Designing a bespoke wedding invitation suite: A look behind the scenes

Let me ask you something. Which question do you think I hear most often from couples who consider working with me?

"Katha, why is your work so amazing?"

Aww. You're very sweet but no, that's not it (although that's some seriously epic goal).

It's this question... "How does it work?" Usually closely followed by "Where do we even start?"

Creating a wedding invitation suite from scratch may seem like a long and complicated process but I can assure you it is not. Yes, it takes a few weeks to come up with a bespoke design that truly represents the two of you, but the way there is filled with excitement and fun. Promise.

To remove all your doubts, I've decided to pull back the curtains and show you how straightforward the process of designing a bespoke wedding invitation suite actually is so you can feel confident about making this once-in-a-lifetime investment.

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Before we get started, please know that I’m specifically talking about my process. Other stationery designers might do things differently (or the same). Our work is shaped by many different couples over the years and we all have to find our own ways of doing things efficiently.


The magic word is process, which doesn't sound very wedding-like at all, does it? But it makes all the difference despite stirring up images of Excel spreadsheets and advanced formulas. (Although I’ve heard crazy rumours that some people get VERY excited about spreadsheets.)

Think of it another way then: designing your wedding stationery is like going on a journey with me as your tour guide. It’s my job to lead you through it in the most pleasant and stress-free way possible and point out all the great sights along the way. That doesn’t sound so bad, does it?

Now let’s dive into the details:

 

STEP 1:

You’ve stumbled upon my work on Instagram or Pinterest and fell head over heels in love with my mad skills. (Can't say I blame you.

Now, to get in touch you can send me a digital love note or go ahead and book a chat.

STEP 2:

Working on your wedding stationery is a big deal so we are going on a (Skype) date to get to know each other better. You can ask me anything you like to help you decide if we are the right fit for each other. 

This is crucial since we’ll be working very closely together for a few months. We don’t have to become best friends (although I’m good with that too) but a few sparks need to fly. We need to feel comfortable talking to each other openly and honestly.

We‘ll also briefly discuss your budget. Money talk might not come easily to you, but it is important that I know what you can afford and if and how I can help you make your ideas come true.

STEP 3:

Ever heard of adulting? That’s what we’re going to do next (if we’ve decided to work together that is). We’ll sign a contract, and you’ll pay the deposit, which secures your spot in my schedule.

STEP 4:

Homework. (Now there’s a word you didn’t think you’ll ever hear again, right?) Don’t worry though. I promise you’ll love it. No algebra (ugh), only some questions about the two of you and a secret Pinterest board full of your brightest ideas to get our journey started.

Many couples are a bit confused because they expect me to dive right into the design phase and start sketching out ideas. But creating a meaningful wedding invitation that is a true reflection of who you are as a couple takes care, and a good amount of research.

 

I honestly believe that getting to know the two of you, your story, your ideas and wishes is the most important stage of the entire process.

 

Once you’ve completed your homework we have another Skype chat. We talk about your vision for your invitations, look at your secret Pinterest board and discover what you like and don’t like… and if you’re still a bit unsure about which direction to take? Don’t worry, I’ll help you figure it out.

At this stage, we’ll also discuss your budget in more detail to establish what creative possibilities are available to us.

STEP 5:

Next, you’ll put up your feet and let me do what I do best. Within two weeks I’ll present you with the first draft of your wedding invitation (as well as some guidelines on how to proceed and give feedback).

Together we’ll refine your invitation design as well as any accompanying stationery pieces such as a reply card or a map until it looks and feels oh so good. Wondering how you can tell when your invitation suite is finished? You'll know for sure by the excitement in your voices, the big grin on your faces and the butterflies in your tummies. (Very scientific, isn’t it?)

STEP 6:

While you proof-read the life out of all the beautiful stationery pieces we’ve created, I’ll speak in more detail with the lovely people who’ll help us bring them to life (most definitely the printer, but we may need the help of other people too).

Next, you’ll sign off on the design, settle all your bills, and then I’ll prepare and send everything to print.

Production time varies from project to project, but I'll give you an estimate upfront and then keep you updated until your beautiful invitations are ready to ship.

STEP 7:

Happy tears.

Once you’ve recovered you’ll mail the invitations and wait for your friends and family to compliment your fabulous taste and r.s.v.p. with a very excited "Heck Yes!".

STEP 8:

This step only happens for one of two reasons. You've decided to have a wedding website, which I’ll work on as soon as we’re done with the invitation suite or you have chosen to add stationery items such as a menu, a program or a seating chart to your invitation suite. Menus and guest lists are usually not fully confirmed until much closer to the wedding so we’ll have to wait until this information is available.


And there you go... the process of designing a bespoke wedding invitation suite. Not so scary after all, eh?

Now that you know how easy and straightforward the process is, do you feel more comfortable and confident to invest in a bespoke invitation suite for your wedding? Let me know your thoughts in the comments.


And last but not least, in the next post I will be digging a little deeper and talk about some of the most common mistakes when designing a bespoke wedding invitation suite. Follow me on Bloglovin for fast and easy access to all new posts.

And don’t forget to share this with a friend who’ll find it as helpful as you did. It would mean the world to me.


Thank you for reading.