When it comes to wedding invitation etiquette, there are a lot of rules. So many rules you might think that half of them are pointless, but there are reasons these rules are in place. Southern Brides are often taught the why behind the rule because Southern women don’t take tradition lightly. Perhaps you shouldn’t either…

Here are 5 wedding invitation traditions Southern brides just get that you may not.

  1. Formality

This word is thrown around a lot when you’re planning a wedding. What exactly does it mean? For many of us, formality refers to visual elements like the bride’s gown, the bridal party attire and the venue itself. In the South, formality is much more and it is the bedrock of wedding invitation etiquette.

A formally written wedding invitation says quite a bit without actually saying much at all. For example, did you know that traditionally the host line in the wedding invitation wording indicates who’s paying for the majority of the wedding? Or that using the British spelling of the word “honour” indicates the ceremony will be held in a place of worship? Not to mention the many details behind properly addressing the envelopes. To learn more, we recommend reading How to Word Your Wedding Invitation: Formally or Informally

  1. A Host Line

We just touched on this but the host line usually comes at the beginning of your wedding invitation wording, and it’s significant because it recognizes the people who paid for most of the wedding. In today’s world, that recognition may be shared equally between both sets of parents or the couple and one set of parents. Some couples choose to pay for the whole wedding. There are plenty of wording options to reflect any of these scenarios. We have several articles dedicated to providing advice and wording examples for your wedding invitations depending on who is hosting. You can read those here in Wedding Stationery Wording Basics.

  1. No Mention of Gifts

The Southern bride will tell you that there is no need to put something as tacky as a gift registry on your gorgeous wedding invitations or any other part of your wedding invitation ensemble, for that matter. Why? Because gift registries and gift preferences should be spread by word of mouth! We do agree that mentioning gifts does take away from the elegant wording and the beautiful aesthetic of your invitation suite but lots of brides today are listing registries somewhere (not the invitation); maybe on the information card or a wedding website.

  1. Inner and Outer Envelopes

Invitations by Dawn is one of the last online wedding invitation retailers to provide inner and outer envelopes with most wedding invitations. We think inner and outer envelopes are an important tradition, and Southern brides agree! They know that the inner envelope is their best bet for telling guests exactly who is invited! What Southern wedding guests know that much of the country does not know is to look at the inner envelope and pay attention to who is listed. To learn more about the difference between inner and outer envelopes, read How to Address Your Wedding Invitations.

  1. Handwritten Envelopes

The Southern bride would never forego handwritten addresses. In fact, they might even consider hiring a calligrapher to address their envelopes. Why? Because the hand-addressed envelope becomes an incredibly special detail, which indicates a truly elegant, formal occasion is taking place. You may not choose the added expense of hiring a calligrapher but you might choose to pay more attention to this detail. For example, if you choose to have us address your envelopes for you, you could choose one of the many stunning script fonts we offer to mimic the look of professional hand addressing.