You’ve just gotten married, it was the happiest day of your life, but you’re definitely glad all that stress is over – well almost. You still have wedding thank you cards. Just as many other wedding traditions have stayed intact despite advances in technology (email wedding invitations – no thank you!), it’s still considered proper etiquette to mail wedding thank you cards after the big day. But what are the rules? Read on for more common etiquette and advice on sending out wedding thank you cards.
It is socially acceptable to send wedding thank you cards as long as three months after the wedding, but why would you want to put it off for that long? It’s not going to get any easier waiting till the last minute. Ideally, wedding thank you cards should be sent out within two weeks of coming back from your honeymoon (unless you’ve postponed your honeymoon, then it would be two weeks after your wedding). In addition, a wedding thank you card should be sent immediately for any gifts received before the wedding.
Many wedding invitation packages come with wedding thank you cards that complement the wedding invitations and save the date cards you have already sent, however in no case should you ever use a pre-printed wedding thank you card! (“Thank you” already printed on the front is fine.) Your guests took the time to pick out a present, wrap it and ship it; the least you can do is write a few words of thanks. (It is OK to have your return address pre-printed, but the gift givers address should always be handwritten.)
If your wedding invitations didn’t come with wedding gift thank you cards, a simple, classic thank you card is always good. Another good idea is wedding photo thank you cards. Just upload one of your favorite photos from your wedding, then all your guests get a special memory from your wedding as well as a thank you! (Just remember you still need to send out wedding gift thank you cards before the wedding.)
A great way to make sure you send a wedding thank you card as soon as you receive a wedding gift is to keep a stack on the counter, by the door, or wherever you know they will be visible and stay at the top of your mind. Keep a few envelopes already stamped with your address label on it or your address already written out. This makes it a lot easier to jot out a quick note and drop it in the mail ASAP.
A short and simple note that is to the point is all you need to write. Unlike the prim and proper wedding invitations you have already sent out, you can use the gift givers’ first names. Try writing something personal about the gift, maybe where you will put it, or how it will be used, and mention how great it was to see the gift givers at the wedding (if it was sent prior to your wedding day, tell them you look forward to seeing them there).
You can always add in some personal touches. If the gift givers traveled a significant distance to attend your wedding, mention how much you appreciate it, or if they were unable to attend, let them know they were missed. If you are thanking someone for a monetary gift, it is not necessary to mention how much was given, but it’s nice to let the givers know what you will be doing with the money (don’t say paying off your enormous wedding).
Even the simplest note inside your wedding thank you card will go a long way in showing your thanks. It doesn’t need to be flawless – a less than perfect note that truly shows some heartfelt thanks will always be appreciated.
By keeping up with gifts that arrive before the wedding, and writing just three or four wedding thank you cards every day after the wedding or honeymoon, you will be done in no time!
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