The Difference Between Minted and Custom Wedding Stationery

When working with brides on their custom wedding stationery, I start by always asking about their budget. Not surprisingly, I'm often met with "ums" and "I'm not even sure what to budget for wedding invitations." 

Usually, brides look through Minted to find designs that they like and get an idea of pricing for their invitation budget. Then, they decide Minted doesn't have exactly what they want. So, they call me - a custom invitation designer, one who can give them exactly what they want and more. 

Photo by Erin Goodrich Photography

Photo by Erin Goodrich Photography

Custom Provides Relationship and Endless Possibilities

Although Minted offers a very large selection of beautiful options and good paper stock - the fact is that you are still limited. And you are limited by no one to call, email, dream with, design with and develop a relationship with. You get a quick and easy ordering process, but if you are looking for a truly custom experience - that you don't get. 

But We Still Need Minted

I love how Minted teams up with graphic designers across the nation to provide trendy and gorgeous quality invitations for weddings and small events. Their business model is smart. We need a Minted for those with lower wedding budgets and want a no hassle, quick experience. We also need Minted for those who might need more affordable, beautiful stationery for their graduation party, holiday cards or birthday party. 

I'll admit, as an invitation designer myself, I love Minted. I love scrolling through the designs for inspiration and joy. Often I find myself wanting to purchase their stuff too, because they are cute and it's easy, no hassle. 

So, what is the price difference?

Pricing is a very gray area, but hopefully I can help give you a general idea. If your budget is under $1,000 for 150 invitations and RSVP cards, Minted or a custom designer can help you. However with this budget, your options are limited on amount of and types of revisions to the design, paper choice, envelopes, and "bells and whistles," like belly bands, invite backings, assembly and calligraphy addressing. 

With this budget, you can still get a very beautiful invitation. (I don't ever want to bash Minted or make anyone feel bad for having a lower budget to work with). 

With a higher budget for your wedding stationary, you can afford the luxury items and services, like calligraphy, letterpress, a sit down relationship with your designer to allow them to get to know you and your dream designs, unique, high-quality envelopes, assembly so you don't have to do any work, and much more. 

Photo by Robyn Icks Photography

Photo by Robyn Icks Photography

Every Bride is Different

In the end, there is no right or wrong choice. Honestly. Be smart with your wedding finances. Put the most cash to those items that matter the most to you. And do what you can afford. 

I always tell brides, never make the wedding planning more important than the marriage preparation. 

Everyone has a different budget and cares about different aspects of the wedding. Go with the option that makes you the happiest, and you feel will make your guests feel special when they are invited to the best day of your life. :)

My Goal For You

My goal for all my brides is to give them stationery and calligraphy that will make their guests feel loved and special. My goal is for us, together, to create statioeary and hand-lettering that you keep as an heirloom and reminder of the day you said "I do." 

 

 

 

 

 

Now Selling Calligraphy Artwork

Now Selling Calligraphy Artwork

My online shop is now open! Now, you are able to purchase original, hand-written calligraphy art work straight from my website.

Pride and Prejudice calligraphy quote available in  online shop.

Pride and Prejudice calligraphy quote available in online shop.

When you purchase your made-to-order custom art, each piece is hand-written from scratch and mailed to your door-step for you to feel the delicate and intricate calligraphy ink and frame in your home, bedroom, office or gift for a loved one. 

Of course, I still take requests for custom pieces, however, this online shop highlights my favorite, romantic and feel-good words written with beautiful, calligraphy ink that will make your soul smile. 

Home is Wherever I'm with You calligraphy quote available in  online shop. 

Home is Wherever I'm with You calligraphy quote available in online shop. 

Pamper yourself with hand-written words that will brighten your day or motivate your soul. 

Never mass printed, this calligraphy art is made especially for you and with love.  

Calligraphy old hymn art available in  online shop. 

Calligraphy old hymn art available in online shop. 

I hope you enjoy and feel loved :)

Rachel

RSVP or Regrets Only?

RSVP or Regrets Only?

Which one is best to put on your invitation? More and more and I am seeing "regrets only" used on shower invitations for smaller events. Why is that?

Most of the time you will have more guests who are able to attend as opposed those handful who cannot. As a host, it is easier to wait for a handful of "can't make it" phone calls rather than hoping that 20-30 guests will let you know they are coming (when mostly likely they are).

As a guest myself, I always appreciate a shower invitation that allows "regrets only." I am much more likely to remember and make it a priority to let the host know I am not able to make it. When I am planning on attending an event, I usually mark my calendar, set the invite aside and move on with my day. 

For larger events like weddings, I always recommend the request for an RSVP. As the one planning the event, you will need to know a more concrete guest count for food, planning, etc. And guests typically make it a priority to pay more attention to an RSVP for a large event.

So, is it better to use "regrets only"? There is really no wrong answer. It is all preference!

As a host, you know your guests better than anyone. Decide which direction you feel comfortable with in order to make your event a success! 

Designs Made for Your Personal Event

Designs Made for Your Personal Events

So many of my designs can be swapped out and used for many types of events. Many wedding invitation designs would also be super cute as a bridal shower invitation or maybe even a birthday invite! It's all up to you! That's the best part: You choose the design that best fits your personal event. 

Please remember if you see something you love, let me know and we can customize it just for your event. Whether it's for your daughter's 5th birthday party or you are hosting an engagement party, designs can fit many different types of celebrations. 

Or, if you don't see what you are looking for, I can create something brand new and special just for you. Invitation design is an endless world of possibilities!

 

Chad and Kimberly are Married!

Chad and Kimberly are Married!

I'm so happy for this couple. From the moment Kimberly and I started discussing her wedding on the phone, she reiterated to me how she and Chad wanted to keep their wedding simple and focused on Jesus. Even before they said "I do," Kimberly and Chad knew the importance of keeping God at the center of their marriage. 

Most of Kimberly and I's correspondence was over the phone since she works a busy job during the week in Stillwater, OK. She did a great job of communicating her vision for her invitations and programs. When designing the stationary, I wanted to coordinate the "look" of  both the invitation and the program. I made sure that both elements complimented each other well, but were still unique elements. 

Kimberly described her wedding day as simple, rustic and small decorated with burlap, hints of sage green and white flowers throughout. The ceremony would be held in a quaint, old church in Stillwater on a hot summer afternoon. We both agreed the kraft brown paper paired with white linen paper and accents conveyed the wedding day she envisioned quite well. A crisp bright white kept the look simple and clean, while the brown kraft brought in the rustic element. 

I love how Chad and Kimberly's wedding stationary turned out. I look at this stationary, and I can't help but think about how sweet and selfless they are as a couple. 

Chad and Kimberly,

Thank you so much for letting me be a part of your special day! I had so much fun designing and creating your wedding stationary as a set. I hope you keep this invitation and program as a reminder of your beautiful day celebrating your love. 

I pray that you continually keep the Lord at the center of your marriage. When marriage seems hard, know that He is right there with you. Turn to Him for help. Include him in all areas of your love for He is your biggest fan. When life seems hard, "be Jesus" to each other for He will bless you for loving each other like He loves you. 

Rachel

 

Most Important Thing You Need to Know During Wedding Season

The Most Important Thing During Wedding Season

While practicing my calligraphy the other day, I wrote this quote and framed it in our master bathroom as a reminder of how we can keep our marriage great. 

As we are right smack in the middle of wedding season, months that are full of fluffy white tulle, bouquets of flowers, sparkling objects, invitations and all the beautiful details that make up one romantic day for a wedding, my mind is on the things that matter the most in a marriage. 

Isaac and I are celebrating three years of marriage this month. It seems like yesterday that I was picking out my invitations, floral arrangements and planning my wedding day. These details are all so much fun. In fact, I love the planning so much that I decided to get into the wedding business myself with this invitation business. 

But whether you are a bride planning your wedding or a newlywed, I want you to know one thing that is more important than choosing the right color of bridesmaid dresses, flowers or even your invitations (which I would love to design!). Marriage, a real marriage that will last, is not build on how romantic your wedding day is or how well written your vows are, but it is build on learning to forgive each other, keep no record of wrongs and choosing to loving each other through the every up and down of life. 

Even if you just got engaged, it may not feel like it now, but marriage will be hard sometimes. Once you get back from your honeymoon (maybe even on your honeymoon!), you will need to forgive and learn to be patient with each other. Real love and a real marriage that will last is based on patience, kindness, forgiveness and self-control. 

Have fun when planning your wedding and the festivities the day of, because it is an unforgettable experience, but don't lose sight of the details of a marriage that are the most important and will make your love story last a lifetime. ;)

My First Year of Owning a Business

I received a phone call today from Google Plus. 

"Do you own a business?" the representative said on the other end of the phone. 

"Uh, yes? I think you have the wrong number?" I stammered back. 

She did not have the wrong number. Since I launched this web site a month ago, she was calling to confirm my business contact information for Google. I told her that I'm not used to officially admitting that I am a small business owner. 

I still have a ways to go and so many "to do" lists to grow Rachel Kathryn Designs. But when I look back over the last year and everything I have accomplished, I feel very proud. 

Although my love of paper started when I was a child, I began learning how to design just over a year ago. Once I started learning, i became a little obsessed. I spent all my free time learning how to change colors, place pretty florals in just the right place on an invitation and learning all different kinds of beautiful fonts. The beauty of design is the learning never stops. After a few months of learning, I began designing invitations pretty quickly and quickly had my first handful of clients. 

Next I went on to learn all about paper (my favorite part!). I love, love, love all the sizes, weights and textures of paper options that are available for your invitations. I want to touch them, smell them and own them all. Kinda silly, I know. Like I said my obsession with paper started long ago. (I used to collect boxes and boxes of Post-It notes, blank journals and Hello Kitts note pads. 

And just a few months ago, I dove into learning all about the art of calligraphy. Calligraphy takes practice, practice and more practice. I love making beautiful words and phrases. 

I desire to create beautiful sets of invitations for your special events in your life. By meticulously choosing the right paper, fonts, colors and even the envelope the final invitation communicates your wish for your guests to  join you in celebrating a very noteworthy event. 

I feel so overjoyed when I hand off off those final invitations perfectly packaged together to my clients. The paper is so perfect and so smooth. I'm almost sad to see them dispersed in the mail for fear the mailman will indeed "mess them up." But I feel complete when I see the smile on my client's face and a sigh of relief that I took great care of something so special to them. 

So, yes I am a small business owner. It may be small, and I may still (and always will be) learning the art of invitation making. But, I deliver a beautiful product from start to finish with great detail and care. 

Rachel