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How to address your wedding invitation envelopes

You are ready to send out your wedding invitations so now it is time to figure out how to address your invitations. What is the reason for two envelopes? Do you need to have two and how do you address them if you do?

Sending out an invitation in two envelopes ensures that each guest will receive a clean envelope even though the outer envelope is soiled in the mail. The use of two envelopes dates back to the 1800’s when the postal system was still new. Two envelopes were used, an inner one which was kept unsealed (for the sake of courtesy) and the outer one addressed and used to protect the inner from rigors of travel. Of course, you do not need to add the inner envelope at all, this is your preference.

Today, the reason why you would want to use two envelopes now is three-fold.

1. The use of two envelopes allows you to list each family member, escorts of your invited guests and children’s name.

2. It keeps your invitation and your inner envelope pristine. You can affix postage and print the mailing and return address on the outer envelope which leaves your inner envelope clean and protected from mailing scuffs, dirt and debris

3. It adds elegance and class to your invitation suite.

Follow this simple guideline to address your invitations

To a married couple with the same last name

Use Mr. and Mrs. And spell out husband’s first and last name, if you decide to add the husband’s middle name, you will need to spell the full name out. Do not abbreviate as an initial.

Outer: Mr. and Mrs. John Smith Inner: John and Marie Smith

Some couples want to see both names listed on the envelope. In that case you can address it as follows

Outer: Mr. John Smith and Mrs. Michelle Smith Inner: John and Michelle

To a married couple with different last names

Write it on the same line with the woman’s name first

Outer: Ms. Lisa Jones and Mr. Jake Stevens Inner Lisa and Jake or Ms. Jones and Mr. Stevens

To a married couple with one hyphenated last name

You list the name as Ms. or Mrs. First name – maiden name – married name. Same for husband

Outer: Mr. John Smith and Mrs. Michelle Jones-Smith Inner: John and Michelle or Mr. Smith and Mrs. Jones-Smith

To an unmarried couple living together

Place them on the same line and list the person your closer to first.

Outer: Mr. Jake Stevens and Ms. Lisa Jones Inner: Jake and Lisa or Mr. Stevens and Ms. Jones

To Same sex couple

Place them on the same line and put either name first on the inner place their first names

Outer: Ms. Lucy Jones and Ms. Melanie Drake Inner: Lucy and Melanie

To a single female

Ms. Michelle Smith or Miss Michelle Smith (if she is younger than 18) Inner: Michelle or Ms. Smith or Miss Smith

To a single male

Use Mr. if he is over 18, otherwise, no title is necessary

Outer: Mr. John Smith Inner: John or Mr. Smith

To a married couple, one who is a doctor, or has a distinguished title. Do not abbreviate the title always spell it out

Outer: Doctor Michelle Smith and Mr. John Smith Inner: Michelle and John or Dr. Smith and Mr. Smith

Outer: Captain Jake Stevens and Mrs. Marie Stevens Inner: Captain Stevens and Mrs. Stevens, or Jake and Marie

To a married couple both of whom are doctors or have a distinguished title

Outer: The Doctors John and Michelle Smith Inner: Dr. Smith and Dr. Smith or John and Michelle

Outer: Captains Jake and Marie Stevens Inner: The Captains Stevens

To a widow – always ask a family member if she would prefer to be addressed by her married name or by her husband’s name

Outer: Mrs. Marie Stevens or Mrs. Jake Stevens (depending on preference) inner: Mrs. Stevens or Marie

To a divorced female

You can use Mrs. Or Ms. Coupled with husband’s last name, if she still uses it.

Outer: Mrs. Marie Stevens or Ms. Marie Stevens Inner: Mrs. Stevens or Marie

To a family including children

Outer: The Miller Family, or Mr. and Mrs. Doug Miller and family Inner: Doug, Nancy, Simon and Miss Lisa

And finally, how to submit your guest list for envelope addressing, please contact us and we can send you an excel template. Otherwise you can create a spreadsheet using google sheets or excel and use the following columns

Column 1 = Guest Name (as you want it to read)

Column 2 = Complete Street Address

Column 3 = City

Column 4 = State

Column 5 = Zip or Postal Code

Column 6 = Country


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