Appropriate Addressing

Back when we sent out our Save the Date’s, I mentioned how helpful it was to have done a dry run of getting a card in the mail. I’m really glad we dealt with those details a few months before trying to do our invitations–I’m guessing I’ll be really over it by then!



Image via Vistaprint / Photo by Caili Helsper

I checked out Real Simple’s How to Address Wedding Invitations for some tips to get my address list in order. We don’t have a lot of special situations, mostly married, living together and single, with a few doctors sprinkled in.

I’m not super stressed about the etiquette on this one, so I’m just going to go with it. Here are the rules I’m using:

Married: Mr. & Mrs. HisFirst HisLast (You can also do Mr. His & Mrs. Hers LastName, but I like the concept of fewer words)

Single Female: Ms. HerFirst HerLast

Living Together: Mr. His His & Ms. Hers Hers

Divorced Women: Mrs. or Ms. Hers Married (Or Ms. Hers Maiden if she switched back–I think. I have none of these.)

Widowed Women: Mrs. His Married or Mrs. Hers Married, whichever she’d prefer (in our case, MIL Clover is one of several widows on Shamrock’s side of the family, all of whom use their own name on return addresses, so I’ll be going with Mrs. Hers Married.)

If the wife has a professional title, she comes first because her professional title outranks her husband’s social one. And two doctors are “The Doctors Clover” which cracks me up and now I hope I have a two-doc couple invited because I want to address it.

And then once again I was all proud because I figured that one out…until Shamrock started formatting the file for Save the Dates. “Hey do I need to spell out W.?”

Oh. Um…

Yes. And St. and Ave. and any number under 12.

So, the address stamp I was so excited about…isn’t technically correct. It should say

123 North Halsted Avenue

Apartment Four

Instead of 123 N. Halsted #4

Oh well. Not the end of the world, and it doesn’t matter enough to me to get a new one. Hopefully no one is horrified by my lack of etiquette (or, realistically, even notices).

Other things we screwed up? If you insist…

  • We used some nicknames. I don’t know which kind of Katherine (Kathryn?) Katie is, and neither of us know how to spell the full version of Ziggy.
  • We didn’t write out the state.
  • We printed addresses directly on the envelopes (which some people say is tacky because it doesn’t turn out right, but ours looked quite nice to my untrained eye.

How do people even know these rules? Did you? Anyone know a couple of doctors??


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