Planning Tips on the Stationary

When you think of stationery the first thing that jumps to mind is invitations; however, once you get into it you realize it is not so simple. It can include everything from invitations to save-the-date to place cards and menus.

It is safe to say that the stationery will play a pretty significant role in the event as well as add to the style, personality and tone. So, it is important that you feel confident in your designer’s skills and willingness to accommodate your needs.

Below is a list of stationery items you may need - note that many of them are optional:

  • Wedding Announcement
  • Save-the-Date Cards
  • Wedding Invitations
  • Thank-You Cards
  • Wedding Program
  • Place Cards
  • Seating arrangement
  • Welcome board
  • Menus
  • Favour labels
  • Other Invites:
  • Engagement Party
  • Shower
  • Bachelor/Bachelorette Party
  • Rehearsal Dinner
  • After Party
  • Post wedding brunch invitations

Check out our Questions to Ask about Stationary

Are they a good fit?

The stationery - especially the invitations - are the first impression the guests will get regarding the feel and look of the wedding so when looking at suppliers make sure they have the correct background and style to accommodate your needs. Also find out if they can supply you with all the stationery you will need from invites to menus to favour labels, etc.

Find out how long they have been in business and what their designing background is. If they only started recently or don’t have any formal training you don’t automatically have to write them off, keep in mind that talent is not necessarily something that can be taught.

Have a look at example of stationary they have done for other events, this will help you to determine if their style matches yours as well as give you a clear idea about the quality of their work - which isn’t always apparent when looking at an online gallery. You can also ask for a couple of references which you can use to find out if other couples were happy with their products as well as their service.

Something else to keep in mind is the customization they offer; it can range from using a template to fully designing the stationary from scratch. Important as well is to determine the printing process they use and if the print in-house or outsource it.

In-house printing usually has a quicker turnaround time (especially if they have to reprint due to an error) and often times works out cheaper. However, outsourcing may not necessarily be more expensive (the supplier often gets a discount) but can take a bit longer - it is however the more common route.

If you have a particular style in mind that will require special customization or printing you need to firstly make sure they can accommodate it but also make sure you have the time and budget for it.

Finer details

Ask them to walk you through the steps involved in a standard wedding stationery order, this will give you a solid idea of turnaround time on their end which will help establish deadlines on your end - finalizing guest list, gathering addresses, choosing the menu, etc.

Also make sure that they will send you proof to sign off before they do any printing, if they can assemble any stationery that involves multiple pieces and if they offer invitation addressing such as digitally printed addresses on the envelopes or calligraphy. Knowing the answers to these questions will help you to better arrange the finer details such as time management if you for example will have to assemble the multiple piece stationary yourself.

Lastly you need to make sure that they fall within your budget - how their pricing and payments work.

Useful Tips

  • When you receive the proof to sign off have at least two other people look at it, they may see something that you have missed.
  • Wedding invitations should be ordered 4 - 6 months prior to your wedding
  • Order extra save-the-dates and/or invitations with envelopes in case you have to add to the guest list or you make a mistake when assembling or addressing the envelopes.
  • Invitations should be sent out 6 - 8 weeks prior to your wedding.
  • With 4 - 6 weeks to go, consider all your other paper needs, such as ceremony programs, menu cards, and place cards
  • Save your sanity by numbering your RSVPs.
  • Components to consider for your Invitations:
    • Outer Envelope
    • Optional Inner Envelope
    • Optional Belly Band
    • Optional Envelope Liners
    • Invitation
    • Reception Card, if held at a different location than the ceremony
    • Directions/Map
    • RSVP envelopes (self-addressed stamped envelope)