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My Save the Dates were an Etsy purchase and mini DIY project rolled into one.

The problem I faced with my STD’s was I needed to get them out asap.  It was June, I’d changed all my wedding plans and had to start making new ones and i’d just found my cocktail reception venue.  Being what felt like the early stages of planning my ‘new’ wedding, I hadn’t purchased my dress, decided on colours, style, theme or stationary and was no-where close to making decisions on those yet.  I had always imagined I’d have the full stationary suite, from Save the Date right through to my Thank-you’s, everything would match.  But these thoughts stemmed from the fact that I’d always dreamed about having a big wedding, with the bridal party, the cars, the delicate printed stationary, the reception with a sit down dinner and dj to party on.  Now that we’d decided to elope and have a post celebration, I needed to open my mind up and relax about my former ideas and wishes.

So what was I going to do about my Save the Dates?  I decided to choose something I loved, and then decide on my stationery suite later and hopefully tie them in together in some way.  I also wanted to keep the costs down but make it something to make people feel excited about our nuptials.

I started looking on Etsy first because I wanted something different and unique.  As a I scrolled and ogled, another problem became evident.  I’m having an amazing elopement, romantic, vintage, with a bush and forest setting.  How do I match that up with a cocktail reception at a funky bar in the city?  Do I choose a Save the Date that reflected our wedding day or the cocktail party?  Of course, the actual date itself on the STD was for the cocktail party too.  This was the hardest thing to get my head around, and I searched and searched lots of save the dates and invitations to hopefully find something that would inspire and decide for me.

That moment came when I stumbled upon this romantic photographic print used as a Save the Date, Carousel Hearts by Erin Reynolds Photography.  I felt inspired by it, it was romantic yet the lights implied a party.  So I clicked on Erin’s ‘X Items’ link to explore further and then I found my Save the Date!  It’s called Tree Love and it captured the essence of our wedding day perfectly, but the pokeh effect gave it whimsy and a slight party feel (almost!).  You see, the man and I have chosen to marry in a forest and the ceremony spot we’ve chosen has a very old fallen log right behind it.  This Save the Date was meant to be.

I asked the man what he thought about a few options and he really liked this one too, so I purchased it for $15.00 USD, very affordable.  I asked for different fonts, colours and wording and nothing was too much trouble.  Erin makes custom changes until you are happy with the result.  After three or four exchanges, I was thrilled with the results.

Intially I thought our colour scheme would be green and purple, but i’ve moved away from the green and moved towards purples for our wedding day and cocktail reception, but it doesn’t matter, it’s a minor detail, and I think it still works.

I had this beautiful jpeg save the date, now I needed to print them.  I wanted to print it as a photo and then stick a magnet on the back so people could pop it on their fridge.  I visited Officeworks with my usb stick containing the image and using their Kodak machine that you use to print your photos, I selected different sizes and papers.  Although I obtained a close match, I wasn’t happy with the print quality.  It wasn’t right, the purple in the log looked pinky and the words had a slight misty blur, they weren’t crisp and sharp looking.  The colours weren’t true, and the smallest size was larger than I wanted, 6 x 4″.  Who wants a massive STD on their fridge?  So then I decided to try Kmart, they use HP machines and so I thought the result might be different, and it was.  Their software is a breeze to use after Kodak, alignment was easy, there was plenty of options like white and black borders and different sizes.  I settled on a cropped picture with no border, matte, 5 x 3.5″ and the colours were excellent and it looked exactly like the image on my computer.  Here’s what the final product looks like (sorry about the quality, lazy iphone photo);


I had the size of my Save the Dates now so I visited Officeworks to find some envelopes. I settled on some C6 lilac paper envelopes.

Optix C6 Envelope Cadi Lilac Pk/25

Optix C6 Envelope Cadi Lilac Pk/25

Then I had a look at the magnets, but the smallest I could find was business card size so I went home and searched online. I purchased a PK50 Ausink Adhesive Magnets for $4.89 online via Officeworks, but had to pay a handling fee of $4.95 which is crazy when they have no stock in store, and I have to pay for it be shipped in to them.

Pk50 Ausink Adhesive Magnets

Pk50 Ausink Adhesive Magnets

I think I will keep the leftover magnets for a future party invitation.

This was a fun and rewarding DIY wedding project and I’ve had so much love for them via Facebook comments, emails and in person, they were a hit!

DIY project cost? $62.62

So for the cost of about 14 coffees or breakfast at a cafe, I have gorgeous and inspiring save the dates, created and posted!

    • Save the Date $15.00 approx
    • Photo Printing Samples Officeworks/Kodak $8.00 approx (7 samples)
    • Photo Printing Samples Kmart/HP $3.69 (6 samples)
    • Printing 26 Save the Dates Kmart/HP $3.90 (One hour photo)
    • PK50 Adhesive Magnets Officeworks $9.84 (custom ordered via website)
    • Optix C6 Coloured Envelopes Pk/25 $5.99
    • Postage costs $16.20