Wedding Invitations Should You Choose Printed Or Electronic

The days when wedding invitations had to be engraved on white card with silver or black writing are long gone. Nowadays the bridal couple have a huge choice of designs and almost anything goes. So much choice in fact that you can even do away with the printed invitation altogether and go electronic if you want to, carrying on all your wedding correspondence via e-mail. Let’s have a look at some of the pros and cons of electronic compared to printed wedding invitations.

Pros of electronic

Electronic invitations are much cheaper than printed invitations. You will only have to pay for the design: no paper costs, printing costs or postage costs to budget for.

Electronic invitations are quick to create and instant to send out, so are a great time-saver if your wedding preparations are of the last-minute variety.

Saving on paper is a positive move if you are trying to keep your wedding as green and environmentally friendly as possible.

You can link your electronic invitations to your wedding website and make it easy for guests to find all the extra wedding info, such as directions to the venue, wedding gift lists and so on.

Cons of electronic

You will need to make sure that you have current e-mail addresses for all your guests. Follow up if you don’t get an RSVP, just in case the e-mail never reached the recipient.

Electronic invitations may be read once and then lost in the morass of an overfull inbox or accidentally end up in the recycle bin. You may need to send out reminders if you haven’t heard back from all your invited guests.

Older family members may not be very computer-literate and may find it hard to get their heads around e-mail invitations!

There is nothing to display on the mantelpiece or save as a keepsake for those who enjoy the old traditional way of things.

Printed invitations still have the monopoly on style, tradition and quality, so electronic invitations tend to put across a more modern, quirky, casual image, which may not be what you are looking for.

Pros of printed invitations

However convenient and clever electronic invitations are, we still love printed invitations. They appeal far more to the senses than a mere image on a screen. Think about the texture of handmade paper, the feel of good quality card and embossed or engraved writing. Printed invitations certainly win on style and lasting appeal.

There are many more design possibilities for printed invitations – endless papers to use, 3D folding and embellishments such as ribbons and pressed flowers. You can get really creative and end up with mini works of art.

Beautiful printed invitations are likely to be displayed on the mantelpiece keeping your wedding day firmly in the mind of the recipient.

Cons of printed invitations

The cost – printed invitations can be expensive, though they don’t have to be if you choose a simple design and affordable paper. But if you choose a whole range of wedding stationery, including save the date cards, thank you cards, RSVP cards with matching envelopes and so on, all on beautiful card stock, it will definitely make inroads on your budget. Then there’s the postage to bear in mind for all of these.

You will need to find out up-to-date postal addresses for all your friends and family – something that in these days of cell phones and e-mail we often don’t have at our finger-tips.

So if you’ve weighed up the pros and cons and still can’t decide, why not go for a combination of the two? Have your actual wedding invitation printed and posted, but use e-mail for all the other communication – send out save the date e-mails, ask guests to RSVP by email and send out thank you e-mails afterwards.

You can co-ordinate the design of printed invitation and wedding emails and make sure that style and tradition are complemented by modern convenience and a green ethos. Have your invitations printed on recycled paper using vegetable inks and you can still feel eco-friendly and responsible!

3 Free Wedding Photography Tips

Ok, so Mr. Wonderful finally popped the question, you’ve found the perfect ceremony and reception site and have a big spiral binder filled with check lists and planners to help you plan your day. You have set the date and have some shiny bling which you can’t stop looking at all day long. You even found the perfect photographer to capture you day below are 3 free tips to help get you started to help you have a picture perfect day.

1. Plan the photography location with your photographer: If your photographer has not shot at your site before it is very helpful to walk the site with them even if you have to pay a fee for their time to go over location and photo ideas. Most photographers will charge a half day fee of around $500.00 to spend a few hours walking site. If this is not possible due to financial scheduling or time constraints draw them a diagram and give them a description of the site location, and lighting conditions and possible interesting places to shoot as a back drop. Good photographers can shoot in any location and any lighting situation and are good at making decisions on the fly so don’t worry if you have made the right choice in photographers. It never hurts though to give them a little help. Provide them with a brochure with images from past weddings and take a few digital images on your own if you have a camera. A good rule of thumb is to give them three or four different locations that may be possible choices for creating portraits after the ceremony and note them on a photography info sheet at least a month before the wedding. The earlier you provide them with info about the site clearly written the better. This gives them an opportunity to review it in the midst of shooting 30 or so other weddings for the year and to ask you any questions they may have. And, it also helps you to be more relaxed the closer you get to your wedding day. If the location has a website it is helpful to provide that to your photographer as well. Give them as much information about the site and lighting conditions as you can. Visit the site and look at lighting at different times of the day.

If you are having an out door wedding be sure that you are not back lit at the time of your ceremony and you are not in direct afternoon sun. If you visit the site and the sun is behind you from where you photographer will be shooting you are back lit and should consider facing a different direction. Your photographer can help you walk through this is you give them a good description over the phone. They can also suggest the best times of day for lighting. The more info you give them the more excited they will be about your location and the better opportunity you have to get more creative images.

2. Build a relationship with your photographer: You will get back from your wedding photography experience what you put into it. If you click and really get along with your photographer your formal images will be better. It is well worth the addition time and expense to go out on location with your photographer and spend some time doing an engagement shoot. Many photographers are more than happy to suggest some great shooting locations where you can go out and spend an afternoon getting to know them and their shooting style and them getting to know you or are happy to have you out to their studio. They are also often willing to travel to your favorite special place for your engagement shoot. Use the time to get to know them as a person and to get your self ready for your day. Their shooting the day of the engagement shoot will be similar to your photography the day of the wedding. Don’t be afraid to have fun on your shoot and practice different poses. If your photographer gives you proofs from the entire shoot it is also helpful for you to see which way you shoot best by looking at the proofs afterwards and can be very helpful to you, and can go a long way towards making you feel comfortable in front of the camera. Ask them what to expect the day of the wedding as far as how the flow of the photography will go. Will they be stopping you throughout the day for formal portraits or will it all be completed right after the ceremony. Do they mind people asking for additional portraits through out the day? Ask them what they will need throughout the day. Will they need a work table or an assistant to help get everyone together in your large family? Plan with them to make sure they have enough time to do all of the group shots you would like with out being to rushed and provide an assistant for them to help gather everyone from a list of friends not in the wedding party, who knows everyone. Don’t provide them with a mile long list of portraits or images you found on an internet site. Each shot takes about 5 minutes to create. You will hamper their creativity and they will spend much of their day trying to complete your list. Ask them if they have a list of basic group shots and go over with them a list of a few shots that you might additionally like.

Ask your photographer if they any special meal needs when you send out invitations to the rest of your guests. You should treat your photographer as a valued guest and make them feel that they are an important part of your day.

3. Be organized: For a photographer, the bride being on time is of paramount importance. If you are behind in schedule it makes their day much more difficult. Do yourself and your photographer a favor by creating a day of the wedding time line with added time built in case of little emergencies and send it to them ahead of time and ask them if they have any suggestions for the schedule and if you have included enough time for them for their photography activities. Give a copy once it is finished to your mom and your bridesmaids and ask them to help you by being on time as well. Hair and make up are biggies. If you are going to be late, 9 times out of 10, it will be because your makeup and hair take longer than you expect. Be sure to plan in an extra hour for these activities and be ready when your photographer arrives. If you are stressed it will show in your formal images if you are doing any before the ceremony so make sure you plan in some time to rest and be a princess as well.

These three wedding tips, if followed, will help you have a worry free wedding day from a photography perspective. Best wishes for a wonderful wedding day.

Preparing For The Perfect Wedding Day On A Budget

It’s built up by so many families, talked about in so many films and books, and is said by many to be the biggest day of a girl’s life. But planning the fairytale wedding that every little girl imagines can be more difficult than you think.

There are so many things to prepare and organise that leading up to the wedding can be rather stressful. This is why preparation is the key, and in particular starting this preparation in plenty of time. Start by doing a few tasks each week to ease the stress and to prevent from the tasks becoming overwhelming.

For many, the wedding day is a financial struggle. It is reported that the average cost of a wedding nowadays can be upwards of $20,000, so if you have a budget make sure that you stick to it, no matter how tempting the over-priced wedding dress is in the shop window!

When you get under way planning your wedding, it can soon become apparent that the budget is being eaten up fast, which is why it is essential to save wherever possible. After all, who wants to pay more for something than they have to, even if it is for one of the biggest days of your life.

There are many money saving opportunities along the way:

Reception:

By the time you’ve totalled up the number of guests you would like to invite to your wedding, you may realise that this is going to be your biggest expense. If need be, save money by inviting only close friends and family and leave those that are friends of friends or distant family members that you may not have seen for 10 years.

Wedding dress:

Shop around for a dress within your budget and also look out for any discounted sales. Also take a look at second-hand dresses.

Photography:

Although it is important to keep memories of the day, instead of having a photographer for the whole day, consider hiring one just for the ceremony and ask family members or friends to take photos throughout the rest of the day.

Catering and alcohol:

You don’t have to have a top three-course meal if it is not within your budget. You may be able to offer a buffet, or to use a small catering company instead of the full-service catering at the reception venue. Similarly do not use the reception services’ beverages as you will be charged at retail price. If allowed, purchase your own alcohol.

Questions You Must Ask When Setting up Your Wedding Budget

Questions you must ask when setting up your wedding budget.

Weddings cost money. It’s a fact of life.
The weddings you see in the bridal magazines are featured to dazzle and entice you. These weddings are NOT your typical wedding, nor are they realistic for the majority of engaged couples. They feature very wealthy people, having expensive weddings. Or, they are a designers inspiration showing what is possible and done only for photographs in the magazine.

The marriage should be your focus, not the party. The party is secondary.

Set a budget and be realistic. You need to know what the cost of food, music, flowers, invitations etc. will cost in your area and you need to be prepared to pay for the services. If you save money in one category, roll the money into another category.

Cut items you don’t really need. Set your priorities.

Ask yourself the following crucial questions to determine what you can cut from your budget without sacrificing the look and the mood you want:

o Do I need a couture wedding dress, or can I be just as happy with a quality gown from a lesser know designer? There are some amazing dresses that are affordable.

o Do I need favors?

o Do I need elaborate invitations? Will I be happy with a basic invitation? Do I have the ability to make my own? Am I willing to dedicate the considerable amount of time to taking on that task?
Do we need to send save the date cards or can we make an online card and send it out to our family and friends?

o Do I need a sit down dinner? Will I be as happy with a buffet (which is always less money)? Do I need to serve dinner or can we serve finger foods?

o Do I need an open bar? Can I have a champagne fountain instead? Or can I have bottles of wine placed on each table? What about spiked punch? Do I need to serve alcoholic drinks at all? Please note: a cash bar is a social no no! Serve NO alcohol rather than asking your guests to pay for their drinks.

o Do I need a live band? Will I be as happy with a good DJ?

o Do I really need to spend thousands on a photographer? Can I get a smaller package from a good photographer? Will the photographer give me the negatives or memory disc and give up copyright rights so we can have any photos we want reprinted?

o Do I need a videographer or can I depend on a family member of a friend to take my video?

o Do I need expensive centerpieces and flowers at the church and reception? Can I make do with potted fresh plants or cut flowers?

o Do I need to rent the bridal arch?

o Do I need chair covers?

o Do I need a desert bar or can we just serve wedding cake?

o Do I need a candy buffet?

o Do I need an elaborate wedding cake like the ones in the bridal magazines or can I go to my local bakery and be as happy with their creations?

Simple money saving idea: Have your wedding on a Friday or Sunday night. Most reception halls aren’t booked for weddings on a Friday or Sundays. They discount prices on their off nights. Saturday night is the most expensive night. They need to keep their staff working, so they are willing to work on prices.

Wedding Invitations Should You Choose Printed Or Electronic

The days when wedding invitations had to be engraved on white card with silver or black writing are long gone. Nowadays the bridal couple have a huge choice of designs and almost anything goes. So much choice in fact that you can even do away with the printed invitation altogether and go electronic if you want to, carrying on all your wedding correspondence via e-mail. Let’s have a look at some of the pros and cons of electronic compared to printed wedding invitations.

Pros of electronic

Electronic invitations are much cheaper than printed invitations. You will only have to pay for the design: no paper costs, printing costs or postage costs to budget for.

Electronic invitations are quick to create and instant to send out, so are a great time-saver if your wedding preparations are of the last-minute variety.

Saving on paper is a positive move if you are trying to keep your wedding as green and environmentally friendly as possible.

You can link your electronic invitations to your wedding website and make it easy for guests to find all the extra wedding info, such as directions to the venue, wedding gift lists and so on.

Cons of electronic

You will need to make sure that you have current e-mail addresses for all your guests. Follow up if you don’t get an RSVP, just in case the e-mail never reached the recipient.

Electronic invitations may be read once and then lost in the morass of an overfull inbox or accidentally end up in the recycle bin. You may need to send out reminders if you haven’t heard back from all your invited guests.

Older family members may not be very computer-literate and may find it hard to get their heads around e-mail invitations!

There is nothing to display on the mantelpiece or save as a keepsake for those who enjoy the old traditional way of things.

Printed invitations still have the monopoly on style, tradition and quality, so electronic invitations tend to put across a more modern, quirky, casual image, which may not be what you are looking for.

Pros of printed invitations

However convenient and clever electronic invitations are, we still love printed invitations. They appeal far more to the senses than a mere image on a screen. Think about the texture of handmade paper, the feel of good quality card and embossed or engraved writing. Printed invitations certainly win on style and lasting appeal.

There are many more design possibilities for printed invitations – endless papers to use, 3D folding and embellishments such as ribbons and pressed flowers. You can get really creative and end up with mini works of art.

Beautiful printed invitations are likely to be displayed on the mantelpiece keeping your wedding day firmly in the mind of the recipient.

Cons of printed invitations

The cost – printed invitations can be expensive, though they don’t have to be if you choose a simple design and affordable paper. But if you choose a whole range of wedding stationery, including save the date cards, thank you cards, RSVP cards with matching envelopes and so on, all on beautiful card stock, it will definitely make inroads on your budget. Then there’s the postage to bear in mind for all of these.

You will need to find out up-to-date postal addresses for all your friends and family – something that in these days of cell phones and e-mail we often don’t have at our finger-tips.

So if you’ve weighed up the pros and cons and still can’t decide, why not go for a combination of the two? Have your actual wedding invitation printed and posted, but use e-mail for all the other communication – send out save the date e-mails, ask guests to RSVP by email and send out thank you e-mails afterwards.

You can co-ordinate the design of printed invitation and wedding emails and make sure that style and tradition are complemented by modern convenience and a green ethos. Have your invitations printed on recycled paper using vegetable inks and you can still feel eco-friendly and responsible!