Wednesday, March 13, 2013

The importance of a detailed guest and address list

Every great wedding starts with a list of who (and maybe who not) to invite.  And this is one area I often find overwhelms many a newly engaged couple and their families.  Gathering addresses, how you properly spell someone's name and more can seem tedious and a chore.

However, a detailed and organized guest list will become the center of your wedding planning universe and, by the time you're done, you will have memorized every name, address and zip code from around the world!

I thought I'd give you a few of my Rabido's and Rabidon'ts when it comes to pulling your guest list together.

Rabido - Create a spreadsheet that one person or couple will manage throughout the entire planning process.  (Rabidon't have multiple spreadsheets!)  The spreadsheet should include columns for salutations, first name, last name, guests first name, guests last name, street, state and zip. (Country code if needed) Also, create columns for Welcome Dinner / Brunch / Bachelor or Bachelorette party and for the Bridal Shower.  By putting everything into different fields in a spreadsheet it allows you the opportunity to later organize who and how many are coming to what party.  You can also use this list to note who you've sent thank you notes to and for what.

Rabido - Take your time pulling the list together.  Often couples and their families rush to put the information into a document only to find out the information is wrong or incomplete.  Or worse yet, they forgot to invite their favorite uncle.  By taking your time in gathering the information you will find you will have less work to do when the planning really gets crazy.

Rabido - Alphabetize your list.  There is nothing worse than looking all over for someone's name when it is not in alphabetic order.

Rabidon't - Don't abbreviate or use nicknames on your address list.  You want your wedding to be a class act and the addresses on your invitation should be too.  Remember, this is the first thing your guests will see when it comes to your wedding.  Take the time to fully spell out names and everything related to addresses.  

Rabidon't - You may want to save on postage but it's not okay to hand deliver invitations.  If you're unsure of someone's address, ask and be sure they receive their invitation like everyone else - in the mail.

Rabidon't - You may want to save time and money but clear labels, or sloppy hand writing, doesn't leave a good impression on an invitation.  Spend a few extra dollars to have your envelopes printed in a coordinating font which is often less expensive than if hand calligraphed.  Again, think of first impressions.

Many of my clients have taken my advice and have thanked me for it in the end.  I know these tips will help you and, until next time,


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