Enclosures in the invitation, though not necessary, are a considerate touch and help clarify details. A reception card is useful, especially if the reception will be held at a place other than the wedding site. Using a separate card for this information keeps the wedding invitation clearer.
Another practical reason for a separate reception card: Some guests may be invited only to the wedding, and it's easy to insert reception cards into the envelopes of those who are invited to the reception. The card should indicate the time the reception begins (or say "Reception immediately following the ceremony"), followed by the name and address of the location.
Other enclosures to consider are a menu-choice card, a map with directions to the wedding and reception, and a rain-location card if needed.
An RSVP card is customary; with the obligatory self-addressed, stamped envelope, it allows guests to reply quickly and easily and provides the hosts with a head count to determine the amount of food needed. Set the RSVP card return date two to three weeks prior to the wedding. All cards should match the style of the invitation.
A new trend in wedding invitations is to send a save-the-date card. This announcement goes out three to four months prior to the wedding. The save-the-date card represents the first news of the occasion many guests receive. It allows them to make arrangements as needed well ahead of time. Typically, the card includes general information about the wedding as well as any special accommodations the couple has made for guests (such as meals or reserved blocks at hotels).
Continued on page 3: How to Address