Assembling the Invitation Suite
Posted: Thursday, Jan. 31, 2013
Photo by: Nathan Abplanalp Photography
Brittany Sajbel is an associate attorney in Concord. Her March wedding planning has hit quite a few bumps in the road, but she remains positive and sane with the help of her amazing fiance, Neil Love, and their two furbabies, Gemma Bean and Kitty Caroline. Contact Brittany here.
With stationery and postage running at such a high cost, the average bride wants her suite to be perfect. For some brides, this means designing the invitations from scratch, while for others it means making the process as minimalist as possible. Having finished assembling, addressing, and mailing out my invitations last week, I can tell all of you brides-to-be one thing: may your marriage last, because you never want to be a part of this process again.When Coach Love and I first envisioned getting married at the beach, we planned everything out with starry-eyed precision. We would have starfish or palm trees on the invitations, sand dollars as place cards, and tropical elements aplenty. As we started looking through our invitation options, however, we realized that even though our wedding is at the beach, we are really not beach people. Specifically, we are not neutral, beach-colored people. The color scheme that I so desperately wanted with rich, romantic colors was not starfish-friendly.We adapted.After looking through hundreds of different invitations and ordering dozens of samples (an absolute must no matter the cost), we found one that was perfect for the venue and our vision. With bright, beautiful flowers cascading down the invitation from a blooming tree on the side, we both immediately felt drawn to the same sample, though it wasnt what we had originally planned. Like a dress you never expect to love until you try it on, this invitation was exactly what we had been looking for, despite originally ruling it out. The tree element corresponded beautifully with the hundred year old oak trees we will be getting married under, and the color of the flowers was the exact shade of pink that I wanted. We realized that we had been drawn to a beach wedding because we love nature and being outdoors, not necessarily sea life. With our invitations ordered, costs began to rapidly accumulate. There was no way to avoid a response card, but time was running too short for us to design and have enclosure information printed. As much as I wanted people to know about accommodations, it made no sense to have them printed at over $1.00 a piece. We have a website, right?Wrong. Even with our invitations ordered and Save-the-Dates readily stuck to refrigerators, we still got daily questions about things that are outlined in painstaking detail on our website (LINK: www.lovesajbel.ourwedding.com). As much as I dont like making phone calls, I realized that for a lot of our guests, making a phone call was significantly easier than accessing and navigating the website. Enclosure cards were a must with guest information.After printing information onto a cardstock from the local craft store, I realized that there were still a few elements missing from our basic suite, including contact information. At a wedding we recently attended, the couples address was hidden from view on all of their registries, and we had thrown away the envelope with the return address on it. It didnt matter either way, because the couple moved in together after the wedding and had a new address that wasnt on anything they had sent out or provided. Given that Coach Love and I plan to move into our first house together after we get married, contact cards were a must for us with information like our cell phone numbers, email addresses, and current and future mailing addresses. Since we dont know where well be living, relatives graciously allowed us to use their home address for future correspondence.In addition to the contact information, we also needed a way to get the rehearsal schedule to people that we wanted in attendance without making it too difficult to get us a reply for their food choice. With a bit of skill, glue, and some stickers, I made a rehearsal information card that people can keep with all of the details while mailing us back their food selections. I felt like a regular Martha Stewart and was only slightly disappointed that I didnt have one for everybody invited.After four very late nights at home and forty minutes spent in the post office just purchasing and applying 120 stamps, the invitations went out, complete with printed and stamped response envelopes and a commendable attempt at calligraphy on each. When the final product was done, I couldnt have been more proud of myself. The suite was beautiful and turned out exactly how I had hoped, well within the 15 extra invitations we had ordered as a precaution.As proud as I was after completing everything, I told Coach Love, Either we stay married, or the next guy has enough money to pay someone to assemble these things for me. This will never happen again. I know its going to be the former, but a girl can tease, right?
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