Should a wedding invitation include children or is a seperate invitation needed?

Here’s some advice on things to think about when sending out wedding invitations that involve children.  First of all, a wedding invitation “assumes” no children are invited UNLESS invited explicitly.  Also, the only sure fire way to prevent having a screaming baby in the middle of your ceremony is to provide a free nursery (easy if at a church) and tell the guests children are allowed BUT must be kept in the nursery during the ceremony. 

wedding invitation writing sample
wedding invitation writing sample

 Here are some examples of wedding invitations with children invited: 

  • If you want to include children as guests, write out their individual names on the addressed envelopes, or put “and family.” For example:
    • Mr. and Mrs. John Doe, Michelle and John
      Mr. and Mrs. John Doe and Family
  • If the children are older teens (say, 16 or older), you might want to send them an individual invitation, just like you would an adult.  This makes them feel more like an adult and allows them the oppurtunity to deny the invitation seperately if they are’t able to go even if their parents go. If they are over 18 then proper wedding etiquette requires a seperate invitation.
  • If you don’t want to include children at the ceremony, don’t add their names or “and family” on the outside of the envelope. Although this violates the stricter laws of etiquette, you might even add something like, “Sorry, but children are not invited”, “adults only” or a similar phrase to clarify. If you want to have children at the reception but not the ceremony, you could note this on the response card … or on the invitation itself at the bottom.

Here’s sample wording for an invitation that includes children:

Sample wedding invitations that include children:

While not necessary, you may want to include your children particularly if you will have a part of the ceremony devoted to them.

Please join
Elizabeth Ann Patrillie
Matthew Robert Wilson
as they exchange marriage vows
and together with their son, Marcus, celebrate their family


Please join us
At a celebration
Of the marriage of
Michele Warez Phillips
James Ryder Celest
The family of
Phoebe, Elora, John, & Maddison
Saturday, December 12, 2009

I’ve also decided to do a post later on the funniest wedding invitations I’ve seen.  Look forward to that another day.

3 thoughts on “Should a wedding invitation include children or is a seperate invitation needed?

    1. This all depends on the type of wedding and age of those you invited. If you are in your 30’s and having a wedding, many of your friends will already be married and have children. You need to keep this mind and make sure your reception has ways to keep the kids entertained.

  1. Hi,
    I agree with the post of weddingnoise, stating that “…all depends on the type of wedding and age of those you invited”.
    However, I also believe that who to invite and who not to invite boils down – at least in many cases nowadays – to money. Formal weddings nowadays average almost $30,000 so there is definitely enough incentive for most couples to ask for the right wedding etiquette … who pays
    for what ? Until not too long ago, it was seldom a question for brides and grooms as to who will pick up the wedding expenses. At least for formal weddings, the traditional way has always been for the bride’s father, her family respectively, to pay for their daughter’s wedding. One major reason for this
    “traditional” rule was that couples used to get married at a comparatively early stage in their lifes, starting off their life together at a point where financial dependency to their parents was often the rule. This, however changed over the past few decades. Nowadays, couples often not only get married at a later point in their lifes, but also at a point where they are financially secured enough to cover their own wedding expenses. Another reason why the traditional “wedding etiquette, who pays for what” changed – at least if we want to believe polls asking “newly-wed” couples – is that more and more couples nowadays want to have their own “say” in the wedding. From the guest-list to the menu, from the flower bouquets to the wedding cake … should the wedding have classical music, or the couple’s most favorite local band … should we really invite uncle Graig, who never agreed to our wedding to begin with ? I really believe that the topic of wedding etiquette is a truly wide minefield; in order to comply with today’s “correct” etiquette, one has to do some serious research – but this blog is a great starting point in my opinion… thanks a lot for this blog – it is great for soon – to – be brides and grooms!

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