What to write in a card for every occasion
Take the stress out of writing card messages with our handy tips and advice
We all want to be able to write the perfect card message for any occasion, but it doesn’t always come easily. You can often find yourself gazing at a blank space as you struggle to get your thoughts down on paper.
Writing a thoughtful card message is a real skill and one that takes practice, but you’ll never regret taking the time to get it right.
We tend to send cards at important times in our lives or to celebrate significant milestones. Many are happy occasions, such as weddings, birthdays or the arrival of a new baby, but cards can also be a way to show our support to someone going through a tough time.
In this guide, we’ll provide you with lots of tips and advice to help you write messages for every occasion, whether you've bought your card from a shop or crafted it from a card-making kit.
- Christmas card messages
- Engagement card messages
- Wedding invite messages
- New home card messages
- Valentine's card messages
- New baby card messages
- Christening card messages
- Graduation card messages
- Mother's Day card messages
- Father's Day card messages
- Sympathy card messages
- Leaving card messages
How to write a jolly Christmas card message
Celebrate the holidays by crafting your own cheerful Christmas card message. You can send a Christmas card to almost anyone in your life, from friends and family to teachers or colleagues.
Keep it simple by choosing a classic festive greeting or writing a more personal message for your loved ones.
It’s important to think carefully about who you’re sending the card to, as this will determine how informal you can be. For your boss or colleagues, it’s best to stick to traditional greetings and save the funny Christmas card messages for your close friends and family.
Ready to write your own Christmas cards? Take a look at our Christmas card messages for lots of seasonal greetings!
Write a meaningful engagement card message
Engagements are a joyful occasion and give us the opportunity to celebrate love in all its forms. It’s often a great time to celebrate our love for the happy couple too.
If you’re a parent, you might want to take the chance to tell your child that you’re proud of them or to officially welcome their future partner into your family.
Likewise, if your parent is getting married, you could let them know how happy you are that they’ve found a loving husband or wife to share their life with.
You can use an engagement card message to reminisce about any fond memories you have of the couple – or to plan a big engagement party!
Discover 81 ways to write a heartfelt engagement card message.
What to include in your wedding invite messages
Writing your wedding invites is an important part of planning your big day. For each guest, you’ll need to think about whether you need to include certain information. Here are a few things to take into account:
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- Make sure you include the wedding date, time and venue.
- Are you inviting the guest to the wedding ceremony or just the reception?
- Will the guest be offered a plus one? Let them know in the invite so that they can plan ahead.
- Do they need to provide you with any information such as dietary requirements or menu choices?
- Are children welcome at the wedding?
- Is there a wedding gift list?
Once you’ve made all of the big decisions, you just need to write the invites themselves. Most wedding invites use a very formal tone, which makes them easy to write. You just need to choose the wording that you like and copy it:
- We request the honour of your presence.
- We request the pleasure of your company.
- Together with their families, (the couple’s names) are delighted to invite you to celebrate their marriage.
- Please join us to celebrate our wedding.
- You are warmly invited to celebrate the marriage of (couple’s names).
Of course, you can always write a more informal invitation to close friends and family if you like!
New home card message writing tips
Moving into a new home is often a thrilling milestone in life, whether you’re buying your first house or relocating for your dream job.
Your card message can reflect a sense of excitement and optimism for the future. It’s your chance to share in that joy and send positive wishes to the recipient, whether they’re a relative or a dear friend.
Of course, not every move is a happy one as it might be due to bereavement or a relationship breakdown. In those cases, you can send a card as a way to show someone that you’re thinking of them and offer them your support.
Learn how to write your own new home card message with our practical tips.
What to write in a Valentine’s card
Love is in the air and we’re ready to write some romantic Valentine’s card messages! Writing a Valentine’s card can be a lot of fun and it’s a good time to tap into your softer side.
If you’re in a new relationship, try to keep things light and don’t make any huge declarations of love. It might scare off your new partner if you’re too intense! You can be much more intimate if you’re in a long-term relationship.
You can be sensitive, sweet and silly in your Valentine’s card, depending on the kind of relationship you have. You can share in-jokes or use any nicknames you might have for one another. Take a moment to recall some happy memories that you’ve shared together.
Still struggling to think of something romantic to say? Here are a few cute Valentine’s greetings to try:
- I love you just as you are.
- I love you to the moon and back.
- Home is wherever I’m with you.
- I never believed in love until I found you.
- You complete me.
New baby card messages to celebrate a little bundle of joy
The arrival of a new child into the world is a wonderful thing, so naturally we want to celebrate their birth!
Share your joy with the parents with one of these affectionate greetings:
- Congratulations on the birth of your new baby boy/girl!
- Congratulations on the arrival of your little bundle of joy!
- Welcome to the world, little (baby’s name)!
- Congratulations! I’m looking forward to meeting him/her very soon.
- Welcome to parenthood! I was thrilled to hear your news and can’t wait to see the baby soon.
Learn how to write a heartwarming Christening card message
A Christening is a ceremony that marks a child being brought into the Christian faith. It’s a special occasion that celebrates the child’s life and introduces them to godparents who will watch over them.
If you’re invited to be a godparent, it can feel like a great honour and a sign of the parents’ love and respect for you. For family and friends, it’s a brilliant time to bond with the new baby and get to know them.
In your Christening card message, you could thank the parents for inviting you to be a godparent or wish the baby a bright and happy future.
Here are some things you could write in a Christening card:
- Congratulations on your Christening!
- Happy Christening Day.
- Thank you so much for inviting me to be the baby’s godmother/godfather. I’m truly honoured.
- Congratulations on your Christening day, little one! Wishing you a long and happy life.
- I’m delighted to have been invited to your Christening and I will enjoy watching over you as you grow up.
Choose eco-friendly wrapping for your gifts
Sending a gift with your card? Don’t buy wrapping paper, which can only be used once. Try the more sustainable Japanese Furoshiki wrapping technique instead.
Celebrate success in your graduation card messages
Completing a degree is a real achievement and often involves a lot of hard work and sacrifice. It’s only right that gaining a university or college education is treated as a major milestone in life.
Give them the recognition that they deserve with one of these special graduation card messages:
- Congratulations on your degree!
- It’s your graduation day! Time to celebrate.
- Congratulations on achieving your degree. I know how hard you worked for this.
- I’m so proud of you for completing your degree! You’ve done an amazing job!
- Happy graduation day!
What to write in a Mother’s Day card
Mother’s Day gives us the opportunity to show how much we appreciate our mums, however old we are!
Take the time to write a message that reflects how much you care for your mother. She’s bound to treasure a personal greeting that’s been thoughtfully written (as well as any gift you give her!).
Here are some sweet Mother’s Day card greetings that you can adapt:
- Happy Mother’s Day to the best mum in the whole world.
- Sending you love and hugs this Mother’s Day.
- Thank you for all your love, support and words of wisdom. I couldn’t wish for a better mother!
- Happy Mother’s Day! I hope you have a wonderful time.
- Best wishes to my lovely mum this Mother’s Day.
What to write in a Father’s Day card
You’re never too old to tell your dad that you love him! Our dads are there for us through thick and thin and we’re looking forward to celebrating them this Father’s Day.
Write a caring message to let your father know what he means to you:
- Happy Father’s Day! I’m so glad that you’re in my life.
- To the world’s best dad!
- Thank you for all of your support and advice – it means so much to me.
- To my wonderful father. You’ve set an incredible example for me to follow and I’m proud to call you my dad.
- Thank you for being a lovely dad! I hope you have a fantastic day.
Sympathy card messages to show your love and support
Sympathy card messages can be incredibly difficult to write due to the strong emotions involved. Many of us find it difficult to talk about grief, let alone write our feelings down on a card.
If you’re finding writing a card overwhelming, break the writing process down into small steps. You don’t need to write an essay – someone going through a bereavement may not have the energy to read it – but a few simple sentences can cover everything you need to say.
Start by writing that you’re sorry for their loss or that you were saddened to hear the news.
Next, you can say something about the deceased if you like. For example: “I’ll always remember George for his kindness and his love of football.” If you have a particularly fond memory you’d like to share, you can write a brief account of it in the card.
Finally, you can offer support if you’re able to give it, such as an invite to meet for a coffee or to go on a country walk. Don’t put them under any pressure to accept your invitations and let them know that they should only join you if they feel up to it.
Here are a few sympathy card messages for you to use as a starting point:
- I’m so sorry for your loss.
- With deepest sympathy.
- You’ll be in our thoughts.
- We were so sorry to hear your sad news.
- Thinking of you and your family at this difficult time.
How to write leaving card messages
Leaving cards can be tricky to write. As with any card to a workmate, you need to strike a balance between being friendly and professional.
If you can, it’s best to make your message positive and include some kind wishes for the future. You can ask the recipient to keep in touch if you like, tell them how much you’ve enjoyed working with them and offer support (such as references or recommendations).
You can wish them well in a new job or share your sympathies if they’ve been made redundant.
Try these leaving card messages or tweak them to suit your needs:
- Best of luck in your new job! You will be missed.
- Congratulations on the new role. I’m excited to see what you do next!
- Good luck in your new job! I’m over the moon for you.
- I’m so sad that you’re leaving! I’ve loved working with you and it won’t be the same without you.
- I’m sorry you’re leaving – we’re all going to miss you.
What to write in a card to show you care
Cards are an important way to show that we care. We send cards to mark all of life’s highs and lows, from births to funerals, so choosing the right message is crucial.
When we’re faced with a blank card, it can be difficult to come up with the appropriate message for occasion. We want to be able to express ourselves and write a message that reflects our feelings.
Writing a suitable card message takes practice, but with our helpful tips and advice you’ll have the confidence to write your own personalised messages in no time.
How to make your own cards
A handmade card can be a lovely way to let someone know how much they mean to you. If you want to take your first steps into cardmaking, learn how to make cards with Gathered’s expert tutorials.
Sarah Orme is a UK-based linocut printmaker, digital editor, feature writer and award-winning podcaster. She's been editing the sewing and art sections of Gathered.how – and before that our sister website calmmoment.com – for over 3 years. She’s the host of Gathered’s We’ve Made It podcast and A Calmer Life podcast. She’s a keen crafter and artist and loves creating DIY tutorials for Gathered. Sarah has previously written features for The Guardian, In The Moment Magazine, Project Calm Magazine, countryfile.com, radiotimes.com and yourhomestyle.uk. She enjoys designing her own unique lino prints and dreams of opening her own online shop. She shares her work @sarahormeprints
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