Although there have been periods in history when single initial monograms and two-letter monograms were preferred, the three-letter monogram has come to symbolize the standard layout.
In the 19th and Early 20th Centuries, when the rules for three-letter monograms were created, it would have been fairly easy to decide which letters represented which parts of an person's name.
Alice Canfield Bostwick would immediately recognize this monogram as her own – first name initial (A) on the left, middle name initial (C) on the right, and last name initial (B) in the center, larger than the rest.
For a married couple the man's initial goes on the right and the woman's initial goes on the left and of course the last name is in the center.
Order of Letters
When monogramming linens for a couple, the middle letter of the monogram should be the initial of the married couple's last name. The initial on the left is the woman's, and the initial on the right is the man's. For instance, the monogram for the Mr. and Mrs. Johnson, whose first names are Rita and Thomas, would read: RJT. Traditionally, monogrammed linens were a gift for the bride and were presented to her at a bridal shower. The letters in the monogram include the wife's first initial, as well as the initials of her maiden name and married name; the initial of the married name is printed in the middle.
|Traditionally, monograms are printed on linens in a fancy, cursive font. However, it is acceptable to consider the personal style of the couple when selecting a font--the order of letters should still be positioned according to etiquette (i.e., the initial of the couple's married name in the middle of the monogram). Modern lettering styles can complement linens and can appear at the edge of pillow cases, sheets and blankets.