Stop! Read this!

Words are so under-rated, dontchathink? It is with great pleasure that we welcome guest blogger Hannah from HD Words to Pasties & Petticoats for a series of posts, all about the importance of words, and how you can use them to set the tone for your big day, and other weddingy stuff! HD Words specialises in writing, as well as proofreading and editing, with a dash of social media, so without further ado it’s over to Hannah for some fab expert advice…


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Words are powerful. After all, you stopped and read this, didn’t you!

Reading or hearing the words ‘Once upon a time…’ puts you into a comfy chair, cuddled up waiting for a good story, hopefully with a happy-ever-after.

‘It was a dark and stormy night…’ is a different kind of story altogether.


This week’s post is about invitations, specifically how they are written. Imagine, you are opening the post one day and see three wedding invitations.

Invitation 1 says:

“Mr and Mrs Arthur McGulliver-Jones cordially request the pleasure of the company of (you) at the marriage of their daughter….”

Invitation 2 says:

“Frank and Helen Armstrong invite (you) to help them celebrate the marriage of their daughter…”

Invitation 3 says:

“Josh and Serena are finally tying the knot and we would love (you) to help us party!”

So, three different styles.  The pictures you conjure on reading those three different invitations are three very different weddings.


1 says you need to go and buy a new dress, probably with matching hat, shoes and bag. You’ll need to get your hair done, and make sure your +1 has his cut too. As you read further down, you’re not surprised to learn this wedding is in a big old church, or grand stately pile.

2 says you can wear that nice dress you bought last summer and only got to wear twice. You’ll be part of a family celebration, so you will probably find yourself dancing with the bride’s grandfather and the groom’s 4-year-old nephew during the evening. The food will be lovely but not the five courses with scary amounts of cutlery that wedding 1 promises.

3 doesn’t surprise you at all when it gives the venue as a beach-front bar’s function room. You know the groom will probably change into board shorts part way through, if he doesn’t turn up in them in the first place. You can wear whatever you like, but probably with your bikini underneath. It will be a wild party and you’ll probably end up dancing with pretty much everyone.

You need to think, when you write your own invitation; what image you want to create in the minds of your guests as they read it. You need to make sure they don’t misunderstand the type of wedding you will be having, and turn up in the ‘wrong’ clothes. You might like to include a note of dress code if there is something particular – boardshorts, kilts, black tie…

Other things you need to make sure are included in your invitation are:

  • Where
  • When
  • Ceremony or just reception
  • RSVP details, with date to reply by, and option to specify dietary requirements.


Your guests will also want other information which can clutter up the look of an invitation, and is often worth putting on a separate sheet:

  • Directions to the venue(s)
  • Local places to stay, and whether the reception venue has a special deal for your guests
  • Contact details for caterers, so special dietary requirements can be discussed
  • Gift list, or alternative suggestion


As well as working out what you want to say, you will need to think about how you want your invitation to look. This again will set the tone of the wedding, and help guests form a picture of the occasion. However, that’s a blog post for another time.

Thank you for reading, and best wishes with organising your wedding, and for a long and happy marriage!



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Thank you Hannah at HD Words for this, the first in a series of guest posts.

Thank you to Kirsty at The Paper Princess, for gorgeous images of her beautiful wedding stationery, handmade in Cornwall.

Photography credit: Rachel Kevern

‘STOP’ featured image: Flickr Creative Commons



If you’d like to contribute a guest post, do get in touch

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