As we enjoy a holiday this week that’s all about gratitude, I thought I’d take a moment to address the ways in which you express your gratitude after your big day. That’s right — I’m talking about thank-you cards! Some folks don’t overthink them, but if you ask me, they really are the icing on the cake of your beautiful celebration and all the effort your loved ones put forth to be there and make it so special.
Thank-you cards certainly don’t have to be complicated, but there are a few simple do’s and don’ts of the custom that can go a long way. Here are the ones that always stand out to me.
Prep your thank-you note design before your wedding day.
Ideally, you already have your box of cards on hand and ready to be written as soon as you say, “I do.” But some couples like to feature a photo from their wedding day in the note design — and as a photographer, I can’t exactly knock that idea! Just be sure to have the rest of your template ready to go so you can add a photo as soon as you receive a few preview images and place that printing order.
Be personal and authentic.
When writing thank-you notes, it’s important to sound like you. No need to be extra formal if that’s not your style! In the note itself, touch on their presence at your wedding, as well as their specific gift and how you plan to use it. No need to write a novel — just get the details across in a way that shows you gave them as much thought as they put into being part of your wedding celebration.
If 150 guests attended your wedding, writing those thank-you notes will be a marathon, not a sprint. Plan to write up to a dozen thank-you cards in a single sitting, and then map out how many days it will take you to finish them all without getting carpal tunnel or resorting to illegible handwriting. Trust me — this is key to actually enjoying saying, “Thank you.”
Procrastinate on writing and mailing your thank-you notes.
Your guests should receive thank-you notes within three months of the wedding day. Of course, life quickly gets in the way and to-do lists always seem to stretch from here to infinity, but try your best to prioritize these gratitudes. It doesn’t look nearly as thoughtful or genuine when a thank-you card arrives a year after the event itself.
Do things digitally.
Again, think about what it means to express genuine thanks. Pre-printed messages and e-cards themselves are easier, but in this instance, the easy way is not really the best way. Your guests will appreciate the fact that you took the time to write to them and think about your relationships with them specifically. They will forgive less-than-perfect script when it delivers sweet sentiments.
Forget to thank your vendors.
Yes, you hired these folks to provide services on your wedding day, but they invested lots of time, sweat, hopefully not too much blood, and likely some tears into making sure everything went perfectly for you. So, remember to thank them for bringing your vision to life! A thank-you card is a simple gesture, but such a meaningful one that reminds them of just how much their hard work matters.
Happy Wedding Planning!
With Grit & Grace~
Sarah Keenan, Photographer
Westland Farms Studio
Boudoir Studio Knoxville