Tuesday, January 15, 2013

A Guide to Thank You Cards


We all have a love hate relationship with Thank You cards. They allow you to personally thank each and every one of your wedding guests for taking the time to attend your special day and for the gift they thoughtfully provided. It allows you to relive your wedding day with every card you write. It also can be a source of stress because trying to be original with every card gets difficult and you don't need the added pressure of knowing you have a certain time frame to complete them in.

I recently came across these Thank You card writing tips on Martha Stewart and I just had to pass them along to you guys (I don't see these types of tips enough). The one thing that wasn't here that I would suggest is at showers, pass out a Thank You card envelope to every guest, ask them to write their full name and address on the front. Then collect them all. This way, the bride-to-be has all of her envelopes already addressed to her guests with their up-to-date addresses. She will use these to send out her thank you cards after the shower. It would take her an hour to address them all, but it only takes her guest 30 seconds to write down their information.
Also, start sending out thank you notes as soon as the gifts arrive. Some guests prefer to send your gifts before the wedding to avoid bringing large sums of cash or a large gift to the wedding. You'll find getting some done in advance will be good for your spirit and lighten the workload a bit.

Getting Organized

Buy thank-you cards early (if you're having them printed, it's often cheaper to order them along with your other wedding stationery), so you have them on hand. Set up a log when you begin addressing your invitations to help keep track of the correct spelling of names, mailing addresses, and phone numbers. Use the list to record guests' responses and, ultimately, gifts they give you.

Keeping Track

When you open presents, immediately record who gave you what, either in your log or right on the gift cards, which you could keep together in a specially designated box. Despite your best efforts, a few gifts may become separated from their cards. If the gift was from your registry, call the store to see if it has a record of who purchased it. If not, you may have to try figuring it out by the process of elimination.

What's the Time Frame?

Ideally, you should acknowledge every present immediately, but sending it within two weeks is also acceptable. The period surrounding your wedding is a busy time; if you fall behind, make every effort to send a thank you as soon as you can -- but no later than three months after the event.
To ensure the task doesn't become too overwhelming, write notes in small batches. Diane Warner, author of "Contemporary Guide to Wedding Etiquette", offers this strategy: "Set a goal of writing three or four thank-you notes per day. Don't try to tackle them all at once, otherwise they may tend to start sounding trite." She also recommends that both the bride and the groom divide the note-writing duties.

How to Save Money

You can save money by dressing up plain cards and making your own notes. Another alternative is to turn a photo from your wedding day into thank-you postcards. Your photographer may offer them (keep in mind that it takes time for him to produce them), or you can make them yourself (just be sure you have the photographer's permission).

Who Should Write Them?

It is customary for just one person to write and sign each note, mentioning his or her spouse's appreciation ("Karen and I want to thank you.... Love, David"). However, coauthored notes, signed by both the bride and groom, are also acceptable. One easy way to share the work is for the bride to write to her own family members and friends, and the groom to his.

What Should the Message Say?

You don't need to write a lot -- four or five sentences will suffice -- as long as what you do express is heartfelt. Identify the gift, say why you appreciate it, why it has a personal meaning for you, and how you plan to use it. If the giver came to the wedding, especially from a distance, also include a sentence thanking him for attending: "Thank you for coming to our wedding. Your presence made our day extra-special. David and I love the coffee maker. We've used it every day since we got back from our honeymoon. Thanks so much." For cash gifts, you need not mention the dollar amount, but it's a nice touch to say how you plan to spend the money.

What Should the Sign-Off Be?

The sign-off should reflect your relationship to the recipient. "Love" is suitable for close friends and family; "with affection" is a slightly less intimate option; "sincerely" may be the most appropriate when you're writing to someone such as your manager at work. You needn't sign off with your full names with people you're close to, but you may want to use them in thank-you notes to business associates and friends of your parents. Trust your instincts: If using your surname feels cold or stiff, leave it out. If your message sounds overly familiar without it, then include it.

1 comments:

Zeeshan Hanzillah January 16, 2013 at 12:28 AM  

For those who just start designing
business cards these are like guide lines for them....

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