This is a question that gets asked very frequently, and can get confusing when you do not know the answer. We are here to help you so that next time you need to address something, you can do it correctly.
The typical protocol is that prior to the wedding, the bride’s name will appear
before the groom’s name. This would typically be on your Save the Dates,
Invitations, etc. After the wedding, however, the groom’s name will begin
appearing before the bride’s name. This would be on items such as Thank You
Cards, Address Labels, etc.
What about during the wedding?
Well, when it comes to items at the actual wedding (Welcome Bags, Favors,
Napkins, etc.) the decision is up to each couple! You can choose to follow the
protocol above. For example, with Welcome Bags, technically you aren’t married
yet so the bride's name first. But with favors, technically you are now married, so
the groom's name first. Some couples just choose to base it off their own
preference, so you can do that too! Really the decision is all yours.
What about same sex couples?
We see two different choices when it comes to same sex marriages. The first is that the couple chooses to go alphabetically. For example, Becky and Kristen as
opposed to Kristen and Becky. Another way couples choose is based on
preference. If you go by “Kathy and Debra” to your friends and family, then go
that route instead of doing it alphabetically. At the end of the day, choose what is
most comfortable to you!