Disclosure: The links in this article/post contain affiliate links. Should you decide to purchase from one of these links I will receive a small commission. This is a win win for both of us. You are getting a deal you may not have known about and I may get a commission for sharing it with you.
He popped the question and you said “I DO”! Now what? What is the first step in planning the wedding of your dreams? Well, the answer to that question is easy, but only, if you first prioritize and make a list of the most important tasks involved in planning a wedding such as: selecting the perfect date, selecting the perfect venue and then simply fill in the blanks with all the special details from there. With list in hand, today let us discuss selecting your wedding stationery designer. If you are creative by nature, one suggestion is, that you can opt to design the invitations yourself by using sites such as Minted.com or WeddingPaperDivas.com, which are two of my favorites. However, if you want to take a more hands off approach, another option is to retain the services of a professional stationery designer. Keep in mind that, should you decide to go with this option, there are a few points to consider.
As a certified event designer, and Atlanta socialite, I have had the privilege and honor of working with a few of the most skilled wedding stationery designers in the industry, who have created the most SPECTACULAR and STUNNING invitations imaginable. There is a flip side to all of this though, and it is my goal as an event designer, to make you aware, that it is important for you to also do your due diligence when it comes to selecting the right designer to meet your wedding needs, because truth be told, not all designers are created equal. Therefore, here are seven tips to assist you on this journey.
Always check references of work and client services.
• Ask around outside of their circle to see if they have delivered on time or had to reschedule dates etc…
• Personally check all references and check them twice.
• Google them. Check with professional wedding sites for their work etc…
• Just because they come highly recommended does not mean their “work ethic” or “customer service” matches the recommendation.
• Oftentimes, people recommend friends they have never actually worked with. So do not be afraid to ask the question, “Have you ever personally worked with them?” Be cautious if they say “No.”
• Some unethical stationery designers, write their own reviews, use bogus emails or recruit family and friends to write positive reviews for them. For this reason, be leery of a designer with all “Five Star” reviews, proceed with caution. Remember, No one is perfect!
• Also, when checking references or their online presence, do they have multiple website addresses which lead to the same site? Or multiple phone numbers on their site(s)? What about multiple addresses? If you come across this, my advice is for you to proceed with extreme caution or better yet, run as fast as you can!
Ask about their experience.
• Ask if they are proponents of continuing education classes. This is very important because continuing education ensures that they are well informed of the latest trends, fonts, skills and more.
• Ask how often they go back for continuing educations classes and when was the last time they attended one.
• Ask what professional organizations they belong to and check with those organizations. If they do not belong to at least one of the organizations listed below, I suggest you not use their services because it may mean they are not invested in themselves or the craft.
~ ABC (Association of Bridal Consultants)
~ AFWPI (Association For Wedding Professionals International)
~ AACWP (American Association Of Certified Wedding Planners)
~ WIPA (Wedding Industry Professionals Association)
• Ask to view their portfolio. A well-established stationery designer will have a professional portfolio they are willing to share with potential clients, which will include a variety of stationery and invitation styles, save the date cards, table setting accessories etc…
Ask about their price points.
• Personally speaking, proof of a first-rate stationery designer, is one who offers at least two price points. It does not matter the type of clientele or budget they cater to, two price points offers to a potential client, diversity and the willingness, on the part of the designer, to work within various levels of design and budgets.
**To be continue next week on Wedding Wednesday. This is a two part series so be sure to check back next Wednesday.