Ever wondered about the hows and whys of save the date cards? Do you need save the date cards at all? They’re a popular element of your wedding stationery, but let’s find out if you even need them.
Your wedding invitations contain all the information your guests need about the big day (or days!). They are typically posted about three to four months out. Save the dates on the other hand, are sent out much earlier, with the aim of giving guests 12 months notice to keep your date free.
Save the Dates Feel Really Special
If you love stationery like I do, then the idea of save the dates are great! Guests get a cute little card with your names and date act as a teaser for the main event. Who doesn’t love getting a gorgeous card and coloured envelope in the mail?! However, there are a few reasons why you might not actually need them.
First, A Note on Timing
I want to note that I’ve seen quite a lot of information lately coming out of the US saying that you need to send your save the date cards four to six months in advance of your wedding, rather than 12. With invitations going out three to four months prior, I would say that there is a lot of unnecessary overlap here. It just shows that everyone does things differently, and nothing is set in stone. Do your day your way babes.
Why You Might Not Need Save the Date Cards
Save the date cards were traditionally sent out to give advance notice of a wedding for one of two reasons. First, you planned to get married out-of-town or overseas, and guests had to book travel. Second, your wedding was on a holiday weekend, and you had to get in first before guests made other arrangements. This makes sense, as in both cases you wanted to give your guests plenty of notice to plan their vacations. If this is you, then I would recommend save the date cards. However, if this isn’t you, then the choice for save the date cards is totally up to you.
Next, you might not want save the date cards if you don’t yet want to finalise your guest list. Remember, save the date cards are to be sent out 12 months in advance, which means you will need to have your final guest list to your stationer about 13 to 14 months out. There are a lot of reasons why your guest list might change, so consider if this is something you can achieve.
And One More Consideration…
Lastly, if you’re designing your save the date cards 14 months in advance of your wedding, what style are you choosing? Part of the beauty of having tangible, touchable, paper stationery in your wedding is that all the elements match, from invitations to signage and table numbers, to thank you cards. If you haven’t finalised a style for your wedding, designing save the date cards might be hard. You don’t want to send out a card with colourful florals, and then have an invitation with black and white minimalism. You can of course send out something very simple for your save the date card to avoid this confusion, but you might decide that this isn’t worth the extra item on your wedding to-do list.
So what to do?
Once you’ve considered these few points, decide if save the date cards are for you. But the main thing I want you to know is that you don’t have to have them. As a lover of stationery, I think they’re beautiful, but you could absolutely do without them if you wanted to.
If you’re not having a destination wedding or a New Year’s Eve celebration, it’s totally personal preference. You could always put the money towards your invitations budget and include a more luxury finish like letterpress, or you could create a jaw-dropping table seating chart instead.