175 days currently remain on our “Wedding Countdown” and all of our Save-The-Dates are now officially in the mail or safely delivered. It’s a great feeling to have one huge Excel file compiled of our guests and their addresses and to have this first major mailing finished. We did quite a bit of research and idea hunting before we came up with the final idea for our Save-The-Dates . . . . and while a lot of Brides might be in charge of such an endeavor, I really must give all the credit to my Husband-To-Be , who designed the cards in Adobe PhotoShop.
They turned out better than I could have imagined . . . and even better than that, they were completely reasonable and within our budget (actually a few hundred dollars below our budget). So, I figured for the sake of Budget-Brides everywhere I would share a few tips from our Save-The-Date experience.
We ordered our Save-The-Dates through FedEx, but instead of using one of its pre-made templates we opted for the Full-Photo version of the “Oversized Postcard” option. This allowed us to create our own design that would then be printed on a 5.5-inch x 8-inch postcard. I think this oversized option makes them more interesting, as it isn’t the same dimensions as a postcard and also makes it stand out from the slew of Holiday cards everyone is receiving.
The price for 250 oversized postcards is $99.00 (full color on front; black and white on back) and included envelopes. Let me repeat that: We did our Save-The-Dates for $99.00 (that’s $.39 each). You can view their pricing and specifications here.
Step One in creating your own homemade Save-The-Dates is to figure out which dimension of cards will suit you best. Picking the cardstock size first will simplify things later on in the process. Once we decided on using 5.5”x8” cardstock we began researching designs online. A simple Google images search gave us plenty of cool ideas. We then took our newfound inspiration to the drawing board (Adobe Photoshop). We started by creating a new document. During the setup process we put in the dimensions that we had decided and set the pixels per inch to 300 (high quality print standard). The Photoshop default is 72 (computer monitor standard). This is the most crucial step in the process as neglecting to do this will result in a very pixelated print job.
From the blank canvas, we used two of our engagement photos---one from each session taken by Matt Sepeta of Sepeta Photography. To personalize the cards we also used the peacock emblem that I talked about in my second blog, Feathers Everywhere, which was designed by my friend and bridesmaid, Alyson, and overlaid it with a calendar of June 2011. We also used a peacock feather in the lower left corner with our location “Two Harbors, Minnesota.”
The price includes free black and white printing on the back of the postcard, but for an additional price you can do color printing. We included all the details on the backside so that guests can research the resort and consider the options for lodging. We kept the back simple, choosing the peacock emblem as the only graphic.
We printed our own return address labels, which also included our peacock emblem and as a finishing touch we stamped the back of the envelopes with a “B.” The process was so simple, and the results were so satisfying, that I am already brainstorming ideas for incorporating a similar idea into our official invitations.
Aside from the successful completion of our Save-The-Dates, more feathers have begun piling into our apartment. I received an order of 500 peacock feathers and an order of 150 oatmeal (bleached) peacock feathers. I am hoping that I will be able to tackle a few DIY projects over the holidays. First, will be my wedding brooch, which is where I would like to use some of those oatmeal feathers. Once that is complete, I would like to experiment with making feather bouquets similar to the one pictured below. To see more fun bouquet ideas and read great feedback from other brides-to-be, become a fan of Aisle File: Dani & Josh on Facebook.
Feather bouquet from Design Whimsy on Etsy.