So your big day is finally approaching. With only a few months left until the wedding, it’s time to start thinking about invitations.
Invitations are a crucial part of wedding planning, especially if your guest list is on the longer side. It’s important to make sure everyone receives not only an invitation, but also the information inside the enclosure card. While enclosure cards may not get the same recognition that the main invitation does, they often play a more important role in assisting guests and keeping them informed.
Writing your own enclosure cards can be tricky if you’re not familiar with the process, however. That’s why we built this guide.
Read on for everything you need to know about wedding enclosure card wording and crafting your invitation suite.
First and foremost, let’s answer the big question on everyone’s mind: What is a wedding enclosure card?
The answer is pretty simple. Wedding enclosure cards contain additional information that cannot fit on your invitations alone. In order to keep invitations sleek and straightforward, couples will forgo putting important details on them and write this information on their wedding enclosure cards. Both invitations and wedding enclosure cards are typically sent out in the same envelope—with a smaller envelope inside separating the two.
For truly extravagant weddings, an invitation suite may be needed to fit all the necessary information. A wedding invitation suite is essentially a larger set of enclosure cards with extra bells and whistles.
Your wedding invitation suite will be made up of several matching cards—your wedding invitation, and anything else you want to include. Some people choose to add decorative elements to their wedding invitation suite, such as:
Opting for a wedding invitation suite is a fun way to make the planning process a little more creative—plus guests will be delighted to receive such an elegant package in the mail.
Zola Tip: With Zola, couples can choose from hundreds of gorgeous wedding invitations, along with matching enclosure cards for a perfectly seamless touch.
While everyone’s wedding invitations, enclosure cards, and suites are going to look a little different, there are a few staple pieces of information that every couple should include. Below are some must-haves when it comes to writing your wedding enclosure cards:
Reception details: Some couples choose to host their reception in the same location as their ceremony, while others opt for two separate wedding venues for each portion of the celebration. If you’re planning to use the same venue, you may simply write “reception to follow” on the bottom of your invitations. Now, if your reception is going to take place in a different place (or at a later time) you’ll want to include these details in your enclosure card.
Directions: Directions to the location of the ceremony or reception are typically included in most wedding enclosure cards. While everyone may have a GPS in their phone, adding this information can still be helpful to ensure guests arrive on time. This is especially true for venues off the beaten path.
Transportation schedules: If you’re planning on transporting guests from one venue to another, this should be included in your wedding enclosure card, as well. Both the schedule and method of any transportation provided should be included here.
Attire: While attire details aren’t necessarily required, they’re certainly encouraged. Including a dress code—whether it be black tie, cocktail, or casual—will ensure every guest knows exactly what to wear ahead of time. Save loved ones the frustration of guessing with their outfits and include a brief description of expected attire on your enclosure card.
Response card: One of the biggest elements you’ll want to include in your wedding enclosure cards is a way for guests to RSVP. Traditionally, a response card with its own return envelope and postage is included for guests to fill out. In 2021, however, using physical response cards has become a little outdated. Now, couples can utilize Zola’s online RSVP tracker, create digital guest lists, and even organize meal preferences directly from their computer. Simply add the link to your wedding website on the enclosure card and encourage guests to RSVP there. Of course, a physical response card can be included as an option for guests who struggle with technology—but digital RSVPs are typically easier to organize.
Zola Tip: Any information you can’t fit in your invitation suite can be added to your wedding website. Simply add a business card with the URL alongside your invitations, and invite guests to visit the website for more details about the big day.
Now that you understand what should be included in your wedding enclosure cards, it’s time to tackle the real topic of this article: how to write them.
Wording and etiquette can be tricky to figure out when navigating the world of wedding stationery. Fortunately, the experts at Zola are here to help you every step of the way.
Below are just a few examples of proper wedding enclosure wording:
For a simple enclosure card, try writing something like this:
“Reception information: Bluxome Street Winery 101 Bluxome Street San Francisco, California
For more details, see: [Zola link] Password: [Optional]”
Zola Tip: Notice how this wedding enclosure card wording gets right to the point. Some couples prefer to save the artful language for their invitations and keep the important information in their enclosure cards much more straightforward. Ultimately, this will be a matter of personal preference. Just know that you always have the option of keeping things simple.
If you want to keep your enclosure card wording in line with your invitations, then you may need to get a little creative with your language. For a more formal approach, try something like this:
“It’s Time to Celebrate: Please join us after the ceremony for a night of dinner and dancing at Bluxome Street Winery 101 Bluxome Street San Francisco, California
Dress Your Best: Dress code will be cocktail attire
Please visit (Zola link) for all wedding details, including hotel accommodations, RSVPs, and gift registry.
Zola Tip: As you can see, this wording takes a little more liberty when it comes to the headings, but the information remains the same. Couples can feel free to get creative when crafting their enclosure cards, but you’ll want to make sure they remain easy for guests to read.
Above are the basics of writing a wedding enclosure card, but there’s plenty of other information that can be incorporated as well. While some couples keep things simple with a single enclosure card, others may choose to include multiple pieces of stationery in their wedding invitation suite.
Let’s take a look at some other popular types of wedding enclosure cards and how they may be worded:
As previously mentioned, setting up digital RSVPs is easier. That being said, we’ve included a wording example for couples who prefer to send out physical response cards with their wedding invitations:
“Kindly Reply On or before September 23rd, [Guest name]: Will Attend or Will Not Attend Entree preference: Beef, Chicken, or Fish”
Zola Tip: The best part about response card wording? Your guest will be writing most of it. Simply state your deadline, give your guest options, and list the entree choices available. The rest is up to them.
Accommodation information is important, especially for destination weddings and out-of-town guests. While this can be listed on your wedding website, some couples choose to include an accommodation card along with their wedding invitations. If you’re interested in doing this, the wording for your accommodation card may look something like this:
“Accommodations: For your convenience, a block of rooms has been reserved at The Fairmont San Francisco 950 Mason Street San Francisco, California.
Please reference [hotel link] for more information with: [group code or password]
Rates start at $150 per night Please book by September 23rd!”
Zola Tip: Finding accommodations for your guests is easy when you use Zola’s online hotel planner. With this handy service, couples can find hotel blocks near their venue within seconds—and all this information can easily be uploaded to your free wedding website.
Direction inserts are fairly easy to write, because you’re mostly reiterating the information your GPS gives you. That being said, couples should include any tips and tricks they have for getting to the venue, finding parking, and avoiding traffic. A solid direction insert will typically have a visual map, along with simple wording such as:
“Bluxome Street Winery 101 Bluxome Street San Francisco, California
From Downtown San Francisco:
Zola Tip: Since guests may be coming from different places, it can be helpful to list multiple sets of directions. This is particularly important if you live near two large metropolitan areas—such as San Francisco and San Jose.
Weddings last longer than just a single day. Getting all your friends and family together for this celebration of love can often take up an entire weekend, if not more. This is why many couples choose to include an itinerary card along with their wedding invitations.
Wording for an itinerary enclosure card may look something like this:
“We would love for you to join us in the following wedding events:
Rehearsal Dinner: Friday, September 17 7:00 PM Sotto Mare Restaurant 552 Green Street San Francisco, California
Wedding Ceremony and Reception: Saturday, September 18 4:00 PM Bluxome Street Winery 101 Bluxome Street San Francisco, California
Farewell Brunch: Sunday, September 19 12:00 PM Plain Jane Restaurant 1000 Guerrero Street San Francisco, California”
Zola Tip: If you’re planning an action-packed weekend, your itinerary card may end up a little longer than you’d like. That’s why we recommend keeping descriptions very brief in order to save space and make your itinerary card easy to read.
With a thorough understanding of enclosure card wording under your belt, it’s time to jump into the fun part of the article: designing your wedding invitation suite.
Putting together the different elements of your wedding invitation is one of the most exciting parts of planning your wedding day. This is your first chance to show off your unique wedding style to guests and give them a sneak peek of how the big day might look. This is why many couples try to match the style of their invitations and enclosure cards to the reception decor. Let’s take a look at some important elements to consider when crafting a chic invitation suite:
We recommend selecting a color palette for all of your stationery and sticking to it. This will result in a more cohesive look and help you match your wedding decor more easily. Some of the most popular wedding color palettes include:
When putting together your wedding invitations, it may be helpful to have an essential checklist for reference. Below are some of the biggest pieces you’ll want to include with your invitations and enclosure cards:
The outer envelope: This is the main envelope that holds every single piece of stationery you’ll be sending out. For larger invitation suites, the outer envelope may be closer to a package rather than the traditional letter size.
Wedding invitation: The first thing you want your guests to see when they open the outer envelope is the wedding invitation front and center. Once they’ve seen the star of the show, everything else can be placed directly behind the invitation.
Inner envelope: The inner envelope will be home to your main enclosure card and any additional stationery you choose to include (directions, itinerary, etc.). The size of this envelope will ultimately depend on how many cards you choose to include.
Response card and return postage (if applicable): If you’re planning on gathering RSVPs the old-fashioned way, you’ll need to include a response card and return envelope with your invitation suite. Adding stamps is also a nice touch that will make the process easier on guests.
Once you’ve got the essentials covered, you can begin to personalize your invitation suite with decorative elements. For inspiration, we’ve listed a few common additions that will truly elevate the look of your wedding enclosure cards:
Dried flowers: Weddings are all about the floral details—so why not add some to your invitation suite? Placing a dried flower in your outer envelope will add a touch of elegance and make a fun surprise for guests when they open it.
Colorful envelopes: While your outer envelope will need to follow postal regulations, the inner envelopes can be as fun and whimsical as you’d like. Opt for colorful envelopes with an eye-catching font to liven up the contents of your invitation suite.
A matching pen: Your guests probably have their own pens at home, but including one in your invitation suite is never a bad idea. Attach a stylish pen in your preferred color to your response card and encourage guests to keep it as a memento.
A photo of the happy couple: Customize your invitations by uploading any couples portraits you may have. Couples can also slip in a photo separately as an additional piece of the invitation suite.
Belly band: A belly band is a decorative wrap that fits snuggly around all your wedding stationery—thus keeping the elements together in a stylish fashion. Belly bands typically have some sort of writing on them, such as the couple's names or initials. Of course, this piece is optional, but it can be great for keeping stationery organized. Some couples may prefer to forgo a belly band or use a silk ribbon in its place.
For our final piece of advice, we’ll be talking about timelines for sending out invitations and enclosure cards.
Every wedding is different, but invitation etiquette is pretty standard across the board. It’s recommended that most couples send out their invitation suites around six to eight weeks before the big day. RSVPs should be returned at least a month before the wedding date in order to properly arrange the guest list and seating chart.
To give yourself plenty of time, we advise couples to order their invitations and enclosure cards at least six months before you plan to send them out. To make this easier to remember, couples can simply order their invitations shortly after sending out their save-the-dates.
For destination weddings, this timeline differs quite a bit. With so many travel accommodations needed, destination wedding invitations should be sent out no later than 12 weeks before the wedding date.
Whether you’re looking for invitations, enclosure cards, or save-the-dates, Zola is your one-stop shop for all things wedding. We have hundreds of gorgeous designs to fit any wedding style, and Zola members can even customize their invitations with photos, metallic foil, unique typography, and more.
Our helpful wedding services don’t stop there, either. From our Expert Advice to our online wedding registry, Zola couples can complete their entire wedding planning checklist from the comfort of home.
Ditch the stress and jump straight to the celebration. Start planning your dream wedding today, with Zola!