Creating the Perfect Save-the-Date Card

A Q&A with Paper Moss's Emily Hostetler on crafting unique save-the-dates.

Courtesy photo

Courtesy photo

Emily Hostetler, owner of Paper Moss, has seen it all—coasters, confetti, word searches, linen fabric, luggage tags, and mugs. Her personal favorite? A mini travel book for a Tuscany wedding, complete with a letterpressed cork cover.

We invited this invitation guru to share her thoughts on save-the-date cards and how you can spice up your own announcements.

What does a save-the-date say about the couple?
It’s a great way to bring out more of the couple’s personality. It allows them to do something more fun or casual that represents them, whereas the invite typically represents more of the actual wedding day.

How can they be über-creative?
There are so many options! Even the more traditional weddings can get away with a more creative save-the-date without disrupting the formality of the event itself. For example, a vineyard wedding save-the-date could be letterpressed coasters, whereas a destination wedding might include custom luggage tags.

What are some elements to consider?
The good news is that inspiration is everywhere, but the bad news is everywhere. We encourage couples to stick to incorporating three things: story, theme, and location. First, their story. Where they’re from, what they do for a living, what they like to do as a couple, how they met, etc. Secondly, the wedding style or “theme.” If it’s a more formal event, but they want splashes of modern style, we might suggest a more traditional layout for the card itself with pops of color through painted edges or a funky patterned liner. Finally, the location gives us a lot to play with, whether it’s a vintage postcard, custom map, or hand-drawn icons that relate to the venue itself.

Courtesy photo

Courtesy photo

What should go on the save-the-date, besides the obvious?
Bride and groom names, date, location (city and state, but specific venue is optional). Some couples also include their wedding website and a line that suggests the “formal invite to follow.”

What are some unique elements a couple can bring out—perhaps a beach wedding announced with a sandy texture?
You said it: Texture can do a lot and not always break the bank. With letterpress, we’re able to achieve any kind of texture through pattern, but nowadays, there are lots of papers that can be incorporated to help set the tone for the big day. For example, wood-grain-textured paper is a great option for nature lovers or a mountain-based wedding. For a modern affair, we’ve seen leather-like papers, or incorporating splashes of watercolor for artsy couples. If budget allows, don’t forget about envelope liners—they can be the perfect spot to add a pop of something if you want to keep the save-the-date more traditional.

How soon before the wedding should they mail them out?
We suggest six to eight months. If that mark falls right around the holidays, we suggest sending them out the first of the year. That way, it doesn’t get mixed up in the holiday card madness and is fresh on people’s brains at the start of a new year.


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