If you recall, our RSVP cards had this sassy little meal icons created by BF K:
We dubbed the vegetarian icon, “Stoned Broccoli”. / Personal Photo
In order to better inform our guests of their meal choice upon arrival at the reception, we wanted to do individual menus at each place setting.
Damn me and my brilliant ideas!
I just spent the better part of an hour hand corner-rounding 140 of these things:
I have mentioned previously my concern that my 93-year-old grandmother will not be able to make the journey from Florida to Savannah for the wedding. Well, the other day I came home to this:
She included a very sweet note but said her “age and feebleness” would not allow her to make the trip. Although I’ve had this in the back of my mind, seeing it on paper made it too real. I now need to think of a way to include something of hers in my ensemble, but I do not know how to coordinate that with her when she is difficult to speak with on the phone. Maybe I can write her a letter and ask her to send me a piece of lace or a handkerchief. I would love something to wrap around my bouquet if possible.
Have you ever felt as high as kite and then everything came crashing down a few seconds later? Well that happened to me a few days ago. I came home, checked my mail box, and was thrilled to see a wedding RSVP card. I was disappointed to see it was a “NO,” but it was from Mr. G’s uncle who is a doctor and couldn’t take the time off. I happily walked up the stairs in wedding planning bliss when I turned over the RSVP card to see a very strange stamp. It was not one of the floral stamps we used for the invitations, but a stamp of a cat. A stamp I had never seen before. My stomach dropped and I had an awful realization: I had forgotten to put stamps on our RSVP cards. Granted, I made only six RSVP cards for our older guests, but still I forgot to put stamps on six cards which means six of Mr. G’s relatives would have to go and buy stamps. My eyes started to get watery. I told Mr. G and he immediately calmed me down, but a few minutes later I realized that this one particular invite was from Mr. G’s uncle whose wife is, I hate to say it, quite a snob. She would look at my mistake of forgetting a stamp as a major faux- pas. I imagined her sneering at me the next time she saw me and I would forever be known as the niece-in-law who forgot to put a 50 cent stamp on the RSVP card. I ended up lying on the couch and crying for a few minutes.
The stamp that brought on tears. And yes, Japanese stamps are really that cute.
That lovely quote came courtesy of Daddy Jet.
You know what that means, right? Invites are rolling out and RSVPs are rolling in—I can finally reveal our invites to the world!!
As I have previously mentioned (a lot), MOH J and Bestie K designed and screen-printed my invitations. My role in this whole shebang?
Cut. Print. Stuff. Tie. Stamp. Send.
Needless to say, they were truly a labor of love birthed by all three of us. To say we were all relieved once they hit the mailbox is a CRAZY understatement!
Without further ado, here are our beauties: (all photos personal, personal info blurred—sorry!)
TOP LEFT: the full folio as removed from the outer envelope., TOP RIGHT: the front of the outer envelope., BOTTOM: the wrapped return address on the back of the outer envelope.
Last week, I showed you guys the wedding website I created using WeddingWire. The main purpose of the site in my mind was to offer an online RSVP option. I’ve yet to receive a wedding invitation that offers online RSVP’ing, but I would seriously be SO excited! First of all, guests can reply instantly without ever having to leave the comforting, radioactive glow of their laptops to find the nearest mailbox. I also figured this would significantly reduce the number of late or forgotten RSVPs that I would then be forced to track down in the weeks leading up to the wedding. Since people could answer straight away, I thought they were less likely to throw the invite on top of their mail pile and forget about it. (Oh, how wrong I was!) WeddingWire also sends you an instant notification every time you get an RSVP (instant gratification FTW!), which was fun, though I’ll admit not nearly as thrilling as getting actual paper mail. Before we continue, allow me to let you in on a little secret I wish somebody had told me when I was planning my wedding. No matter how easy you make it for your guests to RSVP, there will still be people who can’t be bothered to do it. I’m not saying that I get it, but it’s just a fact of life. Seriously. Just accept it and move on, for your own sanity. There is nothing you can do about it. What you CAN do is plan ahead and leave yourself enough time to chase down the stragglers.
Image via someecards.com
So, here is the Waterfall RSVP card:
Some of my favourite posts to read have always been about invitation breakdowns. I always found them so entertaining and informative! So, I’m paying it forward. Without further ado, I give thee The Waterfall Invitation Breakdown! (I hope you read that last part in an ominous voice.)
If you recall, early on in the planning process, we butted heads with my parents about the guest list, because Mr. Waterfall and I wanted to keep things intimate while they basically wanted to invite the whole world. Honestly, the guest list was the bane of my existence for the last two years of my life. It created so much drama, and I just wanted to be done with it. There was a lot of compromising and negotiating, but also many a tantrum thrown. Hive, it’s never easy accepting money from someone, and trust me, there are always strings attached. Any time I refused to invite someone that they wanted, my parents pulled out the money card. It was awful, and to be fair, I didn’t really notice the extra people we invited to appease them, since I spent most of my time surrounded by the people who mattered to me, so in hindsight, I should have saved myself the headaches.
Before we go on, I’m gonna let you in on a little secret: we used a B-list. You see, we had a minimum of 150 people at our venue that we HAD to meet, but we also didn’t want to end up over-inviting and having to pay for 250 people, so we did rolling invites (basically a B and C list). I know the etiquette police are coming to get me, but it just made the most sense. We knew we had a lot of courtesy invites that needed to be sent out to people from out of town that probably wouldn’t be able make it, but you never know! So, we sent those invites out first, and would send out our local invites as the nos started trickling in. This way, nobody got offended and we were able to keep our numbers manageable.
Out of 233 invites sent, 159 were mine, 63 were Mr. Waterfall’s, and 11 were neutral (such as mutual friends and vendors). The initial breakdown looked like this:
I don’t know about you, but I love data. That may be the researcher in me talking, but I’ve always really enjoyed the guest list breakdowns when other bees have posted them.
We invited 169 guests to our wedding. (Not counting courtesy plus-ones. We invited 182 with those.) This was a jump from our original guest list of ~150, but we had the luxury of being able to invite who we wanted without worrying about size. (True story: there was a wedding at our venue where the bride and groom hired Tom Petty to play. If they could fit that, we can fit 180+ guests.)
To be fair, a few more of each of my friends and Sparky’s friends could be counted as mutual, but I was trying to be true to the relationships with this breakdown.
I think I’m losing my mind, so just be aware that it’s entirely possible I’ll start talking/writing like a a loon. With less than three weeks to go, a minor list of to-dos, an incredibly packed work schedule, and an even more packed personal schedule that doesn’t really lend itself to food, water, and/or sleep, I’m just going to exist in a permanent state of delusion. That’s OK, though, because it will all be so worth it. I just wanted to give fair warning to all.
Anyway, hive, it’s here: the Palm Tree RSVP breakdown. I’ve always loved these posts from other bees, and the type-A nerd in me loves to see things categorized so neatly.
We invited 226 people (93 invitations), in the hope that about 200 would show. Our total guest count is 186.
Hive, we’re three weeks out from the wedding tomorrow, and I have something really, really big I haven’t done. Something really important. That I really shouldn’t be putting off.
That thing is to figure out who all is coming to this party.
I haven’t gotten a ton of RSVPs—maybe 30%? Plus another 20% or so who I know are coming or who have said they’re coming. That leaves…a lot of people.
Part of this may be my fault. Remember my invitation with the online RSVP on the back of the card? There have been a fair amount of people who have left the picture on the card and not slid it off to see that there’s a back side. What I don’t understand is the people who ask questions, I refer them to the website, and they’re like “Oh, there’s a back to the card!” and then they still don’t RSVP.
I promise to always RSVP to every single event from here forward.
I know Miss Otter just posted about her RSVP drama so…I’ll just add to that post by saying &@*(@^#^. (That’s as close to swearing as I’ll get…but seriously!)
Oh, weddings. While intended to be days full of love and celebration, weddings bring out the crazy in people. It seems that even the most sane of people go totally off the rails in the months leading up to a wedding. While I’ve touched on the crazy before (and no, I’m not linking—I want to pretend these things never happened!), today I’m talking about those things. Yes, the RSVPs.
Let me tell you something about RSVPs—I never knew they were so complicated! I thought you receive an invitation, you look at your calendar, perhaps take a few other steps like talking to your place of employment and family members, and then you respond if you will or will not be attending. Oh, hive, let’s all laugh together at how wrong I was!
Personal photo / You see! I was excited to send these!
Since Mr. Sword is too
scared busy to write a guest post, I am sharing this post on his behalf, but all of the information gathering and graph making done in preparation for said blog post is courtesy of the ever-cute, ever-Scottish, and ever-skinny Mr. Sword.
Awww! Isn’t he adorable in his kilt jacket?
I know everyone loves to see a good breakdown of the guest list and how many people are attending or not attending, and I’m no different. Except instead of just breaking it down by family and friends of the bride or the groom, I think, especially in our case, it’s equally if not more interesting to look at the breakdown by in state, out of state, and out of country.
It started off like any other trip to the PO Box. Since Mr. Sword has been traveling for work every week, I’ve been doing all of the heavy lifting and car loading and unloading of wedding related packages. That said, it’s hard to complain about receiving lots of great packages and letters, and on this particular day I had SIX boxes to bring into the apartment and a handful of letters. Immediately after unloading I wanted to begin opening the packages (obvs) but something caught my eye in the stack of mail, it was a letter from the UK.
Now it’s not unusual for us to receive mail or cards from the UK (hello Scottish fiance) so at first I set it aside, eager to open everything else. But something made me do a double-take. This letter was special. It looked different, regal, important. My heart began pounding and a scream left my mouth, “WILLIAM AND KATE SENT US A LETTER! OHHH MYYY GOSH OHMIGOSH! AHHHH!!!!”
When I first shared our Once Upon a Time invitations with the hive I talked briefly about my love of online RSVP’ing, but I figure it’s worth sharing my thoughts again and this time in more detail.
I have a confession to make, I placed a lot more importance on our RSVP deadline date than I originally thought I would. I ended up attaching some emotion to the RSVP waiting game and frankly, it’s not something I would recommend!
I have secretly been waiting for Jan. 15th for a while now; feeling beyond curious about who will be able to attend the wedding and who will not. I know many bees before me have written about their disappointment when certain family members or friends submit a “no” response, and I am here to commiserate with them. But I truly believe that everyone who is meant to be there will be there and the wedding day will be fantastic no matter what.
We chose a deadline early enough to give us plenty of time to track down the stragglers and to be certain that guests had ample time to make hotel reservations and flights. If most of your guests are in the same state/city, I wouldn’t think you need to know as far in advance as we do. I’m also anxious to have a real number in my head! For the past year when talking about our guest list it’s always been a range of numbers, like 110-150 or our best guess, 130ish? Soon enough, we will have a confirmed number.
Speaking of numbers, out of the 186 people invited, we have heard back from 129 of them with 102 folks attending and 27 declining. A great start! Since we are inviting a few families, I think it also makes sense to look at our guests as households or invitations. We sent out 86 invitations and have heard back from 63. Out of those 63 households, 50 have accepted and 13 have declined, with 23 households left unknown at this point.
While I love the idea of receiving the RSVP cards in the mail because it’s traditional and beautiful, I have to say going online with our RSVP system was one of the smartest decisions we made! I love the ease of it and the way it keeps track of everything for us. I can just log in and see our numbers quickly without counting or entering in information myself.
So imagine you are a guest invited to our Highland Fairy Tale wedding. Your first step is to type in our wedding website URL to find this home page.
After browsing our engagement photos and reading our proposal story, you’ll locate the “RSVP” tab on the left and click it. After which, you’ll see this:
When I initially started working on our guest list, one of the big questions that came up was, “How many people that we invite will actually show up to this shindig?” Of course, when I turned to my trusted friend, Google, I found many contradicting answers. Some websites said to expect 10-20% guests to respond with a “no” while others insisted that your declined list would be closer to 40% of those that had been invited. However, something that I noticed as I jumped from page to page was that the number of total invited was significantly different for each of these statistics. If you are inviting 500 of your “closest” friends to your wedding, I’m sure you can expect the decline rate to look a little different than a guest list that includes only you, immediate family, and your BFFs.
So, while our number of guests that responded “no” actually fell somewhere in the middle of the numbers I found, I think it’s important to share our RSVP breakdown with you guys, because it could be similar to your experience, especially if your list of people to invite looks similar to ours. Or, our numbers could be the exact opposite of yours, and my stats would be totally irrelevant. Either way, the graphs are fun to look at
So, here’s the breakdown:
We invited a total of 176 guests to our wedding. Here’s how those 176 people broke down:
Our final guest count is 114 (including us). That means that about 65% of the people we invited are coming.