It’s amazing how many things I thought of once I started writing this list, which is by no means an exhaustive list – and there will be many things I could add to it – but for today here is an A-Z of wedding stationery to help you with your planning.
Activity Packs: Treat younger guests to a beautifully coordinated activity pack on the day to keep them occupied during speeches and give mum & dad a break!
Bespoke: If looking for something a bit more unique, be sure to find a designer by recommendation who specialises in this sort of work, it can be very time consuming and not all stationers will be able to create all different types of design.
C Catering: Do your invites need to include the option for menu choices? Be sure to allow enough time for this when stating the RSVP date. Find out if your stationer can accommodate printing these on your daytime stationery too. And remember you need to have a menu tasting before confirming the meal choices, it all takes extra time.
DJ: Does your DJ have the option for guests to choose songs for the evening reception? Be sure to include this info on your RSVP cards.
E Embellishments: Are your invites heavily embellished? Remember to allow for this when posting them out, it will cost you more than a standard stamp, are they protected enough in the post? Nothing worse than arriving in a flimsy or damaged envelope.
Favours: It can finish your table settings beautifully to have your beautiful decorated favour boxes to match the rest of your stationery. It’s all in the detail!
GGuest Book: You don’t have to have a traditional ‘book’ for your guests to leave you messages, there are lots of ways you can get your guests signing, maybe a large signing board with a photo, signing snapshots from the photo booth, a wishing tree. Be creative.
Honeymoon: Struggling for ideas when guests ask what to buy you? Why not use a fun rhyme to ask for donations towards your honeymoon? See here for more ideas.
Inviting: Your invites truly set the scene for your special day so make it count. Invite your guests in a way they will remember forever. Get them excited about your big day from the beginning.
J June: It used to be one of the most popular months to get married but anything goes these days. If you are getting married in a popular month, such as summer holiday season be sure to book your suppliers far enough in advance, and prepare to wait a little longer for them to get back to you during these busy periods too.
K Keepsakes: It’s lovely to have something from your stationery you can remember after the big day, order yourselves a spare invitation or Order of Service to add to your memory box.
Lettering: It’s all the rage, have your stationery carefully hand written or signage for the venue carefully hand drawn by a reputable supplier.
Marriage: Whatever you do, don’t forget what this day is all about. It’s about the 2 of you, together forever, sometimes that can get a little bit lost in the planning!
N Name change: Remember when giving your stationer your seating plan details that the tiny detail of your new married name (if relevant) needs to be taken into account! It amazes me how many couples forget about this when preparing their seating plans.
O Order of Service: Not essential but particularly helpful if you are having a church wedding, check with your church if they have a template you can use if having them specially made, equally useful to note if having a ceremony at the venue, a framed Order of the day to match your seating plan can give your guests a little guidance to what happens when, and looks beautiful too.
Planning: Ask your stationer if they have any way of helping you keep everything organised? I send out a free spreadsheet to contain all the info you might need in relation to your guest list and responses.
Quotes: Find some lovely quotes that are relevant to both of you to use on your table stationery, it looks so lovely and makes it all the more romantic (or funny if that is more your style). It really adds both your personalities to the proceedings.
RSVPs: If you are having these sent back to you by post, do you need to provide your own envelopes or are they included in the cost of your invites? Something for you to consider. Allow plenty of time for the RSVP date to overlap/you to alter your guest list if needed.
Seating Plan:Don’t waste hours figuring this out from the beginning of your wedding planning journey. Your time is valuable, wait until the RSVPs have been returned and you have a better idea who is actually attending, it could save you a lot of stress.
T Tradition: The age-old tradition of invites being addressed from the bride’s parents is long gone. Some couples still do this, but it stemmed from the parents being the ones who paid for everything, and these days that often is not the case. Make sure your wording in your invites reflects both your personalities and feels right for you both. There are many options out there. Here are examples of the wording used my some of my lovely couples.
U Underestimating: Don’t be fooled into thinking that needing to send invites 4 months before means you only need to sort them a couple of weeks before that, this is often not the case and disappointment can cause additional delays and stress. Allow more time for this than you may think you need, a good stationer will advise on realistic timescales and not offer empty promises.
V Value for money: Good work ain’t cheap, cheap work ain’t good! Be sure to check what you are getting for your money before booking to get something made that looks too good to be true, and make sure you have seen the work first hand as well. (a good clue is don’t opt for anyone who spells it stationary…)
Wedding Party: Have your VIPs, eg parents, bridesmaids and best man all been included on the invite list?
X Xtras: Have you considered everything you need in the costs quoted for your stationery? Guest names or other additional printing, spare invites, personalised menus, addressed envelopes, delivery to your home address or the venue on the big day if relevant? Be clear what is included and what is additional to your quote.
Yonks: Be a little wary of any supplier who seems to take an age to get back to you, yes they may be busy but you deserve to be made to feel as though you and your big day are important to them.
Zilla: Keep calm, count to ten and don’t unleash Bridezilla (more tips about that here) if anything doesn’t go to plan. Always keep in contact with a supplier if you have any doubts, they will be happy to reassure you if they are worth their salt.