Weddings

Creating Maps for Wedding Invitations

Do your guests a favor: Show them the way to your ceremony and reception.

By Cynthia Myers

Letterpress wedding map invitation
Photo courtesy Sycamore Street PressBookmark and Share

To share your wedding day, your guests have to be able to find your wedding venue. Afterward, everyone needs to get safely from the wedding to the reception. Addresses printed on the invitation are helpful, but a map makes navigating much easier. Even in these days of portable GPS units, your guests will appreciate a good map.

  • What You Need to Know
  • Your choices range from high tech (putting a map on your personal wedding site) to old fashioned (hand-drawing a map that your printer can reproduce and include in the envelope with your wedding invitations). Or try both approaches. It all depends on your personal style and what you think your guests would most appreciate.

Step 1:

Verify the addresses for the sites of your wedding and reception.

Step 2:

Consult online mapping software. Several online programs such as Mapquest.com, Google Maps or Yahoo Maps allow you to enter an address and create a map. You can even put in two addresses and get directions between the two points---useful for providing directions from the wedding to the reception. Make sure these maps actually show the best route to your venue. These programs aren't infallible and don't always take into account construction detours or route changes.

Step 3:

Decide on the type of map you'll use. Do you want the map printed on the back of your invitation or on a separate sheet of paper? Do you want to print one of the online maps, or do you prefer to draw your own map? Hand-drawn maps make lovely additions to an invitation if they're rendered clearly and artistically.

Step 4:

Make your map. If you decide to use an online map, you can print the file directly from the mapping site, or you can import the map into PowerPoint or Paintshop. This will allow you to add embellishments, such as large street names, landmarks or the names of prominent buildings. You can eliminate side streets that might clutter the map or add the names of the bride and groom along with the date and time of the wedding---useful information if you plan to print the map separately from the invitation. Don't clutter the map too much. You want someone driving in a car to be able to read it easily.

Step 5:

Consult with your printer. Find out in what format you'll need to submit the map in order to have it printed with your invitations. This may be as simple as emailing him the online map. Compare the printer's price quote to the cost of printing up the map yourself on separate pieces of paper. Decide if the difference is worth doing the work yourself.

Step 6:

Post the map to your personal wedding web site. Most of these online services include the capability to add a map to your site. Wedding Mapper is one site that's made a specialty of online wedding maps, with tools that let you build your own.

  • Tips & Warnings
  • Include mileage and travel time between the wedding and reception venues.
  • If you're drawing your own map try to get it as close to scale as possible or include the mileage with each direction.
  • Include phone numbers of the venues, in case someone gets lost even with the map to guide him or her.

About the Author

Cynthia James is a regular contributor to DexKnows.

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