These days there are tons of ways to customize party invitations, or even design them from scratch. Whether your invite is electronic or printed, adding a personal touch has never been easier.
But what to say? The tools may have improved, but the art of writing a great invite remains pretty much the same. Read on to learn how to write a party invitation that will have your invitees falling over themselves to RSVP.
Having a snazzy design and clever wording is all well and good, but keep in mind that the main purpose of an invitation is to inform people about an event. The following is a list of things your guests want or need to know if they’re going to attend your party. Unless a piece of info is obvious to all invitees, be sure to include it on the invitation:
Party Purpose/Theme. You probably don’t need to be reminded of this, but it’s important to indicate what kind of party it is (birthday, Christmas, retirement, etc). If it’s a lesser known theme with special rules/requirements (white elephant gift exchange, costume party), be sure to give invitees the ground rules or at least tell them where they can learn more.
Who’s Hosting. This may be obvious, but somewhere on the invitation it should say who’s hosting the party. Include a phone number and/or email address in case people have questions.
Who’s Invited. In particular, guests want to know if they can bring a date or other family members. For children’s parties, parents want to know if it’s a drop-off event or if they need to be there as well.
Time and Date. The time and date of the event should be prominent. Include the day of the week, and make sure everything is in a familiar format that your guests will have no problem understanding. If the party ends at a certain time, be sure to include that too.
Location. Include the address if it’s a house party, or the building/room number if it’s a work party. If appropriate, you may want to consider including a map as well. That said, with so many people using online maps and smartphone navigation apps, this is definitely optional.
Food and Beverages. You should give potential guests some idea of what you’ll be serving and what, if anything, you expect them to bring. Even if the word “potluck” is right on the invite, it’s best to make it absolutely clear (ex. “Bring a dish to share”).
RSVP Instructions. If you expect people to RSVP, leave instructions at the end of the invitation on how to do so – and what the deadline is. If guests should RSVP by mail, you should also include a phone number or email for those who have questions.
Any Other Pertinent Information. There are so many different types of parties, it’s impossible to create a single checklist that adequately covers all of them. For more detailed tips and wording suggestions, dig a little deeper into this site to see if there’s a page on the specific type of party you’re hosting.
1. Grab Their Attention. A great invitation should generate excitement and have an immediate impact on anyone who receives it. You can do this through a slick design, or through clever wording. The more casual the party, the more playful you can get with the invitation.
2. Make Your Words Match the Images. Ideally, the words should tie in with the look of the invitation. For example, if you’re hosting a Halloween party, you could use the words “I’m feeling thirsty – let’s a have a drink!” next to an image of a vampire.
3. Keep it Short and Clear. If you’re trying to make your invite clever, visually appealing, and chock-full of useful information, you may find that turns into a confusing mess. Don’t let style get in the way of giving your invitees the basic info they need. And if your invite gets loaded down with too much information, consider a followup message with further details – possibly to only those who ask for it or have RSVP’d.