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The Proper Way to Address a Wedding Invitation

At The Petite Acorn, we’re here to help you every step of the way. Read this article to learn more about the proper way to address a wedding invitation. Also, you can browse some of our traditional wedding invitations to give you some ideas and start your journey.

Traditional wedding invitations are comprised of an inner and an outer envelope. The larger outer envelope states the recipient’s name, address, return address and postage. The inner envelope has less information (usually only the name of the person being invited). Customarily, the inner envelope isn’t sealed with a gummed flap. You may either tuck the flap inside or place a seal on top of the flap to seal it loosely. The inner envelope should be addressed as if you are hand delivering it. However, contemporary invitations do not always include inner envelopes.



Traditional etiquette says that you should not abbreviate anything. Today, it is acceptable to abbreviate titles, such as Dr., Mrs., etc.). Abbreviating street names and states also follow this rule.

Hand Addressing

Traditional etiquette says that you should hand address your invitations in black ink. This can be time-consuming, so you may want to enlist some help from family loved ones in order to accomplish this task. If no one you know has beautiful handwriting, consider hiring someone that does calligraphy. Additionally, you could print in an elegant font.

The Return Address

The return address is printed by hand. Add it to the back of the envelope flap. This should be the address of the event host(s). Traditionally, names are not included on a formal return address. Please keep in mind that guests who are unable to attend or wish to send a gift before the wedding will most likely send their gift to this address.

Traditionally speaking, the names of the bride and groom should not appear together in print until after the wedding. Even if an unmarried couple is living together, the return address is addressed to the bride only.

Special Situations: Widows and Children

When doing so, send it using her husband’s name, such as Mrs. William Potter. The inside envelope is addressed to your guest, such as Aunt Mary. If your guest does not have a title, such as “aunt,” then address the inner envelope to Mrs. Potter.

Children’s names aren’t traditionally written on the outside of the envelope, but they are written on the inside envelope if you want them to attend. If you wish to include them on the outer envelope, then address the envelope to Mr. and Mrs. Husband’s Last Name and Family.

We’re here to help you with all of your questions and concerns. Visit us at our Fort Lauderdale store to discuss your wedding invitations. To set up an appointment, click here or call us at 954-962-3141.

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