I know it’s just November, but in wedding planning world – it’s all things Spring! As the holidays quickly approach and the year comes to a close, I start booking invitation clients for the season ahead. Since invitations are mailed 6-8 weeks prior to the wedding, couples getting married in March, April, and May will start ordering wedding invitations soon!
Originally created for a St. Patrick’s Day wedding, I think this design would work perfectly for any spring wedding! The floral envelope liner gives the perfect detail while the invitation is clean and modern. Colors can be customized to make this design your own!
I’ve always been enamored by letterpress wedding invitations, knowing that when I plan my own big day they’re a non negotiable detail. Of course, they’re beautiful, but I love the process that is used to “print”.
As I started my business over five years ago, I only offered digital printing – I wanted to feel fully confident in one production method before introducing something else. Since my business has grown, it’s only natural that I’d add letterpress as an option for my wedding invitation designs!
So if you’re wondering – what is letterpress and why is it so special? Let me tell you about it!
Letterpress wedding invitations have a handcrafted feel because well, they are handcrafted. The printing process dates back to the 15th century and has a full, rich history. Although things are handled a little differently today, the overall idea is still the same – a plate is made using the digital artwork which is then put through the press. The paper is hand fed through the press, one-by-one, where the die leaves an impression of the design.
Because of the production method, designs include just one or two ink colors. If you choose to have two colors letterpressed, that means the paper will be fed through the press twice. There’s always the option to add digital printing along with the letterpress design if you’re dreaming of an invitation with colorful artwork!
The final product is really something unique – letterpress wedding invitations are typically done using thick, textured paper. My standard letterpress suites include the invitation printed on 220# cotton cardstock – it is absolutely delicious! I use a thinner stock for the insert cards, although they’re still a great texture. This helps with not only the cost of postage to mail, but also the durability of the package. Sometimes having all pieces on thick cardstock means trouble with the postal sorting machines.
Cost of Letterpress
With all that being said, it makes sense that letterpress wedding invitations are more expensive than the standard digitally printed invitation suite. The cost is dependent on a few factors, especially the quantity ordered, but overall it’s about three times more than my standard suite. At the 100 quantity, a three piece set of digital invitations is $370, while the same printed in letterpress is $1,075. Keep in mind, the letterpress suites have the upgraded paper as mentioned above. (These prices are for customizing existing designs and effective as of October 2018) Interested in a personalized quote? Complete my questionnaire here!
You can expect turnaround time to be a bit longer for letterpress wedding invitations. Due to the customized method, I recommend not choosing this method if you’re in a rush as it adds about 2-3 weeks on to my typical production timeline.
You only get one wedding invitation. It’s the first impression of your entire wedding day – and one of the only things you get to keep after the big day is over. Not only does it tell guests when and where it’s all going down, but it conveys the wedding theme, even subconsciously telling them how to dress for the event! If your budget allows, I highly recommend considering letterpress. It makes for a beautiful impression (get it?!) and a gorgeous keepsake.
Love it or hate it, Instagram is a big part of daily life in 2018. With all social media, there are positives and negatives to spending time on the platform. For the busy bride, I think the app is a great way to jumpstart your wedding planning – create a feed full of inspiration, discover wedding venues, and find your perfect vendors!
With Instagram’s saved post feature, you can begin to pull together inspiration for your wedding theme. See a photo of a gorgeous gown or beautiful bouquet that matches your big day vision? Just click the flag icon on the bottom right to bookmark a post.
After you begin saving posts, you can even categorize them by adding collections. Visit the posts you’ve saved by clicking on the three bars at the top right when on your profile’s page. Click on “saved” to see everything and “collections” to start organizing. This is a great place to refer back to when wedding planning – and all on your phone!
Find Wedding Vendors
Use hashtags to find the vendors for your big day. Although I work with brides all over the country, many vendors are location specific – think about your planner, photographer, florist, makeup artist, hair stylist, cake designer, band – the list goes on! You can find awesome vendors by searching “your city + wedding” or “your city + vendor speciality” or a combination of these things!
For example, if a San Diego bride wanted to work with a local invitation designer (hi, I’m here!) you can find me on Instagram by searching hashtags like #sandiegoweddinginvitations, #sandiegowedding, #socalbride, #southerncaliforniaweddinginspiration, and more!
To browse hashtags, just type it in the search bar – you’ll be amazed how many wedding vendors are using Instagram! If you see a photo that fits your style, visit their profile – it should be a living portfolio of their work. You’ll be able to get a better idea of their aesthetic, the types of weddings they work, and even a glimpse of their personal life. It’s a great way to connect with someone – you might even follow them in the beginning stages of wedding planning to keep them in mind as you begin booking vendors.
Along with searching for vendors, Instagram is a great place to check out wedding venues – without even leaving the house! To be fair, you definitely need to visit any wedding venue in person to make a decision, but looking at it on social media can help you narrow down favorites.
Use the hashtags or places feature to find venues, then browse their photos to see what the space looks like. On the places page, you’ll see an entire feed of photos that people have tagged at that location. I really like this because there are professional photos from vendors, but also pictures from guests themselves.
Browse Tagged Photos
Find a vendor or venue you really love? Tagged photos are a great way to find other vendors with a similar style. As wedding professionals, we’re always collaborating – both on styled shoots and real weddings. Those pictures end up on Instagram where every vendor involved is tagged. Usually by finding one, it’ll lead you to several others!
It’s never a bad idea to choose vendors who have worked at your venue, or worked together, previously. There’s a big advantage to that – they’re familiar with the space and each other, which ensures your wedding day will go super smoothly!
So, break out the phone (although I know there’s a 52% chance you’re reading this on your mobile device) and begin your Instagram wedding planning now! You can start by checking out my work and following me – comment on my post letting me know you found me through my blog post!
You’ve gotten your engagement photos back from your photographer and are stoked because – it’s time to order your save the dates! The excitement quickly turns to overwhelm as you realize how hard it’ll be to choose ONE photo. Where do you even start? There are so many favorites, because you guys look totally adorable and your photographer did an amazing job. How do you choose the perfect photo for your save the date cards?
When it comes to choosing a save the date photo, I recommend keeping these four things in mind:
A picture taken on a phone doesn’t always work best for printing. If you’re working with a professional photographer, they’ll provide high quality files that are made to print – with at least 300ppi. Your designer will be able to quickly review the file to make sure it will print nicely. Having a good quality photo for your save the dates is important!
Along with the overall size, choose a photo with good lighting and that’s distraction free. The focus should be on the people in the photo, not the things going on around it! I recommend a picture where nothing important is close to the edges. When a design goes to print, there’s a margin of error accounted for and if anything (like your head!) is too close to the edge, there is a chance of it getting cut. A photo where there’s plenty of safe space on the sides works well!
2. Negative Space
Photos with negative space make for the best save the date designs, in my opinion. This means that there’s room on the actual photo for a design to lay without conflicting with the photo itself. A good example is a picture where the couple is on one side and there’s a muted background on the other, perfect for laying out information. Check out these examples for inspiration!
3. Faces are Featured
This is more of my preference, but I like to mention it because it’s often not considered when choosing a save the date photo. There are so many great photos where the couple (or even just one person) is looking down, away, etc. I adore photos from behind of a couple holding hands, but these don’t work best for save the dates.
Why? Because your family and friends want to see your pretty faces when they get your save the date in the mail! Save the dates usually only include first names, so there’s a possibility of confusion if your face isn’t showing. Think about it!
4. Matches Your Theme
Your save the date is the very first detail guests receive for your wedding day – try to keep it within the same overall feel as the rest of your wedding! Having a laid back, non-traditional wedding? Pick a photo that gives that vibe. Will your wedding be black tie? Choose a picture that represents a formal affair.
Hopefully these tips help you narrow down the perfect photo for your save the date! If you’re still having trouble choosing, you can always add a second photo to the back of the card or do a collage style design.
Still in doubt? Send your favorite options to your designer – we’ve done this before and are happy to give our opinion on which would work best. I love getting to see your engagement photos and helping you choose one!
ANSWERS TO FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT SAVE THE DATES
Save the dates should be mailed no less than six months before the wedding date. Plan on mailing earlier if you’re having a destination wedding, wedding on or near a holiday, or inviting a lot of out of town guests.
Order save the dates based on the number of addresses on your guest list rather than the number of guests. Each household only needs one and by counting guests you’ll likely order way more than you’ll actually need!
Save the date cards should include the bride and groom names, location of the wedding (city + state is fine), and the date of the wedding. If you have a wedding website it can be added.
If you’re inviting a person and allowing them to bring a plus one, address the save the date that way. For example, Miss Susie Smith and Guest.
To make sure guests know that the save the date isn’t the actual invitation, you can state “invitation to follow” on the card.
It’s been a while since I have done a styled shoot and I must say – I think this is my favorite to date! Katie of Katie Tiller Photography organized an awesome vendor team to execute her lush, lavender wedding vision at one of North Georgia’s newest (and brightest) venues! Circle B in Tunnel Hill, Georgia is a photographer’s dream with white walls, tall ceilings, and huge windows letting in tons of natural light.
This invitation suite was created based on a custom design I did for one of my best friend’s weddings. I modified it a bit to fit the geo theme Katie envisioned. The soft lavender watercolor give a romantic feel and the gold toned fonts glam it up a bit. I might be biased, but I think it fit pretty perfectly with the other details from this faux wedding day!
From the colorful, lush florals to the artfully designed cake to the gorgeous Hayley Paige gown – and everything in between, this lavender wedding styled shoot is one for the books! At least the magazines, because it was published in North and Peach. See full vendor list and links at the bottom of this post!
Creating a skyline wedding invitation has been on my “design bucket list” for a while. Whenever I visit a new place, I always get a little magic twinkle feeling seeing a city skyline! Although I’ve never truly lived downtown, I suppose I’m a city girl at heart.
There’s something romantic and exciting about a skyline. Whether the sun is rising, setting, or the moon is out – seeing a skyline flicker in the light is my absolute favorite!
These invitations were created with a modern, rooftop wedding in mind. I kept it classic using only black and white, but used a fun script font to add some pizzazz!
I wanted to keep it close to home by using the Atlanta skyline, but this design can be customized for a variety of major cities including my other two favorites – New York City and San Diego!
For Atlanta, I added the ferris wheel detail to the information card. I’d love to get creative on what landmark to add for a different city’s skyline!
Using this invitation suite would be the perfect first impression to guests of a modern or classic big city wedding of any season! Interested in customizing these for your big day? Order a sample or fill out my questionnaire to get started!
When wedding planning, a lot of brides can feel totally lost on where to start when it comes to choosing a florist – and flowers! I’m excited to have Jackie, owner and lead floral designer at Blooming Hites, sharing her advice and the story behind her business.
Jackie is not only a talented florist and amazing business owner, but a sweet friend! We met at a networking event and later bonded over margaritas. She is great at keeping it real and brides LOVE working with her because of her gorgeous visions and fun personality. Read on for her most valuable floral tips for any bride-to-be!
How long have you been working as a florist?
10 years (WOW – time flies when you’re having fun). I started when I was a teenager, and my first “flower” job was down the street from my house at a flower stand in Coronado.
What started your interest in working in the wedding industry?
I always joke that Barbie and Ken got me into the wedding industry. Actually, who am I kidding. It’s 50% true. I can vividly remember always marrying Barbie and Ken outside in my yard and putting on these lavish (kid-like) weddings for them. I tend to give them credit because that’s the earliest memory I have falling in love with all things weddings. The other 50% is the blessed gift of flower design and connecting them with wedding couples. I have a strong passion in the connection between flowers and people. Being a part of a couples wedding day and seeing their reactions to flowers and the entire wedding day backdrop is the sweetest reward I can think of. It’s definitely drive for my company.
How can a client best prepare for an initial meeting with you?
There are four essentials I would suggest here. First: Pinterest Board. Pinterest Board. Pinterest Board. :) And if not Pinterest, having a little bit of inspiration of any type helps when heading into a consultation. Clients aren’t expected to know flower names – if they do, it’s really impressive. All they really need to know is what they like and don’t like so I can guide them to the right palette/theme suited for them.
The second essential, wedding couples should have a wedding date and a venue/location for their date. The third, having filled out my questionnaire as best they can helps out tremendously. Last but not least, keeping an open mind with budget because flowers cost more than anyone would think. (Read our blog post on exactly where your wedding floral budget goes right here!) For example, our wedding flower base cost starts at $4,000 in order to assist the average wedding wants and needs.
What types of things should couples consider when choosing a florist for their wedding?
I would suggest to couples focus mainly on personality. Finding a florist with a personality and skill set you respect and admire will make the planning process and day of execution run smoothly. I would also recommend wedding couples to not let budget guide your florist choices. It might sound like I am a bit of a broken record on this topic, but you don’t want to miss out on an amazing wedding floral experience just because the quote was a little high initially.
I love to work with my clients in helping match their flower wants to their budget. For example, if a couple is set on garden roses but they aren’t within their budget, I’ll help guide them toward alternatives (like regular roses or another type of rose they might find pretty). I tend to always quote for a client’s dream wedding in the initial proposal. If the quote is out of their price range, I’ll work with them in scaling it back to fit what they aren’t willing to give up.
Can the client expect to hear from you between the time they book your services and their wedding day?
Of course! I’m in a healthy amount of contact with my clients between booking and their wedding day. If they want to have a follow up after the initial meeting, I can schedule one in. I’m happy to hold their hand as much as they want. As for our event design head to toe package, we include day-of wedding managing design with vendors.
What role do you play on the actual day of the wedding?
Great question and one I love to be asked. For wedding day flowers, my team and I are there setting up two hours beforehand. The whole time I’m setting up I’m so anxious to see the wedding couples in their “I Do” wardrobe. Seeing them dressed up and watching their special day coming together is magical. In some weddings, we do room flips. If that’s the case, we will stay to flip the room from ceremony to reception. If clients want us to come back at the end of the wedding to clean-up, we can do that as well. My clients who book my wedding event design management package, we are there day-of wedding managing all design elements with vendors.
What is one piece of advice you can offer for making the most of the floral budget?
Reusing flowers within the wedding is a huge money saver in a floral budget. I always love discussing recycling options that wedding couples can do within their ceremony and reception. For example, couples can opt to transition their bouquets from the ceremony to the reception by placing them at tables or in the bathroom. Another favorite is reusing the pillar arrangements from the ceremony and into their reception by decorating the escort table or buffet.
What trends for 2018 weddings are you loving?
This year, I really like that wedding couples are choosing to do more hanging installations. A few other trends I’m loving: non-traditional ceremony decor (like arches) and geo-shape centerpieces.
Is there anything else couples starting their wedding planning should know about flowers?
Don’t settle on wedding flowers by cutting them from or taking them out of your wedding budget. Beautiful blooms help accent and elevate an entire wedding atmosphere. Also, couples should know that there are plenty of pretty alternatives for certain flowers they want but aren’t in season during the time of their wedding.
You can find Jackie on her website here (make sure to sign up for her newsletter!) and on Instagram here. Blooming Hites Studio and Boutique is located in Downtown Roswell – stop in to browse gifting and some pretty paper from yours truly.