Congratulations, you’re getting married! Now let’s start planning the wedding! But first things first… pick a date! I talk to several brides who still don’t have a date set and until the date is set, booking vendors is impossible.
Next, find a venue! You can book some vendors without having a venue booked but there are some vendors who will need to know the venue before they will allow you to book their service.
Once the date is set and the venue is booked you can really begin to check things off your wedding planning to-do list. I personally recommend looking for wedding invitation designer next. Your invitations set the tone for your wedding day and are the biggest preview your guests will see before your wedding. You want to take the time on your invitations to build up excitement and anticipation for your wedding!
After you have discussed your theme and design with your wedding stationer, you need to establish your timeline for ordering wedding stationery items and most importantly, for mailing.
Save the Dates
You want to give your guests time to clear their calendars to make sure that they are able to attend your wedding day. So, taking this into consideration, you want your Save the Dates to be in the mail on their way to your guests between four and six months before your wedding day. If you are planning a destination wedding, you want to have them in the mail six to eight months beforehand, so that guests can book hotel accommodations and purchase airline tickets, if needed.
This means, if they are to be mailed out between four and six months, you want to give yourself a minimum of an additional six to eight weeks before mailing them to plan, design, purchase, address, and assemble them before mailing them out. So essentially, you will want to begin working on your Save the Dates as early as ten months before your wedding day.
When it comes to mailing your wedding invitations, generally you want them to be in the mail between six to eight weeks before your wedding day if the majority of your guests are local. If the majority of your guests are traveling for the wedding, or you are planning a destination wedding, mail your invitations out eight to ten weeks prior to the wedding date. The reason to mail them out this far in advance is because your RSVP date traditionally is four weeks before your wedding day. You will need to have final guest counts to your caterer, florist, and venue two weeks before your wedding date. This gives you two weeks to contact those who didn’t return their response cards and finalize your guest details for your wedding day.
With that said, you want to again allow yourself time to have them designed, perfected, printed, shipped, and then assembled and weighed at the post office before mailing them to your guests. Give yourself time! Move the wedding stationery check off box to the top of your to-do list after setting the date and booking the venue.
To help you plan accordingly, here is a mailing guide for your save the dates and wedding invitations.