Bar and Bat Mitzvah Etiquette
The words “Bar” and “Bat” Mitzvah literally mean “son” or “daughter of the commandment.” A Bar Mitzvah happens for boys at age 13. A Bat Mitzvah happens for girls at age 12. We recommend ordering your invitations anywhere from four to seven months before your event. Only one invitation is needed per household. You should always order a few extra, just in case; it’s easier and less expensive than ordering more invitations down the road.
Bat and bar mitzvah etiquette can be tricky, but there are a number of ways you can save yourself time and energy while planning this big celebration for your child. In this guide, we dive headfirst into bar and bat mitzvah etiquette, so you can get to planning and inviting without any hassles or hiccups. Keep reading to learn more!
Invitation Design and Wording
Bar and bat mitzvah invitations are designed to accomplish two things. The wording of your invitation provides all the essential details and information your guests need, but the design of your invitation gives your guests a first glimpse of what they should expect from your event. The design you choose should reflect the overall style and theme of this momentous occasion, so you might consider certain accent colors or seasonal influences to make a big impression. Modern mitzvahs are all over the map, falling anywhere between contemporary and traditional. If you are hosting a themed event, you might also choose stationery that complements your overall vision for the party. Before agreeing to a specific design, you should always request proofs or preview images of your invitations to double-check for any misspellings, abbreviations, or incorrect information.
Multiple Events and Locations
If you are hosting multiple bar or bat mitzvahs at separate locations or on different dates, you will need to include the date, location, and time of each event on the invitations. If your additional event takes place directly after the Torah reading, it is sufficient to add a single line on the invitation itself (e.g. Kiddush luncheon to follow). If there are various locations, it is essential to inform your guests of where to go and at what time, but some families choose to defer this information to reception cards or supplemental stationery.
How to Handle Complicated Guest Lists
Bar and bat mitzvahs are traditionally held on Shabbat, but contemporary hosts celebrate in unique ways these days. If your celebratory occasion involves multiple locations or events, there’s a chance that some guests will be invited to the synagogue ceremony but not the meal that follows. Use your invitation to invite all your guests to the service, but you can use reception cards or party favors to invite select guests to the after party. Some families may choose to order separate invitations, but you will need two separate response cards for each unique guest list.
How to: Répondez S'il Vous Plaît
While sending your bar or bat mitzvah invitations, you must remember to set the RSVP date, so your guests know by when you are expecting a reply. We recommend that you set the RSVP date for at least three to four weeks before your event, so you can make any catering or equipment changes you might need before then.
Bar or Bat Mitzvah Gifts and Donations
Some might consider it a faux pas to reference a particular gift or preference on the invitation, but there are no rules against registering at a specific store or gift registry. Some of the most popular bar and bat mitzvah gifts include gift certificates, religious books, and savings bonds for college. Parents might choose to include an additional card that requests donations to a particular charity, mission, or nonprofit organization in lieu of gifts.
If you have any questions about bar mitzvah etiquette or bat mitzvah etiquette, please contact us today for additional information. Our friendly stationery mavens are here to assist you in any way possible, so please let us know how we can help turn your vision into a reality. eInvite is home to one of the best bar and bat mitzvah invitation collections available. Shop from our selection today!