Step Four : The Invitations cont.

part four | paper choices


Never underestimate the power of paper. The way it looks and feels makes a massive difference to the way that your guests will view your wedding. Paper also plays a major role in printing as you will need different paper stocks and paper weights to print certain methods such as letterpress printing, gold foil stamping or digital printing. But we will cover the printing side of things on another post. For now, lets go through what kinds of paper we can print your wedding invitations on.

COATED

Coated paper includes gloss or matte finished stocks. These paper stocks are smooth to touch and best used for digital printing. Coated paper stocks generally only come in white and give you the flexibility to print any custom digital design onto them.

UNCOATED

Uncoated paper includes textured paper such as linen, recycled, cotton or handmade paper stocks. Not all of these stocks can be fed through standard digital printers, so you may need to consider other printing methods to make it work. Uncoated paper comes in varied colour choices from white through to black.

METALLIC

Metallic paper stocks have have a shimmery look to them and are slightly textured. Metallic paper stocks can be fed through digital printers and come in varied colour choices.

Once you have chosen the type of paper stock, you will need to consider the paper weight. All paper stocks come in different weights starting from 80gsm which is your standard photocopy paper to 600gsm which is a thick card stock which can be used for letterpress printing.


paper tip

As a general rule for wedding invitations, try and find paper stocks that weigh no less than 300gsm so your invitations feel sturdy and don't flop in your guests hands.


Step Four : The Invitations cont.

part three | typography


Typography plays an important role in the look and feel of your invitations. I receive a lot of requests to use script fonts in invitations, however there are so many different types of script fonts out there that it can be quite confusing choosing the right one. Script or cursive fonts need to be chosen carefully in order for the invitations to still be legible, aesthetically pleasing and fit within the theme of your wedding. Using the wrong font can completely change the look and feel of your invitation, so make sure you take this into consideration and choose carefully. Below are some examples of some of my favourite script fonts.

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type tip

Try to keep script fonts to a minimum. As script fonts can be hard to read, avoid using script fonts for the body of the invitation such as the time and place of the event to prevent any confusion for your guests.


Step Four : The Invitations cont.

part two | the colour scheme


Choosing a colour scheme can be as simple as picking your favourite colour. But you also need to take into consideration whether or not that colour fits in with your theme. For example, say your favourite colour is yellow, this colour might go well with a summer beach theme, but might not go so well with a winter vineyard theme.

Here's are a couple of examples of invitations and menus we have designed that used colour.


Purple

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NAVY

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pink

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yellow

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In each design, we have tried to keep number of colours to a maximum of 2, focusing more on the primary colour and only using the secondary colour to accent certain elements of the design. By doing this, the design stays clean and simple. Less is always more!


colour tip

We recommend choosing no more than two complimentary colours, and using these colours subtly throughout your styling. Using too many colours can look cluttered and unorganised, and using too much of one colour can be overpowering. 


Do you need help designing your invitations?
Get in touch with me to get a custom invitation design, personalised specifically for you and your big day.
— Deena | Graphic Designer

Step Four : The Invitations

So now that the guest list is locked in, the date is set and the venue is booked, we can now start inviting people to our engagement party. We're well versed in this department seeing as we, Tropica Weddings, are specialists in this field. So we're going to get all deep and meaningful with you on this topic to get you up to speed on the power of an invitation.

 

part one | the theme

Since starting our business in 2015, we have designed a wide variety of invitations ranging from casual household birthdays, all the way up to luxe New York weddings. There are so many options out there for invitations that it can sometimes be a little overwhelming. An invitation is the first interaction your guests will have with your event, so it's important to make sure that they get a true understanding of what the invitation is for and the theme you are trying to portray. Remember, an invitation not only tells your guests when and where to be on the day, but it also gives them an idea of the style you're going for.

 Diana & Adrian's New York Wedding Invitation.  View wedding photos.

Diana & Adrian's New York Wedding Invitation. View wedding photos.

Themes can be anything from an intimate garden style, a tropical beach feel or a luxurious destination wedding. All you need to do is make sure that this style translates through your invitation.


theme tip

If you have yet to come up with a theme and need some inspiration, we recommend using Pinterest as a tool to visually see what direction you want to go in. Save the pins of the weddings you love into a folder and then look back at your Pins you've saved once you're done. This will give you a good idea of what kind of wedding styles you're into and help you to narrow down your search.


Up Next

 

Next week, we'll talk about colour schemes and how to choose the right colours for your chosen theme. Sign up to our newsletter to have our tips sent straight to your inbox.

 
 
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Step Three: The Venue

How to cram your friends and family in one room 101

 

Now that the guest list is "done" we've moved on to the venue hunting. We've tried not to restrict ourselves too much on our criteria, and by keeping our options open we're hoping to score a hidden gem that we may not have thought about looking at. We do however have a preferred style which is somewhere between a garden and a warehouse. We want the space to be big enough to hold all of our guests, but small enough to keep it intimate. Surely with all of the venues Melbourne has to offer, there must be something out there to suit us!

Keeping in mind that we are inviting around 100 guests, we started the google hunt.


Hidden City Secrets

The first site we stumbled across was Hidden City Secrets. This site is amazing, as it lists hundreds of different venues that you can search from throughout Australia. You can search by Popularity, Event style, or even by the style of venue (e.g Laneway, Rooftop, Warehouse etc.) With so many options to choose from, we went a little nuts opening every single venue up in a new tab and emailing each and every one of them to see if they were available. We went to bed happy, ready to take on the world the next day.

Lo and behold, the very next day, our emails were flooded and our phones were going off from all of the venues responding to our requests. That's when we realised that what we thought was a productive night of venue hunting turned out to be chaos the next day. We had no idea who was calling us, we had forgotten which venue was what, and had to back track and re-research each venue to see which ones we actually liked. It was a headache!

So then I devised a plan. I created a table to list exactly which venues we liked, and made sure we knew the costs involved, how many guests they could hold, how to contact them and made sure I had all of my questions ready if anything was missing off that list. It made life so much easier to see everything written down.


I have included a printable of what I used to list the venues as a free download, SCORE!
You'll find the link at the bottom of this post.


Venue Insider

The Venue Insider is another great site to look at for venues. It has more of an Airbnb type vibe to it where it lists the venues on one side of the page and also gives you an option to search the venues using the map, which is super convenient. Apart from the convenience, we also loved the quality of the venues that were shown on the site. As good as it was that Hidden City Secrets had such a large list of venues to choose from, we really had to sift through the good and the bad. With the Venue Insider, all of the venues are amazing and literally listed all of our top picks. Definitely one to check out!

 


keep track of all your favourite wedding venues and download the venue listing printable here for free!


Step Two: The Guest List

but, they're all my best friends

 

Writing up the guest list is probably the hardest and most tedious part of the whole event organising process. How do you decide who comes to your engagement? How do you decide who comes to your wedding? What's the difference between an engagement party and a wedding these days? Who are they, and why are they invited? Why can't we invite everybody? Ok, that's it! NOBODY'S INVITED!

It's tough, you have to make what feels like life or death decisions. So much pressure deciding who makes the cut. But you have to do it, and here's how we did ours.


FAMILY & "FAMILY"

First and foremost we had to make sure we invited our immediate family and relatives. From my side of the family, my dad comes from a family of 8 siblings and my mum comes from a family of 11. According to my calculations that's 19 aunties and uncles, who are all married which makes that 38 aunties and uncles. They all have 2-4 children each which makes that, give or take 114 cousins, which brings us to around 150. On the other hand, Frank is Greek and uhh... have you seen My Big Fat Greek Wedding? Poor Ian Miller only got to invite his parents!

So yeah getting our families together under one roof was going to be tough. We also both have a large group of friends. And if you know Frank, everybody is his best friend (bless his cotton socks). So with approximately 300 family members and a gazillion best friends, we needed a way to break it down to a solid 100.

 Shot we took at Marc & Cloe's engagement party last year.  View more photos

Shot we took at Marc & Cloe's engagement party last year. View more photos


the divide

We ended up dividing our lists into 4 lists

  1. Her Family
  2. Her Friends
  3. His Family
  4. His Friends

We then listed absolutely everybody we knew under these 4 categories so that we didn't miss anybody. Once everybody was listed, we started removing people that we didn't mutually know, and people we hadn't spoken to a long time or aren't really close with anymore (Note: We didn't delete them, we just moved them to a safe place incase we decide they're our best friends later). Then we divided it further to turn those lists into 3 location lists and marked off who we would invite to each location.

  1. Melbourne
  2. Indonesia
  3. Greece

And that's it! It made complete sense once it was done. And now we're ready to actually get to the fun stuff.... PLANNING!


DOWNLOAD THE GUEST LIST SPREADSHEET HERE FOR FREE!

I've perfected the guest list spreadsheet that I used, to make it easier for you to list and organise your guests for your engagement, wedding ceremony and reception in one simple document. It comes fully labeled, colour coded, and even automatically calculates the number of guests invited to each occasion. 

Because luckily for you, I'm a little OCD like that! Download it for free now x


Step One: Panic!

So it's official. Deena & Frank are engaged!

 

I'm not usually one to agree to fly off to a winter destination. But when Frank said "Japan", my tickets were booked and off we went! And what an amazing trip it turned out to be as we hit another milestone in our relationship.

It was one cold Tokyo night when Frank somehow managed to find a quiet location and popped the question! It was that very moment when we both burst into confetti from so much joy and excitement. We told our families, made it "Facebook official" and everybody was incredibly happy and excited and congratulated us and WOOHOO!! WE'RE ENGAGED!

 Frank and I, all engaged and stuff in Tokyo.

Frank and I, all engaged and stuff in Tokyo.


what now?

So after the excitement of a proposal and announcement of an engagement, what really happens next in the mind of a bride-to-be? PANIC!

The first thing I did was look for my engagement dress (just getting my priorities straight, you know how it is). Then I started thinking about who we were going to invite, "ooh! Our parents, brother, sister, best friend, their partner, relatives, their partners, their children, family friends, their partners, their children" *breathe*.

Then I started thinking about how we were going to fit everybody into one building. "Hrmm, maybe we can do it in a garden? hire a venue? do it in our tiny backyard? find someone who has a big backyard?" Eep!

Then after thinking about all the costs per head, I started thinking about cutting down our guest list, and then I realised that I've only been thinking about planning the engagement party and haven't even started thinking about the actual wedding. O... M... G!

Being a wedding vendor, sometimes it's easy to forget how hard it actually is to plan a wedding. Hats off to all the Brides and Grooms who have successfully planned their entire wedding day. You guys ROCK!

In saying that, I've decided I'm going to blog about our wedding planning experience so newly engaged couples can read through this and learn from our mistakes haha! Oh did I tell you that we're planning to do this in 3 countries?! Oh yeah.... this is going to be fun!

Stay tuned x


hip hip HOORAY! Mag

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We're so excited to be featured among so many other amazing wedding invitations designers on the Hooray! Mag website today. Our most recent Save the Dates that we designed for our Perth couple, Astrid & Brendan have been featured under Hooray's Classic Romantic Stationery Edit. Take a peek!

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We Heart Athens

Now that's something you don't hear everyday. 

We've noticed recently that a lot of people who have travelled through Athens, wouldn't recommend it to anyone else. Why? Because it's not your typical picturesque holiday destination? Well, if you think that... You're doing it wrong! Athens has so much to offer. From sight seeing, relaxing, eating to partying. Athens has it all. (And if you're a cat lover, there are plenty of them to go around too!)

Let me give you some hot tips on places to go in Athens. Try hating it, I dare you!


bars

The bar scene is crazy in Athens. There are literally bars in every street, corner, alley, hill... Name any place in Athens and yup! there's a bar there. Here are a couple of my favourites, in no particular order.

 Photo Credit six d.o.g.s

Photo Credit six d.o.g.s

sIX d.o.g.s

This place is ah-mazing. I was taken here by my friends from Lost Athina one night. We walked from one alleyway to another, I had no idea where they were taking me, I even thought maybe we were lost. We finally got to a door and entered. We walked down a couple of stairs and then boom! The beauty of SIX D.O.G.S hit me square in the face. It took my breath away. An open terraced courtyard that you'll have to see to believe.

more info...

the clumsies

Set in an early 20th century Athenian apartment, Clumsies is an internationally known cocktail bar run by two finalists of the prestigious Diageo WORLD CLASS bartender of the year competition. By that alone, you know you're in good hands!

more info...

couleur locale

Become one of the locals in this neon lit rooftop bar in central Athens. Whether you're enjoying a coffee during the day or a cocktail at night. Couleur Locale will transport you out of the hustle and bustle of the modern city, and leave you breathless with the amazing views of the ancient Acropolis.

more info...


eats

I don't know if you've heard, but Greece does a mean souvlaki. But did you also know there's more to Greek cuisine than a souvlaki and salad? Here's a couple of my favourite places to eat. Again, in no particular order.

 A quick iPhone snap we took on our lunch visit to Ta Karamanlidika

A quick iPhone snap we took on our lunch visit to Ta Karamanlidika

ta karamanlidika

This traditional deli/tavern specialises in Greek cuisine from the region of Asia Minor. Ta Karamanlidika have generations of family experience in producing top quality cured meats, smoked cheese, famous for their blends of exotic spices. Enjoy a mixed platter of cold cuts or dive right into their hot platters. Oh, and their on the house dessert is to die for!

more info...

oxo nou

Located in the eclectic Exarchia area, Oxo Nou is a great place to sample the rich Cretan cuisine. Upon being seated, you will be given a shot of traditional Cretan alcohol called Raki which is meant for sipping with your food. (Warning: Raki is very potent, so don't try sculling it!). Crete is known for its extremely healthy foods which are full of flavour. And if you're brave enough, you can even try their snails.

more info...

kostas

Now if after these recommendations you're still craving a souvlaki, we beg you try one with a twist. Kostas at platia Irini in Monastiraki is truly a local experience. This hole in the wall shop is easy to miss, especially with a common name like Kosta! But, here you'll find a specialty souvlaki which has spicy tomato salsa rather than tzatziki. A real explosion of flavour!

more info...

Well of course, this isn't the entire list of best places to go. We'll have to do another blog post soon of more places we love and placed we find while we're here. If you have any other suggestions on places to go in Athens, let us know! x


Dear Bali Virgins

"Taxi! Taxi! Taxi!"

No, that's not you calling out for a taxi upon arrival in Bali, that's the sound of 10 Balinese men calling out to you while trying to take your bags out of your hands and shuffling you to their taxi. Meanwhile, you're trying to get your bearings, while making sure your family and friends are still close by and wondering why these men speak such good english.

Now, I don't know about you but I absolutely hate being talked at, especially after a long flight, even worse if it's by a group of random men. Nu-uh! All I want to do is get to my hotel room, find the closest beach, and put my feet up. Now is that too much too ask?

Fortunately for you, this post is not a rant about people yelling at an airport. I'm here to tell you that I know the secret to getting around Bali in peace and without getting ripped off! Are you ready for this? Let's dive in!


the airport

Don't expect to save your money here. Bali airport has its own airport taxi service and doesn't allow any other form of transport service to pick up passengers unless they are from your hotel, or a local family or friend. If your hotel offers a pick up service, I suggest you take advantage of that, because you will most likely be paying the same price as an airport taxi anyway. This way, you won't get hassled by taxi drivers, as your designated driver will already be there ready to rescue you. HOORAY! 

If you don't have any other mode of transportation. Don't try negotiating prices with the taxi drivers themselves. Head straight to the taxi service desk and let them know where you're going. They'll work out a price for you there. 


bluebird

So you've made it through the mayhem, and here you are taking in the sites of beautiful Bali. Now it's time to explore, but how do you get around. First thought "taxi" Not this old story again...YUCK! Thankfully, there are a range of taxi services in Bali, all with their own method of payment. Lesson #1: Don't jump into a taxi with no meter. Unless of course you're an expert negotiator and can haggle your way down to nothing. For everyone else, there's BlueBird. All BlueBird taxi's have a policy to always turn on their meters, and if they don't, you can write down their details and report it to their office.

SWEET! You're done! Never get ripped off again right?.... wrong. Some areas in Bali don't allow taxis in to pick up passengers... damn. Now what?

Onto the next one.


uber vs grab

There are so many different modes of transport in Indonesia it's hard to keep up. But here's something a little more familiar, Uber. We all know how it works, it's quick, it's safe and it's easy. Problem solved..... right? Nope! Wrong again.

Uber are also restricted from entering certain areas in Bali. There is an alternative, and if you're familiar with ride sharing in south east asia, you may also know Grab. Grab works the same way as Uber, so it should be easy to switch between the 2. If all else fails, you can always go back to the good old fashioned taxi (See Bluebird above).


gojek

If you're traveling alone, why not jump on a motorbike with Gojek. They can literally take you anywhere. And although this may not be the most comfortable of options, it certainly is more fun! Ooh, and they also have a food delivery service. Yass!


kura-kura bus

If you don't mind doing a bit of walking, you can always take the Kura-Kura Bus. You can't miss this cute little turtle on wheels. Apart from being super cute, this bus has a range of different routes taking you all around the main attractions of Bali. It's also unbelievable cheap to ride and with free wifi onboard, you can't go wrong!