Budget · DIY

DIY Save the Dates

Hi guys,

I’ve always love the idea of Save the Dates. A cute little card with our engagement photo telling our guests its official; we have a date and we are actually getting married. So one of my first thoughts after we decided on our date and venue, was “Yes I can send out Save the Dates!”, that initial excitement was gone I realized the cost associated with these adorable little cards. 

Now we both have large families and even after painstakingly narrowing down the guest list, we still have 185 guests, which means I need to send out 105 cards. And the average cost of a card is around $2.00 plus the cost of a stamp which is now $.50 so if we do the math (2.00+.50)* 105 = $262.50 (not including shipping/tax)… ouch

So after scouring the internet for cheap (but not cheap looking) Save the Dates, I was outta luck. There was nothing I liked. Ok so I though, what are my other options, perhaps I just skip the Save the Dates and send out the invitations earlier than expected? But no I wanted to send them out. Spend the $200+ and skimp somewhere else? Even if I wanted to, where can I pull money from? How about I make them myself? Ok perhaps thats an option, but they can’t look like I’ve made them. And if I am to make the Save the Dates, I need to stick to a supply budget. Ok I think I can do that…

And guess what…..I did it! I made Save the Dates, and they aren’t half bad. And even better, I didn’t spend more then $50 (not including stamps). Below is how I did it.


  • Vellum Paper
  • Cardstock
  • Computer
  • Printer
  • Scissors or Paper cutter
  • Glue sticks
  • Photo prints
  • Paper fasteners/brads
  • Envelopes


  1. I started with a basic design on Adobe Illustrator, but you can use pretty much any word processing/photo program like Word, Photoshop, etc. This design was printed on my inkjet printer onto the vellum paper. I was able to get three cards per sheet of vellum since I made each card 4″x 6″.

2. I also created and printed a back for each card that showed my wedding website. This can be optional. I printed this on pink cardstock. 

3. After I printed out all of the 4″ x 6″ cards on both the cardstock and the vellum, it was time to cut out the cards. If you have a paper cutter this can be a quick process, but if you are like me and use scissors, be prepared it can easily take hours. Go slowly and cut each card out on the lines.

4. Our photographer offered us free engagement photos with the wedding package, but you can also easily use any photo (new or old) you’d like. Once you decide on the photo, order a bunch through an photo printing company like Shutterfly or Snapfish. You can do whichever size you prefer, I chose 4″ x 6″ prints to get the best bang for my buck. Little known fact, if you download the Shutterfly app on your phone, you can get FREE, yes free unlimited prints each month (you just pay shipping).  I was able to order 125 ( I wanted some extras) prints at the cost of shipping. We had two photos that we loved, so we did two different versions of the Save the Date.

5. I glued each photo to the cardstock, which made the Save the Date less flimsy and gave it a higher quality feel. This can be optional if you’d like. 

6. Once the glue is dry, place the vellum layer over the photo/cardstock and insert a paper fastener/brad to hold the whole card together. 

If you notice in this photo, the exact center of the photo is my fiance’s head (not a good look, with a paper fastener pinned through your head). So i simply put the fastener off-center and problem solved. 

And the final product…..
What do ya think? Not too bad for DIY.
Until next time…
Budget · DIY

My DIY Wedding


Its official, I am a bride-to-be. My Fiance finally popped the big question and now its time to plan the wedding. I am a bride with a budget, in fact I’m a bride who refuses to spend an outrageous amount of money on my wedding (I’ll save that for the honeymoon!)

Like most recently engaged girls the whole wedding planning process started out overwhelming me. Wedding planning checklists and budgets moved me to near tears and left me with many sleepless nights. After all I needed to find a venue, photographer, dj, ceremony band, officiant, hotels, invitations… you get the gist. Ever since I was a little girl, I dreamed of an elegant fairytale wedding with all the bells and whistles, yet as I started to inquire about pricing I realized my fairytale dream might not be possible. So the research began on how to throw an extravagant wedding on a shoestring budget. I decided that if I wanted my vision to become a reality, I was going to have to make it — literally.

enhanceThere are so many helps tips, tricks and tutorials online for DIY weddings, and I thought, why not go for it? I can do anything I set my mind to. So in order to save money yet still have the elegant fairy tale wedding, I will be doing everything myself (with the help of my amazing mother and bridal party). The save the dates, the invitations, the flowers,  the decorations, the cake, and of course, the bridal gown alterations and accessories (helps that my best friend is an fabulous seamstress).

In the next couple of months leading up to my wedding, I will post tutorials, tips and tricks on all of my DIY projects, starting with my Save the Dates.

I can’t wait to share it all with you!

Until next time



Photos by fabulous Sarah Shelley Photography