Why DIY Isn't for Everyone
TL;DR Hire a pro to save time, money, and a whole lot of grief while getting the job done right and stress free!
You have been scoping out Pinterest on the daily, drooling over the picture perfect weddings and stunning stationery, and dreaming about your special day. Weddings can be expensive and you want to make the most of your budget, right? You might be able to pull it off and make nice invitations, and if you do, great!
Hear me out though—there is a certain skill set that comes along with creating wedding stationery. There are etiquette rules that should be followed, important wording distinctions and certain phrasing that is important to note, OR the ‘adults only’ event quandry—how on earth do you let your guests know without offending?!—just to name a few.
You manage to patch it together and get it fairly close… but disaster strikes. You forgot to include the ceremony time! Now you have to re-print, and pay for them all over again. The boxes of blanks from the craft store aren’t cheap, so now you’re waiting for another coupon, and you need to bring 6 friends to get enough.
Or, you were a go-getter and decided to create your own in a free cut and paste web app! But now what? You have to get these printed and the print shop says you need bleed and crop marks and your colours are off. What the heck is CMYK? Cue the frustration and frantic googling!
You really wanted those laser cut pockets, but where on earth do you get them? What kind of glue do you use to attach the invitations? You bought the wrong kind and now there are glue streaks on your invitations. You have more than 100 of them to assemble and not enough hours in the day! GAHHHHHHH!!! Hair pulling ensues.
Printed envelopes look amazing and you definitely want them, but your printer won’t take them and just keeps messing them up! Now you’ve wasted a quarter of them and you need more, but now you have to wait a week until they are back in stock and you just want to throw that printer out the window! &*#$%!!
I am going to let you in on a little secret…I was a DIYer!! I got fairly lucky… muddled my way through the craft store box and had a ‘good enough’ invite. It didn’t really match our theme because they are all pretty generic and they were acceptable, but certainly not special or unique. The printing ourselves was super frustrating and we went through a lot of waste. The wording? Well, we definitely didn’t consult any etiquette experts…oops! And those envelopes--bane of my existence!!!!
In life, they say 'you don’t know what you don’t know'. Back in 2012 when I got married, I was not yet a stationer. I had no idea that there was a certain way to tell your guests that your wedding was in a church, or that the wording can let your guests know what to wear! I definitely didn’t do the envelope addressing properly (I still cringe at what a hot mess that was to this day!!). In the years that followed, I learned that there was a lot to creating a professional, polished invitation. I learned where to get those special finishing touches, and the tips tricks to assembling things like envelope liners and pretty pocket folds. I did TONS of research before I even attempted my very first one and I am constantly learning new techniques and keeping up with innovations in print technology by attending graphic design trade shows. Honestly, a quality stationer is always learning. You’d be surprised how things can change over the years, and like most professions, we need to keep up our skills and education!
What are you getting at Liz? Get to the point! Ok, well, if you don’t have experience as a professional stationer, you probably don’t know the half of what goes into creating a custom invitation. Likely, you really don’t know how to put it all together into a beautiful creation that will wow your guests, but also set the tone for your big day. Do you know how many people show up to a wedding and realize that they are under-dressed or unprepared for what a classy event you had planned? Or that your ceremony is outdoors in the heat or cold and you forgot to give your guests a heads up? Invitations give your guests the information they need to show up on time, be dressed and prepared for the event to come, and even a guide to how swanky your party will be! Don’t leave them red-faced and unprepared because you didn’t clue them in! Don't get me started on the gifts that you *might* have gotten if people realized that this was a fancy place! ( I know this might sound a little gauche, but it is totally true! People often try to cover their own plate when they can, so if they know that it is going to be a fancy dinner with all the extras, they probably would have added a bit more to the envelope!)
There are so many reasons why DIYing invitations aren’t the best option. There might be other ways you can DIY, but invitations are best left to the pros! We know how to get them done right, and you can rest easy knowing that you will be well taken care of, have gorgeous, unique invitations and you don’t have to stress-or even fight!- about putting it all together. Time is money! If you let a pro take care of them for you, you can focus on the other things that need your attention, and have one less thing on your plate! So before you hit up your wedding party to help you glue and stuff, contact us at Liz Kotsamanes Designs to see how we can make your wedding stationery a stress-free experience!