From save the dates to wedding day paper, these are the guidelines we frame around (of course, there are exceptions) for our custom clients; other stationers may work with a different timeline. Here are the basics:
10-12 months before your wedding: You’ll (hopefully!) be working with the same stationer throughout your wedding paper, so this is a great time to start making inquiries and getting the save the date design process started.
6-8 months before: mail out save the dates (for a destination or holiday wedding, you may want to send these out earlier).
5 plus months before: the invitation design process gets underway (for us, we ask for the invitation retainer prior to getting the design process started). This is when your stationer becomes your best email friend! Designs are created, critiqued and refined to the final stage. Your supply orders will be placed and your design will go to print. The remaining balance may be due at final proof approval (this is about 7 weeks before the mailing date for us).
6-8 weeks before: mailing out your invitations! We work with 8 weeks. The structure is a little like dominoes, each date depends on the one before it:
So if you wedding date is September 8…
your RSVP date would be around August 8 (domino: this date usually depends on when your caterer or venue needs the final headcount)…
and your invitations would be mailed around July 8 (domino: If you’re having a destination or holiday- like New Year’s Eve- wedding, or if you have a lot of out of town guests, you’d want to get your invitations out sooner).
There are other factors that may affect your timeline, but this will at least give you an idea of what to expect. Happy planning!
background image: joy michele photography