Q. How long does a bride have to send thank-you notes?
A. I hope the clock is not already ticking - the wise bride writes notes as she receives the gifts - always on note paper and always by hand - of course, usually the majority of the gifts come at the last minute and the bride often doesn't get the work completed until after the honeymoon. Convention wisdom says you have "three months" following the wedding to get this done - but - in today's world of ever quicken response times to everything else (i.e. our little chat here) - turn-of-the-century etiquette is likely to dictate a new and astounding four to six week maximum timeframe - If I were you I'd go with the 4 to 6 weeks and if you are already too late - include an apology card with the thank you card!!! This whole "thank you" thing is pretty damned important - and can set the tone and circumstance of your married life - after all - if people, any people, have the courtesy and interest enough to GIVE you something (remember, weddings are not about gifts and there is NO obligation for ANYONE to give you a gift) the least we can do is say "gosh, thanks guys". Late "thank you's" are like saying, after the fact, "oh yeah, by the way, thanks for whatever". Hopefully you are ahead of the game and not behind the eight ball.