Thursday, December 4, 2008

Wedding Gift Thank You Cards: 5 Don'ts

1. Don't Embrace Modern Technology
Don’t send a thank you email. Don’t post a mass thank you on your wedding website. Don’t social network your thank yous on Facebook. Don’t text your thx u. It's time to put down the cell phone and pick up a pen. Even in our fast paced, tech infused world, proper thank you note etiquette still dictates putting pen to paper. These are your friends and loved ones. If you loved them enough to invite them to your wedding, and they loved you enough to bring you a gift, then don’t Twitter your thank you.

2. Don’t Send Out Pre-Printed Thank You Notes
All stationers who print custom stationery have faced this: the bride and groom who want to mass-produce a pre-printed thank you to mail out after the wedding. Don’t put your stationer or yourself in this spot. Proper etiquette calls for a handwritten, personal note. Just as your family and friends did not all get together ala a Verizon Wireless Network commercial and shop en masse for one gift, don’t lump them together as well. They spent time, money, and gas shopping for your present. You owe them a personal note.

3. Don't Combine Marry with Merry
If yours is a fall or winter wedding you might be thinking that a combo Holiday Card/ Wedding Thank You Card might be just the thing. You’re sending out holiday cards anyway, why not slip in a little “P.S. By the way, thank you for the great panini maker Aunt Sue!” Well sorry, even if you’re making those paninis to leave out for Santa himself, now is not the time. (C’mon we bet you also buy those poor souls born in December the dreaded “combo gift” as well right?) And don’t try to hide behind the idea of being eco-friendly by sending out a single card. With all the environmentally friendly stationery products on the market today, you can find holiday cards and thank you cards that let you practice proper etiquette and be green - even at this red and green time of year.

4. Don’t Think You Have a Year
Contrary to what you might have heard, you do not have a year to send out your thank you notes. Thank you cards for your wedding gifts should be sent within three months of the wedding day. For gifts shipped and received prior to your wedding date, you should send thank you notes within a few days of when the gifts were received. Sending out thank you cards as you go, and in a timely manner, not only lets guests know you actually received their gifts, it also shows them that thanking them for their generosity was a top priority. If this shortened window is making you scramble, take solace in the knowledge that according to Peggy Post of the Emily Post Institute it’s also “urban legend” that guests have up to a year to send you a gift in the first place. When you’re done, you'll likely be done.

5. Don’t Forget He Knows How to Write Too
Don’t think that as the bride you have to write all the thank you cards alone. You just got married remember? What better way to start shouldering responsibilities as a couple then sharing the task of thanking your family and friends. He’s going to use that ice bucket too, so chill a bottle in it, break out your new cheese platter and make an evening out of it. Each write half and then swap stacks so that the other can sign their personal signatures as well. Trust us, your loved ones will notice what a classy couple you two are.

-Diane, Shakespeare's Bride

Photo courtesy of Baron Cards

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