Thursday, September 27, 2012

Vivian Elle Etsy Store Opening October 1!

{Vivian Elle's Etsy Shop is now open! Click here to visit!}

I give my sincere apologies, but there will be no Vivian Elle invitation to show off this week.

I know, I know. You are very sad. Which is why I am at least writing this small little blog, because this year I committed to a once a week post and that is a commitment that I have kept so far and will not stop at the end of September! (Picture me saying this with my fist in the air, very Braveheart-like.)

I know that I could blog about the wedding extras I just finished. I could even blog about some awesome bachelorette party invites I did a few weeks before.  I could blog about rehearsal dinner invites or shower invites or even some wall art that I've been meaning to blog about. But I can't, because this week has been predominantly about one thing...


(I hope I'm not the only one excited about this...anyone else? anyone??)

I've been working on this for a few weeks now (and pretty hard core the last three days) and I'm definitely not going to stop now. The goal is to have everything up and running by October 1, which means that I have about 3 more days to get things done. I may not have everything exactly how I want it on Monday, but I will at least officially "open shop" on that date (did I need the air quotes for that? not sure, but I do love some air quotes).

The thing is, I have no idea what opening shop will mean. Will I get any sales? Will all of this work be worth it? Will anyone think my designs are good? Are they too similar to all the other designs out there? Yeah...those are the thoughts that have been going through my head lately.

So even though I am not doing an official blog post today, on Monday I will be back to officially open Vivian Elle's Etsy Shop. I may even get a big red ribbon and put it over the computer and make Luke cut it with me...he will love it. :)

Friday, September 21, 2012

You Want to Win Something?

Hello faithful blog readers!

Just wanted to share this fun opportunity with you all. Lindsay is a girl that I've been so super excited to get to know because she is an amazing designer over at Inklings Paperie

Inklings is one of the finalists for the Martha Stewart American Made Award. The winner gets to go to the American Made Event in NYC, gets to be in Martha Stewart's magazine, and gets $10,000 to further their business!

I'm posting this because Lindsay is so deserving of this award, but also because she's offering a chance to win 50 free scratch-offs if you vote for her. You can use them for a baby shower, wedding shower, bachelorette party, or a gender reveal party. They are adorable and are a great addition to the next party you host!

Here's all you have to do:

1. Go here and vote. 
2. Post your voting number in the comments section of this post (or on Vivian Elle's Facebook page!). 

**Remember that you can vote once a day until September 24th! Continue posting your vote in the comments section or on Vivian Elle's facebook page and you'll receive more ballots!**

That's it. On September 24th, I'll put all of the ballots in a hat (I don't even know if I own a hat...) and pull out a winner. That winner will get 50 free scratch offs of their choice from Inklings Paperie!

Remember to go here to vote! And go here to see Inkling's entire collection of scratch-offs!

Thanks, guys!!!

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Bethany's Shower Invitations

You might as well get used to Bethany because you'll be seeing a lot of her in the next couple of months on the blog. Not only have I worked on the two shower invitations you'll see in this blog post, but I also have done her rehearsal dinner invites, bachelorette party invites, and will do all of the extras for her wedding in October. 

Bethany's family is very special to me, but they're a family that I don't get to see much anymore. When Bethany's mom, Carolyn, came to me and asked if I would help them with several different extras for the wedding, I was happy not just to be able to do more of what I love, but do it for people that I don't get to see nearly enough. 

So I met with Carolyn, Bethany, and Bethany's fiancĂ©, Devin, one afternoon and we talked about all of the different things they'd like me to do for the wedding. First up, we needed to take care of the shower invitations. Bethany was having two showers that Carolyn wanted to do the invitations for. 

For shower #1, you just need to know one thing about Bethany - the girl loves her shoes. The family friend that threw the shower for her knew this and incorporated it into the theme of the shower. We decided to follow suit with the shower invitations.

We thought we'd keep it simple with the silhouette of a shoe in the corner and a little bling at the bottom.  (I've used that diamond is so many of Bethany's things now that I refer to it as the "Bethany diamond.")

I used Channel for Bethany's name and Foglihten for the rest of the invite.

Bethany picked out red envelopes to wrap everything up nicely. :) 

For shower numero two, Carolyn had found an invitation on Etsy by Cards Etcetera that she really liked, and wanted to do something similar.  

(um...pause to mention that Vivian Elle has an Etsy shop opening in October!!! what what) 

We used the same concept, but I changed up the fonts and added a little something something at the bottom. Here's what we came up with for shower #2. 

I feel like I could gush all day about this invitation and it wouldn't seem arrogant because I didn't come up with it. :)

Fonts are Doris Day, Channel, and Context Reprise for the "She Said Yes," Channel for Bethany's name, and Optimus Princeps for the rest of the invite.

This is just the beginning, folks. I'm so excited about the other projects that we're working on for Bethany and can't wait to show them off! :)

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Samantha and Antonio's Wedding Suite

Right now I'm on the way down to Virginia for this wedding. We're actually stopping off tonight to see my brother and his lady friend/wife, then having lunch with my grandparents tomorrow, then beginning the wedding festivities tomorrow night (we like to cram as much fun as possible into a three day period if you can't tell).

It's insane to me that it's already September; that we're already starting to attend fall weddings. Vivian Elle's weddings for the year are coming to an end and I can't be happier with how the year is winding down. It's been an amazing whirlwind of a first year for this little business and I feel so fortunate to all of the brides who have chosen to use me for such an important part of their wedding day.

Samantha emailed me earlier this year to see if I could help her with her wedding invitations. I met with her and her mom at a Starbucks and we talked all about her beautiful wedding. After picking out papers and doing some designing, this is what we came up with.

Samantha wanted a formal, but modern feel to her wedding invitation. Pocketfold invitation = formal. Square invitation = modern. It really can be as simple as that.

Let me gush about how much I love the font we used for Samantha and Antonio's names. It's Lavanderia and you can download it for free here

You can see the patterned paper ever so slightly at the edge of the invitation. You may notice the vintage accent from this invitation suite. I love how the same piece of artwork can be completely different on another invitation.

Le inserts (I used to use 'le' and 'la' in college all the time instead of 'the'...this is slightly embarrassing now and yet I kind of want to start it up again).

Directions card.

Reception card.

(yes, this is a big Italian wedding)

The RSVP card.

We also put a band around the outside of the pocketfold. You might think I kept a band so I could show off this invitation in its completed glory. Not so, my friends. Not so.

I did at least keep the little frame that we attached to the band to pull everything there's that. :)

Samantha was referred to me by a teacher at the school I work at. We were chatting about my invitation business and she casually mentioned that she'd have to give a friend of hers my information. That friend was Samantha and I am so incredibly thankful that she was sent my way.

So if you've used me or referred someone to me - thank you! You all are the best. :)

Want to hear more about the value of custom invitations? Check out this post

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Janine and Cory's Save the Dates

When my husband and I first started dating about six and a half years ago, he invited me to one of his flag football games to meet his friends. He played with about a dozen other guys, so I figured there would be quite a few people that I'd meet at one time, which was mildly overwhelming for me since after college I decided I was a little less social than I had always thought.  After knowing Luke for a couple of months before officially dating, I knew that he was extremely outgoing, so I figured that in addition to his teammates, he might bring a few other friends to meet me.

I had absolutely no idea what I was getting myself into.

I remember the evening like this:

I arrived at the game early (for me, most likely three minutes after the game started) and I brought reinforcements. My brother and a good friend of mine accompanied me.  Luke's sister was there, whom I knew from our youth group days. I felt better having them with me; they could be a buffer if things went wrong (I don't know what "going wrong" would have looked like, but it was important to me to guard against it).

We entered the arena and I just remember walking straight over to the bleachers and sitting down. I noticed that there was a large group of people in the bleachers to the left of me, but I didn't think anything of it. I figured that group was comprised of several different player's family members and friends that came to cheer them on.

Oh, no. I was wrong.

Those bleachers were filled with Luke's friends. Luke's friends took up a set of bleachers all by themselves. I had literally brought every person I could think of as reinforcements and that totaled two people. Luke had friends that weren't able to make it and he still had a bleacher full of people.

As I sat with my people, I began to notice that something was happening in the bleachers to the left. People began to realize that I was the girlfriend. Heads began to turn my way. I felt like I was on display. As I type this, I'm getting anxious just thinking about it.

Thankfully, the following took place.

I remember that three girls came out of the crowd. As they moved towards me, I recognized them as girls that Luke had been friends with for a while. They must have taken pity on me, seeing as my bleacher of friends was nothing in comparison to the size of Luke's (of course, this is not to minimize the quality of my bleacher :)).

These girls came over, introduced themselves, and sat down with me. I don't remember what we talked about, but I remember that they immediately made me feel at ease. They asked questions and showed a genuine interest in my life. It was my first impression of Luke's friends and it was welcoming and comforting.  I've told this story several times throughout the years because it meant something to me. It was such a small gesture to walk over and say hi, but it had a lasting impact.

Janine was one of those girls. She has known Luke since elementary school and they're still good friends to this day. She and her fiancé live in Chicago and we've been able to visit them a couple of times over the past few years. When they got engaged last year, Janine contacted me to do Save the Dates for them.

I love the way they turned out.

Janine and Cory are getting married in Cancun in April. Janine really wanted the Save the Date to have a beach-y feel to it. We went with starfish and I think they worked out perfectly.

Luke and I are big fans of the destination wedding. Forcing us to take a vacation? If we have to...

I'm overly excited to introduce a new font. Dear Joe is what we used for the names.  It's free. Context Reprise Light (my fav) was used for the rest of the wording.

We used a beautiful aqua color for the backing of the invitation and a coral color for the envelopes. They fit together so well.

Since I shared my first impression of Janine, I feel led to end with my first impression of Cory.

We were at a mutual friend's wedding and Luke and I were chatting with Cory. The song 'I'm Sexy and I Know It' came on. Cory looks at us and says, "I'm sorry...I have to get out on the dance floor. This is my song."

I knew I liked him right then and there.

Congratulations, Janine and Cory!

Want to hear more about the value of custom invitations? Check out this post