Hand painted & stamped Save the Dates

Friday, March 20, 2015

It's Friday (insert praising arm emoji here) yet we woke up to snow falling which was not so cool. Luckily, it has since turned to rain and the warm weather is set to return tomorrow so HALLELUJAH for dat!

Hadley has been down and out with a cold the last few days so we're hanging in and preparing ourselves for a little baby shower we're having tomorrow to celebrate Thompson Numba Two :) I'm whipping up this amazeballs looking frozen peanut butter banana pie from my home girl Sally and I can't WAIT to try it! The pie is featured in her latest cookbook but she has a similar one on her blog here. I'll share all the deets next week!!!

I finally sent the last of our Save the Dates out (only took me 3 months....) so I thought it was due time I shared them with you!

Before starting this project, I did a lot of perusing through the internet looking for invitations I could do myself instead of having printed. Eventually I found the site Oh So Beautiful Paper (based out of DC! Represent!) and have been obsessed ever since. They showcase beautiful designers from all over the country, and better yet, tons of DIY ideas for wedding invitations and save the dates. 

My inspiration for ours started with this rubber stamped project by Annie Carlson. I loved that it gave the invites some texture without having to shell out the big buckaroos for letterpress printing. 

I decided to do a quirky, written paragraph so we could explain a little bit more about why our wedding is on a Thursday. We have a lot of people who will be traveling from out of town and taking significant time off of work so we thought this suited us best!

I designed the stamp and had it custom made with My Stamp shop on Etsy. Cynthia and Ray we're both very helpful with all my questions and preparing the stamp quickly.

I decided to go with a cream cotton paper with black ink for the stamp to make sure all the small words really showed up. Since it was seriously lacking some color, I thought why not hand paint 100+ of these things?! In the end, I LOVE how they turned out and that each is unique and original BUT it was a lot of work. I can tell you I won't be hand painting the formal invitations ;)

I chose to paint the invitations with watercolor so the stamp would still show up well over the top. I went with a random print that sort of resembles leaves and chose 3 green colors and a pop of yellow. A lot of these colors will be at our wedding so they work perfectly.

If you are going to hand paint your invitations, I cannot stress enough to choose a simple pattern. If I had done anything harder than some pointey ovals (technical term here) I would have realllllly hated myself. If you're going to be doing a lot of them like I was, you definitely want to be able to do it while drinking wine and watching Vanderpump Rules ;)

The stamp was really challenging to master in the beginning. After the first couple of mess ups, I was convinced I'd have to start from scratch with a new idea because I couldn't get all the words to show up. Smaller rubber stamps are much easier but if you decide to use a large one like I did (4.5x4.5 inches) with lots of small details, I have some tips for you. First, do not be timid when you're about to stamp down. GO AFTER IT! BE SWIFT! CONFIDENCE IS KEY! Press quickly and firmly down on your paper and then release. This should leave a good impression each time. Also, don't forget to ink your stamp before each use to get the best visibility possible.

To finish off the Save the Dates, I used a gold leafing pen to paint the edges of each card (super easy if you group a large stack together at once) and wrote our wedding website on the back. For the envelopes, I went with simple craft paper and stamped gold hearts on the front.

I hand wrote the addresses on the front and used a return address stamp from Love to Create Stamps on Etsy. I absolutely love this thing and use it for everything we mail out.. Christmas cards, birthday invitations, you name it! So pretty!

Here are all the supplies I used in case you'd like to recreate this project...

5x5 inch luxe cream cards
5.75x5.75 inch envelopes in paper bag
watercolor paints
gold pigment inkpad
black pigment inkpad
custom rubber stamp
custom address stamp
gold leafing pen
heart stamp
vintage rose postage stamps

I love how these turned out and will surely cherish them for a long time to come :) Even though it was a time consuming project for the amount of invites we had to send out, I wouldn't change a thing!

Here's to a handmade, boozy wedding folks.

Only 5 months and 14 days to go!!!!!!

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