Envelope Etiquette

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We understand that envelope addressing can be an overwhelming and daunting task. There are several ways to properly address your envelopes depending on the marital status, family status or living arrangements of your guests. To get you started, we’ve included some basic tips then several examples of common envelope addressing situations. Please note that these “etiquette” tips vary by source and only you can decide how you want to address the envelopes for your wedding.

More Addressing Tips

  • Courtesy titles may be abbreviated, such as Mr. & Mrs., but Doctor should be spelled out.
  • Initials should not be used for middle names. Leave them in or out. However, if a guest never uses his or her first given name, do not use it in the address. An initial is acceptable here. **Please remember if you choose to include middle names on your envelopes there will be an extra charge.
  • For formal invitations, abbreviations should not be used for Street, Drive, Avenue, Apartment, or for cities and states. Abbreviations can be appropriate for informal invitations.
  • Street numbers under 10 should be written out; anything over 10 should be included in digit form. If it is your preference to have us spell out numbered street names over ten there is an added charge.
  • Children and guest escorts should not be mentioned on outer envelope, unless you are using single envelopes only.
  • If you know who your invitee will bring as a guest, include his/her name on the invitation as opposed to “guest”.
  • Children over the age of 18, still living at home, should each receive their own invitation.
  • “Miss” is commonly used for ladies under 18; unmarried women over the age of 18 are traditionally addressed as “Ms.”
  • Adults not romantically involved (i.e. roommates), living in the same household, should each receive their own invitation.
  • A comma should come before suffixes such as Sr. and Junior, but not before roman numerals II or III and so on.

Common Addressing Situations

Married couple – Formal:

Outer: Mr. and Mrs. Ryan Law

Inner: Mr. and Mrs. Law

Married couple – Informal:

Outer: Alyssa and Ryan Law

Inner: Ryan and Alyssa

Married couple with children under 18 living at home – Formal:

Outer: Mr. and Mrs. Ryan Law

Inner: Mr. and Mrs. Ryan Law
Miss Katie Law

Married couple with children under 18 living at home – Informal:

Outer: Alyssa and Ryan Law

Inner: Ryan and Alyssa
Sara, John and James

Married couple – Wife kept her maiden name:

Outer: Mr. Ryan Law and Ms. Alyssa Hooper

Inner: Mr. Law and Ms. Hooper

Married couple – Both are doctors, different last names:

Outer: Doctor Ryan Law and Doctor Alyssa Hooper

Or: Doctor Alyssa Hooper and Doctor Ryan Law

Inner: Dr. Law and Dr. Hooper

Married Couple – Wife is a Doctor:

Outer: Doctor Alyssa Law and Mr. Ryan Law

Inner: Dr. Law and Mr. Law

Married Couple – Husband is a Doctor:

Outer: Doctor and Mrs. Ryan Law

Inner: Dr. and Mrs. Law

Married Couple – Husband holds title:

Outer: The Honorable and Mrs. Ryan Law

Inner: Judge and Mrs. Law

Married Couple – Wife holds title:

Outer: The Honorable Alyssa Law and Mr. Ryan Law

Or: The Honorable Alyssa Hooper and Mr. Ryan Law

Inner: Judge Law and Mr. Law

Unmarried Couple living together:

Outer: Ms. Alyssa Hooper and Mr. Ryan Law

Inner: Ms. Hooper and Mr. Law

Same sex partners – Married or Unmarried:

Outer: Mr. Elton John and Mr. David Furnish

Inner:  Mr. John and Mr. Furnish

Or: Outer: Mrs. Rosie O’Donnell and Mrs. Kellie White

Inner: Mrs. O’Donnell and Mrs. White

Single woman – With or without guest:

Outer: Ms. Alyssa Hooper

Inner: Ms. Alyssa Hooper

Or: Ms. Hooper and Guest

Or: Ms. Hooper
Mr. Law

Single man – With or without guest:

Outer: Mr. Ryan Law

Inner: Mr. Law

Or: Mr. Law and Guest

Or: Mr. Law
Ms. Hooper

*If you are not using inner envelopes, you can include “and Guest” on the outer envelope on the same line as the primary invitee

Divorced woman:

Outer: Mrs./Ms. Alyssa Law

Inner: Mrs./Ms. Law

Or: Mr. Law and Guest

Or: Mr. Law
Ms. Hooper

*Always use Ms. if the woman has gone back to her maiden name

Widow:

Outer: Mrs. Ryan Law

Or: Mrs. Alyssa Law

Inner: Mrs. Law