Stamped & Sealed - The official blog

February 17, 2010

Show Off With Your Wedding Invitation

Taylor Field @ 7:07 pm

No, this is not encouragement to spend elaborate amounts of money in order to impress your guests. Creating a unique wedding invitation is about showing off your style and talents. Think and brainstorm about how you can create an invite that is as stylish and creative as you and your future spouse.
One fun couple created a wedding invitation on film. The invite featured them as stars in their own movie, the trailer to the big event. With all the pomp of a real trailer – even a studio credit for the “studio” of the bride and groom, the invite was collaboration between a creative couple that was really interested in shooting and editing. With all of that work and excitement, who needs an engraved invitation?
If you don’t have the technical skills to master a wedding invitation on the big screen, how about a little one? If you or your partner is skilled with web design, there are some great options out there for a web invitation. Even if you still send out paper invites, a website can answer a lot of questions that might crop up about your wedding. One couple mimicked circus posters for their online website, using their design skills to come up with a creative site that told their story, the details of their wedding and to include info on hotels and registry for the guests.
Think outside the box and create invites that are unique and personal. One couple was crazy about origami, so they included a paper crane, a symbol of good luck, with each one of their invites. The personal touch also meant a lot to the couple – they spent many nights working together to create the cranes, and the time together was a great way to bond while folding.
Another couple had a shared interest in painting, so instead of paying a lot for fancy invites, they printed out plain invites on nice paper and hand-painted a unique design on each invite. Again, this was a time-consuming process that the couple enjoyed together. The image that they created – a modern interpretation of a heart – became a theme for the wedding, appearing on the programs and seating cards.
Using your talents together to create wedding invites is a great way to kick off your wedding planning. It is a reminder that this wedding is about you and celebrating your talents as a couple. Putting a little more time into your invites starts you off on the right foot – as a couple, you will work together through the process to create the most perfect day. What better way to start than with a creative invite?

February 15, 2010

Finding the Right Winter Invitations Wedding

Taylor Field @ 7:07 pm

When you aren’t the typical bride, you might not select a June wedding at a local country club. A winter wedding is a marvelous way to stand out from the typical wedding themes, to avoid competing during high season with other weddings in your social circle, and save some money during low season. You can take your invitations wedding and make them stand out with a winter theme.
Some of the obvious choices for a winter invitations wedding include snow, snowflakes and winter greenery. These can make a great statement, but avoid making your wedding invites look too much like a Christmas card. Stay away from too many decorations – use a snowflake, but just a hint of one or two. Don’t add on fake snowdrifts or bunches of holly on the card border – that just screams holidays. It’s not just a season or a time for holidays – it’s your wedding.
Find colors that reflect the season for your invitations wedding. While bright colors are great for the peak of summer, nothing says style and class in the winter like metallics. Silvers and gold are both elegant and seasonal. Stick with a plain paper but spice it up with foil-lined envelopes in a metallic or even a red or green foil. Touch on the holiday themes without going overboard. Add silver, gold or even copper ribbons to your invitations for a bit of luxe without being cheesy or over the top. Metallics are a great look year round for invites, but especially appropriate during the holidays.
If you want to choose a bold color, don’t be afraid even during the bleak months of winter. Pair a bright pink with blacks and grays for a modern and seasonal look. Use white liberally but spruce it up with a bold green reminiscent of pine trees in a winter forest. A touch of red on your invites is great, especially if you are choosing to use a red color palette for your big day. Play with color to fit with the mood and season of your winter gala.
Take a modern spin on holiday looks. Use a snowflake motif, but make it abstract enough that it doesn’t scream holidays. Add a subtle border or letterpress of ivy to give a hint of winter to your special invites. Or choose a classic look – have a bride and groom on the invites, but sweep them up in a trail of snowflakes. A whimsical look is a great way to make a winter wedding invite seem magical.

February 13, 2010

Getting Great Wedding Invitations on a Budget

Taylor Field @ 7:07 pm

Weddings are incredibly expensive these days! A whole industry revolves around making a bride feel special, no matter the cost. Between getting makeup and hair done, buying the right dress, making up special wedding invitations and programs, renting a space and feeding guests, it can seem like you’re parting with an arm and a leg when all is said and done.
You can find a way to save on wedding invitations while still sending out lovely and elegant invites to your guests. No need to send out emails or evites – there are tons of options out there for the bride on a budget who still want to send out paper invitations. Spend some time looking and comparing, and you are sure to find a bargain that looks beautiful.
The first choice for most brides looking for wedding invitations is to scour the internet for the best deal with the right look. Between discount sites, sales and overstock options, it is easier than ever to find a great looking invites at a cheaper price. Don’t be afraid to talk to a representative to see what your cheapest option would be. Skip the foil envelopes and ribbons – stick with simple and you will still come off as elegant.
Be open and flexible. Give up the response cards, and the extra envelopes and stamps that go with them. Opt for guests to email their responses, or to log in to your website and respond there. Having more information on a website can also mean you can avoid printing up maps, meal information and registry info as well. You can simplify your invites so that you aren’t spending a fortune on little cards.
A modern bride can easily escape the expensive and traditional look of engraved invitations. So many modern sites show off amazing invites done with less-expensive laser printing. This will also give you color options that can dazzle. With more and more people choosing laser printing over engraving, it’s becoming so commonplace that many people won’t even question the cost or quality of your invites.
Save on a calligrapher and address the envelopes yourself. You don’t need to learn calligraphy to address your envelopes – feel free to write neatly in your own unique handwriting. If you have a modern wedding and invitation, you can even use block lettering done by hand to address the envelopes. You can even print out labels – done right, this is a fabulous and stylish option.

February 11, 2010

Invitations Too Late? What to Do

Taylor Field @ 7:06 pm

It has to happen to someone. You spent your time right, budgeted properly, it’s less than two months before the wedding and your invitations wedding have not arrived. Why you? What did you do to deserve this? It can be very frustrating when you feel like you have done the right things and you still don’t have your goods in hand. There are some simple steps to take to make sure that your big day goes by unattended.
If you have already paid for your invitations wedding and they are later than expected, talk to the company. See if there is anything you can do to speed up the delivery. If you ordered ribbons but they are on backorder, ask if you can remove them from the order so as to speed up the delivery. Simplify the invitations so they can be finished quicker. Ask the company to work with you so you can get your goods on time.
If the company cannot work with you and is much later than expected with your invitations wedding, ask them if you can get a partial or full refund. Explain your dissatisfaction with them and tell them you will complain online on wedding websites and to the Better Business Bureau if you think they are being particularly difficult. Try to make sure they know your frustration, but also be willing to work with them. If you have already paid and are being difficult, they will not want to work with you to resolve your issues. Stay positive but be persistent.
Ask the company if they can switch to a simpler invitation. If you asked for engraved lettering, see if they can whip up some laser printed invites in a short time. Remove some of the cards – instead of including a map, just print something up on your own at home to be included. Go through all of your materials to see what you can simplify or remove to help rush your order through.
In the meantime, call your invited guests to be sure they know of your wedding date, time and location. Start asking around to see who will be in attendance. This might not be the most glamorous way to announce your wedding and find out who is coming, but it is efficient if you are worried about getting a proper count for your vendors and making sure everyone knows about your wedding date.

February 10, 2010

Trends for 2010 Save the Date Invitations

Taylor Field @ 10:36 am

Maybe you aren’t a trendy sort of bride, but that’s even more of a reason to know what the trends are for the coming year in order to avoid them.

As the winter starts to wind down, wedding season is around the corner and brides are starting to prepare for their big day. Some of the biggest trends in save the date invitations are starting to hit the web and stationary stores. These include:

Environmentally friendly save the date invitations. Going green has been a priority for a lot of people and companies, and the same is true for brides and the vendors that serve them.

Recycled paper used to be thick and for novelty only, but now recycled papers are beautiful and refined. You can find recycled papers with 100% post-consumer fibers, specifically created for invites. Inks are also going green, with soy ink instead of petroleum-based ink.

Bold colors are a trend not only for save the date invitations, but also for the invites themselves. Colored papers are readily available for your save the dates, from bright pink to grass green. White papers can also be accented with bright inks in shades of eggplant, sky blue or orange.

Envelopes aren’t left out, either – bright envelopes are also coming on to the scene. Envelopes are moving beyond foil-line cream and into the rainbow of colors to match your invites.

Save the dates that are pocketbook-friendly are also very popular. The economic situation and a newfound concern with reducing wedding expenses are fueling this concern with getting great save the dates on a budget. Postcard save the dates are becoming more popular, eliminating the need for an extra envelope and reducing postage expenses.

Graphically driven save the dates are being swept up as well. Large generic image or a personalized picture are becoming more popular for the save the date. Since the save the date can be a little more casual than the actual invite, brides and grooms are jumping at the chance to have some fun with images.

Designing a custom save the dates is a popular option in the new year. Working with an invitation company, either in person or over the internet, is an easy way to create something that reflects the couple’s personality. More brides are working with companies to customize designs and make them work for their needs.

Whether following the trends or avoiding them, 2010 seems to already have trends for brides to pay attention to!

February 9, 2010

Create a Story with the Save the Date Invitations

Taylor Field @ 10:35 am

There seem to be a lot of weddings where the couple takes a back seat to tradition. The ceremony and reception follow all the typical routines exactly; the speeches are sweet but lack the touch of the couple themselves.

The wedding becomes routine and unoriginal. Some couples don’t have much to say or don’t want to let others in on every detail of their relationship. To those that do, the save the date invitations are a good place to start.

Using the save the date invitations to tell the story of the couple is a great way to fill in the blanks for family and friends that might not know the whole story.

If the relationship is relatively new, you might decide to talk about how you met. If you have been together for a while, and have introduced all of your friends and family to your significant other, then telling the story of the proposal is a cute addition to the save the date.

One couple created unique save the date invitations that used an image of the spot where the groom proposed – in a local park – and told the story of the proposal. For those relatives far away, or friends that don’t talk every day, using the save the date to tell this kind of story is cute and romantic.

It also saves the couple from telling the story 300 times! If the proposal was emblematic of how your relationship works, then it would be a great way to introduce your marriage to friends and family.

Since the save the date can be used to set up the theme and feeling for the rest of the wedding, telling the story of how the couple became engaged can create a really romantic or cute feel for the invitation or the day itself.

Another couple told the story of them – how they met, their relationship and their proposal. Often friends or relatives meet a boyfriend or girlfriend and don’t ask questions about how they met, why they lived in a long-distance relationship for seven years, or when they knew they were in love.

Depending on how much the couple wants to tell, the save the date can be a cute way to let your friends and family in on your special relationship.

Taking your save the date beyond dates and names is cute and unique touch to personalize your wedding. Your friends and family will remember your wedding date for sure!

February 8, 2010

Use your Personalized Wedding Invitations After the Wedding

Taylor Field @ 10:34 am

Putting your personalized wedding invitations in a scrapbook is a great way to remember the day… but only when you look at your scrapbook or album. There are several ways to make a beautiful memento of you announcement after the big day.

One idea is to take the personalized wedding invitations out of the album and put it on the front. There are several kinds of blank, white or cream photo albums out there. Creating a unique cover using your wedding invitation is simple and adds a personal touch.

Frame it. This is one of the easiest ways to save your personalized wedding invitations. Just finding a nice frame and popping it on the wall is enough to treasure the invite. You can also enlarge the invite or create a collage with it and photos from your big day.

Shadow boxes are also easy to buy at a crafts store and would be a great display of your invite, photos, wedding favors and garter. Displaying your invites in your new home is a great way to be reminded every day of your special day.

Turn your invites into iron-on transfers and create a decoration to go on throw pillows, towels, or sheets. These can go anywhere you want, and are an easy way to create a unique memory out of your invite.

One newlywed created a beautiful pillow out of an iron-on transfer of her invitation by putting the transfer on a neutral pillow and giving the transfer a nice border out of braiding to set it off and give it flair.

One enterprising bride took this of idea of iron-on transfers and created something personal for her lingerie drawer. Using the transfers on a bit of cloth, she created a sachet by fashioning a pouch and filling it with sweet-smelling potpourri. This was a personal touch that allowed her to remember her nuptials every day.

You can also incorporate the invitation into the wedding itself. If you are using a Unity candle for your ceremony, there are kits that will let you put the invitation onto the candle itself, making a lovely keepsake and interesting wedding photos.

Another idea is to frame the invitation or invites to place at different points at the church or ceremony space and at the reception. It’s an easy way to add to a display of things that represent you and your spouse.

February 7, 2010

Where to Find Inspiration for your Wedding Invitation

Taylor Field @ 10:33 am

There are so many different wedding invitation varieties out there that it can be overwhelming – heavy cards with scrolling cursive text, modern cards with floral patterns, evites, postcards, and even video invitations. If you don’t know what you are looking for, it can be overwhelming.

Look for inspiration from your friends. Ask them if you could see their wedding invitation to see if it has the look or the details you feel are right for you and your spouse.

Take notes on what you like, or take a picture so you can remember as you try to build the perfect invitation. Ask them if they had any invite regrets or wishes – learn from their mistakes or take their advice and see if it works for you.

Talk to your parents. If they still have their wedding invitation around, there might be a bit of vintage nostalgia to trip your inspiration in that direction. Or maybe they chose a timeless look that you would like for yourself. Check out the wording to see if they chose something that you might like to use.

Get lost in a bookstore or library. Take a look at the art section, the book covers, even the travel books. Let your eyes roam and you might be able to find something unexpected that sparks your creativity.

Libraries and bookstores are full of what you are looking for – visual and written details put on paper. Maybe you’ll find an unexpected color combination from a piece of artwork that can pull together your invitation in an interesting way.

Talk to your fiancé about your history together. Perhaps you two met at a concert or a special park. Including details like a drawing of the park or making your invites look like a concert ticket will be a special way to set our invite apart.

Brainstorm and doodle. Give yourself an hour or two and a blank canvas. Once you set aside the time to let your mind roam, you’ll be able to pull things out of the back of your brain that you had forgotten. Maybe you’ll remember an old funny sign that you always liked, or an artist who made beautiful drawings of birds.

Think about your venues, if you have them picked out. A stained glass window in the church you grew up in and will get married in might be the perfect touch for your invite.

Take the time to think through your invite, and it will be as special as you imagined it.

February 6, 2010

Save the Date Invitations – a Must for Destination Nuptials

Taylor Field @ 10:32 am

If you are a lucky couple that plans on leaving town for your wedding, save the date invitations are a must. Unlike a wedding in a different city or across town, a destination requires a lot of planning for you and your partner but also for all of the invited guests. International destinations in particular require a lot of forethought by your guests.

Save the date invitations sent well in advance of your destination wedding will help your guests plan accordingly. Giving a date is the least you can do for your guests.

By letting the invited guests know when the wedding will be held, they can at least block off that day or days on their calendar, cancel any plans that are already on there, and prepare for the trip by saving money or requesting a passport. A save the date might even remind guests to check their passport – that will ensure that no last-minute panic hits anyone that’s planning on coming.

If you send out save the date invitations at least four months before your wedding, you can ensure that everyone can take the necessary steps in order to come.

Passports can take six weeks to arrive, frequent flier miles require a bit of notice in order to cash them in, and people with children will have to make extra plans to either bring them children along or arrange for someone to take care of them.

Giving a location is also important, if possible, on the save the dates. Knowing if the wedding will be located in country or internationally is a basic bit of knowledge that most guests will want to know right away. Try to include as much information as possible – if you have already booked a block of hotel rooms, include that information as well.

You’ll want to have a clear idea of your guest list before you send out the save the dates. Even if you are not sure about the venue or location, be precise about your guest list.

Do not assume that only half of the people you invite will come – plan on 80 percent of the invited guests to actually come to the wedding. Make sure you plan your guest list accordingly.

It is better to invite too few people and then invite more later versus inviting too many and having to change locations, pay more for extra guests or uninviting guests. A destination wedding is exciting and fun, and an early invite will help ensure that everyone can partake.

February 5, 2010

Points to Consider With Save the Date Invitations

Taylor Field @ 10:25 am

Save the date invitations seem like such an easy thing to get ready and send – figure out a location, secure the day and you’re set. Problems can arise once you’ve put out the invites if you don’t think through a few things.

Make sure your budget can include all of the people you sent out the save the date invitations to. One young couple was so excited to announce their wedding date that they sent out 300 invites asking people to come to their wedding. As the rush wore off and reality set in, they realized that in these hard economic times, they could only afford to invite 150 people.

Another couple made a similar mistake with there save the date invitations. After they clinched their dream reception spot, cards were dropped in the mail.

A few months later, as they talked with the venue they realized that a miscommunication meant 50 fewer people could fit into their reception hall then they had planned. After a few embarrassing phone calls, the bride and groom instead decided to change their venue to ensure that everyone they had invited could come.

Finalizing the guest list, but so is finalizing the locale. Another couple sent out save the dates announcing their wedding in Washington, DC – the couple’s new home. The bride’s parents were outraged, having assumed that the wedding would be in their town in Pennsylvania.

The bride and groom had briefly talked about their plans and venues, but had not had a serious conversation with their of their parents. The couple stuck with their plans for a DC wedding, but compromised with an additional reception in Pennsylvania to assuage the bride’s family.

Another embarrassing problem is one that is unavoidable – sending out the save the dates and then cancelling. This is something that you can never plan for, and never expect.

Cancelling a wedding is not always an issue of cold feet – couples cancel weddings because they decide they can’t afford it, or a medical emergency makes it impossible to have the wedding or to really celebrate.

To avoid some of these issues, try to send the save the date as soon as you have concrete plans, but make sure you have talked with each other, the parents and the venue several times to clarify plans and ensure that everything is set in stone. A few conversations should iron out any issues prior to mailing out the invites.

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