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{June 22, 2015}   Wedding Planning: Invitations Final Decision

Well after debating for far too long, I decided that no one was supplying what I wanted in invitations for a price that fit my budget. I may have been over thinking things but to me the invitation is the first introduction to your wedding. Based on the invitation people will be able to determine the type of wedding event they are in store for. I wanted an invitation that would reflect the European, spring tea feel that I wanted for my wedding. Eventually after looking at literally hundreds of invitations and nearly ordering about 5 different sets, I decided to make my own invitations. I drew inspiration from this video:

and this video:

I will say with both I just gathered inspiration because my invitation didn’t look anything like them, but mine did have the same concept as far as the envelopes. The inserts for the invitations were original ideas. I decided to write an old fashioned letter as the invitation from my parents (the traditional hosts) to all of our friends and family.

Here’s How I Did My Invitations:

Some things I learned that could have saved me time and money:

1. Don’t Embellish Too Much – Don’t put the cute pearl button on if postage matters. Because of the button alone I paid $.70 per envelope.

2. Keep it Simple with Addresses – Don’t get fancy with the addresses. Even though the typical way of addressing envelopes is abbreviations of real words (i.e. ln = lane, ave = avenue), we are in a technology abundant world. Which means the computers mostly recognize the abbreviations. Unless there are postal workers who actually check the machine’s rejections (like there is supposed to be) then your envelopes can be rejected if you spell out the addresses directions in the old fashioned manner. For example: 123 N. 5th Ave. could get rejected if it is done in the 19th century manner of: 123 North Fifth Avenue. I had nice postal workers who resent my envelopes when that happened but it wasted time and sometimes money.

2b. Double Check Addresses – On that not check the addresses provided by family and friends. You’d think that people would know their own addresses but again because of the computer age, I had envelopes returned because the zip codes were wrong when everything else was right. I spoke to the postal workers at my neighborhood post office and I was told that the old way of doing it was just to look up the zip code if everything else was correct. However, the computer looks up the address by the zip code first. If that is incorrect, the postal workers are instructed to immediately reject the mail. My neighborhood postal workers told me that the veteran workers will still look up the address but the new workers won’t because this is a new way of earning revenue for the post office. This is just what I’ve been told, so don’t take my word for it, but from my experience this seems correct. I had quite a few that were returned because of simple mistakes like zip codes.

3. Don’t Buy Specialty Paper – I did a lot of research on my invitations, right down to the thickness of the paper I should use. It took me forever to find metallic silver paper card stock. When I did, I had to drive an hour out of my way before work to get the paper in time to do a weekend of invitation making.  It was only later that I found out that Office Depot had metallic paper. When I called the local Office Depot said they didn’t have what I needed. Well they had a thinner paper but it would have worked just as well without the hassle. I talked the Kelly Paper store clerk into a military discount so the difference in price wasn’t that different if you don’t count gas (which I do). Plus, I bough too much paper and didn’t feel like making the trek to return it. Thus, I guess I’ll have to try to sell the extra reams online.

4. Don’t Print Directly on Your Envelopes – I bought specialty envelopes along with specialty paper for my invitations. We had a major printing error occur that was discover until one entire, very expensive, package was wasted. In hindsight I should have bought the clear labels and printed the addresses on them. I ended up doing that but it was an expensive lesson as I had to drive the distance for more envelopes.

5. Don’t Personalize the Invitations – Others have said it and I will say again. DO NOT personalize your invitations. I had others helping me. No one is going to take the time with your wedding that you will. After awhile making invitations gets monotonous. So I ended up with people receiving invitations with the wrong names. Also, invitations that were returned and that I never did get a good address for, I couldn’t use anymore. So if there was any major waste with the invitations it was personalizing the invitations. Keep it general. Personalize the Thank You notes.

The total cost of the invitations with doilies, paper, printing, embellishments, envelopes, and stamps was: $2.18/each

IMG_0499

The invitation that I liked the best but knew I could not afford was: $5.16/ ea

Lace Laser Cut Wedding Invitations Bridal Shower Invite Floral Customized Printable Design with Grey Ribbon - Pack of 50

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