Custom stationery is so much more than just pretty paper – it’s one of the first introductions of your established married couple style you allow guests to see, as well as a precursor for what’s to come on your wedding day. Whether you choose to creatively play up details about the day or include personal touches for some sentimental flair, custom stationery goes the extra mile! There are so many reasons to choose local over online (sorry Shutterfly), and pro wedding calligrapher and stationer Bethany Powell of Bethany’s Letter Shop says it best in this article where she talks the importance of having a professional create your custom stationery for the big day! Read as she takes us through her couples’ consultation process, why you should absolutely opt for personalization, plus ideas for your own invitation suite, down below!
(guest post by Bethany Powell of Bethany’s Letter Shop)
Photo // MaggShots Photography
Why Design a Custom Invitation?
It’s the most unique way to showcase your love story through paper. You’re getting a one-of-a-kind piece of art that has elements of you as a couple, like where you met, your favorite activity together, or an illustration of your venue. What’s not to love about that?!
Every invitation suite I design is completely unique to the couple. There will be elements that may look similar like my style of illustrating and style of calligraphy, but ultimately your invitation suite is completely custom to you and your love story.
The Process of Creating a Personalized Invitation Suite
I always get to know my couples before even starting on their designs. I want to know where they’re from, what they like to do together, where they’ve traveled together, if they have any children or pets, etc. etc. The beautiful and unique details I find out about their story help spur on my creativity and ultimately little pieces of their story make it into their design in the most special ways! It’s my goal for their invitation suite to end up on all of their guests’ refrigerators as soon as they open them.
The couple is as involved as they want to be! After getting to know them, I send them an initial sketch and mood board to show them all of my ideas. After they’ve approved the sketch and mood board, they get three digital design rounds in order to make sure they love their final suite! Throughout the process, they’ll have opportunities to make comments and suggestions. If you have no idea what you’re wanting and the idea of helping design something scares you, great! If you want to be more involved and have lots of design ideas, that’s great too!
Calligraphed Envelopes Make a Difference
Just imagine the excitement of your guests getting an envelope in the mail with their names in beautiful calligraphy. I mean, who doesn’t want that?! It’s the first thing your guests are going to see and will ultimately get them excited about what’s to come on the wedding day! I’m also a huge advocate of anything that’s hand-created because so much is digital nowadays. It’s so special to hold something that a lot of love and time went into making.
Beyond the Invitation Suite
One of the beautiful things about custom stationery is just that. They’re custom! You can have inserts with maps and details about the big day, RSVP cards for your guests to mail back to you, and even envelope liners with custom illustrations! It may seem overwhelming, but once I’ve gotten to know you and what you’re looking for, I always make suggestions of what I think will be the best fit for you and your stationery needs. Beyond the invitation suite, I love to pull in elements from your suite into place cards, signage, menus and programs. It creates a sense of cohesiveness to your special day!
My favorite invitation suite to design was for my first client who entrusted me to do literally everything for her suite (pictured). I was able to design an invitation, RSVP card, details card, envelope liner with an illustration of their venue and calligraphed inner and outer envelopes. Since then, I’ve been able to do many other suites like this. But because it was my first, I was so incredibly proud of the outcome, and I believe it was the bridge that led me to where I am today.