the Wedding Planner

Wedding Feature

Stationery Guide

Your wedding stationery is the first chance that you get to announce your coupledom to the world.

It should reflect both of your personalities and give a firm indication to your wedding theme. Whether you are a boho bride looking for a green option, or a self confessed princess looking to design your first monogram, the choices are endless.

Before you rush to the printers brimming with ideas, you need to have a rough idea of how many guests will be in attendance. For this, you need to establish your guest list. This is not as simple as it would first appear. You need to be mercenary and break your nearest and dearest into categories:

A-List : Those you cannot live without - immediate family members and best friends only.

B-List : Close relatives and good friends.

C-List : Those that you would like at your big day, but you would also be happy if they only attended the evening reception. Distant relatives, work colleagues and old school friends.

Your guest list should, as far as possible be equal on both sides. There is nothing worse than one side of the venue looking overfilled, whilst the other has two people in the first pew. If you think that one of you is likely to have more guests than the other, consider splitting the common ground. shared friends get designated to the side less filled. This evens things up.

Now that you have your numbers in place you can set off to find your perfect printer. The first thing that you should look at is design. You need a design that is eye catching, welcoming and says a little something about you and your theme. Work back to the beginning. Think about the materials and colours that you have chosen. On looking at the designs on offer from a printer, you should get a good idea if and how they will work with your choices. Ask to see a hard copy of your final selection.

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Never make your final choice based on something on screen or in a brochure. A hard copy will give you an idea of the quality of the finished work. Check that you are happy with the weight of the paper and the standard of the ribbons and embellishments. Most reputable companies will be more than happy to accommodate this request. It is a nice idea for all your stationery to match. This gives continuity. However it is not essential and most designers are flexible in their approach.

Now you need to decide what stationery items you require. Ideally you should break your stationery into three sections:

•Before the day: Save the date, wedding invites, evening invites, information cards, R.S.V.P.

•On the day: Order of service, menu, place cards, table plan.

•After the day: Thank you cards.

Those on a budget may not have available funds for all these items. It is perfectly acceptable to reduce your requirements to the following:

Wedding Invites: These will need to be sent out earlier than normal as they also serve as save the date cards. This is essential to allow for guest travelling from out of town.

Order of service, place cards, table plan: E-invites are perfect for those on a budget. Especially for guests invited to the evening reception only and to inform guests of the menu options and directions to the ceremony/reception.

For those on a tight budget:

Homemade invitations are an attractive option. You need to be committed to the challenge, especially if you have a large wedding. You should look at the cost of the resources required to make the stationery. You may find that it is not that much cheaper than hiring a professional. As with all planning, the key is to do your research.

Remember to get your final quote in writing and check to see if it includes envelopes and inserts as these can often be hidden extras.

Ask about the time it takes for delivery. The delivery date is usually taken from the date they receive your confirmed proof.

Make sure that you allow yourself enough time, 12 weeks prior to the wedding but no later than 6 weeks to allow your guest time to RSVP.

How to word your invites:

Invites are traditionally sent from the host (the person that is footing the bill) and should be worded accordingly:

Brides Parents:

Mr and Mrs John Doe request the pleasure of your company at the marriage of their daughter Jane to Mr James Smyth at a ceremony venue on Saturday 14th September at 1pm and afterwards at a reception venue nearby.

Brides Parents are Divorced:

Mr John Doe and Mrs Jean Doe request the pleasure of your company at the marriage of their daughter Jane to Mr James Smyth at a ceremony venue on Saturday 14th September at 1pm and afterwards at a reception venue nearby.

Brides Parents are Divorced: with other partners/remarried

Mr John Doe and Mrs Jean Black request the pleasure of your company at the marriage of their daughter Jane to Mr James Smyth at a ceremony venue on Saturday 14th September at 1pm and afterwards at a reception venue nearby.

Brides Mother/Father is Widowed:

Mr and Mrs John Doe request the pleasure of your company at the marriage of their daughter Jane to Mr James Smyth at a ceremony venue on Saturday 14th September at 1pm and afterwards at a reception venue nearby.

Bride and Groom:

Miss Jane Doe and Mr James Smyth request the pleasure of your company at their marriage at a ceremony venue on Saturday 14th September at 1pm and afterwards at a reception venue nearby.


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"Your wedding stationery is the first chance that you get to announce your coupledom to the world."
XXX