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Hey guys! Well, I finally got my invitations mailed out - and I thought I'd share mine in case anyone was in the same boat I was in just a few weeks ago.


Our wedding is in July, so we had to come up with something fast.


Our predicament was that we wanted to include a letter explaining why we were doing a destination wedding, and have the invitation with the letter. Easier said than done, because when I started I couldn't find a way to package the two together in a way that looked presentable. 


Just a little background: both of us (my fiancé and I) are not really "wedding" people. If you would have asked us a year ago, we would have told you we were never having a wedding and just want to elope. However, our families would have been way disappointed. So since we love to travel, we thought a destination wedding would be the best way to go. 


We wanted our invitations to be fun, and really stress the fact that no one was obligated to come, even though we'd love for them to be there if they could. 


Our second predicament was that we didn't have time to get engagement pictures done, and we didn't really want to do formal invitations anyway. 


Solution: We decided to do a "cartoon" invitation, with a pocket card, and break our letter up into "cards".


Here's the finished product - (keep in mind the lighting is really bad and my camera sucks):

Whole invitation

It looks a lot more vibrant and that pic doesn't really show the true colors at all, but you get the idea. 
It's a pretty goofy idea, but it worked for us! 
Here's what I did:
The pocket card and invitation:
I bought the A7 signature pocket cards and invitations from Cards and Pockets. We wanted the colors to be bright and fun, so we chose the "Sour Apple" color and for the envelope, went with the basic "Cream Puff" color. I was worried the green invitations would show through the envelopes, but that wasn't the case!

A7 Pocket Invite from Cards and Pockets

A7 Mailing Envelope from Cards and Pockets

The cartoon invitation: 
There is a website called icartoon.me and basically, you submit some good face shots of whoever you want drawn into a cartoon, and describe what you want to be doing in the cartoon. So I submitted five or six photos of my fiancé and I, and told them this was for a wedding invitation. I described that we wanted to be on a beach, what we wanted to be wearing and any additional props. They get it back to you in 24 hours, and you decide whether or not you want any revisions. The first one they sent back to me was great, with the exception of my fiancé's mouth - it looked a little weird and it was the only part that didn't look like him. I sent another photo of him, and they revised the photo and got it back to me within a day. 
Here's what they sent back:

Cartoon at first


The cartoon is shockingly accurate! In fact, people told us they couldn't believe how much it looked like us. 


For the actual invitation, we decided to get rid of the hat. Thankfully icartoon.me sends you layered photoshop files so it's easy to remove anything you don't like if you know how to use photoshop.

Cost: $85 - way cheaper than engagement pics!
What I added: All of the text, and some of the clipart (the suitcase, beach ball, etc.) were added by me in Photoshop. I also had to change the sizing of the whole thing to make the dimensions fit an A7 pocket card. 

Cartoon Invitation

This is what the invitation looked like after I was done in Photoshop. I saved it as a PDF, sent it to a local printer, and they printed and cut them all to match the dimensions that Cards and Pockets suggests for the A7 signature pocket card. 
Cost to print: $43
The Cards in the Pocket:
This was the hard part. I wanted to put a letter in the pocket, and I already had one written up. However, folding up a letter and sticking it in there didn't look quite right. 
After looking at a lot of similar pocket cards, I saw that many people used stacked cards - usually an RSVP, accommodations, directions and website info. I got the idea to break up my letter into "sections" since nothing about this wedding is non traditional. 
These were the 4 cards I had:
Greeting: explained why we were doing a destination wedding and they were invited
FAQ's: just answered some very basic questions we thought people may have
Closing: thanked them for being in our lives, told them we hope they can make it to the wedding, but if not that was totally understandable.
RSVP: told them to go to our wedding website to RSVP and get all the information on the trip. 
Using the Product Sizing Guide on Cards and Pockets, I knew exactly what dimensions my cards needed to be. I should have had the same print shop I used for the invitations print these cards and cut them, but I thought it would be pretty expensive, so I wound up making color copies of one printed sheet at Fedex Office, and having them cut them to the dimensions I needed them to be. 
I bought my own paper at Joann's for $4.99 per 50 sheets. It was good quality, white card stock. Fedex wanted $1.00 per sheet!
The color copying thing wound up being a nightmare. For starters, not all of the cards had the same shade of blue text. Most of them did, but there were about 20 invitations out of 80 that didn't have the perfect color. The people we sent those to (that we knew wouldn't care) told us they didn't even notice. But after you spend this much time on something, you want to get it right. 
Total cost for cutting and printing the inserts: $115
Envelope Seal:
While I was at Fedex, I saw these little blank envelope seals made by Avery for $9.99. There were 600 of them in there! The seals came with a template, so I created a little monogram in Photoshop and then printed them from home. 
(again, bad picture but you get the idea)



IMG 4776


Return Address Stamp:


For $24, you can upload your own design and get a custom stamp sent to you from rubberstamps.net. So glad I did this! I found a few fonts I liked, and played around with them until I got a design I liked. Here's what it looked like:


Return address stamp



Address Labels:


I'll be honest - I know people say you should hand write your wedding invitations, but that just wasn't happening. My handwriting is not great, and I wanted this done as easily as possible. Plus, if people were going to judge us for labels, they probably weren't going to appreciate our entire invitation. Lol. 


I bought blank Avery labels for addresses at Office Depot ($18.99), and found a font I liked - "Jenna Sue" on dafont.com. Printed those from home too, and I liked the way they turned out!





Anyway, that's pretty much it - I just wanted to share in case it helps someone else out that may have been in the same predicament we were. We sent out 80 invitations, and got some pretty good feedback, so I'm glad we did these. Although I'm also glad I will never have to do them again! :)



Edited by LaurenC3432
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