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When to Send Wedding Invitations and Other Stationery

meet ALLISON  →

A wedding stationery designer with a love of coordinating envelopes, watercolor envelope liners, wax seals and classic letterpress!

Designing timeless stationery in Findlay, Ohio for romantic couples.


In today’s blog, I’ll be breaking down the timeline for when to send wedding invitations and related stationery. From ‘save the date’ to ‘thank you’ cards, it’s important to plan ahead. You don’t want to “start” at the moment you want to start sending them out. While I hope the below timelines will be helpful for you, I also want to remind you that if you’re hoping for a custom wedding invitation designs, I recommend starting at least 9 months before your big day to allow for revisions, printing, and postage. Or, if you’re reading this and you’re already feeling short on time, semi-custom designs can still give you that luxurious look without needing as much lead time.

Before we get into it, welcome to Kindly Delivered! I’m your personal wedding and stationery designer based in beautiful Ohio. Whether you’re near or far, I’m here to turn your paper goods dreams into reality, and then some! With a true passion for capturing your unique essence, I provide personalized, one-on-one service throughout the entire design process. If this resonates with you, you can find all the details of working together here or click here to get started right away!

invitation suite flat lay
Photo Credit: Hayley Moore Photography; Suite: Emma Suite

1. Engagement Party Invites

Before we talk about when to send wedding invitations, let’s start with the engagement party invitations! This joyful event, usually hosted by the couple’s parents or close friends, is a fantastic way to share your news with your loved ones. It’s a good idea to send out the invitations shortly after getting engaged, while the excitement is still in the air. Just keep in mind that guests at the engagement party will also expect an invitation to the wedding, so make sure to plan your guest list carefully!

2. Save the Dates

Now, these little cards aren’t always necessary, but trust me, they’re an absolute lifesaver for guests who need to make travel arrangements or block their calendars. I recommend sending your save the dates out 4-6 months before the wedding. If you’re planning a destination wedding, I suggest to send them out even earlier! Remember, these are only for those who you plan to invite to the wedding itself.

blue save the date invitations

3. Wedding Invitations

Ah, the pièce de résistance: the wedding invitation suite. It goes without saying, that this one is my favorite. This package usually includes the main invitation and envelope, a response card with envelope, and any additional details cards your guests might need, such as directions or accommodation information. I cover what to include (and how many pieces you need in your invitation suite!) in detail here. Aim to send these out 2-3 months before your wedding date.

gorgeous lavender wedding invitations

4. Bridal Shower Invitations

This pre-wedding soiree is usually hosted by the maid of honor or the mother of the bride. As a rule of thumb, anyone invited to the shower should also receive a wedding invitation. Aim to get these invites out 6-8 weeks before the event.

5. Bachelorette/Bachelor Party Invitations

Let’s not forget the ultimate pre-wedding bash! Traditionally, it is customary for the maid of honor and best man to take charge of sending out these invitations. It is recommended to send them approximately one month prior to the party date, allowing ample time for the guests to make arrangements and mark their calendars for the party. With that said, if the party requires travel, give them a little extra notice.

coral and green invites with personalized wax seal

6. Rehearsal Dinner Invitations

The rehearsal dinner usually takes place the night before the wedding and is an intimate gathering of close family and anyone involved in the wedding ceremony. Send these invitations at least 3-6 weeks in advance.

7. Wedding Thank You Cards

Last but certainly not least, the thank you cards (read our guide on thank you cards here!). These should be sent out anytime you receive a gift during the planning of your wedding and afterwards. This way, you can avoid feeling overwhelmed by trying to send them all at once. Anyone who sends you a gift during any of the festivities deserves a heartfelt note of appreciation. Technically etiquette rules state that you have one year to send out your thank you cards, but usually your guests will appreciate (and expect) them sooner.

wedding invitation designer putting together an invite

When to Send Wedding Invitations and Other Stationery

So here it is—a comprehensive guide that gives you valuable insights into when to send wedding invitations and other important stationery. And remember, pay attention to the details, but most importantly, celebrate the love that truly matters. Happy planning, folks!

As a wedding invitation and stationery designer, I’m here to assist you every step of the way! Whether you’re a wedding planner serving your couples or you’re the one getting married and eager to invite your loved ones, you can find more information on how to work with me right here. Ready to get started? Head over here and let’s create unforgettable wedding stationery together!