Save the Date Cards? Save your money!Save the date cards are often considered unnecessary these days. Invitations alone can cost enough after you hire a designer or pick a style, have them printed, purchase your postage (times 2), etc. Unless you have a lot of out-of-town guests coming, or are getting married on a holiday weekend, or having a destination wedding save the date cards aren’t necessary (and are a waste of paper). If you are sending save the date cards however they should be sent six months to one year before your wedding. If you are on a tight budget (as most brides are) then you this is where you can save some money.
Shop around…and around some moreLarger stores offer a wide variety of standard styles that can be less expensive than smaller, specialized shops. Upscale shops have unusual papers and designs and are always more expensive. Keep in mind that invitations, while pretty and meaningful to you, will likely be discarded after your wedding! If you have a particular style in mind (a friend of mine had her and her husband-to-be’s baby pictures on their invitation) you might want to seek out a designer who can put together a custom one-of-a kind invitation for you. Be careful though because this can also be expensive.
PostageDon't forget to consider postage costs for RSVP cards and inserts as well as the invitation itself when you map out what you can spend on stationary. When picking your invitation (whether making your own or purchasing them) take them to the post office and have them weighed to make sure they are within your postage budget. You do not want invitations to be returned as this is an unnecessary source of stress – and brides just don’t need that!
Time to invite your guestInvitations should go out six to twelve weeks before your wedding day. Your vendors will likely have deadlines for final numbers, so use this as a guide. If you are getting married in the high season (July and August) the sooner you sent them out, the better.
Stationary Money Saving Tips:
- Don’t send save-the-date cards unless these are included in your invitation package (you will have to pay for the card, the envelope, and the postage)
- Instead of using an inner envelope for reply cards use a postcard style reply card
- Put information on both sides of the inner card (e.g., map and hotel information, etc.)
- Skip the ceremony program
- Make your own invitations, table numbers, place cards/name cards. People always appreciate the personal touch…and a wedding is personal so it’s okay to make your own stuff!
Invitation ChecklistPick and choose the things that suit your style and budget
- Include the date, time and location of the ceremony and reception – Search Google for some examples for invitation wording
- Outer envelope for invitation
- Inner (unsealed) envelope (if using) OR postcard reply card
- Reply card
- Parking-arrangement card (if using)
- Hotel information
- Save-the-date cards
- Ceremony program
- Place card
- Escort card
- Table numbers
- Menu cards
- At-home cards