Nigerian Wedding Invitation Cards
I have always had mixed feelings about how much money should be spent on invitation cards… but I have come to realize that Invitation cards are just as important as any aspect of the wedding…
I remember people gushing about my wedding IV and wanted to attend the wedding, just because the invitation card had given the impression that it would be a nice event.
Then I realized that invitation cards actually set the tone for your wedding and in some weird way, people can actually get a feel of the kind of wedding you will be having, just from the invitation cards.
The way people react to a nice looking card, will be different from the way they would react to a mediocre card.
In fact, I tell my couples that a nice card can even determine how civil your Nigerian guests will be at your wedding.
So unless you plan to throw a mediocre party, you shouldn’t plan on sending mediocre invitations.
If your budget permits, your invites should be ‘wow-your-guests’ worthy and designed specifically for your special day.
What to know and do before ordering for your Nigerian Wedding Invitations
There are a few points to keep in mind when planning to order for your wedding invitations.
1. It is important that you have secured a wedding venue before printing your Invitaions.
2. Have an idea of how many invitations you need and if it will be a strictly by invitation wedding or not. Also bear in mind the number of Invitation per person or a couple or even a family, as this would help you know the exact number of invitations to print.
3. Confirm and re-confirm the wedding details. Be sure you have the correct ceremony start time, the correct spellings of the names, locations and the addresses.
4. If you would be using a R.S.V.P service, be sure of the correct number to add. Some planners volunteer to have their numbers as R.S.V.P, but the correct number needs to be reaffirmed.
5. Figure out the number of main invitation cards and access cards that you want. Nigerian parents normally prefer the main invitation cards but these can be quite pricey.
Wedding TIP: Nigerian parents are Big on wedding IV’s and wouldn’t want to give their guests access cards. I always advise my couples to reconfirm from their parents on the actual number of guests they intend to invite and their wedding invitation card preference. You wouldn’t want to print out 400 access cards out of 500 invitations, only to find out that your parents actually want 300 main invitaion cards instead.
6. If you intend to work a strict number of guests, then a strictly-by-invitation wedding is advised. This means that invitations will be printed for the exact number of guests you intend to invite.
7. Decide what you want on the wordings of your invitations. Do you want your parent’s names on the invite or just the couple, a poem or a unique concept all together.
TIP: For a strictly-by-invitation wedding, do not forget to add on each invitation the number of guests the card permits. ‘This card permits one’ is the phrase usually used in Nigeria.
The two major categories of Nigerian wedding invitation cards:
- The Single Wedding Invitations
- The Wedding Invitation Suite
1. THE SINGLE WEDDING INVITATIONS
The single Invitation Card, is one main card with both the traditional and wedding reception details on it.
The main card may also come with an Access card.
2. THE NIGERIAN WEDDING INVITAION SUITE
There are two types of wedding invitation suites that are used in Nigeria:
- The Basic Wedding Invitation Suite
- The Full Wedding Invitation Suites
The Basic Wedding Invitation Suite
This is the most common one that couples do in Nigeria. This comprises of the traditional wedding card, the wedding reception card and an access card.
The main invitation cards are nornally bigger in size and can take all the necessary details about the wedding. From the names of the parents, to the colours of the day and time of event, location etc…
While the Access cards are pocket-sized cards, which grants the guest access into the reception venue. It has only the address of the venue, time and date on it.
The Full Wedding Invitation Suite
The Full Wedding Invitation Suite on the other hand, has other event information paper elements, asides from the access card, some of the components may include the following:
- The main invitation
- The event information details card
- An Access Card
- A meal card
- Parking card
- A guest seating card
- A directional map
- A reply card (RSVP)
- A gift card
- An Envelope
1. THE MAIN INVITATION CARD
The main invitation card will include details of the wedding ceremony, like the name of the couple, couple’s parents, day, date and the wedding reception and traditional venue addresses.
2. THE EVENT INFORMATION DETAILS CARD
The event information details card will include details of the wedding ceremony, like the the start time of the events, dress code, children and plus 1’s, cocktail hours, hotel availability close to the venue for out-of-state guests and contact persons.
3. ACCESS CARD
An Access card is a small card that grants each guest into the wedding reception venue. It has all the necessary details and is normally preferred as an alternative to carrying a big card and since it is a small sized card, it can easily be slipped into a wallet or a pocket and easier to carry around.
4. A MEAL CARD
At Nigerian events, a meal card is given to guests who may come with their drivers or nannies. Many times, these Nannies and drivers may not be allowed into the reception venue. In order for them to get food to eat at the venue, the meal card is presented to the caterer and a plate of food will be given to them.
5. A PARKING CARD
A parking card is sometimes added to the invitations, when the venue or space has limited parking space. So the parking cards are given to specific guests and only those guests with the parking cards will be allowed into the premises to park their cars.
6. GUEST SEATING CARD
A guest seating card is added to the invitation suite, if the couple would like to have a guest-controlled wedding. What this means is that a seat has been assigned to each guest. When the seating card is presented at the entrance of the reception venue, an usher will direct them to their assigned seat.
7. A DIRECTIONAL MAP
This is basically a map showing directions to the wedding reception venues.
8. A R.S.V.P CARD
This is simply a reply card for guests to confirm their attendance. I normally won’t advise this for a Nigerian wedding, as Nigerians won’t reply, they would just show up.
9. A GIFT CARD
Nigerians use this as a way of informing their guests about their gift registry or if they would prefer monetary gifts, as opposed to actual gifts.
10. AN ENVELOPE
An envelope to put all the other cards in. It could come in any design or shape that you like.
You can order for your beautiful Nigerian Wedding invitations HERE
Save- The- Date Invites
Save the dates are mostly e-invites, pre-informing your guests that a wedding is being planned for for a particular date. This card gives a little heads-up to your friends and family about your wedding date.
This is NOT an invitation, just a card to inform your wedding guests about your wedding date and location ahead of time.
Some may want to add their wedding hashtags on the save the date card. I guess this a personal choice.
Wedding TIP: Save-The-Dates are sent between 6 to 8 months before the wedding date. This gives your wedding guests ample time to make all the necessary preparations.
Types Of Invitation Cards
There are many types of invitations, picking out an invitaion card for your wedding is all dependent on your preference, theme, budget, location amongst other things.
NOTE: The cost of an invitation card, is also dependent on the type of card chosen.
Types of IV’s
1. Laser-cut invitation cards
2. Box invitations
3. Scroll invitations
4. Gatefold invitations
5. Pocketful invitations
6. Acrylic invitations
7. Themed design invitations
8. Flat invitations
9. Layered invitations
All Picture credit: IG: @EbenezerRuth
When To Order And Send Out your wedding invitations
Your wedding invitations should be ordered about four to six months in advance. This will give you enough time to process, address and distribute the cards
Knowing when to reach out to your Wedding Stationer is very key in ensuring that you get your wedding invitations out on time… Especially in Nigeria, where planning important wedding details are left to last minute.
You should also remember that a wedding Stationer would need about 2 to 3 weeks or more weeks to get your invitations done.
This duration is subject to how complex your wedding invitations designs are, especially if they are custom-design invitations.
Do not forget that the wedding Stationer will also have pending jobs on their plate and corrections can take a lot longer than anticipated.
Wedding TIP: It is advisable to order your invitations as early as possible, as some corrections on designs and other things can take as long as eight weeks, with a lot of back and forth to conclude on the final designs, texture and general look of the invitations and to get the client’s final approval to print.
This chart is to help you know when you should order for your Nigerian wedding invitations and when you should send them out, depending on your wedding month.
P.S: Did you notice that I gave a 2 month period for the ordering of the invitations and the sending out of the invitations? Following this timeline would give the couple at least one month to tidy up other loose things before the wedding, as distribution and sending out of wedding invitations can be quite stressful.
I hope this article helps.
You Know I Love You
X.O.X.O, Your Integrity Planner
Olamide~ The Heiress
La’ Heiress Weddings www.la-heiress.com