First & foremost, congratulations on your upcoming nuptials! This will undoubtedly be one of the most exciting times in your life. I want to start out by giving you one piece of advice….and that is to RELAX. Picking your wedding stationery can just as easily be as nerve racking as picking your dress. It makes a statement about you and your tastes and is the first chance you have to set the tone of your most special day. I’m going to offer you some key advice including scheduling, design advice, choosing a stock and finishing options which will take all of the guesswork out of preparing your wedding suite.
I have had too many conversations with brides-to-be about what not to do rather than what to do, which can just lead to more confusion. Because this is SO much information, I will be sharing my ideas in a two part blog post with concrete ideas for you to follow.
Part I will address my first four main points to consider. So, without delay, let’s get started on planning your wedding stationery!
Start Early: 6-8 months before your wedding, you should begin thinking about your Save the Date as well as your wedding stationery. When couples begin designing their Save the Dates, they will often use engagement photos. While this is a great option, the Save the Date is a great opportunity to choose a fun design. I’ve seen everything—postcards, magnets, letters filled with confetti, pop-up cards and even my favorite, letter pressed coasters. If you’re getting special finishing or a printing method different than digital printing, give yourself an additional two weeks in your timeline. Your stationer (that’s me) can do everything from designing to printing to mailing for you. If you think you’re going to want a special type of stock, then add an additional week for special orders.
After you’ve determined your project timeline, it’s time to create your design: Once you send over design ideas or a completed design, there is generally a 2-3 week turnaround. When we get edits, it may take a day or two to get the edits completed and sent back to the bride-to-be so please cushion this so you’re not falling behind schedule with the rest of your invitation suite. Alpha can help with the design and we love when we have brides send us their inspiration. You can find just about anything on Pinterest and when you have an idea of the font, graphic or illustration as well as size, be as descriptive as you can so we can bring your ideas to life!
Select your stock: There are just so many to choose from where do you start? Cream, ivory, white? I would have your stationer (that’s us again) give you 3-4 different stock options from which to choose. The stock does depend on the finishing or printing method (such as letter press) so knowing this before you go in is a good idea. Alpha offers free wedding swatchbooks. Order yours here.
Choose your finishing: Finishing is anything from a die cut to foil to embossing and debossing. Depending on what you choose, the turnaround is also about 1-2 weeks. Letter press costs go up with the amount of color in your finished piece. Letter press, deboss, emboss and foiling require that we make a dye. Dyes are priced by the square inch as well so the larger the area the more the cost. There are many different types of gold, silver and colored foil from which to choose. Finishing can also include deckling, belly bands, envelope liners, and ribbons to name a few.
So there you have it! From your printer to future brides-to-be, want you to know what it takes to make your day even more special! My favorite thing is the printed piece and creating something that makes someone feel so special is important to me. I look forward to helping more brides this coming spring!
In my next blog, I’ll address everything from invitations, to how many pieces is too many in my wedding suite, calligraphy, proofing, mailing, stamps, table numbers, seating chart, floor graphics and more!