Ordering your wedding invitations? Let this be your guide!

How to make organizing your Wedding Invitations a breeze

Off The Beaten Path Weddings photos by KT MERRY and MATT EDGE

2012 Bridechilla™ Ni and husband Darren’s wedding invitation (Event Styling by Off The Beaten Path Weddings, photos by KT Merry Photography) on left and 2013 Bridechilla™ Steph and husband Jeremy’s wedding suite on right (Event Styling by Off The Beaten Path Weddings, photos by Matt Edge Photography).

Sorting your wedding invitations might seem like a fairly straight forward process, however once you start looking at designs you’ll soon realize that simply isn’t true. Organizing your invitations can begin to get complicated once you grasp how many options are out there and how many details need to be considered. To help take the stress out of organizing your wedding invitations we’ve put together some handy tips so you can begin your search with ease.

Guest article by Kristi charter

2013 Bridechilla™ Tara and husband Justin's wedding invitation suite... love the modern elegance! (onelove photography)

2013 Bridechilla™ Tara and husband Justin’s wedding invitation suite… love the modern elegance! (Event Styling by Off The Beaten Path Weddings, photos by onelove photography)

Setting your Budget

Before you get caught up in the whirlwind of looking at hundreds of different invitation designs, you must first sit down with your fiancé and work out your wedding budget. Setting boundaries at the start will help ensure you don’t spend well beyond your means. Once you have set a budget, you will need to decide what proportion of your entire wedding budget will be allocated to invitations. If you go ahead and begin your invitation search before setting a budget, you are likely to end up spending a lot more than you were initially prepared to spend so keep this in mind. By taking the time out to organize your budget with your partner you will also ensure they feel involved and that you are both in agreement from the start.

Created by The Aerialist Press, this wedding invitation suite carries a consistent, lovely theme!

Created by The Aerialist Press, this wedding invitation suite carries a consistent, lovely theme! (photos by Scott Andrew Studio, via Snippet & Ink)

Consider your Theme

We’ve all heard it before and it really is true, your wedding invitation is the first glimpse your guests will have of your special day and it will set their expectations for what’s to come. As such it is important you take the opportunity to introduce your guests to the style and formality of your wedding through your invitations.  In addition to all the key information such as dates and venue locations, your invitation design will help your guests decipher the dress code if it is not specifically stated. Having a theme or basic idea of how you wish to style your wedding in mind prior to sourcing your invitation will assist you in narrowing your search for invitations, effectively speeding up the entire process. Even simply having a color theme rather than a broader and more specific styling theme in mind can help.

Don't settle when it comes to your wedding stationary! Find the perfect look for YOU. (Photo via Erich McVey Photography via Style Me Pretty)

Don’t settle when it comes to your wedding stationary! Find the perfect look for YOU. (photos by Erich McVey Photography via Style Me Pretty)

Don’t settle

Before you commit to an order, make sure you first shop around and compare prices to ensure you are getting the best deal to suit your budget. For a simpler process we recommend browsing online wedding invitation suppliers rather than scouring traditional brick and mortar stores which can often be time consuming. The beauty of online stores is having the convenience to search for invitations at any time that fits within your schedule.  By browsing online, you’ll be able to gauge whether you are getting a good deal and might even be able to find some one-off promotions. Also if you have the option, always order samples especially if ordering from an online supplier because products always look different in person. While prices are important you should also take the time to compare quality.  By inspecting the invitations up close, you will be able to make a well informed selection and avoid ending up with invitations you are not truly happy with.

2011 Bridechilla™ Jennifer and husband Bryan’s wedding suite by Passing Notes on right (by Catherine Hall Studios via Style Me Pretty).

2011 Bridechilla™ Jennifer and husband Bryan’s wedding suite by Passing Notes on right (Event Styling by Off The Beaten Path Weddings, photos by Catherine Hall Studios via Style Me Pretty).

Wording your invites

While selecting the right design is important, choosing the right wording and layout is equally as important. You will need to do some research into wording options and styles, however your chosen wedding invitation supplier will most likely have templates that they can provide you with to inspire and assist you in selecting your wording. Similar to your design, your wording should also reflect the tone and style of your wedding. You can opt to keep it simple and include only the main points or you might like to add a quote or poem.  Bear in mind that it is vital to keep the text minimal, as you don’t want to overload your guests with too much content. Including too much content has the potential to make it difficult for your guests to read and could possibly result in vital information such as times and locations getting lost in the confusion.

2013 Bridechilla™ Meghan and husband Ben’s wedding suite (onelove photography).

2013 Bridechilla™ Meghan and husband Ben’s wedding suite (Event Styling by Off The Beaten Path Weddings, photos by onelove photography).

Know everything

The last step before you place an order with an invitation company is to reassess and confirm you have all the necessary information before you proceed. Make sure you know exactly what you will be paying for and that there are no hidden costs that might arise, which you hadn’t prepared for. An example of this is envelopes, some companies will provide these while others will charge a fee. You should also question your invitation supplier about their turnaround times and how long it will take until you receive your invites, including delivery times if relevant.  Another consideration to make is whether your guest’s names will be printed by your supplier or this is something you have to organize separately. The simplest way to ensure you have everything covered is to make a check list and cross it off as you go. Don’t worry if you feel like you’re hounding your invitation supplier, your invitations are an integral aspect to your wedding planning and as such should be done right from the start.

2012 Bridechilla™ Tracey and husband Mark’s wedding invitation suite for their Off The Beaten Path Wedding. (vIa Style Me Pretty, photo by What Shanni Saw)

2012 Bridechilla™ Tracey and husband Mark’s wedding invitation suite for their Off The Beaten Path Wedding. (Event Styling by Off The Beaten Path Weddings, photos by What Shanni Saw, vIa Style Me Pretty)

Approving your Proof

Before your invitation is printed your stationer will send you either a digital proof (via email) or a hard copy proof for you to approve or request amendments. It is vital and we cannot stress this enough that you check the proof several times before you approve it. Also, get someone you trust with a fresh set of eyes to check it too. Examine your proof closely, looking for any grammar or spelling mistakes. You’ll be surprised at how easily these are overlooked. Remember, that while your invitation supplier will endeavor to ensure there are no errors, if for instance one does occur and isn’t realized until the order has been printed your supplier will hold no responsibility. You’ll either have to put up with the error or if there is time for a reprint, be prepared for it to come out of your own pocket.

Beautiful Custom Calligraphy by Lauren Ish Design and Brown Linen Design

Beautiful Custom Calligraphy by Lauren Ish Design and Brown Linen Design

Always Order Extra

After you’ve checked your guest list twice and are ready to place your invitation order, add a few extra to your quantity. You might be thinking why would I want to pay for extra invitations that I have no one to give them too? Simply put you might have managed to miss someone or an unexpected guest might be added to your list after it has been finalized. Also, if you are addressing your invites yourself be prepared for the likely chance that an error will occur. If instead you’ve hired a professional calligrapher remember that they’re only human and can make mistakes too!

Hold on to an invitation! It makes the perfect keepsake from your wedding day. (via Style Me Pretty, photo by Meg Miller Photography)

Hold on to an invitation! It makes the perfect keepsake from your wedding day. (via Style Me Pretty, photo by Meg Miller Photography)

Lastly, don’t forget to keep an invitation for yourself. It’ll make the perfect keepsake of your special day.

About the author

Kristi Charter is a passionate freelance writer, inspired by all that is beautiful, fresh and creative. With a keen interest in the wedding industry and a wide array of knowledge, Kristi is a regular blogger for Giant Invitations.

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Bridechilla™ Throwback Thursday

Michelle Kim Photography
Photo by Michelle Kim Photography

Happy “Throwback Thursday” chill readers! Our BRIDECHILLA™ Mckenzie and her [now] husband Tim were one of our 2013 Off The Beaten Path couples.. today we are reminiscing with this beautiful video of their wedding day by Hit Maker Films. Their chill day was a prime example of the Off The Beaten Path Weddings team in action, as well as our signature look of elegance inspired by nature. With mercury glass and white hydrangea hanging from the trees and earth-to-table dishes, this day was an Off The Beaten Path Weddings beauty from start to end.


Cheers to McKenzie & Tim!

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