Monday, August 8, 2011

interview with a stationery guru: gearing up for your wedding invitations

meet wendy...

wendy is the creative genius behind weswendesign.  if you haven't heard of her, you must.  in july we sat down with her and picked her brain about wedding invitations.  read on to find out how your invitations can make a statement...

1.  how did wendy first get started in designing stationery?
it all started in her college dorm room.  we've all been there - it's college; you're broke; the holidays roll around and between finals and end-of-year parties, you're supposed to figure out how to pay for christmas!  well, wendy pulled out all the stunts and designed (and printed!) her own christmas cards.  cards, which she confesses, only a mother would love.  but people bought them, and at some point she realized she was on to something!

2.  what events does she design stationery for?
tons of fun stuff - weddings, babies, birthdays, holidays.  she's even combined stuff (think birth announcement/holiday cards) so everything's fair game, and she dabbles in the corporate stuff too, so if you're in the market for some creative branding, she's your gal.

3.  what types of printing process does she use?
wendy specializes in digital and offset printing.  offset is more traditional; you pay per ink color.  digital is fancy ink on paper, but technology has become so advanced you can barely tell the difference between the two, and she's been able to save her clients big bucks by using the latter.  digital printing is so cost effective, and you aren't limited to printing in batches of 25, 50, 100, etc., so if you need exactly 72 of something, you can have it!  it's also the perfect medium to get super creative if you're into modern designs.

4.  what's the typical design process like?
first there's the consultation.  she'll meet with you to find out all about your personality, your event, what ideas you have, and whether you're the traditional or out-of-the-box type.  then she'll get busy, and before you know it, you'll have 2 to 3 variations of a design for your event.  once you give her some direction on these variations (you know, what you just love, or could probably live without) she'll do some revisions, and also put together the remainder of your stationery suite (for example, if you are getting married, you may also need maps, programs, menus, welcome cards, etc.).  and best of all--you get unlimited revisions, so you know it'll be perfect!  after everything's finalized, it goes to the printer.  wendy will also set you up with envelopes and other finishes, and can even print envelopes for you.

the whole process takes from 6 to 8 weeks, so you should get started as soon as you know you need something.  she's also super affordable, but be prepared to budget between $800 and $1,200 for 100 invites.  check out these samples:

5.  is everything custom?
sure is!  you can rest assured that no one else will ever have exactly what you had.  you won't have something you picked off a website and then customized with your name.

6. what are the current stationery trends wendy's been noticing?
lots of letterpress.  probably because vintage themes are huge right now on the wedding scene, and letterpress gives you that timeless ethereal look.  but there's also a huge infusion of non-traditional in the wedding industry - clients are infusing their special moments with unique and playful wording and a sense of their own styles.  there's also a trend towards patterns (personally i'm partial to polka dots), and gray seems to be hugely popular right now.

wendy will be your partner in the design process, so put your fears to bed and go the creative route.  not only will you have an incredible custom design (i know i did) but you'll have so much fun in the process!

Monday, August 1, 2011

kyle & john in blagden alley

kyle and john tied the knot on a beautiful may day in dc.  literally, the weather could not have been more perfect.  based on the shore club in miami, where they got engaged, their wedding style showcased a more modern take on things, complete with wispy cabanas and a red brick alley.  guests dined on fancy appetizers from occasions caterers, and then danced their pants off, and then capped the night off with whoopie pies!

getting ready at the w hotel

the vows in historic blagden alley

the party!
fun stuff!

whoopie pies!

Thanks to garrett hubbard for these amazing photos!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

welcome to the strohm home: the invitations!

we are so excited to be featured on United With Love today!  why, you ask?  thanks to wendy, the creative genius behind weswen design, we had some pretty rockin' wedding invitations, that naturally deserved a little showing off.  see for yourself here, and stay tuned for more details on the complete stationery suite. 

Friday, July 8, 2011

another veritas victory: wendy & jason

i've done several weddings at veritas vineyards, but i always love this venue!  and wendy and jason really did it up!  on a perfect fall day in november 2010, they tied the knot just after sundown, under spectacular lighting on the wraparound deck of the vineyard's tasting room.  wendy and jason used purple and green to showcase the venue, complete with huge purple balloons that cast shadows on the walls and ceiling.  they also used fun personal touches to show off their personalities, like escort cards that resembled ski lift tickets, and table names they took from their favorite slopes in wintergreen, virginia.  wendy is also the talent behind the amazing weswen design, so naturally all things paper were sophisticated and perfectly done!


venue: veritas vineyards, charlottesville, virginia
photography: marta locklear
stationery: weswen design

rsvp is weddingwire rated again!

RSVP Event Planning and Management is now WeddingWire Rated for 2011

Washington, DC - July 8, 2011 - WeddingWire, the nation's leading wedding technology company, is pleased to announce that RSVP Event Planning and Management is WeddingWire Rated 2011 for Wedding Planning. WeddingWire Rated is an annual award program that distinguishes wedding vendors across the country for their excellence. Based on hundreds of thousands of recent wedding reviews, WeddingWire Rated is the most recognized and trusted brand among engaged couples looking to find the best local businesses for their wedding.

RSVP Event Planning and Management has seven reviews on WeddingWire. Reviews by our newlywed clients include detailed ratings and insightful descriptions about their experiences working with our business and staff. Our reviews provide transparency for potential clients, assisting them in making the most informed decisions for their big day.

"We are delighted to unveil the 5th annual WeddingWire Rated program," said Timothy Chi, CEO, WeddingWire, Inc. " RSVP Event Planning and Management has made a commitment to capturing their clients' experiences on the nation's leading wedding review site."

As the largest site for wedding reviews, WeddingWire empowers engaged couples with the most comprehensive and trusted review system available. The WeddingWire Rated program provides RSVP Event Planning and Management with a simple platform to capture customer feedback from their wedding planning experience. Newly engaged couples can easily access all of the reviews for RSVP Event Planning and Management on We would like to thank our newlyweds for our WeddingWire Rated 2011 recognition.

For more information, please visit RSVP Event Planning and Management on WeddingWire at

For more information on WeddingWire Rated 2011, please visit

About WeddingWire, Inc.
WeddingWire, the nation's leading technology company serving the $70 billion wedding industry, is the only online wedding planning resource designed to empower both engaged couples and wedding professionals. For engaged couples, WeddingWire offers the ability to search, compare and book over 200,000 local wedding vendors, from wedding venues to wedding photographers to wedding cakes. WeddingWire also offers an online community and a suite of cutting-edge planning tools for weddings, including wedding websites and wedding checklists, all at no charge. For wedding professionals, WeddingWire provides free online management tools creating the only market opportunity that gives local businesses control over their clients, reviews, leads and performance. Businesses that join the WeddingWire Network appear on and other leading sites, including, (NYSE: MSO),, and (part of the 1-800-Flowers family of brands, NASDAQ: FLWS).

Thursday, March 31, 2011

for the boys: the do's and don'ts of formalwear

i came across a vintage GQ magazine recently and thought this was worthy of being passed along...

1.  do buy a tuxedo.  shelling out $100 for a sad-sack rental each time you attend a black tie event makes no sense.
2. don't buy a three-button tux.  stick with the classics: a one- or two-button model will never go out of style.
3. do wear a shirt with a conventional, straight lay-down collar.  and make sure it has french cuffs.
4. don't ever wear a banded collar (those priestlike ones favored by country singers and nfl players).  ever.
5. do learn how to tie a bow tie. (refer to our previous post on this.)
6. don't ever buy one of those matching, patterned cummerbund-and-bow-tie sets.
7. do wear a black bow tie or straight tie.  and skip the cummerbund - you'll achieve a cleaner, more modern look without one.
8. don't stress out over finding cool studs.  a well-made formalwear shirt will have nice, sturdy buttons.  or avoid the issue of the bejeweled button substitutes altogether and go with one of those hidden-button placket-front shirts.
9. do wear a peak-lapel tux jacket if you insist on wearing a wing-collar shirt.  and make sure the wings are tucked behind your bow tie, not peeking out above it.
10. don't muck it up.  keep the outfit simple and keep it black and white.  the cleaner the better.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

vintage vineyard vows: jenn and cody

one of my favorite weddings of 2010...  jenn and cody worked on their wedding for a long time, trying to find the perfect blend of vintage and modern, and jenn left no detail untouched in the DIY department!  this bride made cookie bags, and programs, and burlap table numbers.  she scoured etsy for hair accessories and cake toppers and pennant banners.  and the cookies...this pittsburgh native had a cookie table covered with cookies all made by the mothers of the bride and groom.  we had tons of fun putting together this vintage design and it really paid off in the end!

many thanks to the wonderful vendors who helped make this wedding perfect:
flowers: pat's floral design
photography: simply bloom photography
venue: veritas vineyard & winery
cake: favorite cakes