What we learnt from our latest wedding stationery design & print project...
I mentioned in my October Favourites blog that I designed and printed some really beautiful wedding invitations in October, which was my favourite project last month. I thought I’d put a few tips together in this blog for those of you looking to get wedding invitations designed soon and tell you some of the things I learnt from our recent project.
How to brief your designer?
One of the first things I ask for when speaking with client about their wedding stationery is to see their wedding Pinterest board (Don’t be embarrassed, every girl has one, including me!). If you haven’t got one, sign up now and start collecting pictures because it is brilliant inspiration for us. Even if you haven’t pinned pictures of invitations specifically, the board as a collective gives us an insight into your style and the theme of your wedding. To you it might be pictures of flower arrangements and dresses, but to us it’s colour schemes and styles which show us if you’re a vintage shabby chic couple or a modern minimalist pairing. You can even show your designer things you’ve bought for your wedding so far. Why not bring along a bridesmaid dress or a groomsmen’s tie, then we can make sure you’re wedding stationary matches your colour scheme perfectly. When we started working with Leanne and Graham for their invitations, they hadn’t bought anything yet for us to match the colours to but they told us that they wanted a coral and navy scheme. So, don’t worry if it’s still early days for you too, we’ll get the pantone guides out and find a colour you like.
Both the design and the wording of your wedding invitations give your guests an insight into your wedding day. The phrasing in the invite tells them how formal the event will be, which will give your guests an idea of the dress code and how the day’s going to unfold.
“An ultra-formal, traditional invite with letterpress and calligraphy will give guests a hint to the formal nature of the event, whereas a square invite with a playful font and bright colours would fit a much more casual style.” www.theknot.com
It’s important to think about these things when briefing your designer as weddings are personal to each couple and it’s our job to help you portray your personalities through our designs.
What text should you include?
There’s no right or wrong answer to this but I always think you should sound like yourselves. However, it’s also important to think about who’s receiving your invitations. You might not talk to your besties from uni in the same way as you talk to your nan or your neighbours, so keep it simple and approachable to everyone. Like many modern couples, Leanne and Graham wanted to tell their guests that they don’t need any more pots and pans and would rather receive honeymoon contributions. There’s lots of cute little poems online which help explain this request but to make their invitations individual to them Graham wrote his own poem. Remember the people you are sending these invitations to know you well, so it’s obvious when it doesn’t sound like something you would say. Little things like this really help to make your invitations stand out and make your guests excited about joining you for your big day.
When should you start designing your invitations?
Traditionally invitations go out 2-3 months before the wedding which gives your guests plenty of time to clear their schedules and make travel arrangements. However, if you’ve already got your date set but don’t know some of the finer details it can be good to give you’re guests a bit more notice with save-the-date cards. This is especially a good idea if your wedding is during the popular times of year for weddings and are likely to clash with holidays, during the 6 weeks school holidays or the weeks leading up to Christmas. It terms of timescale for the design and print, we can accommodate your deadlines on this, but to make sure it’s not rushed and to allow yourselves enough time to give us feedback and develop the designs it’s best to allow at least 3 weeks for the design and print process.
Our 3 Top Tips (From experience!)
1. Don’t forget you only need 1 invite per couple if they live together. Take that into consideration when you are working out numbers and asking for printing quotes. Printing quotes are based on quantity so accurate numbers can save you money. It’s good to get the printing costs accurate at this point because you can then splash out elsewhere like some gold envelopes to pop them in!
2. If you’re on a strict budget tell your designer or printer to give you options to reduce the printing cost. We have loads of experience in printing and can suggest things which could save you loads of money. For example, sticking to standard sizes like A6 or A5 rather than fancy shaped invitations can be much cheaper. We designed some invitations earlier this year for Mr & Mrs Harris which were in the shape of a tipi, they had a real wow factor but if you’re conscious of your budget, keeping things simple can really keep the costs down. For Leanne and Graham’s invitations, we stuck to a really simple folded A6 invite which were cheaper to print, but we came up with a beautiful design which made them just as unique and special.
3. Don’t forget to budget for postage. It’s often overlooked and your budget could take a real unexpected hit if you don’t take this into consideration in the early stages. Also, look into the prices of different sized envelopes and how thick they can be. It could be a really expensive mistake including that one extra piece of card which makes them too thick for a standard letter. You could even hand them out to local friends and family to save on postage.