Calligraphy by: Nancy Favorito
What is wedding stationery? What stationery items do I need to mail? What stationery items do I want at my actual wedding? Do I need calligraphy on my envelopes? What is the difference between calligraphy and digital printing? These are so common questions I hear and I want to give you some info to help while deciding what items you NEED and what items you WANT.
INVITATION & RSVP – Firstly, items you NEED. When you’re throwing a wedding, you need to invite people and you need to know if they’re coming or not. Everyone needs an invitation and a way for guests to reply to you BUT with wedding websites you now have the digital reply option which eliminates the need for the tangible RSVP card AND the return envelope that goes along with it. This saves you on item and postage cost. However, it is so fun to collect those cards from your mailbox and see the cute notes people write to you on them. SO the choice is yours my friends. Either way works just fine!
MAP CARD, INFO CARD, DETAILS CARD – These are essentially one and the same (and are circumstantially a NEED but can also be a WANT). What makes them different is the illustration you do or do not choose. The map is of course, an illustrated map of your wedding area including all of the important landmarks for your wedding weekend and or wedding day. This is just so fun and special to keep that most couples want it to have for themselves! It can be framed and even printed in a different size or on another surface, such as on fabric, to become art for your new home as newlyweds. If you choose no map but you have a big weekend planned with an itinerary for your guests, then you probably need an info card / details card. These are the exact same thing. Typically couples will incorporate a small illustration element that pulls from the invitation design to be cohesive, like a floral in the corner or on the edges, etc. The whole point of this item is to give people dates, times and locations so they know where to be and when for your exciting celebrations. All of this info can also be put on your wedding website if you have one and you can lead people there instead.
DAY OF SIGNAGE – I can’t tell you enough how special these details make your wedding day but that said, they are still wants! But like, need wants, you know? One idea, let’s welcome everyone to your wedding and tell them how excited you are to have them there celebrating with you! This sign can be large on an easel or framed on a table or hanging from a tree or pillar. The possibilities are endless for welcoming. Another idea, having a specialty cocktail being made in honor of you and your fiancé? Maybe it’s a blackberry bourbon smash? (Yum, my fave) I can illustrate the cocktail and write what it is, what it’s called and what’s in it, on an 8×10 printout that can then be framed at the bar or in a smaller size on everyone’s table so they for sure know what to order at the reception! And another idea, do you have a little area designated for gifts and cards? People are always searching for this spot as soon as they walk in so they don’t forget to gift you or put the gift in the wrong place. So make a sign that says “Wedding gifts” and then there’s no guesswork for your guests! On these signs we also have the opportunity to continue including design elements that reflect your invitations. It’s your theme and your style and it’s so personal to you on the most personal day of your lives, so let’s put it as many places as we can think of! Without being tacky, obviously.
SEATING CHART, ESCORT CARDS, PLACE CARDS – These are almost all necessary so there’s not total chaos once the reception begins. For sure there needs to be EITHER a seating chart sign OR escort cards so people know what table they are at. Depending on the layout of your venue and your personal preference, you can choose between the two. There are so many creative and exciting ways to display both nowadays. Just type them into Pinterest and you’ll be mind blown. And then we can narrow down the endless options based on your venue and your wedding theme! The place cards would sit at each setting of the table, assigning people to a seat which is not completely necessary but it can be done if you’d like!
HAND LETTERED OR DIGITALLY PRINTED ENVELOPES- Well, envelopes are a need so that you can mail your wedding suites. The choice between hand lettered addresses or digitally printed is personal preference. Nothing compares to that beautiful hand lettered look you see on the envelope, with the slightest and prettiest imperfections that make each envelope so unique and special. That being said, calligraphy is pricey! Understandably because it’s such a special skill that takes time to learn and master and then execute. Digitally printing the addresses works just fine too. Nowadays there are so many beautiful fonts to choose from, it’s almost not noticeable when it’s digital versus hand lettered and no one will judge! And if they do, well rude. Always remember your budget is yours and yours alone and you should spend on the pieces of your wedding that have the most meaning to you and your fiancé.
Let’s recap and view some other day of options:
- Welcome sign
- Specialty cocktail / Bar signs
- Wedding gifts sign
- Seating chart sign
- Escort cards (guests name plus date/spouse with table assignment)
- Place cards (at each spot of table to assign seats, extra step)
- Menu cards (can have design elements that reflect your invitations)
- Gift for the Guests sign (can be setup on the table on the way out with any gifts for the guests to take so they know, these are for them!)
- Personal wedding hashtag sign
- Get creative! If you have a favorite quote or poem or saying, make a sign with it! Every little detail you design for your wedding just makes it that much more special and YOU as a couple and we love that.
Have questions and want to chat about your own wedding? Shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Below are some images from weddings I have worked on in the past! Shout out to Kylie and Ashley, our featured brides. They are so gorgeous and I absolutely loved working with them both to illustrate all of their personal stationery items!
Photo credit: Ciro Photography AND Thompson Photography
Okay so, the “Quadrant of Importance and Urgency.” This little diagram is courtesy of my therapist after I recently expressed that I’m constantly torn between all of my priorities. Which I was quickly informed are not all actually, a priority. Some of them are just things I’d like to do at some point in time. Not important and not urgent OR important but not urgent. Since this was semi mind blowing for me I figured I can’t be the only one confused, right? If I’m wrong, just lie to me.
This concept covers pretty much everyone no matter what your days look like. Whether you’re a stay at home mom, an entrepreneur, a CEO and on and on, you can benefit from changing the way you view that mental to do list. Also what feels better than looking back on your day and actually feeling good about what you did instead of being mad at yourself that you also didn’t clean underneath your couch? (that’s an example of #4, not urgent and not important even though you really might think it is, your therapist will tell you that it is not and she is right BECAUSE the other things on your list like turn in your old plates to DMV and get a long overdue physical, matter more. Because the law and health).
I’m going to send over two great printables with the quadrant diagram to everyone who signs up for my newsletter on my homepage! I’d love to hear how you feel about it once you’ve tried it. There are so many helpful tips and tricks out there these days that sometimes it feels overwhelming to choose a path so I realize you might be like, why do I need this on top of everything else in the world to get organized? Well, you might not. But if you find yourself staring at your to do list, wondering where to start and how you’ll ever get through it all that day, then this is for you. Maybe you use it to map out your whole week. Weekdays you do all the important and urgent tasks and on the weekends you can tackle a few of the not so important and urgent tasks.
Below are the 4 quadrants and a brief description of how to identify each…
- Important + urgent: health or legal matters first, then any time sensitive responsibilities
- Important + not urgent: finances, certain business /work related tasks
- Urgent + not important: things that are a close waste of time, such as reorganizing your bookshelf or spice cabinet
- Not urgent + not important: things that are a complete waste of time, such as scrolling instagram? any takers?
And now for some photos of this diagram in action. And don’t forget to sign up on my homepage to get the printable! You can print two blank diagrams on one page and cut it in half to use twice and even clip it into a notebook as part of your list making ritual. I know I’m a notebook nerd but if you join me, you won’t be disappointed. Us notebook nerds also eat a lot of cupcakes, perks of the club.
My chiropractor once told me that taking small trips and getaways every month or two is one of the best things you can do to bring stress levels down. It may seem counterproductive at first. Why would I leave my huge, endless, sky high to do list to go take a trip before tackling my responsibilities and making that list smaller first? The answer is because that list never gets shorter or smaller or less. It just grows and grows, especially as a working adult, parent and/or a business owner. So you ask again, why are we taking these small getaways every couple of months? The first answer is to remind you why you’re alive. We have to be a little selfish in this lifetime otherwise what on earth are we even doing here? (- direct quote from my therapist who is also, the smartest). And by “here” I mean in this universe. But that’s as far into that as I’ll go right now because if I keep digging into our existence I will have an existential meltdown and no one wants that. SO are we just working until we die? I don’t want that, thank you very much. And don’t take that to mean that I don’t love my work or the doing of the actual work because I truly do. But I also have a husband and a son who I love to spend time with and I’ve noticed when I do it outside of our normal surroundings, it’s exponentially better and makes my work days that much more productive.
Now let’s take this trip. We pack up all the things we only really NEED to get through a day or two and we go sleep in a different room and bed and we eat new, delicious food. (If you don’t know, food is one of the main reasons I travel or leave my house at all). And we get to focus on just each other and having fun. It’s. The. Best. My chiropractor is always right and I’m not even annoyed about it. He also fixed my spine after years of carrying heavy art supplies around the city as a student at FIT and sleeping on a heating pad every night which, spoiler alert, is not a cure. I am now a fully functioning, mostly back pain free human. I still have a million pound baby I carry around so, things can get sore periodically. Cue my massage therapist. Therapists, chiropractors and massage therapists are the trio goal here. Find yourself those people and you’ll see a massive difference in your health. Plus the trips. I’ll probably keep adding in little tidbits I learn from all three of these gurus in my future blogs because I love sharing what I learn.
So where is our favorite place to take a quick getaway trip? In the summer, my family LOVES taking a drive down to Asbury Beach and staying in the Asbury Hotel. This place is fairly new, super cute, has trivia on Tuesday nights, is 2 blocks from the beach and 3 from our FAVORITE restaurant, Porta AND has a bowling alley and diner right behind it. PLUS there’s a boardwalk with all kinds of cute coffee shops, playa bowl cafe’s, shops, incredible murals lining the buildings, a small sprinkler park for the kids, like do I need to go on? So in a nutshell it is the PERFECT getaway from June-August. We hop in the car with one suitcase and all the beach things and arrive in one hour and fifteen minutes, give or take. If that’s not fast, I don’t know what is. Five stars, highly recommend, you all need to go and report back to me on HOW DELICIOUS the pomodoro pasta is at Porta. I know I’ve done a lot of screaming in this post which is how YOU KNOW I’m pumped about Asbury. I wish they would pay me to be their spokesperson because I think I’m great at it? Agree? No? Okay.
FIVE TIPS for planning a quick getaway:
- Choose a place you can drive to so there’s not much time wasted in traveling to get there. If you live near a city, just grab a hotel in a fun area for a night or two. As long as you change up your surroundings, it doesn’t matter how far you go!
- Make reservations! If you’re going to a busy area, do some research in advance on where to eat so that you don’t waste time waiting to be sat on your precious, short, quick getaway. Nobody wants to be hangry. OR just show up at 5pm like we do and beat the rush. #lifewithababy amirite?
- Try on outfits BEFORE you pack so you really are only packing what you want to wear to lighten the load! Lighter travel bags = happy family. Especially with heavy babies!
- Pro tip: tidy up the house BEFORE you leave for said trip. Even though my husband hates me for doing it, we come home to a clean space and that blissful vacation feeling doesn’t have to vanish the second you look at a sink full of nasty dishes. Ya welcome.
- Map out how you’ll tackle your to do list when you return. Maybe that’s getting extra childcare help that week or pushing a few “non urgent” tasks back a bit while you focus on the important and urgent ones! < That’s actually just life advice right there courtesy of, you guessed it, my therapist. I just love her.
Now you can see for yourself why we love this place so much. I mean, look how happy we are! Those are real smiles. I don’t fake how I feel. Physically can’t and won’t do it.
And those were some snaps of us, my sister, Ali and her talented photographer boyfriend who took most of these photos, Gregory Tavani < click to see his site and/or contact him for some of your very own fun family photos! Also, when did Logan become a full time model?
Okay and below is a throwback photo from our time in Asbury LAST SUMMER when Logan was a peanut. The cuteness.