If you just got engaged and you’re on to the wedding planning bit I’ll bet you did the one thing I would tell any newly engaged couple not to do. I’ll bet you jumped on Pinterest. Don’t do it! And here’s why. While Pinterest is a great place to get inspiration and flesh out your ideas once you understand the spirit and style of your wedding day, it’s the worst possible place to go before you have a clue where you want to end up.
Otherwise there’s a chance you’ll find yourself in an anxiety inducing rabbit hole of endless wedding trends and completely lose track of what’s really important to you both in the first place.
As someone who has been in the wedding industry long enough to see it all, here’s my advice.
Put your smart phone (and any other distractions) down and take a moment to envision the day.
Not the bridesmaids dress colors, or the theme, or what the bouquet will look like or really even the actual venue. Just think about how it feels and make that feeling the compass by which you steer all other planning.
Have you done it?
Alright, now to the planning.
If you’re just starting out, you can take a look at my Wedding Planning Guide just to get a few concrete ideas.
BUT, before you do that, and honestly before you even pick a date, let’s talk wedding invitations.
During my ten year stint in graphic design and fine art I learned pretty quickly how to wade through a mass of different creative directions and inspirations and land on one simple style that will best tell a story.
So once you understand how your wedding feels and what your story is as a couple, next is to choose the design that feels most true to the wedding you envisioned. Is it a bright exuberant party packed to the gills with good people and music and delicious food? Is it a black tie event in dazzling glamour and everything just so? Is it a casual mountain elopement with stunning vistas beyond and your ten most favorite people gathered around to witness your love and commitment to this incredible person?
Now, I hope you’re still avoiding Pinterest at this point because here’s my next suggestion.
You may not have a date, a dress or a wedding planner yet, but scrolling through wedding invitations is a quick and easy way to get to what you do and do not like in color and style.
Your invitations are the perfect place to start when it comes to communicating who you are as a couple. After all, it’s the first bit of your wedding styling that your friends and family will see. Remember while you look that this day you want to create is, in its essence, simply a day to celebrate you together. I love getting to know the couples I work with because they are all so different and so unique. And this uniqueness always informs the floral decor I create in the end.
The possibilities are surprisingly endless. From mountaineering wildlife experts who met in college to globe trotting world travelers to the most lovely ballroom dance partners, the most successful weddings I’ve had the pleasure of decorating become the perfect culmination, not of some picture perfect wedding fantasy, but of the spirit of these two beautiful people together.
While there are some really exceptional hand crafted wedding invitations out there to choose from, you may find that your invitations are a place where you’d like to keep things simple. Meet Basic Invite, a digitally printed wedding invitation company with a huge and beautiful selection of designs (and I am picky when it comes to visual appeal), high quality printing and fast turnaround.
When Basic Invite approached me wondering if I might like to look at some samples and recommend them to my couples, my first question of course was about sustainability. Much to my delight, I learned early on that several of their paper invites are printed on FSC certified paper and their Smooth-Coated or Semi-Gloss paper is 50% recycled (40% pre-consumer and 10% post consumer). Not a bad option for reducing your carbon footprint by just a bit in the grand wedding planning scheme.
What’s more, they have so many designs to choose from, I had no trouble at all picking at least five that I thought would appeal to my couples who tend to prefer the rustic, outdoors or botanical feel. AND you can order samples of your most favorite with all your own information and tweaks so you can see them, hold them, coo over them IRL.
While I felt like there were plenty of beautiful options out of the box at Basic Invite, if you want a more hands-on approach and you’re feeling creative, once you select a design you can change the color of each element on the card to over 180 different options plus choose from 40 different peel and seal envelope colors (no one choking on noxious envelope glue here). There are not a lot of other online invitation companies that will allow you this much choice.
Throughout any of my wedding planning articles the theme is always to first keep it simple and to get help just about whenever and wherever you can.
Here’s where a few additional services come in handy with Basic Invite. Their free address collection service allows you a shareable link you can use to collect addresses and get free envelope printing. So much easier than chasing addresses and keeping endless spreadsheets.
Additionally, a free wedding website that is completely customizable keeps your invite and wedding style a through-line for your guests and allows you to instantly upload and share additional wedding details, pictures and a map of directions with your guests (extra helpful for those of you who chose a wedding locale up a complicated mountain pass).
I had such a lovely time putting together these little flat lays for you that I’m a new fan of these invitations. Starting as low as $1 per card, they are the best I can find for both quality and budget and I will be recommending them to my couples moving forward. I highly recommend them to you.
100% Locally Grown.
Foraged and local flora.
NEW for the 2019 wedding season, opt for a completely locally sourced wedding including foraged seasonal greenery and local sustainably grown flowers and get 10% off your wedding floral package. Or opt for a Wild Bouquet add-on to your traditional floral package.
Seasonally foraged and locally sourced for just $175.
*With purchase of $500 or more in wedding flora.