Growing up I thought my Mom was weird with her love for all things linen; from her precious care of bedsheets to her search for the softest of towels, I just didn’t get it. That is until I moved on after college and came to appreciate linens that felt and smelled like pure bliss. So you better believe when it came time to register for our wedding, I made a special trip to feel the fabrics. The apple may have taken a bit longer to blossom, but it sure didn’t fall far from the tree.
For the couple that’s traveled to 16 countries on 6 different continents, where in the world do you choose to shoot your engagement session? For these two, it was the beaches of Malibu with Ashley Sawtelle by their side. It’s not hard to see why the beautiful coastline caught their eye, and truth be told, we’re now itching to book a little Malibu trip for ourselves.
From Ashley Sawtelle…Sarah and Tony met sophomore year, in the last row of finance class, at the University of Pennsylvania. It wasn’t until 10 years later during a trip to Mykonos that their friendship turned into something more. Since then they have traveled to 16 countries and 6 continents together. Currently, they live in Los Angeles, where we shot their engagement session on the beautiful coastline of Malibu. In October, they will have their wedding celebration in Wyoming at Brush Creek Ranch, coordinated by Table 6 Productions.
While there’s no denying how fun it is to find your perfect invites, the proper wording can be a bit confusing. Proclaiming “I do” in a church or outside? How to introduce the reception that follows? Fret no longer friends, we have Mrs. John L. Strong here to help; with 85+ years of experience, they know a thing or two on the do’s and don’ts of the oh so important invitation language!
1. What is the appropriate wording for getting married in a place of worship vs elsewhere?
If you’re getting married in a place of worship, we use the term “honor of your presence” instead of “pleasure of your company”. It has nothing to do with the formality of the wedding itself (i.e. cocktail or black tie), strictly the venue.
2. Do you write honor (the American English way) or honour (the old English spelling) on wedding invitations? What about favor vs favour?
Both ways are grammatically correct. The decision is up to you and comes down to personal preference. At Mrs. John L. Strong, we prefer the American English version, unless you are English.
3. What is the appropriate verbiage when it comes to the reception?
There are a few different options, including “dinner and dancing to follow,” “reception to follow,” “reception immediately following,” “and afterwards at the reception” – the choice is up to you!
4. What is the etiquette when it comes to monograms on invitations?
If clients use a monogram on the invitation it should be the first initials of the bride and groom. Since invitations are sent out before the actual ceremony, they have not been united in holy matrimony yet so it’s improper to use the groom’s surname initial (assuming the bride takes his name). You can use the full married monogram on menu cards, escort cards and place cards (since these are all used after the actual ceremony).
5. What’s the etiquette for a traditional wedding suite?
In a traditional wedding suite, an invitation and RSVP are included. A reception card is only included if the reception is taking place at a location other than the location of the ceremony. Typically and traditionally, wedding invitations are assembled in size order, with each card face-up, starting with the invitation. There are of course deviations depending on the size, orientation and number of items. With engraving, we have a tissue overlay on top of each engraved item to protect it. When the invitation goes through USPS, the invitation can be jostled which can cause friction on the ink and paper, so we always require tissue overlays with our engraving. Another way to avoid damaging your invitations is to take your envelopes to the post office and request hand cancel. This helps preserve the integrity of the envelope and its contents!
In the mood for more invitations? This way!
ONGOING GIVEAWAYS + DISCOUNTS…
We’re excited to share that Shine invitations is currently offering FREE SHIPPING on orders over $500 (US orders only) as well as a free sample kit featuring the invitation of your choice, color charts, paper samples, and an example Save the Date! Don’t miss out!
THIS WEEK’S DISCOUNTS…
For our Destination Brides… Discount from Hitch’d Weddings & Events
Congratulations to our Doie Lounge winner Katie!
Stationery Advice: Mrs. John L. Strong
Chris and Alice are innovators. Reason being? Their big day was inspired by mustard seeds. That’s right, and if that doesn’t make you think twice about your average spice then maybe a talented vendor team like A Good Affair Wedding & Event Production, TEAM Hair and Makeup, Elevated Pulse Productions, Found Vintage Rentals, Little Hill Floral Designs and Brandon Kidd Photography will. Watch dreams become reality in The Vault!
From A Good Affair Wedding & Event Production… From the moment I spoke to Alice on the phone I knew we were a perfect match for one another. She wanted someone who would help her find the perfect venue for her Southern California destination wedding and someone who would give her a personal experience during the planning process. We clicked right away and I knew I was in for a really amazing time with Alice and Chris! When it came to designing their wedding I wanted to incorporate personal details that had meaning for them and capture Alice’s eclectic style into the design. Going for an All Saints meets Romance vibe I set out to create an outdoor ceremony and reception at Montage Laguna Beach that was romantic but relaxed. Their intimate wedding had guests from all over the world, all first timers to California so we wanted them to experience what SoCal is all about. From the CA cookies to the In-N-Out truck for late night snacks, we created surprises throughout the day for them to enjoy. What I loved most about Alice and Chris’s wedding was the custom lighting canopy at dinner and the gorgeous ceremony, it truly was the perfect oceanfront destination wedding.
From the Bride… Chris and I met in 2008 at Washington University in St. Louis while pursuing our MBA degrees. Prior to orientation, I had sent him a Facebook friend request with the intention of getting to know ALL my new classmates but Chris will stand by that I made the “first move!” Our class was split into two groups, Chris and I were in the opposite groups, so, I didn’t get to know him until a few months later into our program. I remember one of the first times I saw him in the hallway, I tried to high-five him, but instead, I hit him in the eye! Over the next several months, Chris and I began to have classes together and of course, that led to “study dates”. Chris and I never had a “first date” – our relationship evolved from friendship to love little by little. I truly believe this is what makes our connection so strong.
Mustard seeds have a very special meaning in Chris’ life. Inspired by his Mom and taken from the scripture, it is symbolic of faith. We filled small apothecary bottles with mustard seeds and used it as place card holders by tying our guests’ table assignment with a leather band. We love to travel and our guests travelled from all over the world to share in our special day. Rather than a traditional guest book, we asked our guests to sign our globe (found at Anthropologie). Chris and I wrote on our vows and it was really special to recite our own written words in front of family and friends. True to my personality and an ode to our favorite show, I quoted Cam Tucker from Modern Family.
Even though Chris and I met in St. Louis and were living there at the time, it was not our hometown. Since almost all of our guests would have had to travel, we thought it would be more fun to visit a destination with beautiful landscape and amazing weather. Chris and I love California and immediately, the vision of warm sun, crashing waves and cool breeze appeared. We wanted a venue that would put you at ease the moment you stepped onto the property, a venue that embodied nature and simply put you at peace. When we stepped through the grand entrance of Montage Laguna Beach and stood at the balcony, we literally gasped and it took our breath away. We knew then it was the perfect venue.
Every wedding is unique, take the time to research and set priorities early with your fiancé. Always come back to these priorities when decisions become tough. It’ll help guide the way!
For the bride – even with a designer/planner, your life will be consumed with wedding planning because you find it fun but your partner likely won’t! Set aside time to talk about the wedding rather than letting it dominate every conversation and meal. My approach with Chris was that I would set aside 30 minutes each week to share with him all the progress that had been made and where I needed his input. Rather than asking him to help come up with a concept, I often asked him to pick between 2-3 options. Another quick tip: when he says he doesn’t care, he genuinely doesn’t care, don’t push him, go with what you like!Hire the best photographer and videographer your budget allows. The love, joy and touching moments of the day captured will last a lifetime.
Photography: Brandon Kidd Photography | Cinematography: Good Time Productions | Floral Design: Little Hill Floral Designs | Wedding Dress: Vera Wang, Beverly Hills | Invitations: Darla Marie Designs | Bride's Shoes: Jimmy Choo | Hair + Makeup: TEAM Hair and Makeup | Band: The VIP's | Favors: Melissa Barbakoff | Groom's Attire: Hugo Boss Red Label | Groomsmen's Attire: The Black Tux | Officiant: Rev. Dr. Mike Decker | Bride's Veil: Vera Wang, Beverly Hills | Bridesmaid Dress: Amsale | Bridesmaid Dress: Adrianna Papell | Bridesmaid Dress: Monique Lhuillier | Ceremony Musician: Denny White | DJ + Photobooth + Lighting: Elevated Pulse Productions | Event Planning + Event Design: A Good Affair Wedding & Event Production | Late Night Catering: In n' Out | Renals: Found Vintage Rentals