Category Archives: invitations

Map Maker, Map Maker, Make Me…

A map! Or two or three.

So on a 13 hour flight you have a few options. You can watch 7 movies, listen to one of 12 pre-programmed airline radio stations repeat the one hour playlist 13 times, play a few thousand rounds of video games, or make maps for your wedding guests.

What would you choose?

Before my NZ-LAX flight I went on mapquest and downloaded some maps that I thought would be useful to our guests. Then I did a little MS Word artistry at 30,000 feet and this is what I came up with.

A far far away map.

A bit more detailed map.

And a very detailed map.
The process was fairly simple, if a bit time consuming. But like I said, I had some time to kill. First I took a screenshot of the mapquest map (on a PC you could use the “print screen” button) and then inserted the image as a picture into a word document. I then traced the roads that I wanted with the line drawing tool, labeled them with text boxes, and labeled important points of interest. I then deleted the original map and added a rectangle behind the lines and filled it with a texture I liked.

And now I have three maps to put on our wedding website. I don’t know that they’re the absolute most useful maps, but they sure are pretty.

Since You Asked

When I first wrote about our decision to do e-vites and then posted the final product many of you asked what we would do for relatives that didn’t have email. It’s not super glamorous, but I thought I’d take a minute to show you the seven snail mail invitations that went out.

Yep, that’s right. Seven. Out of 200 invited guests. Turns out our families are all pretty email savvy. The five paper invites I absolutely needed to send out went to my paternal grandparents, a great aunt on my mom’s side, my maternal great grandmother, long-time family friends of Mr. Veggie, and my dad (he has email, but doesn’t really have a good handle on the internet yet). Then once I got going I thought that Mr. Veggie’s parents and my mom and stepdad would probably like to have a paper invite too, so I made each of them a set to keep.

A warning: we spent lots of time and energy on our e-vites so, I have to admit that I didn’t have much remaining enthusiasm for the paper invitations. These are definitely low-quality, low effort paper invites (but grandmas and grandpas wont care, right?). And really, in the end I think they turned out kind of pretty, considering I didn’t actually buy any supplies and just used what was laying around Veggie Sister Kale’s house (my U.S. home for the summer).

Here’s a step by step tutorial on how I made these fabulous-impromptu-home made paper invites:

Step 1: Print out e-vite onto cardstock.
Step 2: Try to use Veggie Sister Kale’s rotary cutter.
Step 3: Fail at rotary cutting.
Step 4: Allow Veggie Sister Kale to take over rotary cutting and watch her complete the task about 100 times faster and better than I could.

Veggie Sister Kale workin’ the rotary cutter in her PJ’s. Aww yeah.

Step 5: Ponder why the craft gene seems to be absent from my DNA.
Step 6: Print out engagement photos to add in the envelope. Grammies do love photos. Cardstock + home printer= bad quality pictures. Grammies wont mind, right?
Step 7: Dig through Veggie Sister Kale’s craft room to find envelopes. Hmm… red or green?
Step 8: Green.

Step 9: Tie with grosgrain and stuff into green envelopes. Lick and Seal.
Step 10: Call Veggie Mamma for addresses.
Step 11: Realize it would have been much easier to address the envelopes before they were stuffed.
Step 12: Have your hopes dashed when you find an empty packet of beautiful king and queen stamps in the junk drawer, and hope no one notices the Christmas stamps you are forced to use by your strong desire not to have to bring a two and three year old to the post office.

A Thought: When I am married will I finally be grown up enough to have things like a craft room and a complete list of family addresses?
Probably not.

So there’s the quick and dirty low down on the paper invites. We also assigned an internet savvy friend or relative to set up a lunch date with each of the paper invite recipients to show them the e-vite, video, and website. This way they wont miss out on the full experience and will get to have a lunch date with someone fun. I think this will all work out really well. Worst comes to worst, I can always give them a call to make sure that they received their snail mail.

By the way, apologies for not posting more for the past two weeks. I arrived in the U.S. one week ago today and have been quite busy making cupcakes, singing songs, tickling, and giving raspberries to bellies. Life is good.

Invitations: Check

When we decided to do e-vites I mourned the loss of pretty paper, the loss of receiving snail mail RSVP’s, and the loss of dwelling on tiny details like ribbons and stamps. To be honest, the period of mourning lasted for a long time. To be really honest, it only finally ended yesterday when we sent out our slightly tardy invitations. I just simply cannot be sad about the above losses when I see our final product. It makes me so happy.

So without futher ado I present you with the Veggie Wedding Invitation Video. Thus far, it is the crowning achievement of our brief cinematic career:

And of course our Paperless Post invitations:

I really wanted to embed the video on the actual invitation that people received in their in-box, but wasn’t able to find a company who could do that (definite business opportunity for some techno-savvy person out there). So we ended up embedding the video on the front page of our wedding website. Not ideal, but since people will need to go to the website to figure out their accommodations and to get directions, we figure everyone will see it at some point.

I am so happy with the way the video and e-vites turned out. I just couldn’t contain myself. The first thing I did when I got to the US (after sleeping for approximatel 13 hours) was iron out the final few details with our venue so that I could confidently send these puppies out. And guess what? Only 15 minutes after we sent out our invitations we got our first RSVP. One day later we’ve received 24 responses out of about 200. Oh my gosh. People are coming to our wedding. Like definitely coming. It’s all beginning to feel very real.

Paperless Post Preview

Sorry I’ve been a bit absent on the blog front lately. T-minus six days until I fly to the U.S. for the summer of wedding-palooza and the past two weeks have been full of pre-trans-pacific events. Some of which included tying up loose ends with my job, seeing friends for the last time as a single lady, and… buying a house – if you can call a gutted 1910’s villa wth no kitchen and bathroom a house (yay!). And of course there has been heaps going on in wedding world as well. Some stressful, some fun.

One of the fun things has been the chance to test-drive Paperless Post, the medium through which we’ve decided to send our e-invitations. I wanted to play around with it and make sure it really worked before committing to it fully. I also wanted to send our moms something nice to invite them to be our officiants. Skype or email seemed to casual for such an important request, but snail mail was not an option since it would take over 2 weeks to arrive. Not sure whether the timing of it all was a factor there so much as my lack of patience.

Anyhow, I played and played for hours on the PP site and this is what I came up with for the moms.

Envelope Liner. Of course.

Front Side. Featuring the beautiful MIL Veggie and Mamma Veggie with us wee veggies.

Back Side.

Overall I was super pumped about the design I came up with. But, there were a few bumps in the design process. First is the fact that the PP site takes ages to load. Broadband hasn’t hit our part of the world yet, so I realize our connection is slower than most, but there must be a better way to run this site for faster loading. Also, despite the insane amounts of options when it comes to envelope liners, I was disappointed by the limited amount of fonts available. I love me a good font. They offer about 20 total, not nearly enough for me. But, having said that, I have come up with a creative way to usurp this font blockade for our actual wedding invitations (oooh… a cliffhanger).

I sent off the officiant invites to the two moms with high hopes and heard back from Mamma Veggie within two days. She loved it. Of course she would be our officiant. Hooray. After 3 days I still hadn’t head from MIL Veggie, so I sent her an email asking her what was up. Turns out she never received it. PP has some good systems set up for this kind of snafu, where you can track which invites were undeliverable, which ones got delivered but not opened, etc. It even resends unopened invited automatically every three days. But somehow, even though it was showing up as “delivered” it wasn’t showing up in MIL Veggie’s inbox. Lost in the mail? Not sure what was happening there.

I got another chance to preview PP a few days later when I got this in my inbox:

I was a bit overwhelmed. It was very sweet that my sisters and mom were throwing me a shower, and I felt loved just for that. But what really got me was the fact that they were trying to be as eco as possible while doing it. Not because its what they wanted, but because they knew it was what I would want. They used PP invites instead of paper, which showed huge restraint for Veggie Sis Kale who loves paper products. They also carefully worded an email to those who asked about gifts. This email was such a nice added extra touch because it showed us their appreciation and understanding of what we want our wedding to be about. In the email they wrote about our ethos as a couple, our budding non-profit, our feelings that gifts were unnecessary, and our need to transport any gifts many thousands of miles. They encouraged guests to keep those things in mind as they thought about gifts.

Which brings me to my next post. Gift registry. Or the lack there of.

We’re Not Sending Invitations?!?! *gasp*

Too dramatic? OK let’s try again.

We’re not sending invitations.

We’ve been thinking along these lines for a while. But I haven’t really discussed it with anyone fully besides Mr. Veggie. I guess I was a bit afraid of people’s reactions.

Will they be shocked at our lack of decorum?

Confused at why we would forgo such an important detail?

Disapproving of our decision?


Well, Willis, this is what we’re talking about. Tough choices.

We have a strict budget, financially and ecologically. When we decided to splurge on a photographer we knew there would be other things that we would have to cut out. And, when we looked at all of the components of a wedding, invites just seemed to make the most sense to us, ecologically and financially.

Don’t get me wrong. I love getting mail. I love the idea of people opening our invites all over the world and getting excited for our big day. I would love getting back RSVP cards. I love envelope liners. I love twine. I love wood block carvings. I love letterpress.
I love this set of invites:
And this one:

And this one:

And this one:

While I swooned over our Save The Dates design, I didn’t like that they arrived in the form of an attachment on an email. Where’s the fun in that? No one gets excited over receiving a mass email. Verdana font on a computer screen just can’t compete with letterpress swirls and twirls. And the second it takes you to click on an attachment hardly holds the anticipation and glee of opening an envelope.

And that’s why my heart broke a little the day I realized that paper invitations were not in our future.

But then I found Paperless Post and the skies began to clear. They have solved the excitement v. eco, pretty v. functional, paper v. e- dilemmas. When you send an invitation through them they send a personalized envelope to each recipient’s email, which they can click on to “open” the invitation. The invitation they open is created by you using one of PP’s gorgeous templates, which are designed to look like letterpress. They can click on the invitation to RSVP. Genius.

And then I saw this video… and I swear I heard a choir of angels.

I began to realize that there are some advantages that e-invites have over their paper counterparts. Not only could we do a rad video, but depending on what company we use, we can also link directly to our website and registry, manage our RSVP’s, link to a mapquest or google map, and even allow people to add our wedding as an event to their blackberries.

So what I’m imagining now is a Paperless Post-type e-invite where the email guests receive will have a personalized envelope. But instead of opening up to a beautiful one-page invite, it will open to a multiple page invite. The first page will contain our video, the second will look like a traditional invite, and the third will link to our wedding website where guests can RSVP, check out maps, registries, etc.

Ok bees, so here’s my question to you. How do I make this happen? Paperless Post says that their system is only set up to do one-page invites. Any ideas?