(Closed) Whose name to write first?

posted 5 years ago in Etiquette
Post # 3
Member
749 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

I just did person that i know best.. and if they were married and i knew them both equally i put “The Jones Family”. 

Post # 4
Member
839 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2014

Technically, if we’re talking straight etiquette here, you only put the man’s name (assuming they are married). So like this: Mr. and Mrs. John Smith

The inside envelope has both names, but the man’s name first, like this: John and Karen Smith.

 

If they aren’t married, address it like this: Mr. John Smith and Miss Karen Jones

You can put “The Smith Family” if you want, but usually that is reserved for people with children who are also invited to the wedding. So, if John and Karen have a child that is not invited, you definitely don’t want to use this.

Post # 6
Member
1416 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: January 2013

Whoever you damn feel like writing #AntiEtiquetteGirlOverHere

As a PP said, I put the person I knew best first. It made the most sense. Despite what “etiquette” says, it would have been beyond silly to, say, put her boyfriend’s name first, when I only know him through her and am sending the invite to her address, and she’s really the person I’m inviting, he’s just a nice bonus.

Post # 7
Member
749 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

@Ellyson:  in that case i would just put hers. 

Post # 8
Member
8691 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: October 2013

I have read to put who you know better first and I have read put alphabetical first for unmarried couples.

But married couple are: Mr. and Mrs. John Smith

@Ellyson:  

Post # 9
Member
839 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2014

@Ellyson:  If they don’t live together and you are only friends with one of them, I was always taught that the proper way to do it is to send it to the one who is your friend, and address it to her “and guest.” But, I know a lot of bees on here don’t think it’s right to address an invitaton to a “guest” if they’ve been together for a long time or are engaged, but I believe that is the proper way to do it.

If you feel weird about it, just address it to both of them and put her name first. Unless they are complete etiquette snobs, they won’t think twice about it.

ETA: I just want to say that I agree that many of the etiquette rules are silly, like this one for the most part. I just thought OP wanted an answer from a proper etiquette standpoint. I’m not saying I agree with the rule.

Post # 10
Member
6114 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: October 2013

For your situation you could always address it to her and guest…so “Miss Jane Smith and guest”

Post # 11
Member
6114 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: October 2013

@LilliePad:  you just beat me to it! Lol

Post # 12
Member
1130 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

I put who I knew best, with the exception of older married couples where I put Mr. and Mrs. John and Jane Doe. I put both names even then because I’m hyperfeminist and just because you’re married doesn’t mean that you suddenly don’t even have a first name. FUCK THAT. /rant.

Anyway, do what seems best to you and in the case of older or more traditional couples use your best judgment as to what you thing would go over best.

Post # 13
Member
2968 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

i always put the wife’s name first because i was taught that you’re not supposed to separate the man’s first name from his last name. if they’re not married or don’t have the same last name, i don’t really do it any particular way. sometimes i’ll put the woman’s name first, sometimes the man’s.

 

Post # 14
Member
2497 posts
Buzzing bee

I always thought you put the man’s name first if they’re married (i.e., Mr. and Mrs. John Smith).

 

However, if the couple is unmarried and living together, you write her name first and place the names on separate lines, not joined by the word “and” (i.e., Jane Brown on the first line, then John Smith on the second line).

 

Post # 15
Member
449 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

I aslo think it depends a lot upon where you are. I’m from the mid-west but Fiance and I live in Texas. I know that if I didn’t address it to ” Mr. and Mrs. John Smith” or have the man’s name first, I’d have some huge drama. Unecessary drama, but something I dont’ really feel like dealing with. 

Post # 16
Member
1699 posts
Bumble bee

@Ellyson:  Technically, if you are talking proper etiquette:

“Ladies first” applies in all safe, informal, intimate and familial situations. Ladies do NOT go first in any situation where they can be made safer or more comfortable by the gentleman going first: when crossing a minefield, for example; or making a path through a crowded restaurant where there is no Maitre’d or hostess to lead the way; or when entering a large hall full of formal people whose presence demands formal titles, or when crossing the continent metaphorically on the back of an envelope. So:

On the outer envelope (in the USA — elsewhere the outer envelope should be addressed to the lady of the house, only): Mr. and Mrs. John Smith or if the lady uses her own name on business documents, Mr. John Smith and Ms. Smith

On the inner envelope or the write-in line of a formal invitation: Mr and Mrs Smith or if the lady’s surname is different Mr Smith and Ms Jones.

On the inside of an informal invitation: Jane and John

On the invitation of a couple who are neither married; nor assumed for social purposes to be married through cohabitation: Mr John Smith (on the outer envelope sent to John’s home address) and Ms Jane Jones (on the outer envelope sent to Jane’s home address).

All of which, though proper and traditional, is quite thoroughly sexist. If you choose not to be sexist, write the names in alphabetical order. What you cannot do with propriety, is write them in the order of the person you feel closer to. A polite hostess shows the same level of kindness and friendship to all her guests and goes out of her way to make sure she does not betray any favouritism. Indicating that “we like her better than him, nyah,nyah na nyah nyah” is the kind of indelicacy that mothers try to train out of their children long before those children are ready to get married.

 

 

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