Place cards vs. Escort cards - what's the difference?

Place cards vs. Escort cards - what's the difference?

For most of us when we see a tented card with the name of a wedding guest on it we assume that it's a place card. Oh wait, or is that an escort card? Do you understand the difference?

I've been seeing the terms "place card" and "escort card" used interchangeably as if they are the same thing but actually they are not the same and they serve different purposes. The truth is that it can be a little confusing. Even I became confused when looking at pictures on Pintrest and other websites where there was a picture and it was categorized under place card, when really it was an escort card. So, I decided to clearly spell it out here just what the differences are between place cards and escort cards ... oh and how they work with table cards and a seating chart.

Place Cards:
The picture below with David Francis and Addis Francis is an example of place cards. The card has the guests name but no table number. The place card is set strategically at the guests designated seat at the guests designated table. To help guests find their seat there is usually a seating chart letting guests know what table they are at. This is where the table card comes in; each table has one whether it is numbered or customized with a name guiding your guest to their seat.

In the first picture the place card is used from our June Bride of the Month and the second set of pictures with seating chart is from our October Bride of the Month. The beautiful photographs of the seating chart and table setting are by Jacque Lynn Photography. Click on a link to see more about our brides.

group1Escort Cards:
Below is an example of escort cards. Note that the name of the guest is printed but also there is a table number included. In this particular instance the table number is printed on the inside of the card but it could have been on the front as well and still be an escort card.  The accompanying table card indicates the table just like with place cards. A table alphabetically displaying all of the escort cards is strategically placed at the entrance to the reception and guests simply look for their name then take the escort card and find the table they are assigned to. Once at the table guest can seat themselves anywhere at the designated table.

In some cases a bride will use both escort cards and place cards. Escort cards would be displayed at the entrance to the reception exactly like in the description above for escort cards - but when the guest arrived at their designated table they would find that each seat at the table has been assigned and they would find the seat at the table with the place card for their seat.

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Table Cards:
Table cards are simply an indication of what each table has been named or numbered. In the set above the bride and groom chose to name the tables after sports teams. We've also used names of flowers and names of ski resorts for table cards. Personalizing your table cards can be a fun way to interject the personality of the bride and groom into you wedding.

An easy way to remember the difference is a place card does just that, puts you in a specific place. An escort card "escorts" you to a table or tells you where to go.

Whether it’s a wedding or a formal event hosts everywhere are always coming up with creative ways to use place cards and escort cards. So depending on how big or small your event is using place cards/escort cards or both is always a great idea to help guest feel comfortable at finding just where they fit in.

 


Do I need a menu for my wedding/event?

Do I need a menu for my wedding/event?

Have you ever been to a wedding or event that has a custom designed menu detailing just what type of food will be prepared? Maybe you are planning your own wedding or event and that extra detail is just what you need to convey to guest what’s on the menu. We have some unique menus in the pictures below to share this week. Depending on the event your menu should reflect the type of atmosphere and theme; for instance we have a Bar Mitzvah with an adult and kids menu catering to both groups. For weddings we’ve created everything from rich, elegance to fun, laid back designs setting the tone for our bride’s dinner.

Another great way to make it more charming for your guest is adding personalization making each menu unique to each guest. In our third picture down Shannon Simpson-Meron gave each guest a menu with his or her name on it. Our fourth picture down Mary Crafts-Homer brought a touch of elegance by adding Rick and Mary to the top of their menu. The bottom photo Rachel Siegel-Schapiro also personalized each menu with her guest’s name.

So whether you’ve already incorporated a menu into your event or you adding one as a last detail you can’t go wrong because it’s just one more way to personalize your special day!

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Thank You Notes!

Thank You Notes!

This week we want to talk about thank you notes. Whether you have finished up with getting all your wedding invitations out or still in the process of having them designed remember to get your thank you cards. Everyone knows sending a thank you card is common courtesy. We believe it is more than that; a handwritten note is by far the best way to thank guests. It shows you're making an effort to the people closest to you of how much you appreciate them. Ordering them sooner than later will help you be strict with yourself about getting them out in a timely fashion after the wedding/honeymoon. Let’s face it people love getting recognition and a personalized note in the mail is the perfect way to do it. In our pictures below we have some different ways to make your own custom thank you notes.

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The pictures above show a more modern style thank you with a picture of the bride and groom on their wedding day saying thank you. The picture on the left is a folded note card with a blank inside to write a personal note. They held two blank pieces of paper for the photo and we designed it to say “Thank You!” Where the one on the left is more like a postcard with room on the back to write a little message.

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The lower left picture is classic and elegant from the wording of announcing themselves as Mr. and Mrs. Argust to the added backer for thickness and a blank inside for a personalized note for each guest. Where our colorful and simple blank note cards on the lower right are just great to have on hand for any occasion to send someone a special thank you.

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The lower pictures are a great way of showing how this bride incorporated the design work from her wedding invitations into her thank you notes by using the leaf and same envelope liner. They added a picture of themselves on their wedding day on the inside with room to leave a personal thank you. This thank you note kept the flow of the wedding theme going all the way to the end final touches of the Thank You!

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The Mini Deck!

The Mini Deck!

This week we want to talk about paper samples. Have you ever had an idea of what you want your invitations to look like but you're not sure what paper may be best? Have you looked online at invitation and paper samples but never really get the full experience of what they may feel like and look like in your hand? That's where the ultra-handy mini paper deck comes to the rescue. For only $20 bucks your can have your very own mini deck and all the paper options you can imagine right at your fingertips.

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The mini deck is a valuable tool to help you select your favorite papers and you get to play around with mixing and matching the variety of paper swatches. You may even find something you didn’t know you wanted and now can’t live without! What's the best part of the mini deck?  When you order your invitations through Ann Elizabeth we credit the $20. toward your invitations! So order yours today. It's completely risk free.

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Want one? Call us at 801-262-3605 and then stand by your mailbox in eager anticipation.


Bridal Shower Etiquette

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Bridal Shower Etiquette - “Who should host the party?”
Traditionally, the maid or matron of honor hosts the party. In some cases family members, bride’s maids or close girl friends will do the hosting so make sure the communication is there. Never let the bride host her own party!

“What should be included on a bridal shower invitation?”

  • Bride's full name (and sometimes Groom's)
  • Date
  • Time
  • Location
  • RSVP name and number
  • Date to RSVP by
  • Short description of any food details
  • Registry

“What time frame is proper etiquette for hosting a bridal shower?”
Most would say anywhere from a two month to two weeks before the wedding. When mailing invitations you will need to do it no less than a month prior to the bridal shower so guests have time to respond to the RSVP.

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[/one-half-first][one-half]When choosing a theme for the wedding shower, select one that reflects the personality and interests of the bride. Here are some examples we’ve done for our bridal shower invitations from top to bottom.

Jennifer Vigor-Kalm’s goldfish bridal shower invitation was themed after brides name Melissa Fisher and grooms Jon Goldman. She also had a menu themed after the bridal invitation for the restaurant where the bridal shower was held with choices of what entrees they could choose from!

Hailey Kandell’s sushi themed invitation for Sara Little makes a bold yet chic announcement. This invitation has it all! With a full color two-sided pocket that holds the RSVP reply card and envelope. Even the envelopes are tastefully printed from the flower design on the main envelope to the reply envelope with chopsticks. Not only is this theme colorful and youthful, it’s the very essence of femininity.

Julian McKeon's Fiesta theme relayed a relaxed get together with a southwestern buffet lunch.

Ann Jager’s invitation for Alyson Garff was a traditional themed invite focused on incorporating her wedding colors keeping a flow throughout her invitation suite.

Kimberlee Sirstins' invitation is a great example where multiple family members come together to host the bridal shower. The details of layers and clean lines make for a beautiful classy invitation![/one-half][one-half-first]Hailey Kandell’s invitation for Sarah Klothorr indicates a more formal dinner party with her details for cocktail attire. The invitation itself is gorgeous down to the last detail. With the layering on an elegant wrap and champagne ribbon, it really captures the mood for the occasion.

Rachel Francis' invites for Kate Feinstein is a fun and more modern invitation with an additional teaser of the upcoming Bachelorette party. Fun side note: Rachel has gone from bridesmaid to one of our current brides!

With a few good guidelines you can create the perfect bridal shower for your bride to be![/one-half-first][one-half]bridal shower 3[/one-half]bridal shower 5


Envelopes 101: Inners, Outers, and Liners

All of the many pieces of a wedding invitation ensemble can be intimidating for a lot of brides.

Today's post is meant to help you clearly understand the outermost pieces: the envelopes!

Oftentimes the envelopes are overlooked, but I'm here to give you the scoop on why you shouldn't discount these beauties. Not only are they functional, but they are traditional, and they can really play into the overall experience of your invitations.

Inner Envelopes

1) Inner envelope with custom liner, and 2) Outer envelope with calligraphy by Distinctive Inscriptions www.dicalligraphy.com

When I talk about envelopes being traditional, this is what I mean! You'll probably want to know first-off that many brides are shying away from this tradition, and here's why.

In the past, back when mail was delivered via horse, train, or some other grubby process, the outer envelope would often get soiled pretty badly. An inner envelope would keep the invitation suite immaculate and flawless. The outer envelope would be discarded upon opening.

Today, our mailing system is a little less traumatic on our invitation ensembles. Yes, they get tossed around and dirtied a bit, but nowhere near where they used to be. S0, you can see why many brides opt for an outer envelope only, or an outer envelope with a custom liner (we'll touch on that in a bit).

Here at Ann Elizabeth, we have a few criteria that help a bride decide whether or not to use inner envelopes:

1) Formality:

The more formal/traditional your invitations are, we recommend including inner envelopes. For invitation suites that are less formal, inner envelopes are not necessary.

2) Clarity:

Inner envelopes are handy in situations where only certain members of a household are invited to your event. The inners provide clarity, because etiquette dictates that the names on the inner envelopes are those for whom the invitation is intended. For example, this might apply to an adults only event.

3) Cost-Effectiveness:

Surprisingly enough, a lined inner envelope can be more cost-effective than creating a custom liner for an outer envelope (something many of our brides opt for, and which you have to do for any outer envelope liner). The reason this can be more cost-effective is, there are about 25 standard liners that are pre-made for inner envelopes we offer. So if you're on more of a budget, but a lined envelope is something you want for your invitations this is the way to go.

Outer/Mailing Envelopes

Outer envelopes are the most familiar to everyone. It's your typical mailing envelope with a few options to dress it up for a wedding. There are a few rules for etiquette, however.

1) Post to the hosts:

Outer envelope, return addressed to the hosts' residence

It is discouraged for the return address printed on the mailing envelopes to be different from that of "the hosts" of the wedding. If the parents are announcing the wedding, the return address should be the parents' unless circumstances prevent this.

2) It takes two to tango, with this acception:

The bride's portion of the invitations and the groom's portion of the invitations should all be issued from the same return address (ie, do not print 2 different return addresses depending on whether the guests will be on the bride's side or the groom's side).

3) If you only have an outer, watch out:

Things can get a bit tricky when you have a more formal invitation without an inner envelope. Like we stated above, certain things are traditionally written on the inner envelopes, so you have to take care when addressing your envelopes that there is

no room for questions as to who in the household is invited.

Liners: Standard and Custom

Custom outer envelope liner

As stated in the heading, there are liners that come standard for certain envelope sizes, and then there are custom liners that you can have made.

Standard liners are a great option if you're on a budget but are still looking for an extra pop of color.

However, we really love the custom option, because the paper you choose for your liner will tie in perfectly with the rest of your invitation, whether it's used as an accent piece (like you see in the suite to the right) or whether it matches your motif exactly. There is something to be said for a custom liner; it's one of the fine details that make an invitation ensemble so chic and so glamorous.

 

Envelope tips:

  • It's best to either hand-write (write yourself or hire a Calligrapher) or have your addresses professionally printed (called envelope personalization) on your outer envelopes. The handwriting gives an added personal touch, and the printing will be cohesive with the rest of your invitation ensemble (not to mention, you won't have to stress over writing them yourself! Saves time, and is SO worth the small cost). Oh- and did we mention that having your envelopes printed on looks a whole lot classier than labels? Just sayin'!
  • We recommend always having your invitations hand-canceled. This lessens the chance of the post office running your delicate invitation through a machine. Most post offices have what they call a "nonmachinable surcharge," which they'll apply to each invitation mailed, usually around 20 cents. So it costs a little extra, but if you ask us, this surcharge is definitely worth it.
  • Square envelopes cost a little bit more to mail. The same surcharge we mentioned above applies to square envelopes.

And last but not least, here is today's pinnable! Don't forget to share- we love it when you do!

 


Lost in a Font Fog?

Are you overwhelmed with all the different options when it comes to choosing a script font for your invitations?

You're definitely not the first, and you're definitely not alone!

Choosing fonts for your invitations can be a difficult task, to say the least. So today's post offers you some gorgeous selections of script fonts.

I've chosen two of our most popular types of script fonts for you to see today: Elegant/Classical, and Whimsical/Lovely. Each has their own place, and are equally stunning. To see examples of wedding invitations using these fonts, head on over to annelizabeth.com.

Elegant and Classical:

First up is Burgues Script. This font is incredibly beautiful on wedding invitations because of the graceful swirls called, "swashes" that extend from the letters.

Next is Edwardian Script. This is such a classic-looking font, you can't go wrong!

Bickham Script is what you see in the example below. This is a nice font if you're looking for beautiful swashes like you see in Burgues Script, but a little toned down.

Our next example is called Adios Script. This script font is the perfect marriage of playfulness and elegance. It's so versatile that it can be used for informal and formal wedding invitations alike.

PF Champion Pro is similar to Bickham Script, but is a little more free-flowing. I'm pretty sure it's impossible for you to go wrong with this one!

Whimsical and Lovely:

Next up is Feel Script, which is a nice hybrid between classy and cute. It comes off as a little more casual, but paired with the right block font, it could be used for a more formal invitation if you chose it.

The next two script fonts are from the same family. The first is Carolyna: a super-cute, hand-written-esque font. We love the look of this one paired with a floral paper. So pretty!

Second is Carolyna Pro Black. It's Carolyna's thicker twin. We love this font and how it is playful and elegant, kinda like Paris.

Last but certainly not least is the lively Jacque & Gilly. This font is dainty and feminine, and looks AMAZING when printed with Letterpress. Love.

Like what you see? Don't forget to share it! Here's today's "pin-able"

Graphic Credit:

Burgues Script, Adios Script, PF Champion Pro, Feel Script, Carolyna, Carolyna Pro Black, and Jacque & Gilles graphics come from their respective pages on MyFonts.com. Each photo links to that page.


3 Tips for Tackling Invitation Inspiration

So you want gorgeous wedding invitations.

Not, "Oh, that's pretty..." (then gets tossed in the trash once your wedding day is over).

You want the jaw-dropping- "This invitation is STUNNING! ... so chic I feel guilty throwing it away (so I'll hold onto it for years)!"- kind of impact.

And you want your invitations to be original. None of this fill-in-the-blank, cookie-cutter, "My cousin had that exact same invitation!" stuff. We're talking one-of-a-kind, knock-their-socks-off original.

Believe it or not, this is possible! And it doesn't have to break the bank.

Question is, where do you start? Do you sit back and just hope that luck will strike an idea into your head? We say, "No, ma'am!" Put on your big girl pants and do as author Jack London so wisely said:


Couldn't have said it better myself, Jack. That's why I'm so excited to bring you today's post: 3 Tips for Tackling Invitation Inspiration.

 Tip #1: Know what you want.

When it comes to having a flawless invitation ensemble, indecision is not your friend.

There are SO many options available to you. I know it can seem daunting at first, but colors, format, fonts, size, shape, texture, motif, folds (or no folds), enclosure cards, etc can all play a part in making your invitation extraordinary. Get your hands on as many different kinds of invitations as possible, so you can see, touch, and interact with different styles of invitations. We love having brides come in and browse our showroom, especially for this purpose. Check out our studio hours here if you'd like to come see us!

The other side of knowing what you want is knowing what you don't want. Make a written list! Sometimes your "Don't Want" list is easier to come up with, so it's a great place to start if you're at a loss for coming up with what you do want.

Tip #2: Get out of your comfort zone.

Many times, the best inspiration stems from something you never expected. Do you find yourself browsing invitations that all have the same kind of look? Delve into some that look completely different and see what you like. You may come up with a way to "marry" both looks and come up with something 100% original. Win, Win!

Tip #3: Add your personal touch

What better way to both "wow" your guests and help them feel connected to your event than to have something meaningful in your life as a theme or decorative element? This could be anything from your love for the beach (using a nautical theme), to the title of your and your fiance's song, to the color of the sunset when he proposed. Don't be afraid to share these intimate (and sometimes vulnerable) moments with your guests. It will only make your invitations more cohesive and all that much more meaningful.

For example, we recently had a bride incorporate into her invitations a watercolor painting she did herself. Not only was it absolutely stunning, it was absolutely personal. So lovely!

The bride behind the gorgeous letterpress invitations to the left chose an evergreen motif because of the location of her wedding. She felt like the colors, paper choices, and motif really set the tone for her event. We completely agree!

The Ann Elizabeth team wishes you the best of luck in gathering your wedding invitation inspiration. Remember: Know what you want, Get out of your comfort zone, and Add your personal touch! You got this.

Know someone struggling with finding invitation inspiration? Share this with them!

Where have you found wedding invitation inspiration? We'd love to hear from you in the comments below!


The Factor That Can Make or Break Your Wedding

It is no secret that I am a huge believer in the impact color has on us. It's everywhere!

And believe it or not, others (businesses, especially) are using color to influence you.

Sounds like a conspiracy theory, I know.

But truly, color has a remarkable ability to transform the way you interpret things. I could talk for days about how our world of color impacts us, so for today I'll keep it to the color palette you choose for your wedding.

Your color palette will set the tone for your event, so choose wisely. No pressure, right?? It will create the mood and set the tone for your event. When you think about it, you've got a lot of control over what your guests might feel at your event. It's cool to think that you have a say in the finest details of your event, right down to the mood and ambiance your guests interpret. Love it!

With today's post, I hope to help you with 2 things:

1) Provide for you a simple, easy-to-understand crash course on color psychology to help minimize confusion and fear of color.

2) Help you understand the importance of color and how it can make or break your event.

I realize there's a chance you simply like a few colors and want those as your wedding colors. No problem! You can use this post to check the meanings of the colors you've chosen.

Take a look at the following infographic, courtesy of yours truly, containing the ingenius content from mywedding.com. Not every color in the book is listed here, but you'll get a good idea for the symbolism color has, and the affect it'll have on your event.

 

Hopefully this gave you a better idea about color and how it can make your event even more fabulous.

Until next week, feel free to share this post with your friends! Pin it, tweet it, FB it!

 

If you're interested in learning more, here are some more great color psychology sources:

http://www.sashasouzaevents.com/publish/psychology-of-color-7a236/

http://visually.visually.netdna-cdn.com/ThePsychologyofColor_4f188ffa3b069.png


Solving the "Adults Only" dilemma

You're engaged to the love of your life, and you've started to plan your big day.

You've got ideas for colors, centerpieces, flowers, favors, and more. Your pinterest account is overflowing with wedding inspiration boards. It's all you think about, day and night.

Everyone you ever knew (and lots of people you don't) will be at your reception. This is huge, and you're starting to feel the gravity of it all. This is your first day together as a married couple, and you want to start it off just right: with a gorgeous reception. Only kicker is- you have loads of people you would like to be there... just not their children. Nothing against kids or anything; it's just that you know you (and you're mother in-law alike) will have a heart attack at the sight of little Tommy dipping his fingers in the cake. We don't blame you!

We love kids, but a lot of times weddings aren't the best place for them to play.

If you're in this boat, you're probably concerned at what others will think of your decision to not have children at your wedding/reception. Some will support you in it, but some will have strong opinions against it (and won't hesitate one bit to share them with you). You'll have to be ready for that.

So the question is, how do you break the news that the little dears aren't invited?

This is a concern for many brides, and I'm happy to clear this up for you.

You'll be glad to hear that there are a few different ways this can be accomplished while maintaining formality and respect. Both good!

Go the traditional route

Traditionally, those who are addressed on the inner envelopes are those who are invited to the event. A problem with that is that tradition is slowly diminishing over time, and many brides these days don't have inners envelopes- just outers. And you and I both know that a lot of people disregard who an envelope is precisely addressed to. It's a piece of mail, and they're anxious to open it; the envelope ends up in the trash.

It's all in the wording

Many brides are concerned that it's tacky to mention "Adults Only" anywhere on your main invitation. Our answer to that is: it all depends on how you say it. If you were to flat out say, "Adults only," you can bet your boots that will come off as offensive to many, so make sure to check out our examples below.

RSVP round up

Check out these examples from a couple invitations we did recently. These are options we recommend to make it clear, without question, that only a limited number of guests are anticipated.

Examples

 

 

Consider this...

If leaving the kids out is out of the question, but you're still concerned they'll be a nuisance, an option is to offer a babysitting service at your reception. Plan fun activities to occupy the children's hands and minds, like a photobooth, crafts (so many great kids' crafts can be found on Pinterest), etc. The Knot has some great suggestions in this article for some ways to keep the kiddos busy.

There are various options for every event; if your event happens to be formal enough that kids would be a distraction, by all means, feel free to request that they stay at home.

Keep in mind that a great wedding maintains the balance between the comfort of the guests and the wants of the bride and groom. You know better than anyone how the event should go, so make it happen!

What's next?

You're most likely wondering what to do next. If you're still undecided, I would suggest doing some more research on options for you. Each wedding is different, so you have to be the one to really do some feeling around and see what's right for your event.

Chances are you're not quite sure whether or not your guests would cringe at the idea of a children-free event (or visa versa). Ask them! Don't hesitate to get feedback from a few choice people you trust. Visit with your spouse-to-be and see what they think. You two will decide together, and between you and me, your guests will deal.

Last, but certainly not least, don't stress! Your day will turn out great, and you'll look back on it with fond memories. Good luck and let us know if you have any questions!

-- Dana and The Ann Elizabeth Team

PS, make sure to share this with your friends! We know you know someone who could benefit from this.