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How To Make A Wedding Website And Invites Your Guests *Actually* Want To Read

Planning a wedding is stressful as fuck — we totally get it. That’s why Betches’ beloved Say Yes to the Betch newsletter is now also a web column! Every other week, a bride who’s deep in wedding planning will share updates on her journey: the highs, the lows, and everything in between. Meet your bride: Sara K. Runnels.

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How To Add Personality To Your Wedding Website And Invites


I’ve done things non-traditionally for so long (most notably: being a happily unmarried woman until 40) that I hate to admit, by getting married at all, I’m embracing peak tradition. So when it comes to the invitation, information and innovation, I wanted to stay on brand, tapping into opportunities that make it wildly apparent I have not just suddenly transformed overnight from Clever Single Witch to Professional Bride.

Of course your personality is supposed to shine through in all the tiny, spectacular details of the momentous event (even if no one notices them), but before everyone shows up to the party, I wanted to set the tone with websites and invites — two places right off the bat I chose to take a slightly different path in how info was distributed to guests. 

First, Save the Dates. By deciding to get married six months post-engagement, we had to get those bad boys out immediately. I wanted something centered around a stunning photo of me and my spouse-elect, naturally, but with enough added creativity that our recipients might covet it instead of letting it die in the junk mail pile or giving it bottom-tier placement on the fridge under a picture of Baby Parker (who is now 15). In other words, I wanted it to be an STD you’d love to get.

Another requirement for my date-savers was something that could double as a really cool piece of decor for our actual wedding day. I had this vision of a rom-com movie poster with more rom than com. (Unlike the rest of my life, which was more com than rom.) I hopped on Canva and typed in “movie poster template,” then got to work on the best ad for a film that no one would ever see but somehow would receive rave reviews by The OMG Times. 

Black White Minimal Alone Movie Poster (5 x 7 in) (Postcards) - 1

We met on Hinge, so our relationship was literally produced by the app designed to be deleted (many, many, many years later). The backside of the card has a cute headline, accompanied by our custom wedding URL in extra-large font with directions to RSVP and learn everything you could ever want to know about the big day. I printed them with Canva ($76 with rush shipping), then bought black envelopes to showcase the color of my heart before I met Adam ($17), cute forever stamps ($100) & DIY address labels ($5) and sent them out frantically. 

I would say about a third of our 140 invited guests reached out as soon as they received them to say they LOVED how cute and clever the announcement was, which felt very validating. Nowhere on the card did it say, “Save the date for a wedding!”, but if you couldn’t derive what was happening, then sadly, dear loved one, you are no longer in the running to be America’s Next Top Wedding Guest. 

The next wild thing I did was resize the image I created from 5×7” to 24×36” and print it at Walgreens for $25, then bought a giant gold frame to hang in our house until we put it on display at our wedding venue. Adam says he still can’t believe there is a three-foot picture of him in our living room, to which I reply, “I know, you are so welcome!” 

We’ve been debating doing official invites because of our abridged timeline and because we already prompted guests to RSVP, however, I think it’s not a terrible idea to send a simplistic, slightly more formal reminder that we’re having an expensive party in the name of forever-love and it’d be wonderful to please let us know if, in celebration of that against-all-odds kind of romance, you’d like salmon or short ribs. So I’ll be ordering those soon — right after my work tasks and life tasks and 63 other wedding tasks.

After the Save the Dates were knocked out, I got to work on the website so it’d be ready to go the second the URL landed in guests’ mailboxes. The Knot’s template was the easiest to maneuver in such a short period of time (and has truly made it a breeze to collect RSVPs). Most of our site is pretty classic in form –– there’s a giant profesh pic of the two of us in Paris to welcome our visitors (which is false advertising since we’ll be in Seattle), followed by a funny and heartfelt message and then straight-up facts; exactly where to be and when. Those things should be as clear as possible so when Aunt Jo texts you, “What time is the ceremony?” at 4:30pm on wedding Saturday, she’ll have to live with that devastating choice for the rest of her life. 

After you get the basics laid out, one way I found to have a little fun on the site was with the Q&A. While a bit of sass may not be for everyone, it was another place I could let everyone know that wedding planning has not taken away my incessant need to be a clown in a gown, as you’ll see below. 

Some of My Real Wedding Website Q&A

Can I bring my child?

No, thank you. We love your kids but this party is Rated R. (For Adult Situations, Alcohol & Language). Please stick to the names listed on your invitation as a guide of who should be in attendance. If you can’t leave the angels home with grandma, there are lots of great sitters in Seattle!

What if it rains on October 12?

First of all, don’t be crazy. It will be the most beautiful day on earth, and we will get to enjoy the fabulous terrace with views of Downtown Seattle and the Space Needle. Second of all, if the city does, in fact, try to show off its stunning gray skies, luckily, the ceremony and reception are indoors, and we will just have to settle for panoramic views of Puget Sound.

Am I invited to the rehearsal dinner?

We wish! We are having a very intimate rehearsal dinner, and those who are invited have been notified. The good news is, we will be having welcome drinks on Friday, October 11 after the dinner, so we’d love to see you there! (Just make sure Sara leaves the party by 9.) 

How can I make the day easier for you guys?

OMG, thank you for asking! Just show up on-time looking beautiful ready to party and that’s it! 

Does the wedding have a theme?

The theme is “Pacific Northwest Glam,” which, yes, is in fact an oxymoron. 

Why did you only give yourselves six months to plan a wedding?

Essentially, we said to ourselves: “Why wait?!” Even though our bank accounts were like: “We can answer that.” But to quote from Harry Burns (via Nora Ephron): “When you realize you want to spend the rest of your life with a person, you want the rest of your life to start as soon as possible.” However, Harry wasn’t planning a wedding in 180 days, so he can take it down a notch.

What does Black Tie Optional mean?

In short, it means: please don’t wear shorts. Or jeans. Or anything you might wear to a backyard BBQ. In long, it means: you could wear your most formal attire (i.e. an evening gown or tuxedo) or you can choose to wear a formal suit or cocktail dress. Basically, you have some flexibility in dressing up. You can either go full-on glam in black-tie-worthy attire or opt for a slightly more relaxed but still formal ensemble. We know you’ll look fab no matter what!

As a creative copywriter, it was easy to be both informative and playful in execution, but if you’re struggling with ways to make the Q&A (or your entire site or your invites) representative of a fun and elevated “you” (or, more accurately, “y’all”), I’d say ask yourself what you would find entertaining if you were on the guest end and go from there. Ultimately, you may discover you just love the traditional route and want to save any or all creativity for the big day. (Nothing better than respecting your own boundaries, am I right????) 

Sara K. Runnels
Sara K. Runnels
Sara K. Runnels is a copywriter and humor writer living in Seattle, Washington. Her work has appeared in The New Yorker, McSweeney’s, Tinder messages, Gmail inboxes, group texts, Instagram captions, one Yelp review, several spec scripts her mom thinks are GREAT and hundreds of Twitter screenshots. Follow her all over the internet – @omgskr.