Another month of wedding planning down! This past month, we didn’t have as many new developments as our first month wedding planning, but the details we did nail down were pretty big ones!
After we came back from booking The Pines Resort as our venue, we created our wedding website using The Knot. I researched several different companies that provided free wedding websites, and theirs was by far my favorite. Basically, it keeps everything in one place: your website, your wedding planning to-do list, your address book, and your RSVPs.
The online RSVP system was extremely important to me, as I wanted to save money (and trees) by passing on physical RSVP cards. The Knot provides an online form you can send your guests so that you can collect their contact information for the save the dates and invites, then saves the info in a large spreadsheet for you.
Once invites have gone out, guests can enter their name on the website to find their invite. From there, they can choose whether or not they will be attending, as well as their dinner choice from the drop down menu. If they have other guests in their party (+1s, family members, etc) they can RSVP for them at the same time. This is super handy considering a lot of the families we’re inviting have 3-4 people in their household, so that way they don’t each have to reply individually.
Speaking of RSVPs, one of the biggest things we checked off our list was designing our save the dates and invites, and getting them printed. It was really important to me when choosing a company that delivered quality at a fair price, and had designs that were truly unique and special enough for the occasion. I was so lucky to partner with Minted.com, and I can’t tell you how obsessed I am with our stationery!
Minted sources their designs from a global community of independent artists, so you’re not getting the typical cliche designs you’ve seen over and over again. They have so many beautiful designs to choose from, it was so hard (and time consuming) to go through them all… but we finally settled on the Cottonwood Foil-Pressed Save the Date Cards ($2.16 each) and the Fall in Love Foil-Pressed Wedding Invitations ($2.70 each).
I was drawn to both of these designs largely because of the foil detailing. It’s embossed onto their Signature paper stock (really thick with a creamy cotton texture) so it not only adds glamour but also texture to the card. They were also both very clean without too much distraction from the main focus— the wedding information— while still being super elegant. We printed information on the front and back for both the save the dates and invites, with information about room blocks as well as our wish for a child-free weekend. (Sorry, not sorry!)
Something that sets Minted apart from other stationery printers is their personal customization. They have a do-it-yourself customizer where you can tweak the text, fonts, and colors, but you can also write special instructions if you want something outside of the default settings changed. Once you order, they send you a digital proof which you can either approve, or ask the designer to tweak and send back for final approval. We went back and forth about three times before I finally approved the design, and I was relieved that they were so kind in helping me get it perfect.
I was extremely impressed with the fact that the cards came with envelopes in matching styles, and Minted offers free address printing on them! It will save us a ton of time, and in general looks a lot better than my tired handwriting would after I got through half of them, probably. We also chose to purchase their Skinny Wrap Labels for the formal invitations, which not only help seal the envelope but also contain our return address on them. A really nice touch that’s also functional!
I’m going to start packaging up the save the dates next week, and our guests should get them by the first week of March. I’m so excited for them to see the cards— they are TOTALLY fridge-worthy.
Finally, the other big development we’ve made over the last month is deciding on bridesmaids dresses… well, we haven’t quite decided on the actual dress, per se, but at least where they’re coming from!
I’m looking forward to partnering with Kennedy Blue, which is an online brand (also found at The Wedding Shoppe in Saint Paul, MN) that takes a really unique approach to bridesmaids dresses. They make tons of different styles, but in the same range of colors… which means your bridesmaids can match without having to choose the exact same dress. As someone who has a hard-to-please body type myself, it was really important to me that my maids wear something they’re comfortable in while still looking like part of the group. Kennedy Blue lets them do just that, and at pretty reasonable prices!
Now the real novelty of Kennedy Blue is that they have an at-home try on service for their dresses. You can choose three dresses to be sent to your bridesmaids to keep for three days so they can try them on and decide which ones they— and more importantly, you— like best. This try-before-you-buy approach takes the risk out of buying online. They take care of all the logistics, including the return label once your try-on time is up. Once you’ve settled on your favorite, you can purchase at any time online and they’ll send you a fresh dress in your size and color choice. Plus, all try on orders come with a promo code of 10% off your dress order!
These are some of the dresses we’re considering for the girls. We’ve finalized the color, called Bordeaux, which they sent me a swatch of to see in person (another great service they offer!). Once we get the at home try on process going, I’ll definitely share the experience since I think it’s such a convenient and unique take on this part of wedding planning. Plus… huge spoiler alert… they also make wedding gowns, and it’s official: I’m wearing one of theirs for the big day. SQUEE!!!
ALSO READ: Wedding Planning Month 1: Venue, Photographer & Registry
As for our official checklist, we didn’t get too much else squared away but I feel so good about what we accomplished over the past month. Here’s what we have left:
Hotel Room Blocks
Rehearsal Diner Venue
Save the Dates + Invites
What was your favorite part of wedding planning?
How exciting! I love the foil detailing on the cards, and the colour of the bridesmaid gowns.
I’m excited for your wedding. I am liking what I see on your to do lists. Are you doing this all yourself? Bravo for that
I sure am! But of course, Adam is doing a great deal to help. He packed up all the cards and added the stamps lol!
Kennedy Blue sounds great! My bridesmaids all wore deep sapphire blue, but I let them choose the style. their deep sapphire blue matched the skirt for my dress.
Your invites are beautiful. The online dress service is fabulous!!!!
Thanks so much, Cindy! I absolutely love how they turned out.
You are so lucky to be able to partner with these great brands. I think the online invitation sites are taking over. I had friends who used to sell invites as a home business but have stopped because you can find so much more now at Minted and Paperless Post. What fun you are having.
Yes, there are so many resources now for quality and unique invites!
I love all of your invitations! They are so modern and attractive. My step-daughter got married a few months ago, and her bridesmaids also wore Bordeaux. The dresses were essentially the same below the bodice but had different neck or top treatments. They all looked great. So fun to follow your plans!
I think it’s such a beautiful rich color and will look great contrasting with my white dress!