15 Mar SUPPLIER SQUAD ~ Olive & Millicent ~ Wedding Stationery
Over the years’ I have worked with some amazing suppliers in the wedding and events industry and one of those suppliers is Katy, of Olive & Millicent. Katy specialises in elegant watercolour invitations and paper goods and is inspired by all things botanical.
Her house collection designs are inspired by some of her favourite couples in classic literature- how romantic is that?! And with a nod to all things botanical, each design is hand painted before being scanned and edited digitally to create a wedding stationery collection suitable for a range of themes and seasons.
Katy also works on bespoke collections for couples looking for something unique to match their theming and colour schemes.
When I work with a couple, stationery is such an important part in the styling and design process. The pre-wedding stationery sets the tone for the wedding, giving the guests an insight of what’s to come and the on-the-day stationery helps cohesively pull a styling plan together. But for a lot of couples who don’t have a wedding planner, it’s hard to know where to start with the stationery plans. And that is where this wonderful of advice from Katy comes in useful!
Katy… over to you…
A Beginner’s Guide to Wedding Stationery
by Katy, Olive & Millicent
The question has been popped, the venue and photographer have been booked and your Pinterest board is bursting with inspiration. One of the next things on your never ending to-do list will of course be stationery.
Your stationery is the very first glimpse your guests get of your wedding and will completely set the tone for the day. It’s also one of the few elements you’ll get to treasure long after the day is over and can serve as a wonderful keepsake for your guests too!
The world of wedding stationery can seem a little overwhelming at first, so I thought I’d come up with a brief guide to help you with all things paper.
SAVE THE DATES
If you want a more formal way of announcing your wedding plans to your prospective guests, save the date cards can be a wonderful way to do so. You can plan to send these out as soon as you have your date secured at your venue, just so your loved ones know to keep the date free for you.
They’re a particularly good idea if you’ve got guests that have to travel a long distance for your day, if you’re having a destination wedding or if you’re getting married on a Bank Holiday weekend.
The beauty of save the dates is that they can be kept very simple. The only information you really need is your names, wedding date and possibly the location.
While they can be a lovely addition to your planning journey, you certainly shouldn’t feel as though you have to send them out, especially if you’d rather save your budget for more fancy invitations or day stationery.
When to send them out: As soon as you’ve booked your venue or 10-12 months before the wedding.
When to order*: For a bespoke design, aim to get in touch with a stationer at least 2 months before you need to post them. For a house collection or ‘off the peg’ design, try to order at least 3-4 weeks before you need them.
*Please note that these timings are based on my own lead times and that other stationers may require more or less time to book you in and process your order.
If save the dates are the appetiser, your invitations are the main event and therefore the most important piece of stationery you’ll order for your wedding.
By the time you’re ready to order your invitations, you’ll definitely have a clearer picture in terms of your colours and overall look of your wedding. It’s always a nice idea to feature these elements in your stationery design, so that everything can be coherent. In terms of wording, your invitations should include the key details of your day – your names, the date, time, location(s), along with any other helpful information you feel your guests will need.
If you’re keeping things quite simple, an invitation on its own may suit you perfectly. But if you’d like something a little more traditional, you can opt to have additional cards for your RSVPs and any extra details (transport, accommodation, gifts etc…).
If you’re want to go all out, lots of stationers (myself included) will also offer optional extras such as bespoke wax seals, envelope liners and calligraphy addressing for the ultimate finishing touch.
When to send them out: 3-6 months before the wedding is thought to be standard but you can send them out earlier if you’re not sending save the dates or are having a destination wedding.
When to order: For a bespoke design, you need to get in touch as early as possible (at least 3 months before you need to send them), as most designers will only take on a limited number at a time and generally book up pretty quickly. For house collection designs, get booked in at least 4 weeks before you need them.
ON THE DAY STATIONERY
As the title suggest, these items are for your wedding day itself and while you may not need all of them, it’s always good to know what’s available, just in case.
ORDER OF SERVICE
If you’re having a religious ceremony, you’ll probably be needing an order of service for your guests to give them the run down of everything. They usually include readings, hymns and prayers, among other key ceremony details. Even if you’re not having a religious ceremony, they can certainly be handy to have, especially if you have guests that are hard of hearing. They also make a wonderful keepsake!
These come in all shapes and sizes but have a very important role to play. Whether you decide to have a large format design, or opt for separate cards that can be hung or displayed creatively, you’ll need some way of informing your guests where they have to sit.
When it comes to table stationery, there really are so many possibilities. The most popular items are usually table numbers (or names), menus and place cards. But I’ve even had one couple come up with a quiz for their guests, which was a really fun idea!
I love it when couples get creative with their table stationery, whether it be table names inspired by your favourite films, or place cards made with sea glass, it’s these little touches that make your wedding truly unique.
When to order: You need to be quite organised with day stationery, so I usually recommend getting everything ordered at least 8 weeks before your day, just so everything can be designed, printed and posted in plenty of time before the wedding.
Hopefully this has answered some of your questions about the world of wedding paper. It is however worth noting that the the timings I’ve recommended are based on a ‘usual’ year and with the ongoing pandemic, even 2021 is looking to be a little different to usual so please don’t worry if you’re a little behind schedule with your invitations etc… we’re all muddling through this together.
A huge thank you to Katy for taking the time to write this post for my supplier squad blog series!
If you have any questions for Katy or would be interested in looking at using her for your wedding, get in touch here…