Today we welcome Bryan from Shutterfly to our blog with some great tips and information on Save the Dates!
What Impression Are You Looking to Make With Your Save-the-Date?
Ah, the save-the-date. Some dread it, some can’t wait to design it and some simply wonder if it’s actually necessary to send what’s essentially a pre-invite invite. The short answer is yes, the save-the-date is an essential component of the wedding planning process, and it’s one you really can’t afford to skip. Here’s why.
For starters, the save-the-date is intended to be sent long before the actual invitation, especially if some of your guests have to book flights and hotels and clear time off with their places of business. Your guests will appreciate you giving them a heads up ahead of time about your special day, and they’ll be that much more likely to be able to make it if you send them notice enough in advance that they can keep their calendars clear. The save-the-date also helps set the tone for your special day, so use it as an opportunity to let others in on what it is about you and your betrothed that helps you stand out from the crowd.
Like wedding dresses and hair styles, save-the-date trends come and go. Whether you’re looking to take a traditional approach with a well-designed card or magnet or go for broke with a bold photo book or other offering, the save-the-date gives you a chance to make a lasting impression on your desired guests. Here’s a look at some current save-the-date trends, and what your choice may say about you.
Classic Cards With Accompanying Photos
Keep in mind when designing your save-the-dates that whatever design you go with will likely be displayed on the refrigerators of dozens or even hundreds of your closet friends for weeks or months on end. A classic and popular choice is to go with photo-emblazoned save-the-dates. This not only gives you and your betrothed an opportunity to showcase what stands out about you as a couple, but it also gives you a chance to set the tone for the wedding itself. Planning a big, backyard barbecue? Consider a picture of you and your spouse-to-be in casual cowboy boots. Going for a fancy, suit-and-tie soiree? Go with an upscale shot of the two of you at your last special function. Whatever image you choose to portray, your save-the-date gives you a great chance to showcase something special and unique about you.
Digital or Smartphone-Friendly Save-the-Dates
Sustainability-minded individuals sometimes turn to digital save-the-dates as a way of saving money, time and Mother Earth all at once. Something like an evite, digital save-the-dates get delivered straight to your desired guests’ phones, eliminating the need for postage, paper and expensive designs. While digital save-the-dates are great for the eco-conscious, they unfortunately are not without their downfalls. For example, some older generations may not use smartphones at all, or they may use them sparingly and not understand how to view a save-the-date if received. It’s a good idea to follow up with these individuals if you choose to go this route to avoid hurt feelings and make sure everyone is aware that they received notification about your nuptials in the first place.
Some couples choose to send CDs or similar music selections as save-the-dates to give guests an idea of what’s to be expected at the upcoming ceremony. Planning a jazz-era swing party? Share some tunes that’ll help get your guests in the mood. Hiring a favorite local band to provide the sounds? Give others a taste of what they’re in store for and give your favorite band a little free publicity at the same time. Save-the-dates with a musical aspect not only give you and your spouse-to-be a unique opportunity to let others in on some of your favorite sounds, but they also give guests a little something fun to do once they pull the save-the-date from the mail.
The Passport-Inspired Save-the-Date
Planning an overseas wedding in far-off locale? Give your guests a look at what lies ahead with a passport-inspired save-the-date invitation. Not only does this make it glaringly obvious that a destination wedding is in store, but it also helps get them excited about joining you in a special, far-off location when you say your I-dos. Passport-inspired save-the-dates are not simply limited to cards, however – consider a magnet design, or combine it with a musically accompanied save-the-date if the situation warrants. For example, planning a seaside soiree in the Caribbean? Send a save-the-date CD that plays island tunes in a case that boasts a passport design. Even if you and your fiancée aren’t planning a destination wedding, a passport-inspired design is great for showing potential guests that you love to travel or share a sense of adventure. Just be sure to put the place where you’ll be married on the invite, even if you don’t have an exact venue nailed down – people need to know if you’re marrying in, say, Europe, ahead of time, so they can start to plan (and likely, save) accordingly.
The save-the-date presents a great opportunity to let others in on what’s special about you as a couple, so find something uniquely you, send it in plenty of time for your guests to make arrangements and then cross one very important wedding-planning step off your to-do list.
Bryan Passanisi is a guest writer at Shutterfly. He graduated from USF (The University of San Francisco) with a bachelors in marketing and a minor in computer science. He currently lives in Downtown Redwood City, California. In his free time, he enjoys running, reading and photography.