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Wedding: Our Custom Wedding Invitations

by Meghann on October 30, 2012

They’ve been stamped, sealed, and delivered. The time has come to share the story behind our not-so-traditional invites (and why we LOVE them so much πŸ™‚ ).

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A few weeks ago I shared my thoughts on wedding invitations in THIS post (check out the comments – lots of great invitation advice there!). What it came down to was that the invitations were not something Derek and I did not want to blow our budget on and we liked the idea of personalizing them to represent us and not exactly what people are used to seeing. I really liked the look of poster style invitations because they were fun and out of the ordinary.

Source: etsy.com via Meghann on Pinterest

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To get the look I wanted, I ended up working with graphic designer Katie Lobkovich, who was PHENOMENAL to work with if you’re ever in the market for an awesome graphic designer (http://www.katielobkovich.com/). Over the course of several gchats, emails, and edits, she was able to bring my vision to life.

Before Katie and I connected it never even occurred to me to start from scratch with the invitations (instead of going the traditional route or ordering something online), but I’m so glad I did. If you have a vision in mind for something – but can’t find it anywhere else – don’t be afraid to reach out and make it happen. Just because it’s not out there now, doesn’t mean you should give up on it.

Here’s the final product.

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(please note the ceremony time and Derek’s middle name have been removed for privacy reasons)

I LOVED it! It was exactly what I had envisioned for our “rustic snowflake” theme. It was charming, romantic, and gave off that casual we’re-getting-married-in-a-barn vibe we were after.

And I almost squealed when I saw the matching RSVPs. They were PERFECT!

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Since our wedding date is the first Saturday after the New Year (and technically still considered part of the “holiday season”) we’re asking for RSVPs a little on the early side so our guests don’t have to worry about sending them back in the month of December, plus that gives us plenty of time to follow up on RSVPs that never made it back before our final numbers are due to the caterer two weeks prior.

To save a little dough, Katie used the VistaPrint sizing templates to design the invites and RSVPs. Once the designs were done, we used the 50% off coupon from RetailMeNot.com to order the invites. I took your advice and splurged on the higher quality paper option and had our return address printed on the envelope.

Unfortunately, when the invites arrived, they weren’t exactly what I had in mind.

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It’s hard to tell in the photo above, but the white paper made the invitations look very cheap. I loved the design, but wasn’t digging the overall look. I had a long talk with Derek about it and he told me if I didn’t like it – and if I was going to continue to beat myself up about it – then I should do something about it.

So I started researching local printers and found one that was willing to re-print the invites on an off-white paper for about 1/2 the price of what I paid on VistaPrint (what the heck? Lesson learned – next time I need ANYTHING printed, I’m researching locally first!). So I had the invites reprinted and could not have been happier with the results.

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The final invitation (which is more off-white in real life, not sure why it photographed so white)

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Our RSVPs

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The RSVPs were actually post cards. Our address and a place for a stamp could be found on the back. I pre-stamped them before we sent them out, so all our guests had to do was fill out the other side and pop them in the mailbox. However, funny story, we had one guest put their RSVP in an envelope and mail it to my parents’ house. Since they mailed it to my parents – and not to our address – I’m assuming they never saw the back of the RSVP? Maybe we should have included a note with instructions?

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We took your advice and pre-numbered all of the RSVPs. We realized the way that the RSVPs were set up, that some guests might not include their names (especially the “No’s”), so we took out the guessing game with the numbers. I have a spreadsheet with corresponding numbers, so all I have to do is look up the number to find the name and mark them accordingly. πŸ™‚

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We also had a small business card printed with our original VistaPrint order with our wedding website on it for guests who still needed to book a hotel or directions to the ceremony site.

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The final look.

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And everything that went in the envelope.

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If I’m being honest, I’ll admit I wasn’t a fan of the white envelopes, but we already had them and it was the one thing I could live with. Most people are going to toss the envelope as soon as they open it anyway, right?

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I ordered all of our stamps through USPS.com just to keep it easy and hand addressed all of the envelopes since I thought it added a nice personal touch. I’m the first to admit how terrible my handwriting is, but I like to think the hand addressed envelopes let our guests know we’re thinking about them and further gives off the casual vibe we’re promoting for our wedding.

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Re: international invites… Derek and I came up with the plan to send the stack of the Cayman Island invites to his Uncle down there and he’ll take care of making sure they make it to the right relatives with a note attached to the RSVP with our email and phone number for yes or no replies. We also plan to follow up with them in a couple of weeks just in case there’s a problem. The other international invites are being mailed with a similar note with similar plans to follow up to make sure they receive them. Fingers are crossed it all works out!

So that’s it. Those are our invitations in a nutshell. So far we’ve received great feedback on them and every time I receive an email, text, or FB message from a friend or family member who has received on, I can’t help but smile. πŸ™‚

A BIG thank you to Katie for the beautiful design. If you are looking to do a creative one-of-a-kind invitation, I can’t recommend her enough!

{ 37 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Lindsay Margaret October 30, 2012 at 12:39 pm

Very fun invites! Funny thing, we did vista print business cards for our wedding website as well πŸ™‚
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2 Melissa @TryingtoHeal October 30, 2012 at 12:42 pm

I loved it and personally, my first thought was about how much paper you saved! haha! some other invites I’ve gotten have been so bulky!
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3 deva at deva by definition October 30, 2012 at 1:11 pm

These are really neat! We are working with a designer through Etsy for fun invitations that are equally as awesome!
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4 Kathy October 30, 2012 at 1:20 pm

These are so great! Personal…keeps with you and your theme…just wonderful! It’s the little touches that make it memorable…you certainly are adding the little touches through out….

πŸ˜‰

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5 Erin October 30, 2012 at 1:24 pm

I like the look but find the language/layout confusing. even the mr and mrs John Anderson was hard for me to track…and “of their daughter meghann AND Derek”.., just iffy wording/placement for me. I think with a busy language the text/wording should be simple…I feel it took a long time to read!

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6 Steph October 30, 2012 at 2:50 pm

They’re signed, sealed and delivered. So what’s the point of your comment? I understand expression is free, but at the same time why make someone feel badly or regretful about their choice just because? Hmm?

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7 Erin October 30, 2012 at 4:45 pm

just honest feedback.. i assume people we be inspired by these invitations (because they look wicked), so things to keep in mind if people are going to style theirs off of meghanns. that’s all.

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8 natalie @ will jog for food October 30, 2012 at 1:50 pm

They look so good! The envelopes aren’t a big deal at all. I don’t even remember what color mine were, haha!
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9 Megan October 30, 2012 at 1:58 pm

isn’t the website for coupons RetailMeNot.com ? the site you listed [retailmeORnot.com] goes to a funky site…. just FYI

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10 Meghann October 30, 2012 at 2:03 pm

You’re right. Thanks for the catch.

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11 Dione October 30, 2012 at 2:08 pm

I love your invites! They are so cute you could frame one as a momento after the wedding. Glad the re-print worked for you, I think the off-white card stock looks nicer and more “rustic”.

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12 Katie @ Peace Love & Oats October 30, 2012 at 2:14 pm

I absolutely LOVE your invitations! They are adorable! And I what a clever idea to put a # at the bottom of the RSVP, you really think of everything! Haha maybe you should be a wedding planner!
Katie @ Peace Love & Oats recently posted..Happy Birthday To Me…

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13 Amy October 30, 2012 at 2:15 pm

Love the look! Totally seems to go with your overall look. I tend to agree with the commenter above about the funky wording and placement. I mean, people know what you mean but I’m surprised that your designer didn’t suggest a change.

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14 [email protected] October 30, 2012 at 2:26 pm

I love them!!!
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15 Annette @FitnessPerks October 30, 2012 at 2:27 pm

Love the look of them!

We went the more traditional route, but that’s exactly what I wanted πŸ™‚
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16 Anne P October 30, 2012 at 2:40 pm

Yay! I love the invites – even cuter in person than they are in your pictures – so fun and unique. Can’t wait for your wedding – and very sneaky to have the # on the bottom of it. I was wondering what the #50 on ours meant! πŸ™‚

xo
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17 Steph October 30, 2012 at 2:47 pm

Adorable! Love the poster concept! πŸ™‚
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18 crystal d. October 30, 2012 at 3:51 pm

Your invitations are beautiful!! They seem perfect for the theme that you are going for! Super smart to number the corner of the RSVP cards. Which I had done that. We had a few come back nameless and we had to investigate who they came from!

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19 danielle October 30, 2012 at 3:51 pm

I love the colors, so pretty together!! We went with super traditional invites for our wedding, but we also did a really formal Catholic church wedding. I love seeing how other people put their unique personalities into their weddings. You will have a blast watching your mailbox fill up with RSVPs πŸ™‚

Just curious–why blur out Derek’s middle name for privacy if you kept his last name? I am running off no caffeine today so maybe I am just being dim, ha! My husband would probably make me blur his middle name just because he hates it πŸ˜‰

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20 MealsAndMiles October 30, 2012 at 4:02 pm

I think he felt too exposed having his full name out there πŸ™‚

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21 Laura October 30, 2012 at 4:11 pm

i think this style is so cute, and very fitting for your vibe wedding! i hate the stuffy invitations with the formal language… kind of sets the tone already and i haven’t even attended the wedding! yours sends out a much more “chill” vibe that i think you’re trying to emulate. way to go on designing them yourselves! they look awesome! (and very smart to do the numbered invitations. i’m sure you’ll laugh hysterically at some of the stuff you come up with. it amazes me!)

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22 Kaitlin H. October 30, 2012 at 4:31 pm

If you don’t mind me asking, I am a local reader/bride (March 2013) and would love to know what local printer you used. Thanks! Beautiful invitations!!

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23 Meghann October 31, 2012 at 10:58 am

Carrollwood Copy Shop πŸ™‚

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24 Emily October 30, 2012 at 4:55 pm

I love the great variety of fonts the designer was able to use- was that your idea?

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25 Meghann October 31, 2012 at 11:00 am

Nope – that was all Katie πŸ™‚

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26 Lena October 30, 2012 at 6:52 pm

Love the look!
This might be a stupid question (sorry, I’m from Europe and not too familiar with American wedding etiquette) but why is it worded as if your parents are inviting ? Are they paying for it? Cause I got the impression from your blog that both your families are kind of sharing costs… It just seems to completely leave out Dereks family and their involvment in the event.
I am not critizising but truly curious, I don’t think I’ve ever seen an invitation coming just from the brides parents here in Vienna.

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27 Meghann October 30, 2012 at 7:54 pm

I think it might just be a southern thing or preference of the couple/family. My parents’ are covering 80% of the total cost for the wedding and requested their name appear on the invitations for the “host” role – I didn’t argue :). You can see a breakdown of our budget here: http://mealsandmiles.com/2012/09/06/wedding-our-budget/

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28 Karen @ Runner Girl Eats October 30, 2012 at 7:22 pm

Love these! Perfect for a casual, rustic wedding. I would def use something like this.
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29 Paula @ Eat: Watch: Run October 30, 2012 at 7:26 pm

Super cute invitations! I wanted mine personalized too so since Fabian is a graphic artist, I had him make them. He drew little cartoons of us underneath the Vegas sign. It was really cute and we were able to get them printed at Kinkos for really cheap.
Just curious if the privacy reasons for Derek’s middle name is just cuz he doesn’t like his middle name? Fabian HATES his middle name and refuses to tell it to people so that was my first thought. Also, we have the same middle name. Ann is not cool without the E. πŸ˜‰

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30 Meghann October 30, 2012 at 7:56 pm

He’s fine with his middle name, but for some reason he didn’t want his full name (beginning-middle-last) on the internet. I respected his wishes. πŸ™‚ And Anne’s rule!

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31 Meghan October 30, 2012 at 8:35 pm

Love them! The ability for your guests to add their own comment on the RSVP’s is so fun!
I can’t help but laugh, my name is Meghan Anne as well! Just missing that extra ‘n’ πŸ˜‰

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32 LindsayH October 30, 2012 at 9:34 pm

The guests are supposed to write their names…

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33 Meghann October 30, 2012 at 9:42 pm

They can write their name and they can leave a fun message – heck, they can do what ever they want πŸ™‚

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34 Katie @ Talk Less, Say More October 30, 2012 at 8:47 pm

Those are absolutely BEAUTIFUL!!
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35 Cher @ Weddicted October 30, 2012 at 8:58 pm

Very cute!
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36 Raffi October 30, 2012 at 10:27 pm

If you’re going to go local on the printing, you should go local with the design work too… Just MHO – since I happen to own a local design firm πŸ™‚

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37 Margo October 31, 2012 at 8:44 am

Very cute and seem totally appropriate for your wedding! My mom suggested we do traditional invitations for our wedding, otherwise we’d get an earful from some of our older southern guests. We had them custom designed and they came out gorgeous! We did the same thing with the numbered cards. It was SO helpful!
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