You might think that when your wedding is over, that your work is over too but (aside of course from putting all your energy into creating the perfect marriage!) there is one more formal task yet to be tackled – the wedding thank you card or note.
Well rules were, it is commonly accepted, made to be broken so it is a matter of personal taste as to how seriously that you take them but there do seem to be some generally agreed principles when it comes to sending out your thanks to your wedding guests.
- Get a notepad ready before you start opening your wedding gifts and make sure you write down each gift and who gave it to you. This will save a lot of thinking cap time after the event and also the possibility of crediting the wrong gift to a person which would be a bit embarrassing. Following that, don’t lose the notepad 🙂 (Reading back, that sounded quite old fashioned – I know I’d use my iPad for this purpose. Following that, don’t lose your iPad)
- Etiquette dictates that you should send a card or note to each guest (or family of guests) whether or not they gave a gift and that these should be received within three months of the wedding date. I have to say though, even though people know the work that goes into planning a wedding and so they aren’t surprised when a thank you card isn’t on their doormat the following week three months does seem like a really long time. Unless you’re on a three month honeymoon. Lucky dogs if you are!
- Preprinted thank you’s might save time but they don’t seem sincere – of course having part of the card printed is fine, but you should always include a personal message
- If you received a gift, you should mention it by name and comment on how you are going to use it, or how much you love it, where you will put it, etc..
- If you received money or vouchers, you should mention them but not the amount. Not sure why, probably just the British reticence to talk about matters financial but the consensus seems to be that it is bad form to put in a £ amount!
Boring Rules Over. Now for Inspiration
Thank you cards are abundant in type, shape, size and cost – a search on Google will inundate you with all different sorts from preprinted, off the shelf to hand made. Budget and taste will dictate what you choose – whether you choose to match it into the theme of your wedding or your other wedding stationery, or just go with a simple plain card and personalise each with a heartfelt message.
Creating Photo Cards
Lots of online printers offer an easy facility for you to take an image of your own and turn it into a card that looks just a professional as anything you’d buy in a store. Whether you have hired a professional photographer or not (and of course you have ‘cos you realise your wedding memories are not the sort of thing to take a chance on 🙂 ), you’ll have lots of images from your day that would probably fit the bill perfectly. However, what about building your thank you card image into your day? This is on my favourite ideas – I think it’s fab and shows your guests that you cared about thanking them so much that you even prepared something amidst the hustle and bustle of your wedding day. There are lots of ways you can add this in, I’ve seen examples using bunting, chalk boards, card board signs, your imagination is the limit really. Another idea on the photo card theme is to send a photo of the wedding guest themselves, either as a family or as individuals – if your photographer has taken lots of reportage shots then you could choose from these or alternatively a group shot in which the guest is included.
Include a Little Gift
You could choose to add in a little something extra to say thanks to your wedding guests. The problem with this idea is that it is likely that you are going to have to post a good proportion of your wedding thanks and so you need to choose something that is likely to survive the postal system or at least give some though to boxing it up in a survivable (but halfway elegant) way. Still there are lots of little boxes and containers available online so you are bound to be able to find something that is workable. If you are feeling traditional, you could send a slice of your wedding cake. I’m pretty sure this would only work with a fruit cake as I can’t imagine a sponge handling the rigours of the sorting machines too fabulously, but there are plenty of ready made boxes that you can buy for this purpose. If you are looking for flat gifts that fit easily inside a card, I thought seed sticks were a lovely idea – basically they just look like a match book but inside the book, there are cardboard strips impregnated with all types of seeds. You plant them in the usual way and it is a nice though that your guests could be enjoying flowers in their garden (or vegetables on their plate) long after your wedding day. There are also lots of flat tags and plaques available that can be personalised to include your wedding message – Etsy was a good place to browse for these but I’m sure there are lots of people that do them.