Wednesday, April 15, 2009

La Invitation, Part Deux

So last I left you, my heart was singing with the joy of Excel spreadsheets and formatting formulas. However, those formulas were churning out numbers that were not joyful to this Thirty-Something Bride. I budgeted four separate scenarios for DMO (Do My Own) invitations and the cheapest came out to $4.12 per invite. I might as well just go straight to Bella Figura and place my order. I mean, I LOVE this invitation,
but at $480 for 100 invites (mind you that is JUST the invite - no envelopes, response cards, etc), I couldn't even consider them! I had also looked at lots of other options too. One I thought I might end up with was through Yup, that's right. Costco does wedding invitations and flowers too! Costco is pretty cool. To find it, you've got to got to, click on FLORAL on their navigation bar at the top. The FLORAL drop-down box has an invitations link. Go there and you'll find all sorts of invitation choices. Choose Wedding Invitations and it'll pop you into a new screen. Just under the photo, there is a blue "click here" link that will take you to the invite selection page. You can choose from hundreds of styles and designs from reputable manufacturers like eInvite and Nu-Art, up to 30% off the retail price. Right now, they are offering 40% off certain styles! You can customize on-line and some will let you order a sample. You can right-click and save and share with others too. Like me:
This invitation is only $74.24 for 100 and that includes envelops! This particular style can be ordered in increments of 10, which is good for small-ish wedding like ours. Unfortunately, not all styles come with response cards or receptions cards and I wanted a few more options than Costco was offering me on the styles I liked. I think it's a great resource though!
Before the invitation process started I read a post somewhere about a bride buying her invitations at Michaels. My immediate thought at the time was "Oh, bless her heart, her budget must be hideously small." Yes Blog-Readers, it is true. I thought that thought. It is my deepest hope that all will forgive the transgression as I knew not The Perils of Wedding Planning. I had not yet blown my budget on my wedding dress. I had not yet realized that a 20% gratuity for an entire restaurant meant thousands of dollars. I did not know.

Off to Michaels I went, tail between legs and head hanging low. I ducked into the wedding aisle, hoping not to be spotted by crafty housewives. I begrudgingly passed glances over really bad tulle related products and just knew my trip would end in misery and that The Candyman would endure another WPM (Wedding Planning Meltdown). But hold up, what's this? What's this section that is not wrapped in tulle? And wait, here are my wedding colors, ivory and brown! WAIT JUST A DAMN MINUTE!

So in this kit of 30 (I bought two) you get a pocket fold envelope, response card and envelope, pre-cut ribbon, sticky things to hold the ribbon, envelope seals, 5x7 invitations and mailing labels all for the price of $39.99. Inside the box are directions how to download the printing templates from Gartner Studios. This website also offers 50 FREE fonts, perfect for wedding invites! They offer all of the BRIDES Collection brands as well as others. Guess what? They are having a sale now! They're offering 15% off your total order until April 30th - so hurry!

Now, I pondered and perused the BRIDES invitations as well as other goodies they had to offer like the ceremony programs, thank you notes, place cards, table number cards, favor boxes, pre-punched confetti and more! I went back to work (yes, this was a Michaels lunch-run) and immediately emailed my Twenty-Something friend, Alecia. She agreed to meet me to review the invitations for I feared I had fallen into The Tacky Zone and not realized it. The next day, I got not only a stamp of approval, but an interest for her own future-invites if Mr. Twenty-Something Boyfriend should decide to pop The Big Q.

I had remembered seeing a coupon for Michaels in one of my bridal mags. I dug through the ever-growing pile and found one for 25% off my total order. The next day I made another lunch run and committed to the following:

2 Boxes of Invitations (30 count), $39.99 ea
2 Boxes of Ceremony Programs (40 count), $39.99 ea
3 Packages Table Cards (12 count), $5.99 ea
3 Packages Place Cards (40 count), $6.99 ea
2 Boxes Thank You Cards (40 count), $9.99 ea
2 Packages Envelope Seals (40 count), $4.99 ea
With my coupon and TN tax of 9.25%, I spent $187.52!

So, things to learn from this post:
1. Bella Figura has awesome and really expensive invitations.
2. has invitations up to 40% off until April 21st!
3. Gartner Studios has all sorts of stuff, including 50 FREE FONTS and a 15% off sale.
4. Michaels has 25% off coupons in nearly every bridal mag out there. Clip and save, clip and save!
5. Both Michaels and Joann's offer weekly coupons (average is 40% 0ff a single item) if you sign up online.
6. Tennessee has incredibly high sales tax, but we don't pay state taxes.

Part Trois with actual photos of my handicrafts coming tomorrow! I've also got tasting updates and booze to discuss!


  1. I am a devout Michael's shopper! They have ads in the Sunday section of the newspaper every few weeks (at least in NYC) and they are usually for 40% off. I manage to get a few ads.

    In the last few weeks, I noticed that they also have 40 to 50% off register coupons print out after your order. I got 3 50% off coupons 2 weeks ago and 1 40% coupon for this week (they are for the week after). So if you are willing to go in a few times a week, you could save a ton on various wedding related things.

  2. Woops, forgot to add that your invitations are lovely! I love the ribbon and floral motif!
    The quality of the boxed invitations is pretty high these days - monogram labels, pseudo embossing, nice designs...

  3. You're right! I've been getting those too. Every time I buy something, I get 25-50% off my next purchase! Those last a shorter time frame than the bridal mag ones though - about a week compared to a month, right?