Mr. Mole designed our wedding programs, and I have to say that I have a pretty talented fiance (very soon to be husband). We are so thrilled with the results! We hope that our guests will feel the same way when they see them.
Mr. Mole had a lot of fun with the process of designing and assembling these programs. He was able to incorporate some meaningful details into the design, like our love of crossword puzzles, that really represent our relationship. Mr. Mole hadn’t done any print design work in the last 10+ years—not since his sophomore year of undergrad! He insists that it was actually a pretty easy process, here’s what he did.
Step One: Brainstorm
Mr. Mole started out by thinking of all of the components that his ideal program would have. He came up with the following list:
Step Two: Create Mock-Ups
Mr. Mole then created some very basic mock-ups of the programs. First, he created a drawing in Adobe Ideas on his iPad using his awesome drawing skills.
Mr. Mole should be a computer illustrator
Then, he made a paper version using white paper and a sharpie pen. He taped together two pieces of white paper to make one tabloid-sized sheet. Doing so was important to make sure that he nailed down the correct size of the pages and the placement of the folds.
Third, Mr. Mole and I sat down together with a notepad to create the crossword puzzle and its clues. We wanted the clues to be meaningful to us and our relationship. We also wanted some of the clues to be tricky enough that both sides of our family would have to work together to solve the puzzle. For example, the name of my favorite childhood toy? Le Mutt! That’s right, my beloved stuffed dog had a pseudo-French name. After creating the clues, we fed them into a free online crossword generator to get a rough sense of the puzzle’s overall layout.
Step Three: Design
Mr. Mole used Adobe Illustrator to lay out the content. He used the guides to set the borders and folds based on the paper mock-up. He then tooled around for a bit until he was happy with everything’s placement.
We work better in our pajamas
At this point, everything was still in black and white. We decided that things were looking a little too stark, so Mr. Mole added color. He used the eyedropper tool in Photoshop to match the exact colors from our invitations. He added those colors to our logo. Next, he created a gradient design using dots to go behind the text of our list of participants and our schedule of the ceremony. Last, he grabbed some clip-art from one of his favorite (and highly recommended) websites: NounProject. This website is awesome when you need to find iconography for a variety of different purposes. Mr. Mole did a quick search for “dog” and “union” to add in some vector-based drawings behind the text of our ceremony readings.
Screenshot of Side One
Screenshot of Side Two
Step Four: Proofread, Proofread, Proofread
We probably proofread our programs dozens and dozens of times. Good thing too—we found two or three typos and one pretty epic error in the crossword puzzle. I always like to print things out and edit with a pen in hand. For whatever reason, it’s much easier for me to miss a mistake on a computer screen than it is on paper.
Step Five: Print
We decided to outsource some work at this point. There were two main reasons for this. First, our printer doesn’t print in tabloid size and eats a ton of ink. The price of buying three new color cartridges plus paper would have been more expensive than getting the programs done elsewhere. Second, we were feeling pretty iffy about cutting the programs down to size. I kept imagining that I would accidentally chop Mr. Mole’s hard work in half.
So Mr. Mole checked out reviews of local print shops on yelp. He then called the places with the highest reviews to get quotes for paper, printing, and cutting. One place seemed especially promising, so Mr. Mole took the pdf files to the shop to print out a test program. It looked great! Our decision to go with this company was reinforced when the printer gave Mr. Mole some important tips about how to better format the file.
We ended up getting them printed on white 65lb paper. The final dimensions of the unfolded program are 8″x16″.
Step Six: Assemble
We set up a short assembly line for this part. Mr. Mole folded the programs and then passed them to me. I then used our leftover Divine Twine in a baker’s cross to attach one one of our moo mini-cards and a pen. I wanted the overall look to be reminiscent of our invitations. The mini-card is to say thanks and remind our guests of our wedding website, which has an group log-in for a photo upload site. The pen is to allow people to work on the crossword puzzle while waiting for our ceremony to begin.
Here are some photos of the completed project!
Are you having programs for your ceremony guests? If so, are you making your own?