Saturday, February 23, 2013

Day-Of Wedding Stationery & Accessories - The little details...

You put a lot of time and energy into creating your perfect wedding invitation, setting just the right tone for your event. A little advance planning is all it takes now to pull the details together beautifully and continue to wow your guests with your “day-of” stationery and accessories.
Here is a brief description of some of the most popular items:
Day-of Stationery
Wedding Programs
Help make your guests feel more included in your special day and provide a keepsake of the event. Traditionally, programs include two components: a description of the wedding ceremony and an introduction to the members of the wedding party.
The program will provide an outline of the ceremony and the order of events. This often includes things like processional music, greeting, readings, prayers, exchange of vows, ring ceremony, unity candle ceremony, pronouncement of marriage, and recessional music.  Or other traditions and religious rites performed during your ceremony.
Introducing your guests to your bridal party through your program helps identify and honor those special participants who are in the ceremony. Be sure to list not only the members of your wedding party, your officiant’s name, as well as the names of any musicians, soloists or readers.
Some programs also include a thank-you message to family and friends, as well as a reference to loved ones who are deceased or otherwise unable to attend the ceremony, explanations of special religious or ethnic wedding traditions, and/or special poems or readings.
You will want to order enough programs to equal at least 75% of your expected guests, since couples usually take just one program. Of course, if you do not have a program attendant and choose to place a program at each seat ahead of the ceremony, you will want to order one for every guest. Any extra programs can be placed at the reception near the guest book or gift table for guests who may have missed them at the ceremony.
Escort Cards
If your wedding reception includes a seated meal, you will want to consider escort cards to let guests know their assigned table. Typically escort cards are small tented cards that list the name of the guest {or couple} and the table number. However, the possibilities for getting creative with your escort cards are endless, incorporating the theme of your wedding in their display or even attaching the escort card to the guest's favor item.
Seating Chart
Seating charts have quickly become a fashionable and elegant alternative to escort cards to let guests know their assigned table. Generally, seating charts are placed in a decorative frame and/or on an easel at the entrance to the reception site {more specifically the dining area of your reception}. The possibilities for getting creative here are endless. When planning for a seating chart, be sure to list the guests alphabetically.  If you list them by table number, you may end up with guests lined up at the door waiting to see their seating assignment.

Place Cards
Some people choose to assign specific seats for their guests and some opt to simply assign people to
tables and let the guests select their seat at the table. If you choose to assign specific seats, you will
need place cards to let guests know their specific seat at the table. Having assigned seats helps to
relieve the pressure some of your guests may feel about where to sit, and shows that you put a great
deal of thought into ensuring that guests are well matched and likely to enjoy the conversation at their
Table Cards
Table cards are used to designate the number or name for each table. Some people get very clever with
the names of the tables, which can signify places or things that are important to the couple. Table cards
should be fairly large so that they can be seen from across the room. They may be tented and placed on
the table, or set up higher in a stand or incorporated into the centerpiece.
Menu Cards
Menu cards are most often used for seated meals at wedding receptions. They are not necessary for a
buffet-style dinner, however, you may still want to list the buffet choices and beverages that are offered.
Printed menu cards can be a decorative element to the table and is another way to express your creativity.
Wedding Day Accessories
Wedding napkins personalized with a design or monogram and the bride and groom’s names and
wedding date will create a wonderful accent for your wedding reception decor. You should plan to have
at least 2-3 beverage/cocktail napkins per person, more if you are planning to use these napkins at the
cake table as well.
Personalized coasters, especially letterpressed coasters, have become very popular at weddings. These
can be personalized with motifs, monograms, the names of the bride and groom, and/or the wedding
date. The recommended quantity of coasters ordered is 1-2 per guest.
Favors can be any small token of your choosing. Traditional favors can range from the classic
sugared almonds or individual chocolates to candles and scented soaps. Modern gift trends include CDs
with the favorite music of the bride and groom, glassware, and picture frames. Candy bars {where the
guests fill their own goody bags} have become very popular. Favor boxes or bags, or the gifts
themselves, may be be personalized with the couple’s names, monogram or initials and wedding date.
A noble option that is gaining in popularity is for a donation to be made to charity in lieu of gifts.
Guest Book
The wedding guest book was once a necessity. Long ago, everyone who attended a wedding was
considered a witness and was required to sign the marriage document. Today, even though the legal
requirements for witnesses have changed, the concept of a guest book remains as a wonderful
remembrance for the wedding couple.
The options for guest books also vary widely, from traditional books with lines for guests to simply
sign their names, to pages that provide more space for guests to write longer messages and/or for
photos, to wildly creative ideas like giving each guest a puzzle piece to sign that will later be put together by the bride and groom and made into a memory to hang on their wall.
More and more, couples are getting creative in their use of signs at their wedding reception. Perhaps
you have concocted a signature cocktail for your wedding and would like to display a description or
recipe for the drink. Candy Shoppe Bars or other dessert bars can be dressed up with tented signs, especially designed to match your theme or colors. You may also wish to have welcome or directional signs at your reception.
Monogram letters cut out and hung by ribbon is a creative and unique idea for your entrance doors as well.  This piece can then be used to hang on the front door of your new home!  And, of course, there is the traditional “Just Married” sign.
Whatever little details you choose to incorporate into your wedding ceremony and reception, your day-of stationery
and accessories provide a perfect opportunity to infuse the decor with a bit of your {and your fiance’s}
personality and style in a way that pulls all of the pieces together beautifully.

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