A tip or two

Every couple I have ever worked with has had this problem, so let’s just start off with that. You’re not alone, and your guests aren’t particularly more thick headed than anyone else’s–so pull up a chair, pour a glass of wine, and let’s tackle this together.


I’m kasey, owner of revelry + heart, a non-traditional design studio for couples that revel in their authenticity and crave statement pieces that evokes conversation. Translation: I make badass invitations and foundation aesthetics for couples that crave something beyond the pages of premade designs.

These 5 tips should help you alleviate some of the issues that surround guest’s responses to your wedding invitation and set you on a path of healthy boundaries that hopefully turns your glass of wine into one of celebration instead of wallowing in self-pity. LET’S GET THIS PARTY STARTED!

Photo Credit: Ana Teresa Photography

Let’s start off with the acronym RSVP itself. If you don’t know, it stands for the french phrase répondez s’il vous plaît meaning please respond. So bonus tip on RSVPs, don’t use “RSVP please” because you’re being redundant and saying “please respond please” — it’s a dead giveaway that you created your own invitations and girl, no one needs to know your secrets!

What date should I set my RSVP for? || Tip one

I always advise my couples set their response date 2-4 weeks before their wedding. I most frequently use a month, as it gives the couple extra time during those last [and most stressful weeks!] to make sure they’ve got enough time to herd the cats and track down the stragglers before submitting a final headcount to the venue and stationer for seating cards. Make sure to take into account any holidays that may delay the mail around that time if you are doing traditional paper RSVP cards. (Looking for alternative options like online or postcards? There are special considerations for these–so, let’s chat!)

Photo Credit: Something Blue photography

Know your audience || Tip two

If you have a guest list that is progressive, technically literate and don’t use the phrase “on the web” you can totally get away with digital RSVP options. But people typically expect a traditional rsvp card with a big fact M____________ (this is where you write in your name for my fellow millennials ie. Ms. Jessica Hunt) and a pre-addressed envelope. But if you’re really adamant about saving on waste or postage, divide your guest list into those you know can handle an address without saying WWW dot and give those people digital RSVPs and paper for the rest of your folks. My general and assuming rule of thumb is using 40 as an age divide where you split the herd.

If you’re asking your guests to mail your rsvp cards, include the damn stamp || tip three

You’re spending a significant amount of money, time and effort into planning your wedding. The knee-jerk reaction is to cut costs wherever you can, and postage often gets put in that bucket. But I’m here to tell you that I don’t think the headache is worth .50. Ask the couples before you, they’d have done anything to get their replies in sooner so they had more time to organize their seating plans, relay information to their venue about dietary or other special accommodations, and not have to cold call people on a tuesday night (we all hate calling people, I promise). If a few cents difference matters to use, postcard stamps are less than a letter rate.

Think about it, we don’t mail a lot of things anymore, greeting cards are what we send most, all of our bills are online pay now and honestly, even as someone who designs mail, I don’t have many stamps lying around. So if you received a wedding invitation with a RSVP card you had to add your own postage to, you’ll have to dig around your desk drawers or finally surrender to go to the post office between the hours of 10:07 and 10:17 when pluto is at 128* on the eastern equinox–the point is you’ll be annoyed and delayed which means the couple is now waiting for you before they can proceed with their plans.

Pro tip: if you can’t get into the post office, the grocery store, pharmacies and Costco all sell stamps!

Photo Credit: Something Blue Photography

Number your RSVP cards || tip four

Whether you use a pen, pencil or blacklight marker, make sure to take this extra step. Ps. on the need for a blacklight only visible ink, I’ve never had more than maybe one 30 second comment from each group of guests on seeing their number written on an RSVP card. If you write it on the back, or secret spycode your own set of specialty numbers ie. A1 B1 or 01101 you’ll really throw off anyone who has a problem with having a “low” number on your guest list. But really, people don’t pay as much attention to this as you might think they do.

Number them in accordance to how your have their address list set up. I actually provide my couples this google sheet for their guest list to keep them organized. We use this to make escort cards or seating charts, as well as track RSVPs, dietary needs, and address updates for thank you cards. One bonus of having an organized cloud-based list is that you can add things like birthdays, nicknames etc so you know when to send cards for special occasions or winter holiday greetings.

Numbering them will allow you to cross reference cards that may have no name filled in on the M line, or illegible handwriting as well as keep track of who you haven’t yet heard back from.

When is it okay to contact guests with missing RSVPs? || Tip five

You did everything right, you mailed them out with enough time to turn around a response (ps. Tips on when to mail your invitations here), you included your stamp, you set that RSVP date and still no answer? Well that date on your card is now a warrant for missing guest harassment. Midnight on the day after your RSVP date, you have my permission to reach out to your guests and shake them down for an answer. Tell them you need a final headcount for your venue, and remind them that the date has now passed. Usually people will have an answer for you by then, and the worst case scenario if they do not, is to include them in the count and hope they show. Unless you don’t like them to begin with. Then leave them out and if they show make them sit on the floor.

Now that you are armed with all the information you need about getting wedding response cards back, you better be sure to act like it! When you get your next wedding invitation, you’ll know how much is weighing on that little card and you’ll be armed with stamps (or the resources to get them) and drop it in a mailbox before the ink on your M line even dries, right? I have faith in you. Don’t let me down.

Photo Credit Images By Amber Robinson

Kasey Kyprianou is a trailblazing designer, owner and founder of revelry + heart, a custom design studio for couples that revel in their authenticity and crave design that evokes conversation. She’s been called a disco ball, a big red bow and straight fire. She has an obsession with corgis, the pop-punk scene of the early 2000s, and shaking up the monotony in the wedding sphere. Her motto is “following hearts, not trends.”

Find Kasey on or on social on Instagram, Facebook, & Pinterest!



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