I consider myself to be very progressive, especially when it comes to wedding etiquette and tradition. I believe couples today are making their own rules and letting their creativity run wild when planning and designing their wedding, so that the celebration truly reflects the couple. However, one thing I will not ever budge on is thank you etiquette. The tradition of a hand written note to thank your loved ones for their gifts and presence at your wedding is a custom that cannot be skipped.
We have all been to weddings. We know the time and cost involved for guests. Travel, time-off, engagement parties, weddings showers, bachelor and bachelorette parties and lastly a wedding gift. Your guests know exactly how to make you feel over the moon special, loved and appreciated, and it is the couples job to thank the heck out of them!
Yes, verbal thank you's are always appreciated, but nothing tops a handwritten note. A thank you card is important for many reasons aside from just the etiquette. For starters it shows the guest that their gift was actually received. With most gifts being mailed, guests sometimes wonder if you actually received their gift. Secondly, it shows the guest that although you are busy planning the wedding or simply busy as newlyweds, that you truly appreciated their gift.
And I am sorry, but you don't get a year to send a thank you, although your guests get a year to send you a gift. Gifts given to you prior to your wedding (including wedding gifts, shower gifts, engagement gifts, bachelorette party gifts) should be sent a thank you card within two weeks of receiving the gift. Any gifts received at or directly after the wedding should be sent within a month.
Lastly, don't forget to properly thank the people that hosted any parties for you. These hosts should receive a thank you either at the time of the party, along with a hostess gift, or directly following the party.
It may seem overwhelming to thank all these people, but writing thank you notes as gifts come will certainly help you stay organized and on top of it! And hey, a few thank you's a day does the body good.