Opening the envelope to your wedding invitation is like opening the first page of the book about your wedding story, it sets the scene for your wedding and gives your guests an insight into your wedding day.
To help you know where to begin, I’m excited Lynda Athey of Lynda Loves, is sharing her top 5 wedding stationery tips. Lynda Loves is a UK wedding stationery and branding design studio, with a passion for minimal, typographic design, colour, and illustrative details. Lynda’s work is a blend of considered design, premium materials and luxury hand finishing that brings a touch of style to your wedding.
How To Choose Your Wedding Stationer
Recommendations can come in far and wide when you start the whole wedding planning process – friends and family members opinions may vary greatly when it comes to choosing the very best suppliers to create your dream day. Here are a few tips you may want to consider when it comes to nailing your wedding invitations:
One of the most important things to consider when looking for a wedding stationer is whether or not you like their design style and aesthetic—this will always be reflected in the work they produce for you. Look at their collection portfolio—you want your vision and their design style to complement each other.
Consider working with the same stationery designer for all of your printed materials, so that all of your items have a cohesive look and feel from your Save the Date cards right up to your wedding menus.
An important part of the design process is that they are able to communicate with you clearly and that they really understand your vision. You want to feel confident that your designer will create beautiful, unique invitations for your wedding day.
Some questions you may want to consider when looking for a designer:
- Do I like what I see in their portfolio?
- Do I like their design style and aesthetic?
- Does my vision for my invitations match with the design style and aesthetic of the designers?
- Does their pricing fit within my budget?
- Do I understand their process for completing my invitations?
- Am I excited about the possibility of working with this designer?
If the answer is yes to all of the above or at least most of them—reach out and get in touch. Whether you choose to customise an existing design or choose something bespoke you can work together to create something really special and enjoy the whole planning process.
Your Save the Date cards should go out about 12 months before your wedding. Once you’ve locked down your date and venue, do some research on finding your preferred stationery designer and work together to get these designed, printed and posted.
At this stage they don’t necessarily have to match your invitations but ordering everything from the same stationer can save you money and make the invitation process easier. Your second stage will be to order your invitation suite, usually consisting of your invitation, RSVP card and guest information booklet. These are usually sent to guests about 4 months ahead of your wedding date, so work ahead with your stationer (usually 4 – 8 weeks to allow for design time, proofing, printing, assembly and dispatch). If you’re having a destination wedding you may want to send your invitations out a lot earlier to allow guests to book flights, accommodation and arrange holiday from work.
Give Your Invite Space
List only the key points on your invitation – your names, who is hosting—if any, the ceremony time and venue location, dress code and RSVP info is optional.
Keep it elegant—trying to squeeze too much on the invitation on can make it harder to read. Leave other information like directions to your venue, accommodation recommendations, details about pre and post wedding activities and RSVP responses for your guest information booklet. These are separate cards and can form the rest of your invitation suite, all designed to keep a cohesive style.
Consider Your Costs
The price per invite can vary widely—anywhere from £3.00 to £9.00 each. It all depends on the card stocks, print processes and whether you opt for a customised design or to go bespoke. Digital printing is the most cost effective, has no minimum print run and has a quicker turnaround time.
Hot foiling and letterpress techniques require a different print process and set up, so they have a higher price bracket and slightly longer turnaround time. Adding in other extras such as vellum wraps, wax seals, envelope liners, RSVP cards or guest information booklets and your total cost can add up. These all require additional design time and printing, so prioritise and factor in what is important to send to your guests.
If you want your envelopes addressed with calligraphy, also factor this into your costs. This finishes off your invitation suite beautifully and makes for a more personal and elegant impression. Most calligraphers will charge extra for this, usually £2 – £4.00 per envelope. Alternatively your stationer can typeset guest addresses for printing, this is usually half the cost per envelope.
The last and final thing is don’t forget to weigh each envelope at the Post Office. Multiple paper items can be heavier than you think so you don’t want to risk your guests having to pay for excess postage costs!
On The Day Stationery
One of your final stages is your on the day items. Anything from welcome signs, orders of service, guest menus, table cards, seating plans and guest name settings. Working with the same stationer throughout is a good way to ensure all your stationery has a cohesive look, in keeping with your design and style. Check in with your designer about 6-8 weeks ahead of your wedding date on these items, once you have guest RSVP’s finalised.
After the big celebration you may want to consider thank you cards to send to your guests. These can be designed in the same style or personalised with one of your wedding photos and are usually sent to guests within a month of your wedding.
Such great tips from Lynda who I’ve been honoured to work with on a number of occasions. Her work really is beautiful and she’s lovely to work with too (supplier relationships are so important!).
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