Jessica from Odd Duck Press put together this seriously helpful post about wedding stationery. She previously shared a great post about etiquette and invitation wording, check it out if you missed it! Thanks Jessica, you are a wealth of knowledge. :)

Odd Duck Press WeddingInviteLove

Photo by Lindsay Docherty for Odd Duck Press

Ok, first take a deep breath. This will be painless, I promise! I know that with the myriad of to-do’s involved in getting ready for the BIG DAY, planning the invitation suite can be daunting. (How do you tactfully let people know their kids aren’t invited? What is an escort card?) Let’s take it a step at a time and begin by breaking down the invitation suite.

Get the full breakdown after the jump… Continue reading

Today’s guest post comes to us from inspiration board extraordinaire Sara of Burnett’s Boards. She was so kind to put together this post and share some boards that she’s put together. We look forward to many more posts from Sara, stay tuned!

A great place to start when planning your wedding is with an inspiration board. What is an inspiration board? Well, its basically one image, with several images within it, that wraps your dream wedding up into one neat little package.

Why is having one important? It’s something to show your wedding planner to give him or her a direction to go (he or she will probably ask you to create one anyway!).

What can you do with it? You can pin it onto a Pinterest board and add from there. Add things that enhance it, add things it might be missing, add pictures of your wedding dress and venue, and you’ll end up with a perfect visual of your wedding that all of your vendors can work from.

Yep, I know. There are a lot of inspiration boards out there to choose from… so which one is for you? It’s the one that stops you cold in your tracks, that you stare at for a little too long, that intrigues you and makes you dream a little. That’s the one.

Lets take a look at a couple of popular inspiration boards and the types of brides that love them.

Bride #1

She’s elegant, sophisticated, educated, and loves a little touch of old world glamour.

Burnett's Boards All That Glitters

Photo credits: cake, reception, Arabic gold lettered invites, ring, No.5, vintage Dior dress, gold stars, love blocks, mosque

See more of Burnett’s Boards after the jump… Continue reading

One of my favorite parts about planning my wedding were the DIY crafts. I couldn’t get enough of them. If you’re anything like me, you’re gonna love today’s post. Paper & Dot was so sweet to share one with us today, complete with designs that you can download and print at home!

When it comes to invitation design, I am crazy about details! I don’t know about you but I don’t get much snail mail these days, except for American Express begging me to rack up some debt! When I do, I am always blown away by unexpected and personal touches. Envelope liners are a great way to add that special and surprising element to your invitation.

Paper and Dot WeddingInviteLove

Custom invitations can seem out of reach to some couples. I try to make my designs as affordable as possible by creating custom designs with optional DIY elements. Adding DIY or semi-DIY touches to a custom designed wedding suite can bring your vision to life.

An easy DIY touch with lots of personality are envelope liners. I often create and print the invitation for a couple and pass off digital files of envelope liners, belly bands and other elements with instructions.

See the full DIY and get the free downloadable patterns after the jump… Continue reading

Tired of walking around wedding events with too many or not enough camera gadgets? Alex Sarna Photography will direct you to which camera gadgets are most essential to have.

All brides should keep in mind the equipment used, while shopping for a wedding photographer. If your photographer is excellent, but he/she is using consumer level cameras, your images won’t turn out they way you expected.

Equipment Wedding Photographers Should Have :WeddingPhotoLove

Learn about the must-have equipment after the jump… Continue reading

With Julia just getting engaged and me getting married last year, we’ve been doing a lot of chatting about wedding planning. Let me tell you one of the hardest parts about planning a wedding –even a wedding that is happening THOUSANDS of miles from where you live: a seating chart.

I never would’ve guessed that assigning seats would have been so complicated. My fiancé and I would think we figured out a table when a couple would pop up as an odd ball. Then, it was back to square one. If you have divorced parents who do not have the most civil of a relationship, things can get even hairier.

Photo by Kimberly Potterf Photography

Photo by Kimberly Potterf Photography

See my advice on putting together a stress-free seating chart after the jump… Continue reading

Tiny Bubbles Wedding and Event Design brings us today’s guest post! If you are not sure what the difference is between an on-site coordinator and a wedding planner –Melissa is gong to clarify that for you!

If you’ve chosen to have your wedding at a full service wedding venue, chances are there’s an on-site coordinator who will be there to make sure your day runs smoothly. While that’s certainly a huge weight off of your shoulders, there is a difference between an on-site coordinator and a wedding planner. Although these two individuals strive to work synergistically together and to not compete against one another, many brides and grooms don’t know the difference between the two (other than the fact that they have two different titles). An on-site coordinator does much of what a wedding planner does, but only up to a certain point.

Tiny Bubbles Wedding and Event Design WeddingPlannerLove

If you’ve ever watched a wedding related “chick-flick” (Father of the Bride, anyone?!), you have your assumptions of what a typical wedding planner will do.  An on-site coordinator’s job description has boundaries, but a wedding planner’s duties are next to unlimited. A destination wedding, for example, requires a planner to help brides and grooms who just aren’t around to deal with all of the necessary details. The same is true for any wedding, destination or otherwise. Your planner is there to get to know the on-site coordinator at your wedding venue personally, as they’ll be working with them quite closely for (in most cases) 9 months or more.

Tiny Bubbles Wedding and Event Design WeddingPlannerLove

An on-site coordinator does quite a bit to manage the details of your wedding, which is what causes confusion for many brides and grooms. Your on-site coordinator can often give answers about processionals, music selections, and lodging. They see many weddings throughout the seasons, which gives them expertise. However, an on-site coordinator may not be required to do certain things, such as facilitate your rehearsal, in which case, a bride and groom may be left feeling uneasy and insecure. At the end of the day, an on-site coordinator is there to represent the property, but not necessarily the bride and groom themselves. Rather than managing your every wish for your wedding day, they may be there to make sure you’re getting what you were promised in your venue’s contract, to make sure the kitchen is staffed, and that they’re sound system is working properly. Your wedding planner will be there every step of the way, making sure you’re getting not only what your venue’s contract states, but what all of your vendors’ contracts state. They’ll get to know you and your soon-to-be spouse, and will represent you and your wishes, not just the property.

Tiny Bubbles Wedding and Event Design WeddingPlannerLove

Make no mistake; there is without a doubt some overlap between a wedding planner and an on-site coordinator. The best suggestion I can give is to interview your on-site coordinator well, identify exactly what their duties include, and hire a wedding planner to pick up where the on-site coordinator leaves off and to fill in any blanks. Your wedding planner will be back at your wedding venue on a very regular basis to prepare things exactly the way you envision them while you’re busy working and living your life in the months leading up to your wedding.

So, if you’ve been trying to weigh the differences between what you’ll get from an on-site coordinator versus what you’ll get from a wedding planner, stop. The bottom line is, you need them both.

This guest post was written for us by Kara from Love This Day Events. Kara plans beautiful weddings in the Denver area, so she knows all about how to plan a mountain wedding. Thanks Kara!

Mountain weddings are spectacular. Mountain weddings are iconic. Mountain weddings offer venue, food and design opportunities that are hard to match in an urban environment. Mountain weddings also offer unique challenges in terms of logistics. And mountain weddings should simply be more fun! Here are a few steps to get your mountain wedding planning process started and make your mountain wedding day spectacular! Plan, prepare and enjoy your wedding day.

Love This Day Events WeddingPlannerLove Photo by Jared Wilson Photography

Hire a planner.

It should be fun to plan your wedding. After the champagne and the congratulations phone calls, you and your fiance should take a week or two and really talk about what you would like your wedding to look and feel like. Ask for wedding planner recommendations from friends and do some online research (WeddingPlannerLove) and have a very honest discussion about your wedding plan during the interview. A good planner will save you time, money and hours of stress.

Love This Day Events WeddingPlannerLovePhoto by Stellar Photography

Set a budget.

Once you have decided what planner to work with start sketching out a budget. Your planner will be able to guide your plan and show you where to save and where to spend. Setting a budget is vital before you select your venue.

Love This Day Events WeddingPlannerLovePhoto by Brinton Studios

Start your Pinterest Board.

Pinterest is a great tool for design. It allows you to save your photos (instead of trying to remember which wedding blog your dream bouquet was in) and share inspirations with your vendors. Seeing 20-25 inspirational photos enables your wedding vendors to see what you love. With that information – you are setting everyone up for success.

Love This Day Events WeddingPlannerLovePhoto by Julie Harris

Create a top three list.

Every couple is unique and each wedding has different priorities. Sit down with your betrothed and write down the top three most important elements for your wedding. Compare lists and compromise. If your fiance chooses bar, band and food and you have chosen band, food and decor – it only makes sense to find a venue known for their chef and menu with a reception space ready for a band. Put these lists somewhere you can both see them and revisit them from time to time. Remember what matters to the two of you.

Find the Venue.

Now you can find your dream mountain wedding location. With the budget, vision and priorities in mind, your wedding planner will be able to easily guide to a spectacular mountain venue. This will save you hundreds of driving miles and several weekend scouting trips!

Love This Day Events WeddingPlannerLovePhoto by Paige Elizabeth

Local Versus Imported Vendors.

Hire local or import your vendors from your city? Every couple has different needs. I recommend asking your venue for local vendor recommendations and planning a trip to interview a few. Plan your trip for a non-event day! Your florist will be able to spend much more time with you on a Tuesday than on a Saturday morning in August. See whose work you admire and who you feel comfortable with. Ask for references from past clients. The most important part of building your mountain wedding vendor team is that you hire people who you trust. If it is easier for you to work with someone from home – bring them with you. And you can always mix and match (some local and some imported) to create your dream team.

Love This Day Events WeddingPlannerLovePhoto by Brinton Studios

Weather Plan

Always always always have a back up weather plan. Here in the Colorado Mountains, I have seen it snow on the 4th of July and I have seen 60 degrees and sunny days in February. Work with your wedding planner to create a weather plan and establish exactly how it will be communicated to your wedding party, vendors and guests. Make sure that you have allowed adequate time for reception rooms to be reset by the catering staff and for the florists to move any outdoor decor to your indoor location. Explore and plan for the worst case scenarios . . . and hope for sunshine.

Love This Day Events WeddingPlannerLovePhoto by Brinton Studios

Consider your guests and altitude.

Although you and your honey may have no problem hiking above timberline or taking a chairlift – consider your guests. Have alternate transportation, consider having oxygen available for older guests and encourage everyone to enjoy the mountains. At their own pace.

Be Prepared. The Emergency Kit.

Mountain weddings are usually a little bit removed from services and stores that we rely on in the city. The emergency kit should be stocked with everything from bandaids to superglue. Talk to your wedding planner about what she has in hers – there are always great stories behind some of the more unusual items in the kit.

Love This Day Events WeddingPlannerLovePhoto by Paige Elizabeth

Consider the elements when buying your dress.

If you are planning to get married outside consider what the ground will do to your train. If you are getting married on grass, consider a shoe with a wedge heel (or cowboy boots – what can I say – they are functional) and always have a wrap or coat that compliments your dress. It gets chilly when the sun goes down!

Outdoor Mountain Ceremonies

There are 3 must haves for Colorado Mountain outdoor ceremonies. Have water available for your guests. Have sunscreen available for your guests (even 30 minutes at 9,000 can do a number on you!) and consider offering the ladies parasols (there are several options for renting). If it’s early season, have bug spray available (mosquitos can be quite persistent early season).

Love This Day Events WeddingPlannerLovePhoto by Julie Afferbaugh Photography

Mountain Weddings and Your Dog.

Why not? Just remember 2 important things. If your dog is your ring bearer – please do not put your real rings on his collar (mountains + wildlife + dogs + expensive jewelry = stress). Have a plan for Fido for after the ceremony. Make sure someone is assigned to take him to the room, for a walk and feed him.

Have FUN.

There may be a little more wind than you planned for. You may have forgotten your veil at home. No matter what hiccups may occur, your mountain wedding should be fun. Remember what is important to you and your new husband and trust in your planner, venue and the rest of your wedding team to make your day spectacular.

Thank you Kara! What a wonderful post!

Today’s guest post is from Nan, author of EatBreatheBlog, a healthy lifestyle and parenting blog. She is sharing some great advice with us on planning your wedding online. Thanks so much, Nan!

Planning Your Wedding Online

Remembering how we functioned before doing everything before the Internet is like remembering what your living room looked like two remodels ago: impossible.

That being said, using the web as a resource for daily life is second nature for us. But, even the most internet savvy people still can’t believe that planning a wedding online is totally possible. Maybe it’s the age-old tradition or the sacredness of the big day, but some people are hesitant to take to the web for all things wedding.

Exquisite Affairs on WeddingPlannerLoveExquisite Affairs Productions

If you’re planning an upcoming wedding, but you’re resistant to turn to the internet, don’t be. There are many great resources waiting to make your wedding planning faster, easier and more efficient. WeddingPlannerLove is a great place to start your search!

Shopping for the Ring

Buying a ring online may not be everyone’s first choice. But, think of it this way: instead of browsing a jewelry store with and being hounded by a commission driven sales person to buy more diamond than you can afford, hop online and take a look at your own leisure.

Promise Tangeman via Flickr

Whether you’re shopping for engagement rings or wedding bands, buying online means you do so at your own pace and with a wider selection. You also don’t run the risk of walking into a store where you can’t afford even the tiniest of diamonds.

Venues and Vendors

From venues for the wedding to cakes, florists and photographers, online is the easiest way to peruse a huge selection of possibilities without making any commitments just yet. Even if you’re using local vendors, you can still access their information and services online, possibly without ever having to step foot in an actual store. With the stress surrounding wedding planning, having this information at your fingertips is priceless.

Cynthia Ross Affairs WeddingPlannerLoveCynthia Ross Affairs

Our wedding venue directory, WeddingVenueLove, will be launching soon and will be a wonderful resource to help you find the perfect venue for your location and budget.

Guest List and Invitations

Internet resources like Google Docs allow you to create spreadsheets for budgets, guests, and of menu options that you can access from anywhere and share with anyone. Google Docs is free, easy to use and incredibly efficient.

Bloom Art Design Designer WeddingInviteLoveBloom Art & Design

You can find hundreds of invitation designers on WeddingInviteLove to help you set the stage for your big day. Many of the vendors work nationwide (or even worldwide!), so make sure to contact any designer that interests you!

Honeymooning

And, the best part of online wedding planning: the honeymoon. Sites like Kayak offer a comparison tool, so you can make sure you’re getting the best deal. Once you’ve gotten the logistics out of the way, you can kick back with your laptop and a glass of bubbly to plan your dream vacation.

Image by Christina Spicuzza via flickr

Happy planning! We hope that you find WeddingLovely’s vendor directories to be a resource as you plan your big day. We’re very excited, to say the least, about what is in the works for next year. We think you’re going to love it almost as much as we do!

Ring image by Promise Tangeman via flickr

Tropical beach image by Christina Spicuzza via flickr

The oh-so-talented Anita from 2bsquared designs is guest posting today about invitation etiquette. This is a very important subject, and she did a wonderful job explaining it all with great detail. Thank you so much, Anita!

So you are engaged…literally you think “what could possibly be more exciting than that”? And then it’s time to pick your dress… you look like a fairytale princess and it’s these best moment of your life. Then before you know it, you’ve picked a date, chosen the most perfect venue…EVER, decided on your flowers (original, affordable and exotic all at the same time and how you did it nobody will ever guess), booked a DJ who rocks, and a photographer who promises to make your entire wedding party look like supermodels. What could possibly be left now that all your wedding dreams are all coming true? Yes! Yes! your wedding invitations… screams the stationer. Oops, was that my outside voice? Sorry about that. Anyhoo… Shouldn’t your guests open their mailbox to find your invitation screaming…”Oh, you so wanna come to this shindig!” After all it’s not a party until their invited, right?

Jen Simpson Design Stationery Designer WeddingInviteLove

Getting them to the Party

Once upon a time, a long long time ago, in a galaxy far far away…wedding invitations came in two colors- white and off-white– and the hardest decision you had to make was whether they were engraved or not. We’ve come a long way and it’s now big world of choice. Don’t get overwhelmed by your options. Consider a few keys things when choosing what works for you:

Be You – keep your invitation style as close to your personality as possible. Don’t rock the bling and bedazzle your invitation unless that’s your style. Guests should not open your invitation, see your full name in bold zebra print and say who the heck is this from because they don’t recognize you in your invitation.

Be Creative – your invitation should match the style of your event. Now that doesn’t mean you can’t think outside the box a little. A formal sit dinner for 200? Turn it up a notch and instead of the classic black and white engraved invitation, engrave white ink on dark colored stock, or add a brightly colored or patterned envelope liner. A wee bit o’the Irish…work some plaid. Boating enthusiasts…anchors away!

Faue amd Co. Stationery Designer WeddingInviteLove

Be Careful – there are many extremely talented and reputable vendors to be found on line and in your neighborhood. Do your research. Before purchasing invitations from anyone, really understand what you will be getting for money. Don’t be afraid to ask questions or order samples of their work. Peek at your favorite blogs including this one for preferred vendors, ask your married friends who they used and recommend. Then pick a few designers who match your style and start an honest conversation with them.

Be Calm – it takes a village to put on a wedding and that means there will be a lot of voices and opinions clamoring to be heard as visions of sugar plum fairies dance in your head. Remember everyone is entitled to an opinion but not always a vote unless they are holding the checkbook. If so then listen close! Otherwise, refrain from the overwhelming desire to shout “because I am the bride that’s why” and consider that most of those people have your best interest at heart. So it may be a good thing when its suggested you take a break from obsessively combing blogs looking for invitations. Listen to the voices of reason and the squeals of your piggy bank. Take breaks so you keep perspective. You’ll make better choices.

It’s all in the Details

A wedding invitations sole purpose is to invite your guests and to tell them when where they should show up if they are even remotely interested seeing you marry the love of your life and perhaps partake in a bit of feasting and merriment while they’re at it. So once you find one you like, here is a quick primer in 140 characters or less on getting them written right:

  • He /She who pays invites. Invitations are issued by the holder of the checkbook or checkbook(s).
  • All invitation phrasing is in the third person. Use “their” not “our”
  • Spell out all words. Yep, all of them.
  • Do not abbreviate. Only exceptions are Mr., Dr., Mrs., Jr., Sr. and Ms.
  • Going to the chapel or not. You “request the honor” of a guests presence as it’s naughty to “request the pleasure” in a house of worship.
  • What’s in a name? If her parents invite, first and middle for her and full name for him. Both parents invite – first and middle only for him and her.
  • Days and dates are always spelled out. Always.
  • The time. The hour is “at” and followed by o’clock except at noon. Married on the half hour is “half after” or “half past”. No caps please.
  • The year. The word “and” is either in or out but the first word in the year line is always capitalized.
  • Location. Location. Use the complete name of the facility. The street address of your location is only needed if you’re not using a map or direction card.
  • Only punctuation used on invitations are commas. Period.
  • Do not print zip code on invitation. If they really need it they can find it on the envelope.

White Aisle Stationery Designer WeddingInviteLove

Traditional invitations consist of eleven lines and they are the:

  1. Invitational Line – this line tells your guest who is extending the invitation. While, traditionally invitations are sent by the bride’s parents, they may also be issued by the bride and groom or a combination of the bride and groom and their parents.
  2. Request Line – the request line invites your guests to your wedding. The wording varies according to the type of service and where your wedding is held. “Request the honour ( honor) of your presence” is always used when the wedding is in a house of worship as you cannot request the pleasure of one’s company in God’s house. Weddings held at a club, reception hall or residence use “Request the pleasure of your company.”
  3. Bride’s Name – the brides first and middle name should appear when the invitation is issued by her parents. If invitation is issued by bride and groom her full name is written.
  4. Joining word – the word “to” is used to join the names of the bride and groom on invitations issued by the parents. The word “and” is used on invitations issued by the bride and groom.
  5. Groom’s Name – the grooms full given name should always appear unless the invitation is issued by both the bride and grooms parents, then only his first and middle name is required.
  6. Date Line – the day of the week and the date of the month should be both spelled out i.e. Saturday, the twenty -ninth of July The day of the week can be proceed by “on” but is not necessary.
  7. Year Line – you can choose to write the year with as “Two thousand and thirteen” or “Two thousand thirteen” either is fine. Just remember the first word in the year line is always capitalized.
  8. Time Line – the time always appears on one line and is preceded by “at.” No uppercase letters are used. The word o’clock should always follow the hour except when married at noon. For weddings held on the half hour, they are written as “half after” or “half past” followed by the hour. Ex. half after four o’clock in the afternoon.
  9. Location – the name of the facility where your wedding will take place appears on this line. The complete name of the facility is used.
  10. Address – the street address is only necessary when there is more than one of the facility with the same name in the same town. The street address is not used when maps or direction cards are included.
  11. City and State – the last line of your invitation shows the names of the city and star where you wedding is being held. Both city and state are included but not the zip code.

Lisa Samartino Atelier Stationery Designer WeddingInviteLove

Thank you Anita! Check out 2BSquared on WeddingInviteLove, or head straight to the 2BSquared’s Etsy shop to order a custom invitation directly from Anita!