Even the most creative of us can be stumped by what to write in a wedding card, especially when you're trying to find the perfect wedding wishes for that couple. They sent you a beautiful wedding invitation and they're planning a beautiful day, so a beautiful card is the least you can do.
Whether it's heartfelt wedding wishes for your sibling or some funny wedding card messages for a colleague, our guide to what to write in a wedding card can definitely help.
Image: Katie Leamon at Not On The High Street
DISCOVER MORE: The Best Wedding Cards at Not On The High Street
Knowing what to write in a wedding card for a religious couple or for a parent's second marriage is even tougher, so we've covered etiquette and example wedding wishes for every type of couple - from the traditional to the alternative.
Read on to find those perfect wedding wishes or click below to jump to exactly the words you need. If you're looking for something short and sweet, make sure you check out our favourite quotes for wedding cards.
You'll find a selection of our favourite wedding card designs dotted throughout this article and lots more at the bottom which you'll love!
What to Write in a Wedding Card: The Basics
Image: Whole in the Middle
There isn’t a checklist of what to include in wedding card messages, but by covering the following points you'll have a very happy couple.
You can address the card to both the bride and groom/bride and bride/groom and groom, or write separate messages for each person. However, ideally you should end with a joint message or wish for their life together. The general format should follow:
- Your congratulations or best wishes
- Your hopes for their future together
- How right they are for each other
- A thank you for allowing you to share in their big day
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The wedding wishes and messages you actually include will be dependent on a few different factors that you need to take into consideration. A couple of risqué jokes might be great for your best friend and their partner, but will your distant second cousin appreciate them? You should think about:
- Your relationship to the couple
- Their personalities and interests, e.g. would they love a poem, or hate a funny message?
- Whether the wedding is formal or informal, as this may dictate the type of message they would like to read in their card
- Whether they’re religious
- Whether you’re attending the wedding
Top Tips for What To Write in a Wedding Card
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Once you've read through this article and decided on what to write, then there's a few tips for actually getting across what you want to say in the card (it sounds simple, but it's not!). So before you whip out your pen, do these:
- Be personal. They'll cherish their wedding cards forever so make it special and remember to sign your name! It's not a test of how well they know their friends' handwriting
- Write your message out in rough first, so that you can tinker with it until it’s just right
- Read your message aloud before writing it in the card
- Spell check! If your spelling and grammar aren’t the best, ask someone to check it for you
- The card will likely be read by a lot of people, so ask yourself again if your message is appropriate and doesn't contain anything that the couple wouldn’t want to share. This is not the place to joke about the groom’s antics on the stag do…
- Have you thought about the wedding theme? A nod to their theme is a great touch: a lyric from a rock ‘n’ roll hit could work well for a fifties theme, for example, or a Disney quote might be perfect for a fairy tale theme. Walt Disney had the right idea with this line:
“Laughter is timeless. Imagination has no age. Dreams are forever.”
Our Favourite Wedding Wishes
Image: Martha Brook at Not On The High Street
Wedding wishes are the messages of congratulations and wishes for the future that you write in the wedding card. These can take the form of anything from quotes, poems, even lyrics from one of their favourite songs, to just a nice few sentences about the couple.
Original Wedding Wishes
If you'd like to write your own original wedding wishes, try writing down the top five words that come to mind when you think of the couple, e.g. funny, committed, adventurous. These can get your brain flowing around wishes that would suit them, for example, 'Your greatest journey is only just beginning and I wish you a lifetime of adventures together.'
Formatted Wedding Wishes
It can be easier to follow a set format, for example where each line starts with the same phrase, such as ‘I wish for you’:
I wish for you a life filled with happiness.
I wish for you the strength to overcome any obstacles together.
I wish for you a love that grows ever stronger each day.
Example Wedding Wishes
We’ve written a few wedding wishes to get you started. Most are easy for you to personalise, so feel free to copy and edit them as much as you like (we won’t tell if you don’t!):
On your rollercoaster ride through life together, may you high five at all the right places and support each other through every twist and turn.
You have shared so much love and laughter over your years together, and I know there will be many more joyful moments to come. I wish you all the happiness that you deserve for your married life together.
May the love you feel for each other today grow ever stronger and more fulfilling as the years go by.
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All love stories are special, but yours is one of the most beautiful I’ve had the fortune to witness. I wish you love, laughter and happiness for all your years ahead.
May you look back on today with fond memories of the start of a life filled with love and happiness.
As I enjoy the free bubbly on your wedding day, I’ll raise a toast to two of the nicest people I’ve had the pleasure of meeting.
The two of you shine with the love you share for each other. May that light get ever brighter as the years go by.
READ MORE: Stunning Wedding Stationary Ideas for Your Big Day
What To Write in a Wedding Card For Every Kind of Couple
Image: Charlotte Filshie at Not On The High Street
These wedding wishes are quite generic wedding card messages that would work for almost every couple, but if you've got a specific relation to the bride and groom, here are some much more personal examples that you can use as templates and adapt or get a flavour of what to write.
What to Write in a Wedding Card to a Friend
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If you are close friends with the couple, why not personalise the content with in-jokes and use a warm, friendly tone:
You met over drinks, bonded over your love of Masterchef and cheesy jokes, and fell in love completely, utterly and forever. It would be hard to find a couple more ideally suited to each other. (And let’s face it, who else would put up with Ellie’s snoring or Matt’s Arsenal obsession?) In all seriousness, I am so happy to be celebrating this day with you, and look forward to many more celebrations to come.
READ MORE: 18 Rules All Wedding Guests Should Follow
Thank you for letting me share in your special day. The two of you are made for each other, and I couldn’t be happier to see my oldest friend Karen and my newest friend Ben tying the knot.
May your days together be filled with joy, and your nights full of fun!
What to Write in a Wedding Card to a Best Friend
Image: Becka Griffin Illustration at Not On The High Street
Let’s face it, trying to decide what to write in a wedding card to your best friend can be a bit of a headache. How can you cram everything you want to say into such a small space? Our advice is to pick two or three highlights from your friendship to focus on, and make sure you don’t leave out the other half of the couple:
Well, Lisa, what to say? From building dens and bunking off school, to braving Oceana nightclub together, we’ve had plenty of adventures over the years. Now you’re entering into the biggest adventure of your life so far, and I couldn’t be happier for you. You kissed more than your share of frogs to find him, but Ben is definitely a keeper. Ben, thank you for making my best friend so happy. I can’t wait to see what the future holds for the two of you.
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Mark, I’m still reeling with the shock of you landing someone as warm, funny and drop-dead gorgeous as Judith. Let’s face it, those practice runs in the uni bar were not your finest moments. Jude, I’d like to point out that when I met him, Mark was a Star Wars obsessed geek with a rather suspect taste in slogan T-shirts. Obviously I take full credit for turning him into the man who stands beside you today. In all seriousness, I am truly happy for you two. You’re clearly made for each other and I look forward to watching the two of you grow even closer over the years to come.
What to Write in a Wedding Card to a Son or Daughter
Image: Katie Leamon at Not On The High Street
If it’s your son or daughter getting married, here are some suggestions for what to write in their wedding card:
The saying goes that you don’t lose a son, you gain a daughter, and that’s certainly true for us. We can’t think of a better new daughter to welcome into our family. The two of you are so well suited. You have brought us so much happiness over the years, and we look forward to sharing even more joy over the years to come.
Sam, you have brought so much joy into Ben’s life. We could not wish for a better person for him to spend his life with. Ben, you have made us proud since the day you were born, but never more so than today, as we witness the man you have grown into. We look forward to sharing in your life together over the years to come.
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Lily and Albert, you are clearly made for each other, and we couldn’t be happier. The bond you have is very strong, so you need little advice from us, but one wish we do have is that you let each other grow and give each other the freedom to follow your own dreams. May you always remain your own people, as well as partners, friends and companions on your journey through life together.
What to Write in a Wedding Card to a Sibling
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Is your big brother or baby sister tying the knot? Here are some sentimental wedding messages perfect for siblings:
It’s hard to believe that the little brother who followed me around for all those years is now all grown up and getting married. Emma, I hand all responsibility over to you for Jonah’s wellbeing. I’ve done my best to mould him into something resembling a decent human being, but I reckon you still have your work cut out when it comes to his dress sense… In all seriousness, Jonah I could not be more proud of the man you’ve turned into, and have loved watching the two of you fall in love. Emma, you’ve got yourself a good ‘un, and I know it’s well deserved. I’d wish you well for the future, but I can see that’s not necessary; the two of you are undeniably ‘right’ for each other. With love always, your big brother Sam.
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I don’t need to welcome you to the family Harry, as you’ve been a member of our clan since the night you braved the Smith family Christmas. What I will do is congratulate you both on finding your soul mate, your partner in crime, your companion on life’s adventure.
What to Write in a Wedding Card to a Colleague
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If someone in the office is getting married, you can get them your own wedding card or sign a shared one that’s passed around. These messages would work for either scenario (although if you’ve been invited to the wedding, you should definitely get your own card!):
While I’ve never met Judith, I can see your love for her every time you speak of her. I wish you a long and happy life together, and look forward to seeing the photos of your big day.
Let’s hope you make Olivia tea more often than you do your colleagues! Have a wonderful wedding and enjoy escaping work on your honeymoon.
What will we do on our tea break now we no longer have wedding dresses to critique and venues to discuss? I hope your big day goes just as you’ve dreamed and your life together is all that you want it to be.
What to Write in a Wedding Card to a Parent and Step-Parent
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It can be tough to know what to write when your parents remarry. Here are some ideas:
Mum, I know dad is looking down and smiling to see you so happy. I couldn’t wish for a better man than Graham to stand by your side today. I am truly happy to see the love that you share, and I wish you a million more joyful moments to come.
Celia, I am so happy that you are joining our family today, and cannot thank you enough for the happiness that you have brought to my father. May the two of you have many more days of joy and love together.
The two of you are so clearly meant to be together, it was destined to be. While you may have met later on in life, that just means that you will treasure every moment together even more.
What to Write in a Wedding Card for Religious Weddings
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If the couple in question are religious, you may want to reference that in the wedding card. You could include a Bible quote, such as 1 Corinthians 13.4-7, which starts "Love is patient, love is kind." You could also mention God’s work in the message, e.g.:
‘May God continue to bless you in your marriage, as he has done in your courtship.’
What to Write in a Wedding Card for Second Marriages
Image: Martha Brook at Not On The High Street
If they’re divorced, it’s best not to mention their previous relationship, even in a jokey way. However, you may want to mention children by name, particularly if they will all be living together. Don’t refer to the new partner as the child’s new mum or dad, especially if their real mum or dad is still on the scene.
Funny Messages to Write in a Wedding Card
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It’s hard enough trying to decide what to write in a wedding card, without the added pressure of making it funny. It can help to stick to a format, such as a list, limerick or a humorous similie:
Marriage is a rollercoaster ride. May you have more ups than downs and more laughs than screams. Most importantly, may you both enjoy the best ride of your life every night.
May your love story be more X-rated than PG, with just enough plot twists to keep things interesting, but not enough to see you clapped in handcuffs for the wrong reasons.
Our Favourite Wedding Cards
Custom Mr and Mrs Card - Superfumi
How fab is this custom illustrated card! The newlyweds will never want to take it down from their mantlepiece.
It All Began... Card - This Paper Book
If the couple had a funny or chance first encounter, this card telling the story of how they met is brilliant.
Metallic Personalised Heart card - Sophia Victoria Joy
A simple, but super stylish card is perfect for a glamorous wedding. The metallics of this personalised card are totally on trend.
Personalised Map Location Wedding Card - Bombus
Is there a place close to the newlyweds heart? A country they met in? The town where they grew up? Or the place they got engaged? Celebrate their favourite spot with a card featuring a map of the area.
Keepsake Heart Wreath Wooden Card - Studio Thirty Two
This is a great alternative to a traditional card; the laser-cut wooden card features a pretty wreath and can be personalised with the initials and date of the couple's wedding. It'll look great as a keepsake on a shelf or hung on a wall.
Paper Boat Wedding Card - The Little Boathouse
If you have friends who live by the sea or met on holiday, this keepsake paper boat card is a thoughtful gift. It comes in a variety of colours as well so you can suit it to their personalities.
Now you’ve sorted out what to write in the wedding card for the happy couple, why not browse our wedding present guide for gift ideas for the newlyweds?