Post # 1
Well that was an awkward title, but here’s the context:
A dear friend is getting married this summer and I just got the gorgeous invite for the big day. I am in her bridal party and super excited! One thing surprised me just a touch though, and I was curious if this is the norm:
The invitation was addressed to me and my SO (we’ve been dating over a year, and we all went to college together so she and the groom know him very well). I thought it was sweet to see our names together on the envelope for the first time and didn’t offend me in the slightest at all, but surprised me because we are just dating, not engaged or married.
I am just curious (for reference purposes) if this is the standard addressing protocol for +1s where the guest’s name is known? For some reason I assumed SO would receive a separate invitation since he has known the couple independent of our relationship (ie, they were friends before we started dating) and she has his current address.
If its nothing more than a way to save on postage and paper, then I totally get it– I just wonder if this is the norm since it took me by surprise!
Post # 4
It would be expensive to send a separate invitation to the SO of every guest if they are not living together. For me if the SO was someone else I was also friends with, they got a separate invitation mailed to their house because I’m inviting them specifically, whether the couple was together or not. If I was not friends with the SO, and they would not have been invited otherwise, I sent one invitation to the person I knew with their SO’s name underneath the primary guest. I think that’s pretty typical, whether it’s proper etiquette or not.
Post # 5
I know Miss Manners advises addressing both guests by name. That’s what I did – in one case, where a dear friend of mine and her boyfriend are not living together. I do know him socially too (would occasionally have coffee together without her there, for instance), but not close enough that he would get an invite if he weren’t her partner. So I sent the invite to her, addressed to both of them by name.
Post # 6
thanks for the clarifications ladies!
Post # 7
@dolphindoll: This is certainly common practice — and it is closer to being correct protocol than the even more common practice of writiing “and Guest” on the envelope. But does it conform to protocol? No, not at all.
Correct protocol would be for the bride to find your address and enter it in your visiting book alongside your name, and then send you your own invitation to you in your own name, at your own address. Time was when writing your name together with your friend on the envelope could have been done only as an intentional insult: a way of announcing publicly that you are your friends mistress.
Nowadays, however, you’ll find that some guests take offence if you don’t put both names on the envelope. For one thing, they don’t consider there to be anything insulting in the implication that they are sexually associated with someone they aren’t married to; and for another thing they feel entitled to be treated as an “official” couple as soon as they begin dating. Some people even take offence if you put anything other than “and Guest” on the envelope because they feel entitled to the guest of their choice, and consider it “nosy” of the hostess to want to know the names of the people she will be entertaining.
I have decided to stay in the camp that keeps visiting books and sends invitations to individuals unless they are married to one another. Miss Manners,incidentally, is in this camp as well. Although she does insist on a hostess finding out all guests’ names, she does NOT recommend sending joint invitations to people who are not cohabiting. I figure my invitations would lose even more of my guests’ respect by cutting costs through discounting their indivuality (and individual addresses) than I lose by choosing a slightly less expensive invitation. Happily, though, the most correct invitations according to formal protocol, are often less expensive than the more elaborate or exotic ones.