Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Those Invites

Scene: A slick haired salesman in crocodile shoes approaches the readers computer screen. That Bride lags behind a bit out of shyness and apprehension surrounding the critical response.
*knock knock*
A seasoned wedding blog reader, the kind that stalks every blog and files away every beautiful idea comes to the computer screen.

Reader: "Hello?"

Salesman: "Special delivery, brought to you by That Bride, That Mother, and Elizabeth Anne Designs!"

Reader: "Oh, do come in. That Bride teased me with a little preview over a week ago, and I knew this day would be coming rather soon. I can't wait to have you show and tell me everything!"

Salesman: "Now before we begin, you should know that the Elizabeth Anne inspired prototype design was nearly perfect, but the overly ambitious That Bride realized halfway through that the only way to survive the experience was to accept that she was no DIY Diva. These invites stand as the classic example of a work produced through love, sweat, and tears and the only way to finish 275 of them was to accept the fact that she was NOT a design professional. The only way to make it was to accept the imperfection"

That Bride:"When I contacted Elizabeth Anne Designs (hereafter reffered to as EAD), about being my invitation design consultants I knew that I would be provided with many beautiful ideas and lots of wonderful inspiration but I realize now I overestimated my ability to execute the wonderful design. I wanted a button, a book, and a binding and somehow I made it all happen. I emailed back and forth many many times with EAD, until each piece of the invitation had a design. I (and my mom!) then took each of those pieces and tweaked them just a little bit using Photoshop and Illustrator to create exactly the look I was going for. The resulting design is a creation that could never be accredited to one, but would never have been possible without the help of all.

I'll let my friend, the slick haired salesman, take it from here. I couldn't bear to break this into 2 posts, so it's quite long!"

Salesman: "I'm going to be showing the components of two different types of invitations, one for those invited to the wedding in Seattle, and one for those invited to the hometown reception in Royal City. Both have the same base booklet, just slightly different inserts. Depending on the time that the invitation was mailed a guest could have received one of three types of calligraphy, or, saldy, a clear label affixed to their envelope. These different forms of addressing guests are in no way to be viewed as a form of favoritism, and it should be noted that all of the method switching was due to the brides absolute inability to write beautifully (or legibly).

Each invitee opened their envelope to find a button wrap, and the wedding quote. The quote was hand written by Laura Hooper, scanned in, and sent to That Bride as a file that could be used and reused throughout the wedding. Credit goes to EAD for suggesting having the quote handwritten and scanned.""

That Bride: "Each of the following booklet pages started out as an 8.5X11 sized sheet of paper, and each was cut down individually to A7 size using That Mother's fabulous new paper cutter."

Salesman: "That Bride will be doing a post on how these paper bands were individually ripped and glued by hand. Boxes of buttons were ordered off of ebay, and the all sorts of cream/gold/bronze buttons were set aside for glueing on the invitations. The post office charged 20 extra cents for non-machinable envelopes due to these buttons, bumping the cost of mailing them from 59 to 79 cents.

The three sheets of the booklet were sewn together on a home sewing machine. Once the settings were configured, it was actually quite easy to sew the three pages of different texture and thickness together.

The first page features an abstract, textured map of Europe with Poland slightly darkened and shadowed printed on vellum. That Mother created this map by taking a basic map of Poland and layering textures and the phrase "Are we not like two volumes of the same book" in many different fonts across it.

Turn the page to find the names of the bride and groom above the phrase "For time and all eternity". This rose compass from istockphoto was just the right touch to add to the slight vintage travel theme."

That Bride: "The compass is a complete compass, I just had to remove That Groom's name for privacy's sake :)"

Salesman: "The middle of the book contains the actual announcement, and the full names of both the bride and groom and their parents. Polish names include a lot of consonants, and many guests have asked how they are pronounced. That Bride is still practicing her new last name out loud several times a day. The swirly embelishments were designed by EAD, and really helped to tie several of the invitation pieces together.

It is no problem for us to announce the marriage to hundreds of people when only 35 are invited, as most people we know are familiar with the fact that a temple reccomend is necessary to enter into the temple. Those guests who are reccomend holders know that a personal invitation from the bride and groom will be forthcoming if they are invited to witness the event.

On the next page guests will find information regarding the time, date, and location of the hometown reception. The wording "tented reception" was chosen very carefully, as it was important for guest to realize that this was being held outside in the middle of October, and although the tent will be heated, it is important that they dress appropriately.

The last page revealed another textured map, this one of the western United States with Washington state slightly darkened and shadowed. It's a subtle theme, but a wonderful nod towards the fact that these two cultures and families are coming together to experience this once in a lifetime event.

The back cover features a handmade pocketfold (yes, 275 pocketfolds were cut out, scored, folded, and glued by hand). This is where the two invitations diverged in design."

Salesman: "Later today.......the inserts.


Guilty Secret said...

I love the subtle way you highlighted the merging of two families / cultures.

Skywalker said...

I swear looking at these pictures make feel guilty about my standard invites.

Very nice! am green with envy.

Kelly B said...

I LOVE your invitations! I can only imagine the time and attention to detail that you gave to these lovelies!

EthidiumBromide said...

Jenna, they look great and your hard work clearly paid off. See, I told you no matter how many other things you had going on in your life, somehow the invitations would get done! It's wedding magic! Congratulations! :)

AmyJean said...

Those are some truly awesome invitations!

GetMarried4Less/LadyT said...

my goodness. Jenna, these are stunning. truly. i am soooo happy for you!!!!!

i can't imagine what amazing comments you must be getting from your guests. i've heard from a few of mine that they think ours our lovely and unique (lol..they've not seen pocket fold invites before). one day, i'll actually sit down and post about mine.....until then i will live vicariously thru you!

Carol said...

WOW Jenna, those are gorgeous !!

Amy@Fiancé Meeting You Here said...

Brilliant! You must be SO happy with them!

Melissa said...

I love your invitations!

Amy said...

I'm blown away! And to make so many of them!! Wow. I especially love the scanned calligraphy idea. And the buttons. And the maps. Ok, all of it. I totally have recently-married planning envy syndrome :)

Tiffany said...

those are truly beautiful and unique. the sewn booklet is such a great detail.

east side bride said...

super cool :)

Anonymous said...

wowzers! they look fabulous!!

Tara said...

Wow! What beautiful and thoughtful invitations! They are just sooooo pretty. You must have some serious patience to have created these!

Jenna said...

ethidium-So much wedding magic has been happening!