How to do a Vancouver Wedding on a Budget: Picking Invitations

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Be sure to check out the complete Vancouver Wedding on a Budget series of posts.

When planning for invitations, there are a few hidden costs that you don’t think of right off the top when you’re doing things like choosing stationery, font, colours, theme and layout – mainly, postage.

It’s proper to send a self addressed stamped envelope for the RSVP with each invitation, so that immediately doubles your postage costs for each invite.

Jen and I are only going to be sending out 40-50 invites, so that’s only an additional $25 for return postage, but if you’re having a big wedding, it can quickly add up, especially when you factor in reply cards and extra envelopes.

But, as with anything, there are many ways to cut costs when it comes invites.

You can simply email your guests and sort their responses on your own for nothing. You can step your presentation a bit by creating an eVite which will let you add a little bit of wedding personality to your invitations, and it will manage your responses for you – again for free.

If you want to go traditional and have actual printed invitations mailed to guests, there are still ways to save.

Jen and I are wanting to try something a little more traditional, while still having a new media flare. So we’re choosing to mail invitations, but have the RSVPs handled online through a personal wedding website. (I’ll tackle the personal wedding website in a future installment)

I tossed the question out on Twitter one night, and got an instant response. “Use a Google Form for RSVPs, will populate a spreadsheet of guests,” wrote @dougsymington.

I tested it. It’s brilliant. I can ask guests to choose menu items, provide email addresses, give us information about special needs, and have it all instantly populated on a spreadsheet for easy viewing and management.

The Google Form is free, it’s embeddable in our wedding website, it’s totally customizable and it’s thorough in its managing of information.

When it comes to saving money on the invites, doing them yourself is the easiest way. I can take a photo with special meaning to Jen and I (definitely not the one below!) and have it printed on a postcard with iPhoto on my Mac.

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With iPhoto, you can add all the fancy scripty font and then you just put the wedding website and RSVP address on the bottom.

Going the postcard will mean we dont have to buy envelopes to mail the invites, and we can keep the design to just one card (saving paper costs). By having the RSVPs online, we dont have to buy extra reply cards, envelopes and postage.

Total cost for invites, including postage, would be about $2 each!

What are your secrets for saving on wedding invitations? Let me know.

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