I don’t want this to become a wedding blog, but there are probably going to be a few more posts like this one, especially since my fiance and I have just reached the stage where we have to start making things for the day of celebrations. There are 68 more days until Steve and I get married and it has been crazy. 🙂
For this post, I want to share our advice on dealing with vendors, particularly for wedding paper products. I’m going to go over the good and the bad parts of our experience, and hopefully you will be able to find something useful for your own events (even if it isn’t a wedding).
Save the Dates
We were super happy with our StD. I found a beautiful templet off weddingchicks.com. We uploaded some of our engagement photos, saved them as a jpg, and sent them to a local copy/print shop. Super easy and the process was great. We were even able to print 6 different versions without any added cost. Win!
Not as good
The way the return address was placed on the templet, the post office got confused and mailed about 15 StDs back to us. That was kinda disappointing, but we just placed those in envelopes and mailed them again. Easy fix.
(Didn’t One Two Snap Photography do a great job on our Mad Men inspired engagement photos? We love them! UPDATE: Check out the rest of our photos here.)
We loved out StD so much we wanted to have all our wedding paper product match. I soon found out that the company that produced the StD template was local. I emailed them and asked if they had a invitation package that matched the StD. They didn’t, but said we could have one custom created. I was super excited and happy. The good part is that the invitations matched the StD perfect! All the beautiful details that we loved about the StD were in the wedding invitations.
Not as good
Around the beginning of April I started to get concerned that I hadn’t heard anything from the company. I emailed and didn’t hear anything for about a week, so I called. After a few days of no reply, Steve emailed them again. We finally got a response and were able to move forward with the proofs. The communication was not great between ourselves and the vendor. They were also later in communication which cause the processed to be rushed and mistakes made.
Since the process was so rushed we didn’t request to view a sample before printing started. I was not very happy with the proof of the envelope liner but picked the better of the two, and ended up being unhappy. The company forgot that we had paid to have the envelopes printed, which caused even more of a delay and for us to rush the guest list which caused some incorrect addresses. We finally received the invitations late and had two days to assemble and send out the invitations. The worst part was, we soon found that one address was double printed, one wasn’t printed at all, 4 had letters cut off, and one even had a last name cut off completely. For the amount that we paid to have everything addressed and printed it was very disappointing.
How do we think these things could have been, not avoided, but lessened
1. Don’t let the vendor talk you out of yourtime table (if your timetable is doable by the vendor). We let the vendor talk us out of having the invitations finished by early April so we could have plenty of time to assemble them and deal with issues.
2. Trust your gut. If you feel that your vendor should have contacted you by a certain point, contact them and increase your communication with them.
3. Be assertive with what you want. Some things are not doable but you won’t know until you ask. Don’t be too attached in case your requests are not achievable, but it never hurts to ask.
4. My fiance, Steve, works in project management, and has been saying over and over again that he wishes he would have monitored the vendor more closely. It is perfectly fine to keep up regular communication with a vendor, especially when they are providing a time sensitive item like and invitation.
Bridezilla Verses Assertiveness
If your experiences are similar to mine you have had friends and family who have joked about you being a bridezilla. I was so worried about being a bridezilla that I was scared to be assertive at all. This is my biggest advice to future brides. Don’t let your fear cause you to settle on a situation that others think is better, but you don’t agree with. You do have to compromise with our partner, but as long as you communicate openly there should not be many situation that you will feel really bummed about later. The day is about you and your significant other and those are the only two people who have the deciding factor. There is nothing wrong with having nice things, that you truly appreciate, at your wedding. If paying a little extra for custom make invitations is your thing or life size ice sculptures of you and your soon to be husband/wife makes your heart smile, and you can afford it, go for it! Just having something impressive doesn’t make you a bridezilla.