Please welcome the very lovely Samantha Birch...
The High-Street Bride’s Guide. I’ve written about dresses, bridesmaids and cake toppers for Brides and You & Your Wedding, and regularly contribute to the likes of GLAMOUR and Love Baking – often while eating cake in my pyjamas. I live with my husband in a chaotically untidy flat in Letchworth, which I pretend is an artfully
unkempt writer’s loft in St. Albans.
BLURB: Brides-to-be, this one’s for you!
You can say your vows in a catwalk gown so beautiful it reduces your mum to tears (and not because she paid for it).
You can style a reception so stunning your
guests won’t believe you didn’t hire an A-list
And you can sprinkle the day with personal
touches that make everyone feel like you gave them special attention before they even got there. Without spending a house deposit on it.
Samantha Birch has written for GLAMOUR, Brides, You & Your Wedding and Cosmopolitan
Bride. She knows a thing or two about planning a wedding on a budget, how much you can expect to pay for everything and where to go to get it for less. And she’s put it all down here.
I love stationery: Samantha Birch
cards for people that you’ve bought way, way too far in advance. She smiled as she gave it to me and announced: “You’re the only person in the world I think would use this!”
She’s right. Because yes, I have too many notebooks to ever get any use out of, and yes, one of the highlights of my Christmas every year is picking out the co-ordinating wrap and ribbon (or twine—maybe twine this year?), but it’s got to be said I’ve also got a bit of an obsession with finding the right birthday card. I’ve been known to spot the perfect one for somebody months
before their big day, and keep it squirreled away until the time comes.
Writing the Stationery chapter of The High-Street Bride’s Guide only made it worse—I was researching places to get your invites, place names, menus, table numbers and orders of service, and finding that most of them also did some totally gorgeous birthday cards. Here are some budget beauties from the book, and some that aren’t so purse-friendly for your wedding
but might just work on a one-card-at-a-time basis…
http://www.hellolucky.co.uk/zombie-birthday-hl-934.html Seriously, I’m going to have to start shielding my eyes until I’ve clicked through to where I need to be on this website—I’m always getting sidetracked by beautiful cards and charts and printables I have no use for at all. I mean really, I just got married last November, I have no use for a potty-training chart, but the damn thing was just too cute!
I recently bought a birthday card here for my husband because it was not only bright, quirky and retro, it said ‘Live it up!’ and was—get
this—covered in zombies. I mean, how could I not? W-day potential: Come here if you’re planning a small do, or if you’re looking for freebie printables.
Dicky Bow http://www.dickybow.co.uk/collections/all/products/owl-card
Dicky Bow’s capsule collection of cards and prints swings from modern-vintage—retro-look rockets, anyone?—to in-your-face bright and cheerful. I defy you to look at that big-eyed geometric owl and not smile. And I just need
to think up an excuse to buy the hotdog. Anything! W-day potential: Unless you’re going for something really off-the-wall, this place won’t fly for your nuptials, but it’s hard to beat for random ‘thinking of you’ cards that won’t get quickly forgotten.
North Divide Cards I’m a writer so—shock, horror!—I love a good bit of typography, and wotmalike.co.uk have got it by the bucket-load. Their cards are smothered in delicious slang that you’ll be desperate to say out loud as you read it—browse out of earshot of your significant other if you ever want to live it down…
W-day potential: Invite-able picks are few and far between, unless you’re really excited that you’re getting wed in Newcastle or Manchester—then you could send out the awesome Geordie City or City Scape Manchester cards!
Paperless Post I’ll be honest, I’m still working these guys out—not sure how this Free, 1 coin, 2 coins, 3 coins business works—but they look great if you want to ping something pretty over to a friend abroad, you forgot to send a card and need something online last-minute or you just feel like saving a few trees (not that they don’t do a paper option). They’ve got designs by kate spade new york, Oscar de la Renta and Virginia Johnson, so you can’t really go wrong, but personally I’m currently drooling over their cute illustrated macarons.
W-day potential: There are some super-pretty designs, even among their free options, so they’re great for save-the-dates. Also worth thinking about if you want to go green for your
My Wedding Invites No, really—that’s not a place. This is the result of all my hours trawling gift shops, Pinterest, websites and wedding magazines for graphical inspiration: mine and my husband’s wedding invitations!
I wrote the words (just try and stop me!), he did the visuals and we had them printed locally—we loved them so much we let them set the colour
scheme for the whole day. And the barrage of ROFL texts we got as these babies landed on people’s doormats? So. Totally. Worth it.