Rather than a set of stuffy rules, etiquette is the way of doing things that our grandmothers considered 'being proper' in a social, professional or formal situation.
Although the times and our world have changed, the basic tenets of respect, honesty and consideration - ‘doing unto others’ - still have a vital role to play in society today.
Services provided include:
- Writing etiquette articles: on eg wedding / social / thank you note etiquette
- Commenting on the correct etiquette in certain situations
- Public speaking
- Etiquette training – facilitating workshops
For details on pricing and availabilities please email
+ 61 8 8269 2301.
Thank you notes
Sending a lovely thank you note is an art that’s simple to master and one that shows you care.
Today, it is all too easy to send a thank you text or email, but there is simply nothing like
the joy of receiving a thank you note in the mail. Not only does it make the person you are writing to feel appreciated, it also says a great deal about you, your manners and of course your sense of style!
When to send a thank you note
A thank you note should be written on receipt of a present, hospitality or some other kindness and posted within the week.
Wedding thank you notes should be sent as soon as possible after the newlyweds return
from their honeymoon.
That said, better late than never is most definitely the case.
How to write a thank you note
While a thank you note should always be written from the heart, including the 4 key points as listed below will help with the format and flow of the note.
- A greeting
- A message of thanks
- A mention of how useful the gift will be
- A suggestion to see them soon
Thank you note stationery
To ensure writing thank you notes is a joyous experience, rather than a painful task we recommend having lovely stationery to hand, be it personalised or boxed. Lined envelopes are also a lovely touch and ensure that no-one will be able to read your correspondence.
For major life events, such as becoming engaged, having a baby or moving to a new home, it is customary to send out a note 'announcing' the news.
Announcing an engagement is a momentous step in a couple’s life. The news will travel fast, so it is essential to tell everyone at the right time.
The traditional practice of sending engagement announcement cards is less common nowadays but a lovely tradition nevertheless.
Birth announcement cards should be kept simple and to the point. The format generally reads as follows:
James and Alice Jones are happy to announce the birth of their
son Edward James
The baby’s date of birth and weight may be included, and a pink or blue ribbon can be attached. If the child is not the couple’s first, reference can be made to the siblings. For example, 'a brother to John'.
Many new parents also enclose a photograph of their newborn too, although this is still a relatively new practice.
Moving or change of address announcements are a lovely way to advise friends and family
of your new address and contact details.
There is no formal format for advising your moving announcement, however it is always
nice if they reflect your personality or that of your new home or suburb.
The wording of your announcement can be as formal or informal as you like, and may include some or all of the following details, address, phone number, fax number and email address.
Who doesn’t love receiving a fabulous invitation in the mail? It really helps to set the tone for the event.
Invitations should match the event to hand, be it formal or informal and advise the following information:
- The nature of the function ie lunch or dinner
- Where the function is to be held
- The date of the function
- The time of the function and if appropriate, the time the function is due to end
- The time of the function should dictate the dress code, however if you have a specific dress code you would like for your event, you are best to include it
Formal invitations should be a minimum of 10 x 14 cm and are placed in an envelope. The name of the guest is to be handwritten, however the rest of the card is to be engraved or printed.
Information invitations may be extended by letter, telephone or email, however we recommend a lovely, printed invitations.
At Home Invitations
'At Home' invitations are fabulous to have to hand for small informal parties, pre-printed with the wording 'At Home' and 'R.S.V.P.'.
The host or hostess then adds fills in the remainder of the invitation details, for example, name, address, date, time, names of guests and other necessary information.
With regards to wedding stationery, it is important to remember it is there for a reason! Your guests need a certain amount information in order to physically get to the wedding – the date, the time and the location. Of course you want to convey this as graciously as possible, while injecting a bit of your own personality and a sense of the event to your wedding stationery.
The wedding stationery essentials:
- Save-the-date cards
- Wedding Invitations
- Thank-you notes / stationery
- Order of Service programs
Other wedding stationery options:
- R.S.V.P. Cards
- Gift Registry Cards
- Wishing Well Cards
- Information Cards
- Table Numbers
- Seating Plan
- Place Cards
- Bonbonniere Tags
In order to ensure that your friends and loved ones can make your special day, sending out a save-the-date card is a fabulous way to let people know both the date of your wedding and also that they are to expect a formal invitation in due course.
The formal format for a wedding invitation is for it to be issued by the parents of the bride.
As these traditions have now changed, that is, the wedding may be jointly hosted by the bride and grooms parents or by the bride and groom themselves, the flow of the copy and who is inviting whom has changed.
Sending out Wedding Invitations
The time for which wedding invitations are sent relates to their location.
- International Guests – These should be sent 3 months in advance
- National / Local - These should be sent 6 weeks in advance
You should therefore look to brief your stationery 5 – 6 months prior to your wedding date,
to allow time for back and forth over the design and artwork approval, printing, delivery and the addressing of invitations and postage.
R.S.V.P.s are generally requested 1 – 2 weeks prior to the wedding day, however it is always a good idea to speak with your suppliers to verify when they would like the final number of attendees confirmed.
Many people are not sure whether or not to include an R.S.V.P. card with their wedding invitation. While I must admit, I am a fan of the handwritten reply, R.S.V.P. cards are becoming more and more commonplace and if pre-stamped will most likely ensure that all
of your R.S.V.P.s are returned well and truly prior to the R.S.V.P. date. This will save you the time of following up guests to confirm their attendance.
R.S.V.P. cards can be as detailed or simple as you would like. The details that need to be included are:
- Space for the guests names
- Whether the guest/s ‘Accepts with pleasure’ or ‘Declines with regret.’ (There is generally a box placed next to these options, for the guests to tick.)
Other information which may be included is:
- If there are any special dietary requirements to be taken into account
- If bus transfers are required and if so, how many?
The time of the wedding generally dictates the dress code:
- Morning wedding – prior to 2pm: Morning suit
- From 2pm: Lounge suit
- From 5 pm: Cocktail dress (knee length dress)
- From 6 pm: Black or White Tie, floor length gown for the ladies
However, as many people have ie a late afternoon wedding with an evening reception, it is a good idea to let your guests know how you would like them to dress, so that they can be prepared and dress accordingly.
Pre-Wedding Thank you notes
Thank you notes for presents received before the wedding should be written and posted prior to the wedding.
This thank you card should only be sent from the person to whom the present was given. (Most likely the bride.) Traditionally, the stationery used for this thank you note is the brides personalised stationery or if not to hand, the initial of the bride’s maiden surname. That said, any suitably elegant stationery will do.