Post # 1
This is only for people who changed/are changing their last name and not continuing to use their maiden name at all, e.g. you go/will go by by Jane Smith rather than Jane Jones Smith. If you were receiving a formal invitation, how would you prefer that it be addressed?
Post # 3
In general, I would prefer to get a letter to John and Jane Smith, but since you’re talking about a formal invitation, I voted for “Mr. and Mrs. John Smith”. It’s the formality of the occasion that changes it for me.
Post # 4
For a formal invite: Mr. and Mrs. John Smith
Post # 5
@GreenEyedMoon: Interesting, thanks for the response. My inclination would be to always include the woman’s first name, except there is really no traditionally “proper” way to do that while also using titles, and I would like to use titles too!
Post # 6
I love seeing envelopes addressed to Mr. and Mrs. My Dear Husband. 🙂 I think that you’ll find that most of us bees who did choose to take our DH’s last names would not mind at all (and, in fact most of us probably will enjoy!) receiving a formal invitation addressed in that manner. That is how I addressed all of my invitations to — and the escort cards for — married couples, unless the wife had kept her maiden name or had hyphenated her name.
Post # 7
I really would not mind, but I voted for the traditional “Mr and Mrs”
Post # 8
I don’t like the Mr and Mrs John Smith just because…well my name isn’t John Smith. I’d be the new Mrs Jane Smith and would prefer to be addressed as such!! So when I take my hubby’s last name it’ll be Mr. John Smith and Mrs Jane Smith. Even Mr. and Mrs Smith would work for me.
Post # 9
You could do “Mr. John and Mrs. Jane Smith”. Maybe not as traditional, but accomplishes all the same goals and doesn’t leave anyone out!
Post # 10
I will always prefer to be addressed by our own first names, e.g. John and Jane Smith.
I realize you said formal, but I prefer to be addressed/address people by name, no matter the circumstances. I’ll admit I find the whole “Mr and Mrs John Smith” thing totally creepy.
Post # 11
Just a note to respond to the PPs who said that they would prefer to be called “Mrs. Jane Smith.” The OP would like to use formal, proper, social tities. Unfortunately, what you suggested (though MANY people wrongly do this routinely) would not be considered a proper social title, as a woman cannot be considered to be a “Mrs.” her own first name. She is, however, able to refer to herself properly as “Ms.” Jane Smith. Unless she goes by Mrs. John Smith or simply Mrs. Smith, the Mrs. title cannot properly be used. Instead, for anyone who would be offended at the thought of seeing “Mr. and Mrs. John Smith,” the OP could choose to omit the courtesy titles altogether on that envelope and simply address it to “John and Jane Smith.” I do not know the following for certain, but she also MAY be able to use the format approved for couples with different last names, which would be to use two lines and address the envelope to “Ms. Jane Smith” on the first line and the words “and Mr. John Smith” on the second line.
ETA: I just checked the Crane website, and I wanted to amend my above comment by noting that, if a woman is divorced and has maintained her ex-husband’s last name, she is able to be addressed as “Mrs. Jane Smith.” In this case, she also has the option of choosing a “Ms.” title. I know this wasn’t the OP’s question, but I just wanted to be sure to amend my post accordingly. For anyone who is not yet familiar with it, the Crane Blue Book is really the best source for all of this information. The link to some of the content available online is: http://www.crane.com/etiquette/wedding/
Post # 12
@AmeliaBedelia: My thoughts exactly. I addressed all of our invitations to John and Jane Smith, “formal” etiquette be damned. I understand the sentiment behind the proper format, but the whole Mrs. John Smith thing kind of creeps me out.
Post # 13
I really like “mr and mrs john smith”, but that’s just me. I know a lot of girls who are hurt if they don’t see their own name there.
Post # 14
@misspeanut: Exactly. I’m not particularly traditional in the first place, so perhaps that’s part of it. Also… I DO feel offended when my name is left off, proper etiquette or not. It is, in fact, my name. That I have had for X years of my life and people know me by. I’ll never refer to myself as “Mrs S___ M____y.” <–FI’s name. Never ever.
And honestly OP, do whatever YOU want to, it doesn’t actually matter in the scheme of things. Some people will be etiquette sticklers, others may be a bit put-off by not seeing their own (female) name on the invite. There is really no perfect way to go about it. You know your audience. 🙂
Post # 15
I MUCH prefer to be addressed as Jane and John Smith. I kind of hate the “Mr. and Mrs.” (a lot) but I accept that its the “proper” way and I don’t get upset when I get invites addressed that way.
Although it does kind of annoy me that my mom insists on addressing things to us as Mr. and Mrs. even after I told her I don’t like it… but whatever. Habits die hard i guess.
Post # 16
I would be annoyed if my name wasn’t on there. Traditional or not!!! It’s 2011 after all.