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Ah, invitations. So simple in theory, so complex in reality. They look like innocent paper beacons of joy, but they come with a lot of, well, baggage. This is my how the invitation process of my wedding has gone down so far:
The Save-the-Dates (aka. The pre-invitation): I get this. The vast majority of our family and friends are coming from out of town and will need to book vacation time off very far in advance. Our wedding is being held on a long weekend, so advance purchase of flights and hotel rooms will save them a lot of cash. Our venue was booked over a year in advance, so once we knew the general gist of when and where, why not let everyone know with as much notice as possible?
The one issue I noticed is that by the time the STD was sent, pretty much everyone already knew. Why? Because we were excited, so we told them! It seemed a little redundant. However, still a nice gesture in theory. Keeping that in mind, however, I got the impression that for a simple “heads up” about something most people knew about, I wasn’t about to spend a lot of money or kill a lot of trees, so we elected to send them electronically. We made a personalized e-card on Paperless Post, and it cost approximately $30 total. As a bonus, the card also prompted people for their mailing addresses, which made my life a lot easier with not having to email everyone and ask for their address. 10/10, would do again.
Invitations: As for the invitations, we’re about halfway through the process. We’ve explored a lot of different options. We decided to design ours online and have them printed and mailed to us. I pinned all the pretty invites I liked on Wedding Paper Divas and Minted. Then, I asked my partner to pick his favorites. Then, I had samples mailed to us (which cost about $1 each) for IRL inspection. As a bonus, the sample package came with a coupon, in the event we did order from the company. Score!
The choices were lovely, and we’ve also narrowed it down. But man, oh man, did they come with a lot of other stuff to think about: Matching reply cards. Matching postage-paid reply envelopes. An enclosed photo print of the couple. A second page with detailed information about how to get there. Envelope liners. Customized postage stamps, addressing, return addressing. Ribbons. Confetti. Glitter. I was a little disappointed, however, that they stopped short of selecting a flock of live birds to deliver each envelope directly into each guest, then serenading softly as the guest muses over menu choices.
We’re minimalists, mind you, and very untraditional, so we don’t need most of that stuff. For one, I’ve heard using paper reply cards can be a bit of a nightmare — they get lost, people don’t write their names on them so the couple doesn’t realize who the RSVP is for, people try to RSVP for people who aren’t actually invited, having to keep track of all of them, etc. etc. Thankfully, the wonders of technology offer the lovely opportunity of the wedding website where people can RSVP digitally and the RSVPs get organized into a simple list for the couple to view. So, I’ve decided that when my invitations finally get sent, this is what they will consist of:
- An addressed, stamped envelope
- A customized invitation, with a link at the bottom to a wedding website which will contain all further pertinent information.
How are you handling the excess of paper invitations? Share in the comments!