I talk a lot about planning your wedding here on the blog - how to stay calm and relaxed throughout your engagement season, pick the right venue, make final preparations, and so on. But what about after the wedding? After the flowers are cleaned up, the linens are pulled, your band packs up, and your vendor team heads home, what is left of your big day? As a marriage-focused wedding planner, I can tell you the best is yet to come. However, I do believe it is important to have tangible reminders of your wedding day - mementos that remind you of the day you made your promise to each other, and celebrated the start of your marriage!
Your wedding invitations are one of the few physical items that you will have to remember your wedding with. They are also the first glimpse your guests have into your wedding design. I may ruffle some feathers by saying this, but it’s a bummer when my couples or couples I talk to say things like, “People are just going to throw the invitations away.” Today, I have listed a few reasons why I believe your invitation suite shouldn’t be an afterthought, and ideas about how to afford keepsake worthy invitations without breaking the bank.
Invitations are the first touchpoint you have with your guests, and the first piece of your design puzzle.
I love infusing my couple’s personality in their invitation suite, and giving their special guests a glimpse into the wedding design. The way you design your wedding takes a lot of thought and careful planning, and it is fun to be able to infuse elements of your design into your invitation suite.
Wedding invitations are considered an honor, and should be treated as such.
How do you feel when you receive a beautiful wedding invitation in the mail? I can tell you that my fridge is adorned with all of the invitations that my friends and clients send, and looking at them every day make me so excited for the love that these couples share and the fun that is in store for them on their wedding day. It is a huge honor to be a guest at a couple’s wedding. The physical invitation should look as special as the sentiment feels. If people tell you that invitations just get thrown away, they have never been to my house! During a time when people are accustomed to getting advertisements, coupons, and bills in the mail (and not much else), getting a gorgeous envelope that holds a beautiful and meaningful invitation is a delightful and meaningful experience. Don’t let anyone else tell you otherwise.
Your invitations can serve as a keepsake for many years to come.
I received three framed invitations as presents for my own wedding. They are gorgeous and I love walking by them every day and seeing a reminder of one of our favorite days! Some of them are even painted with flowers all around, making them gorgeous works of art (even though they were stunning all on their own). I also have a copy in our scrapbook, and a few extras stuffed away in my office. I can’t wait to pull them out when our kids are getting married one day to show them what mom and dad picked out, and let them touch and feel the same paper that was sent to the people we hold most dear leading up to the wedding.
Just like any vendor or element of your wedding, the cost of your invitations is highly dependent on the choices you make. If you believe all of the things I believe about how special wedding invitations are, but want to make sure that you don’t break the bank, I have gathered up some of my favorite tips for saving where it matters most without sacrificing the design, and getting the invitations of your dreams within your budget.
Deck out the actual invitation, and spend less money on the collateral pieces of the suite (either with the printing method or the paper weight/type).
The actual invitation is the most important piece of the suite. If you love letterpress, engraving, or foil, or want custom artwork or calligraphy, this is the piece you should use it on. Splurge on the invite, and save on the rest of the suite by choosing a lighter weight paper (paper weight = thickness), a less expensive printing method (digital printing or thermography is less pricey and will look beautiful), or a less expensive type of paper.
Purchase your save-the-dates from an online retailer.
If you want super custom invitations, you can go with a less expensive, pre-designed option from Minted or another online retailer for your save-the-dates. Don’t blow a ton of your budget on fancy save-the-dates if you are trying to save money!
Use an RSVP postcard instead of an RSVP card with an envelope.
You will not have to pay for the envelopes, and the postage is less! You still get the same effect of a paper RSVP, but with a bit of cost savings.
Make smart decisions about the size and shape of your invitation suite.
Talk to your stationer about the postage required to mail your invitation suite before you sign on the dotted line. Square invitations and invitations that weigh more (think: thicker paper) cost more money to send through the mail. If you are looking to save, make sure you consider the cost of postage! It seems like it will be a small expense, but can easily cost you hundreds of dollars if you aren’t careful.
Look for custom stationers who also have “collections” or semi-custom suites.
If you love a custom stationery designers work, as them if they have collection pieces. Some of my favorite stationery designers have the option to purchase from customizable, pre-designed invitation suite collections. Chances are, if they don’t have to recreate the wheel for your design, but only have to change the names and colors, your overall spend will be much more affordable (and you will still get a custom look).
With tons of wedding planning tips and tricks up our sleeves, the Brianne McMullan Events team is here to guide you through the wedding planning process, devising practical solutions to help with the logistics of your day, your budget, and your design. Our experience allows us to help you navigate the wedding planning world with expertise so you walk away with a custom, tailor made reflection of your love story. If you want to chat with us about wedding planning, click below to fill out a contact form. We will be in touch soon!