However, it can be used for travel details, directions, transportation information, special activities, rehearsal dinner invitations, and much more.” For example, Shine’s large enclosure can hold about 18-20 lines of text:

A block of rooms has been reserved for your convenience at
Big Tree Inn
46 Main Street—Geneseo, New York—(585) 243-5220
Please mention the Grimes-Fox wedding when making reservations
Shuttle transportation to the reception will be available
For additional information, visit our website at

The Small Enclosure

Shine has a small option, too, so don’t worry if you’re not into the idea of sending a small FedEx package to your guests. “In addition to the reception details, if it’s hosted at a different location than the ceremony, this enclosure size is perfect for your wedding website, registry information, a new address, or a small morning-after brunch announcement.” The small enclosure would hold about 8-10 lines of text. For example:

Please join us for
a reception amongst the trees at
The Wadsworth Homestead
4 South Street
Geneseo, New York
Half after/past seven in the evening

Response Cards With Meal Options Vs. Without Meal Options

Hey, get ready for everyone to bitch about your food regardless of how many options you give them! But if you’re planning on a seated meal, the response card helps you and your wedding planner confirm the attendees and figure out exactly how many steaks you’ll need. If you’re having a buffet dinner, you obviously don’t need a meal inquiry card, since your guests, like animals, can let loose on piles of food. Meal inquiry cards are also a great way to figure out exactly how many gluten haters and vegans you need to un-invite.


Kindly reply on or before

the twenty-fourth of November


_____ Accepts

_____ Regrets

Please initial your choice of entree

_____ Chicken

_____ Beef

_____ Vegetarian

List any dietary restrictions below:


And just like that, your guests will know exactly who, what, when, and where, without (hopefully) having to ask you too many questions. You won’t get every RSVP card back (so know that going in), but you will have a super spectacular day with limited confusion if you follow these steps to a communicatory powerhouse of an invite.

Images: Shine Wedding Invitations 

4 Questions You’ve Had About Wedding Invitations, Answered

If, like most people, you’re not an incredibly talented artist, then being tasked with designing wedding invitations is kind of like taking the mic at a karaoke bar: the skills are not there, but you accept the challenge with grace. Doing something at which you don’t consider yourself a savant can be daunting, but luckily, there are people out there who are actually quite skilled at the very thing you don’t know how to do, and you can hire these people to help you! Great Scott! The wedding industry wouldn’t have raked $72 billion in revenue last year if these experts weren’t available to us, and invitations are no exception. So don’t be afraid to turn to people who know a lot more than you for help.

Look, unlike table runners or water glasses, wedding invitations are a big deal when it comes to details that actually matter. It’s an introduction to you and your lobster as an official, legally bound couple. It’s both an expression of your love and a preview of the wedding, whatever that that vibe or theme may be. No pressure! For real, designing a wedding invite is f*cking hard because it needs to make the right statement: fun, charming and aesthetically pleasing. (And if you’re going to light me up re: these descriptors in the comments, don’t, because every invitation to any party should be those three things.) If you’re feeling a bit lost on where to start on your wedding invitations (and where to go after starting), read on for helpful tips and tricks from Jessica Terrell, Creative Designer and Marketer at Shine Wedding Invitations.

How Do You Choose The Look?

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Floral perfection.⁣ .⁣ .⁣ .⁣ ⁣ #weddinginvitations #weddinginvite #waxseals #whitewaxseals #weddingaccessories #luxurywedding #simplewedding #neutralwedding #silkribbon #luxuryweddinginvitations #classicwedding #minimalwedding #seekthesimplicity #weddinginspiration #weddinginspo #wedding #2019bride #bridetobe #engaged #dailydoseofpaper #pinksilkribbon #floralweddinginvitations #floralwedding #classicweddinginvitations #stationery #peachwedding #blushwedding #blushweddinginvitations #ribbonweddinginvitations #designshouldshine

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The convenient thing about companies like Shine is that you don’t have to sit at your desk staring at a blank piece of paper, trying to remember everything you learned in 8th grade art class, in order to decide how you want your wedding invitations to look. Shine offers five main styles, including Classic, Ribbon, Letterpress, Floral and Vellum, and after you pick one that represents the vibe of your wedding, you can get started on hard-core personalization. Again, if you’re not a self-proclaimed artist, getting excited about the idea of designing your wedding invite seems as unlikely as giving designing the dress a go. But Shine makes it so f*cking easy! All you have to do is be decisive and your creative consultant will do literally everything else for you. Terrell says, “When looking at invitation designs, we recommend focusing on the structure—the body copy is the foundation of your stationery.” So focus on not necessarily what it says, but how it looks. We’ll get to the actual text in a sec. The bottom line is you want the physical appearance of the invitation to be representative of what guests can expect at the actual wedding. So if you’re going for an ethereal beach-y feel, maybe don’t choose a graphic black-and-white invite with block text. Instead, opt for organic, handwritten calligraphy on Shine’s Ophelia or Natalie wedding invites, for example.

What Do You Write On It?

Shine Wedding Invite

Ok, this part can seem like a true catch-22 because you want to include as much info as possible so that your great aunt doesn’t have to call you 72 times to ask what time the ceremony starts, but you also don’t want to squeeze so much text on there that it looks like the window from A Beautiful Mind. So what do you do? Terrell says, “There are seven important lines on an invitation: the hosting line, the request line, the bride’s name, the groom’s name, the date and time, the ceremony location, and the reception information.” That’s it. That’s all you need! Maybe throw in a line for attire so that your step-brother who’s rebelling against his parents by dropping out of grad school doesn’t show up in, like, sweat pants, but most people know what to wear to a wedding if you name the venue. And for those of you who don’t know what a request line is (same), it’s the one that actually invites your guests to your special day. So like, “Carrie Bradshaw and Big request the pleasure of your company…” or “Donald Trump and Vladamir Putin cordially invite you to attend…” You get the idea.

To Go Paper Or To Go Digital?

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Welcome your guests in style⁣ .⁣ .⁣ .⁣ ⁣ #weddinginvitations #weddinginvite #greenery #welcomesign #weddingsign #weddingwelcomesign #weddingaccessories #luxurywedding #simplewedding #neutralwedding #silkribbon #luxuryweddinginvitations #classicwedding #minimalwedding #seekthesimplicity #weddinginspiration #weddinginspo #wedding #2019bride #bridetobe #engaged #dailydoseofpaper #designshouldshine

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Terrell says, “Paper is always the best way to go, even if you are eco-friendly. Your printed invitation is for sure to be remembered and valued in years to come. If you print your wedding invitations, you’ll be able to look back and reminisce on the experience and bask in the timelessness of it all.” Unlike the White House’s current stance, I am pro-Earth, but I totally agree with Terrell on this one. Whether or not you’re making a wedding scrapbook, just remember that the invitation to one of the most special days of your life is something that shouldn’t accidentally get deleted from someone’s inbox or buried beneath a million spam emails. Just like your college diploma, your wedding invitation should be something you look at years later and smile at how hard you blacked out all the memories. The invitation is one of the few tangible things you’ll actually get to take away from the wedding—in addition to a diamond and a spouse, of course—so make sure you print those bad boys! If you want to look out for the environment, just send digital save the date cards and maybe just become vegetarian while you’re at it.

How Far In Advance Should You Order?

Shine Wedding Invite

Unlike your high school graduation party where you sent one invite two weeks in advance and hoped your guests would show up it, your wedding has a totally different invitation system with a full-on schedule in place. Assuming you are planning one year out (and it is A-okay if you aren’t), order your save the dates 10 to 12 months in advance, mail them (or email them!) eight to 10 months out, order invitations and thank you cards four to six months out and mail the invites (duh) two to three months out. Ok, fair enough. So when do you embark on this process? “Choose between modern, classic, and simplistic designs to find what fits your and your fiancé’s personal taste. Once you receive your sample and are sold on a design, place your invitation order four to six months before your wedding date, which will give you plenty of time to work one-on-one with your designer to come up with the perfect look before it’s sent to print,” Terrell says. And with Shine, you’ll receive your personalized proofs within two business days via email for your review and any rounds of revisions. Ideal. Lastly, if you’re unorganized (hi, neighbor) you’ll receive a PDF checklist to look over before sending those babies out! Can you tell I’m excited?

At the end of the day, your wedding day should be one of the most exciting days of your life, so don’t take the invitation-designing process so seriously that you’re raising your cortisol levels to dangerous heights. Have fun with it, people, and make sure to make it clear whether or not there will be an open bar. As a wedding guest (never a bride), that’s all I ask.

Images: Shine Wedding Invitations (2); shinewedding / Instagram