Wedding calligraphy, as you might be aware, is a thing. Pretty florals and loopy letters… What’s there not to like? But you, my friend, are a letterer, which means you have the skill to appreciate and create your own watercolour floral wedding stationery.
And that’s what I’m going to share with you today — how I go about making a watercolour floral wedding stationery suite!
What’s in my package?
Wedding calligraphy covers a huge spectrum of services! With weddings being such a big industry, just a quick Google search can leave you overwhelmed — I know I was. But with a little research, I put together a list of services that I split into three categories:
- Wedding party cards: for you to ask people to be your bridesmaids and groomsmen
- Wedding invitation suite: all the pre-wedding items like save-the-dates, the invitations, RVSP cards and so on
- ‘Day of’ calligraphy: from things like menus, table numbers and place cards to larger scale items like welcome signs and seating charts
For the purposes of this post though, I’m just going to work the the bare-bones of an invitation suite: an invitation, thank you card, and RVSP card, plus addressing the invitation and RVSP envelopes.
Hashing out all the small details
Now it’s time to get all the teeny tiny details confirmed. From the most mundane things like colour palette (e.g. turquoise and copper) to more complex style choices — for example, do you want your floral embellishments to be purely watercolour or would you like them metallic? Perhaps you’d like line drawings that are then lightly watercolored?
Wording also needs to be confirmed! Some people prefer formal language while others like a modern twist that is more irreverent.
For this step, what I like to do is to ask for a Pinterest mood board, but you can also take inspiration from various colour schemes like these. Since I’m a planner-person, I also have different wordings on hand to save myself — and the client — a mountain of research! This way, we can just edit the existing copies I have 😉
Design sketches — aka proofs!
There are two big stages here. The first is a general outline, where I simply indicate the placement of the headers, body text and embellishments. Once they’ve been approved, I get to move on to the second stage: actual detailed design aka the first proof.
The process for creating the first proof very similar to the one I use for creating calligraphy prints: I start with pencil sketches, using tracing paper to make little changes before inking it — in black.
After I add florals to the first draft, I’ll shoot them off to be approved.
If I’m really lucky, they get approved right off and I can get to lettering properly the final proof. Otherwise, it’s back-and-forth with edits till I get approval!
Creating the final proof
Once the overall design is approved, it’s time to create the final proof — aka a mock up of the actual thing to be digitised! This is where I break out the light pad ‘cause it’s time to say goodbye to tracing paper.
I tape down the design, then tape down the actual paper and get to lettering and painting over!
After the design is dry, I’ll scan it in and digitise it. The digitised piece is the final proof. Once that’s approved, it’s off to the printers!
Finishing touches: envelopes and other things
While the printing people are doing the hard work of printing and cutting, I start addressing envelopes! A good rule of thumb is to have an extra 5-10 more than you actually need just in case you mess up!
There are two sets to address here: one to the guest and another for the couple as the RSVP envelope. For the guest list, I simply centralise in word then stick the envelope over one of my envelope guides on my light pad for easy placement.
For the RSVP envelope, I can either individually address each one, or I can digitise my lettering and get a stamp made! Personally, I’m in favour of the latter simply because it’ll make things go so much faster.
When the printed suite is in, all that’s left to do is to pack each invite individually then send them off!
And that’s how I create watercolour wedding stationery!
Now I want to hear from you: would you DIY your own suite or get it done by someone else?