STD’s mean something TOTALLY different in Wedding-Land

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Now that our Save the Dates have made it through the US Postal Service and (except for one that I am hand delivering this week) are safely in the hands of our guests, I can share them here. And tell you a lil bit of drama that went along with it. (Question: Why can’t we do something without drama? Answer: What fun would that be?)

So, back in the day when I thought we would be getting married at a winery in New Jersey, I had my heart set on this Save the Date (STD, for the rest of this post. Get all your snickers out now, kids…I’ll wait….)

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Little Wine Charmers Save the Date by gakemi art +design on

Cute, right? I personally think that STD’s are the time in the planning process to be a little less formal. Show some personality! Formal weddings tend to get a bad rap for being BO-RING, but that doesn’t have to be the case at all!

Our wedding is formal (black tie optional), but I still was on the hunt for a cute, charming Save the Date. I want our guests to know that our priority is fun, even though it’s formal!

Once we ruled out the possibility of a vineyard wedding, and set our sights on Philadelphia, I also changed my search for STD’s. (Are you still giggling every time I call them STD’s? It’s ok. Take your time.)

As you know, I love the stationary site, Minted. I just love their style, even though they source from different independent designers, they have a real eye for what works, and looks professional, while still having personality. I’m hooked.  But they didn’t have anything when I searched for “Philadelphia themed Save the Dates”. Nothing. Zip. Zilch.

When I hit a search engine wall, I generally just go directly to Etsy. It seems like Etsy is magical in that way. Can’t find what your looking for? Check Etsy. Etsy will have it!

And for a minute, I thought they did.

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At first, I was sold. But, the more I looked at it, I was convinced it was not fun enough. As with most wedding related decisions, I put myself in the shoes of our guests. I asked myself, “Would receiving this Save the Date in the mail make me excited to travel to this wedding?”  The answer, unfortunately, was no. Although it is a lovely design, it was not the message I was trying to convey.

So, I went back to my old lover, Minted. I searched “destination wedding”, expecting to see nothing but sand, palm trees and star fish, but lo and behold, this beauty popped up:

I changed our names (and, um, mispelled them) to protect the innocent, but that’s our photo!

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And it just seemed to fit. I love the retro style of it, and I loved that the little airplane was traveling from west to east, as Bob the Builder and I will be doing for the wedding!

The one snag: the photos! See, even in the age of iPhone cameras, B the B and I did not have one decent photo of the two of us. Not one. We have a lot from the play that we did together almost three years ago, but in that play, my costume was a slip. And his was a wife-beater. So, no. No way can we use those photos. Even though our wedding photography package comes with an engagement session, it’s also in Philadelphia, and won’t happen until the spring. And one of our great friends is a photographer, but she’s in New Jersey. And we are in Los Angeles.

Also, these bad boys had to be ordered before November 15th. Why, you ask? Because I am a money-saving ninja and I had a coupon. Like, a major coupon that gave me $200 off. We could not wait.

Enter the fine folks at Save Local (think Groupon) and a holiday portrait deal from April Rocha Photography. Just in the nick of time, I tell ya! April was able to fit us in before the ordering deadline, and as she is a featured photographer for Minted, she just uploaded our chosen photos right to my account. Easy peasy!

The day of our photo shoot was kind of madness, truthfully. It was a Wednesday, I was coming straight from work (with beauty stops at DryBar and Blushington in between) and we were all meeting down at the beach in Santa Monica. All was well, until we actually got onto to beach and realized how incredibly windy it was! So windy, the umbrella kept flying out of April’s hand and sand was whipping around us everywhere! But, April is a pro and a trooper, and managed to get two useable shots, with no windswept hair in my mouth and with both of our eyes open. WIN!

For the record, this was my (unflattering, I know) before and after. Just to prove, ya know, the value of great makeup, hair, and photography…

collage one

I am positive I will regret posting that one day.

So, there you have it! I found the STD’s, we took photos, ordered them in the nick of time, got them months before we needed to send them out, and then myself and Maid of Honor CraftyPants and Bridesmaid Red spent an evening drinking wine and stuffing and stamping envelopes and all was well in in the world. Right??



Check back for Part 2, to see how it all plays out. (Part 2 can be found right here.)


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