Monday, March 1, 2010

Fun with STDs*

I cannot craft. And I really, really mean that. I cannot craft. Back in my seventh-grade-teacher days, I sometimes assigned my students to make the occasional poster or collage and usually made an example for them to see. The kids always, ALWAYS soundly trumped my example with the projects they turned out. I was out-crafted by thirteen-year-olds on the regular.

So when it came time to start planning for our save-the-dates and invitations, I knew that I would not be touching a Gocco, a Cricut, Adobe Illustrator, or even plain ol' MS Word with a ten-foot pole. Instead, I turned to your friend and mine, Etsy, and put out an Alchemy bid requesting someone to design PDFs, which I could then print myself (that makes it sort of DIY, right?!).

I got some good bids and some very, very not-good bids (think, but I got one outstanding bid, from seller gramkinpaperstudio. She offered me a great deal: $100 to design for our save-the-dates, invitations, RSVP cards, and information inserts, with five rounds of revisions for each item. Then I checked out her badass portfolio:

(Source: all from gramkinpaperstudio's Etsy shop.)

Hi. Sold.

So we got crackin' on collaborating to design save-the-dates! I described my ideas--red and purple, statement fonts, throw a calendar in there somewhere, and can you find a spot for a few quirky little graphics?--and she responded incredibly quickly. With each revision, the design got closer and closer to what I had in mind, until, on the fourth round, it was perfect. I sent my PDFs off to OvernightPrints, and squealed with glee when these showed up a few days later:

I was really happy about how sharply the details of the design came out in the printing process.

They're the "premium" postcard option, and they turned out exactly how I was hoping. The design is just what I had dreamed up in my head, and the print job is perfect. I was looking for something pretty and classy, but also a little off-beat and unexpected. I really hope everyone enjoys them as much as I do (although to be perfectly honest with you, I don't actually mind if they do or not, because I love them enough not to care!!).

I included this picture so you could see the shine from the "gloss" treatment the postcard gets.

The one dumb, dumb mistake I made in the design process? It never occurred to me to ask the designer if, instead of putting lines for the return address in the top corner, she could instead actually include our return address. I paid for that oversight by writing our return address eighty times in a row. So super dumb, you guys.

And now, after many hours of address-writing and hilariously-irrelevant-polar-bear-stamp-affixing, these suckers are ready to get mailed to our guests!

Here's a bonus shot of our save-the-date cozying up to Bridesmaid Erica's save-the-date on our fridge.

Cost breakdown:
Design fee: $25 (though it was really all one lump some with the invitations; I just broke it down like this)
Postcard printing: $47
Postage: $23
Total: $95--exactly 95 cents per card!

Where did you get your STDs**? Was it a DIY, a semi-DIY, or a DISE (do-it-someone-else) job?

**Ha ha! Seriously, can't stop myself.

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