5 THINGS YOU MUST DO BEFORE SENDING YOUR SAVE THE DATES
Hey loves! We have been non-stop wedding planning over here, and are so excited to share our save-the-date design with you. My rockstar wedding planner Laura of Fawn Events recommended Velvet Fox Designs as our stationary designer, and this was literally a match made in heaven! It has been an absolutely lovely experience working with her, and we are so excited to show you our save-the-dates. We are about to start designing our invitations + day-of signage and my soul is so happy.
The lovely Angelica of Velvet Fox Designs custom made these arched beauties for us, and we could not be happier. I absolutely love the arched shape, delicate script, and the gold fastener she used to attache the vellum to our invitation. We chose a thick suede-like envelope, and she printed our return address on the back flap which saved us several hours and hand cramps. (I highly recommend adding this additional service, it was 100% worth it). We are inviting around 80 guests, and love how special these save-the-dates are. They truly set the tone for our upcoming wedding under the desert stars.
Angelica added the final touch to these beauties with a custom designed stamp featuring our initials, E + J. This was extra sentimental for us because every year on our anniversary Johnny carves our initials into the same tree up in Crestline. (sheds a tear) These make my soul happy and I highly recommend adding on a custom stamp :) I've learned quite a bit the past few months, and wrote all about my experience with save the dates and my top 5 tips. Keep scrolling to discover.
Custom designed stamps are a resounding HARD YES from me.
I knew that I didn't want to take away from the beautiful overall design by slapping an regular old stamp on them, and I didn't want to by the standard "love" wedding stamps that everyone uses. (nothing wrong with them - if you're using them kudos to you - I just wanted something a little out of the box). Angelica designed them to reflect our overall wedding color palate - right down to the desert terrain. I love how she added our initials, I think it adds such a romantic touch. I admire how attentive she has been to all of the little details, she truly blew my mind with these stamps! I cannot wait for my family's reactions when these are delivered.
It is super important to make 100% sure that you have paid for the correct postage. I sent a save-the-date out to my cousin in Australia, and realized at the last minute that we needed to buy different postage.
I totally recommend investigating "hand- canceling." As WeddingWire gracefully puts it, "... a “cancel” refers to the black circular mark that is stamped on the upper right corner of an envelope to ensure that the stamp won’t be used again. This process is usually done by machine that can, in some cases, damage a wedding invitation." After all the hard work that was put into these beauties, the idea of them getting damaged by an aggressive black mark made my stomach sink. You'll have to call around different local shipping locations and find out if this is a service they offer prior to going in and dropping off the goods.
WHAT TO INCLUDE ON YOUR SAVE THE DATE:
We chose to keep our save-the-dates very simple, and only include our date + location.
It is common for couples to also include:
- a link to a wedding website (this is where you can share where you are registered)
- note specifying if a +1 is allowed
- share preference on a kids
Our personal preference was to share all of this information on our formal invitations.
This, of course, is totally at your discretion.
WHEN TO MAIL THEM OUT:
Common courtesy suggests sending them out at least 6 months prior to your nuptials. If you are planning a destination wedding that requires guests to travel, it is recommended to send 8 months in advance. Sending save-the-dates allows your invitees all the time they need to book their flights + accommodations, save a bit of extra moolah and ask for time off work.
This timeline is quite important to stick to because sending it out any earlier may cause them to forget; and sending later is a waste and might as well be an invitation.
Save-the-dates are the less formal sibling of the invitation. This is where you can get creative and think outside the box! Although choosing a theme can be daunting when there are so many options, I highly recommend spending time on Pinterest to discover what you like and what you don't. My personal wedding Pinterest board is chock full of ideas (848 pins to be exact), and you can check it out here.
I highly recommend hiring a graphic designer to keep all your stationary and day of signage cohesive. Angelica of Velvet Fox Designs allowed me to be 100% part of the design process, and sent several rounds of proofs until it was just right. There are SO many amazing options when it comes to color, texture, font, fasteners, layers, etc so it can be a bit intimidating but don't be afraid to take some design risks. Angelica read my mind when it came to our save the dates, and I genuinely LOVE them so much. They are so special and i know they will be cherished by our family members.
Remember, your save-the-date doesn't have to be a card. They may be the most straightforward way to go, but a wedding save-the-date can really be whatever your heart wants it to be. There are so many options! There's magnets, comic strips, photographs, mini bottles of bubbly, campaign buttons, laser cut wood, luggage tags just to name a few. You can also choose to go digital and skip the snail mail altogether. But, remember the older + less tech-savy members of your family and try to cater to what would work best for them. Tangible save-the-dates are a sweet & sentimental keepsake, so I personally recommend not going the digital route.
BE CLEAR ABOUT WHO IS ACTUALLY INVITED:
Yes -this far in advance. It's best to put everyone's name on the envelope who you re inviting so that there is no confusion. If you realize you make a mistake here, dont worry just make sure your formal invitation is SUPER clear, and includes exact names of who is invited.
Remember, once your save-the-dates are mailed out, there is no going back. Make sure you're sending them to people you truly want to celebrate with you.
While we were going through the design process, Angelica of Velvet Fox Designs created so many absolutely beautiful save-the-date options for John and I. It was SO hard to narrow it down! We loved them all so much that we all made the collective decision to print them all and have a little photoshoot with them! The talented Elaine Chang shot the images below, and I am so excited to share these with you!