Create a spreadsheet that lists all of the contacts invited to the wedding, in alphabetical order by last name. Include everyone invited–even family. Provide a space for each contact to be checked off when the invite is mailed (preferably at the same time), a space for RSVP, for preferred meal if there is an option, address and phone number, whether they will have young children with them, any food or flower allergies and any other pertinent information you can think of. Use this spreadsheet to give your caterer the final count and special orders (don’t forget vendor meals for those who will be there the whole time like the photographer and DJ), to give the rental company a number for chairs and tables, etc. You can also include a space for gift received and what the gift was, then thank you note mailed. This way there are no forgotten thank you’s and it’s easier to keep track of gifts.
Bonus Tip: Thank you notes are generally expected by three months following the wedding, but the sooner the better. Start with monetary gifts first so that the giver isn’t worrying about whether you got it.