Saturday, 7 September 2013

Wedding Series! #1 - Save the Dates

Sooo, we have 314 days until our wedding and I thought be would be a good time to start blogging about the preparations.
We've booked most of the big stuff now. Well I say that but I have no DRESS, we have no cars or bridesmaids dresses. And we hadn't sorted out stationary. Plus another load of stuff making a list longer than both arms put together.

Everyone's first question when I see them has become "so how's the wedding planning going?!". Errm. Sloooowly!

One thing we have done lately is choose and send our save the dates. As our wedding is on a Friday and in peak holiday season we decided it might be a good idea to give everyone plenty of warning. I should say first off that I'm in no way a DIY person and without a significant amount of  help (ie someone doing it for me while I provided brews) the products of my labour would not have been fit for human consumption.

Throughout the process of choosing the save the dates I established that I am almost entirely incapable of making a decision. We spent hour after hour scouring the Internet for ideas. At one point Adam, my mum and I were all sat with a laptop on our knee at my parents' house searching at the same time and my best friend was whatsapp-ing me pictures.  Eventually, and just before my family were driven to murder, I made a decision. The save the dates arrived 2 days later and have since been sent. Most of them anyway.

I thought I'd show you some of the ideas we had and where you can buy them.

Wooden Save the Dates

Early in my planning I decided I really wanted people to be able to keep the save the date for reference until next July and the best way of doing this was a magnet or something wooden. These were my favourites that we found from this seller on Etsy, but the practicalities of postage and the fact they were slightly smaller that I'd have liked, meant we didn't go with them.
They are reasonably priced at £65.78 for 75 though.

Tea towels 

I came across these in a wedding magazine, thought they were a tad excessive and showed Adam expecting him to raise a mocking eyebrow at our friends and family drying their dishes with our tea towel for the next 11 months.
To my complete surprise Adam loved them. Slightly less so when he saw the price, which is ludicrous, but he really liked the idea. These definitely got a mixed reaction from my family but the consensus was they spending over £200 on tea towels was a no-go.

So we came back to the magnet idea. I found some that were okay on etsy and not on the high street but again they were super expensive at £2.65 each and I didn't love them.
I think I went about my search for save the dates in the same way people go about shopping for their wedding dress: hoping to know what they've found the one and possibly to begin weeping. This was never going to happen but any real lack of feelings towards the options I found really delayed the process.

Whilst perusing found personalised balloons from Not on the High Street that are attached to a piece of card and then blown up by the recipient revealing the text with our names and wedding date. For the number we needed it was going to cost £188, which I couldn't justify for a few balloons. Considering that save the dates are meant to be kept as a reminder of the date until the invites go out a couple of months before the wedding, a balloon that lasts 2 days isn't much good really anyway.
There's also the issue that I cringe when I see balloons at weddings; ick. So I wouldn't want anyone to think we are 'balloon people'. Adam said I was crazy.

Traditional invites
Unable to agree on anything within 'budget' - there was no budget at such, we just wanted to spend a sensible amount - we then turned to more traditional save the dates - post cards and cards.
I loved flicking through all the beautiful designs on Not on the High Street and Etsy and there was one design (see below) I was sosososo close to choosing. But I decided that ultimately it was one sheet of card and I couldn't justify the price, although it was really pretty.

My mum then brought me back to the very first design I'd ever looked at, which was on Vistaprint. The colour of pink matched our theme and had a pretty little design that we thought was a bit more fun than the rose one. I'd discarded this one originally because I thought the text was too small and squashed to one side. Then then discovered that Vistaprint allows you to move everything around, change fonts and sizes and they'll print it to your specifications. 2 hours of tinkering later we were happy with the result. We added the linen finish paper, chose to have the coloured back rather than the plain back, ordered matching stickers for the envelopes and finally made the order.

A relief for all concerned.

(this was the basic template for our save the dates but we changed it around quite a lot and made the text much bigger)

2 days later the save the dates arrived, which was about a week faster than the estimated delivery. The quality was lovely and they'd been printed just as we'd altered them.
I was so happy with them and everyone has commented on how pretty they are.
Best of all we only paid £43 altogether including the more expensive card, coloured back, envelopes and matching stickers.

I'd definitely recommend Vistaprint: they're so reasonably priced, you can faff around with the layout and they are super quick in delivering. 

I'd advise brides to just to keep it simple and not keep second guessing your choices. Save the dates are more of a practicality than anything so there's really no need to spend a small fortune; no one will be devastated not to receive something out of the ordinary and in my experience people are just excited for the wedding!

Have you used Vistaprint for anything? Where did you get your wedding save the dates from?



  1. I love Vistaprint... such a good website and reasonably priced. I've ordered all sorts from them and think whilst there are some fabulous and fun ideas for Save the Dates but I know I'd rather spend the money on the things I'll see at the wedding than something that recipients might look at and then discard!!


    1. It's amazing isn't it?! I couldn't believe how inexpensive their stuff is! They were really good quality too, which I was worried about cos I hate cheap card haha!
      Thats so true! Although I'm trying to scale back wedding sttu too and think rather than spend ££££ on things like canapes and photobooths that's money we could spend on honeymoon :)