it's all happening or: how we sent out our save the dates

Mike hard at work on our save the dates.

Hi! Once again, a link to Penny Lane: It's all happening.

You guys. YOU GUYS. Mike mailed our save the dates today! Which means I can officially go and buy a whole litter of Birman kittens. Why? Because Mike can't break up with me now that all 200,000 of our guests have been alerted to our pending nuptials. If he did, we'd have to send out DON'T Save the Date cards and I think the thought of stuffing all those envelopes again is enough to make him stand by me for better or for worse.

As I've documented previously, I spent a lot of time finding the perfect spot to create our invitations. I've been extremely happy so far both with Village Invites and with the actual line of stationery we're using, Bella Figura. If you're based in NYC, I would definitely pop by Village Invites. The prices, service and accessibility of the staff are all the best I've found in the city.

So how did we actually manage to get these babies into the trusted hands of the United States Postal Service and out into the world? One word: Excel. Actually, three words: Mike knows Excel. If it were up to me, I'd probably have listed all our guests in a Word doc, with pretty color coding for each subgroup (i.e. my friends from Trinity who weren't in my secret sorority but were invited to my 21st birthday party). This, I have now found, while aesthetically pleasing, is medium-useless when it comes to actually organizing your wedding lists. Luckily for me, I have a fiance who spends all day on one of those silly Bloomberg keyboards and can navigate his whole computer screen without ever touching his mouse. I won't lie, there's something weirdly sexy about it. [Hi Mike, on a level from one to Dance Moms, how much do you hate this post already?]

In practical terms, this means Mike can organize lists and sub-lists in nanoseconds, thereby spitting exact numbers of: invited guests, guests who are invited but probably won't attend, guests who are invited to the rehearsal dinner but not the brunch, guests who like cats, guests who don't like cats (this list is also cross-referenced under Uninvited), and so on.

This brings me to Tip #1: Have your final number of guests before you order your save the dates. We had a rough idea of how many people we were inviting, but ended up being off by about 25 actual invites. This was both annoying and costly, since we had to go back to Bella and order only 25 more. Like most printing presses, the more you order, the lower your cost per invite, so we could have saved some money if we'd planned it out exactly.

Once we had our final list, however, we still needed to get everyone's addresses. My friend Alexa found an awesome way to do it through Google Drive, but I got distracted and never managed to set it up. If I get motivated, I'll figure out and post about it though! Instead, we relied on parents to deliver most of the family addresses and emailed the rest of our friends to get theirs. Tip #2: This is sometimes a long process, so give your self enough time to track everyone down, especially anyone coming from overseas.

On to addressing our envelopes: there was no way I was handwriting 150+ envelopes and I'm actually not sure if Mike can write in English. Luckily, the good people at Village Invites have a super fancy laser printer that will address your envelopes in a font of your choosing. This ended up being far less expensive than calligraphy but still looked like it had a personal touch. Tip #3 Don't forget to proofread your list before having it printed indelibly on your actual envelope.

Finally, last night, Mike was an absolute star and stamped and stuffed all the envelopes. And then when he was finished with that, he put our save the dates in envelopes and even affixed the stamps. For my part, I was in charge of the handy envelope wetter. Giggle.

That brings us to today's lesson: teamwork! Everything from choosing the guest list, to picking out the actual save the date, to getting them out the door and delivered was a collaborative process. And now -- yikes -- people will actually be saving the date for the wedding.

Or else.

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