(Closed) Invitation Wording

posted 6 years ago in Paper
Post # 3
2281 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

Your best bet is to do a very standard invite that has who, where, and when. Then, either on a wedding website – the address for which you can put on the invite – or on a separate reception card, put the information you’re trying to get across. Oh, and I personally advise that you just do beer and wine and not try to do BYO because it’s confusing and you have to provide mixers and keep track of the booze and it can be a mess, and then you don’t have to deal with those details…

Reception following ceremony at Venue X


We respectfully request that children not attend.



Post # 4
12878 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

I would simply put “adult reception to follow” on the invitation — invitations tell who is invited, not who isn’t.  You could add something to a wedding website about it being adults only, as well. 

If people miss it on the invitation, you could deal with it on a case-by-case basis and contact people who RSVP for children and inform them that it is adult only.

I also missed the part about BYO… I wouldn’t mention that at all, and I would do a beer and wine only reception.  Honestly, I think it’s inappropriate to ask your guests to bring their own alcohol to a wedding reception, and that you should provide for them.  Beer and wine only is sufficient…

Post # 5
2616 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: October 2010


Technically, there is no way to tell people directly that children aren’t invited. If you think about it, adding something like “Adults only!” or “No Children Allowed!” (even in nicer verbiage) is sorta like sending a birthday party invitation to a friend who has an older brother and writing, “But your older brother is NOT invited!” Let invitations be about inviting people, not restricting people. It’s also a bit balsy to write that because it indicates that you are assuming your guests will make an etiquette faux pas before they actually do so and that’s a pretty unfair. You know your crowd, but I bet that the number of people who will understand that their children aren’t invited just based on the fact that their children’s names don’t appear on the invitation will outnumber the number of bozos who do–do you really want to imply that you think the worst of everyone when you’re really worried about a few?

What you CAN do, however is change the wording on the RSVP card. Some of the common ones include:

___ # of adults attending


writing “we have reserved X seats in your honor” where you write in the number for the addressee so they are aware that inviting Mr. and Mrs. Doe does not include their 2 kids. You address the envelope strictly to the adults–children’s names do not get included anywhere.

And, if all else fails, have someone call the offending party and pointedly explain it’s an adults-only reception and would they like suggestions on a babysitter?


I would not worry about this. Beer-and-wine receptions are common these days, perfectly accomodating and generous, (hell, dry receptions are somewhat common) and in the end, this is YOUR shindig, YOUR hospitality, and you shouldn’t have to justify or defend your choices in this manner. Skip the BYOB–it’s a headache and people will resent you MORE for implying that they should provide their own sustenance (if you consider jagermeister sustenance!) at your wedding.

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