Since we're both artists, we knew the invitations and other paper products would be something we would want to make ourselves. Some people who saw me working on these at work thought I was crazy for hand coloring each one, but I just loved the idea that each guest would receive a piece I had worked on individually. Not that I would necessarily call these art, but I love the whole "artist's touch" feeling you get with original art, and I wanted to share that with our guests in my own way.
If you recall, I was originally hoping to work on these in December and have them mailed after the holidays, but I got myself all stressed out trying to plan how the Save the Dates would match the invitations and somehow be a perfect representation of "us" and our wedding... and so I got stuck and they didn't get made. Then I read the A Practical Wedding book (definitely check out their blog if you haven't found it yet--I read it daily now), and it totally relaxed all the planning stress I didn't realize I was building up. After that I decided that we should just make Save the Dates that we like and think are pretty, because that is definitely enough. Of course they did still end up taking a good amount of work (so so much coloring), but that's the fun part for me!
Here's how all went down:
-this paper (perforated 8.5x11 linen paper, has great texture and works in the printer easily): $12.60 total including shipping
-this handmade crystal stamp: $16 total
-two stamp pads from Michaels: about $5
-a couple colored pencils (adding to the ones I already had to make our wedding color palette): about $4
Grand Total: $37.60 for about 60 totally custom Save the Dates (with some blank paper left over, to be used later for RSVP cards - and the rest of the materials can be used for a long time to come) not including postage, which will be around $20
What we did:
First we designed the layout of all the text for our double sided postcards in Photoshop. We downloaded this font (Mathlete) from Font Squirrel (great website for cool free fonts), and used it for almost all the text on the Save the Dates and as an accent on the website. I used a couple other fonts already on the computer for the script "the" and the ampersand, and I played around with the different weights and styles of Mathlete to mix it up for the text on the back.
After a few test runs with normal paper, we printed them with Chris's nice inkjet printer, which was surprisingly quick and easy. Then I did a bit of experimenting with the materials on the normal paper prints before moving onto the final paper.
I brought them to work with me and spent all my spare time stamping and coloring. They were all complete after two shifts! This picture (and the next few) shows the progression I followed for each page of postcards:
1. stamp black/grey shape, then blue shape (we did several different formations of the pair to keep it interesting)
2. color in the triangles randomly (aiming for a good spread of colors)
3. shade a circle of aqua over the "the"
1. smoothly color rounded shapes of peach and aqua over the "Berkeley, CA" and "August 18 2013"
2. fill in the ampersand in gold
3. loosely color darker aqua over "We're getting married!" so it has a more scribbly texture
Done! It definitely took a good amount of time and patience, and I was starting to feel a little cross-eyed after repeatedly coloring in those shapes for hours on end, but it was worth it for me.
I think they came out to be pretty cool and artsy, just like us :)
What do you think? Have you DIY-ed invitations or Save the Dates before? Any tips for keeping the wedding planning stress monsters at bay?