Real Weddings: Pretty On Paper

1Ecruwhite Royalty Wedding Invitation

Meet Jens and Amol, a couple so pretty on paper you would think it too good to be true. World-travelers, yet homebodies when in town, these two businessmen know how to keep the flame alive. Date nights are a weekly ritual and weekends together are a sweet dose of couple activities. Their love for each other seems almost tangible, something which they were able to harness beautifully in their choice of stationery. Crane, being their stationery destination of choice, and a resource they use near exclusively in their home, was an easy decision for their wedding – and the perfect fit. Choosing an invitation suite that accommodated their exquisitely posh – yet within the bounds of casual – affair, was something the Crane team was wholly equipped for, and readily tuned into. The result? Something akin to magic, something near perfect. Their love became a sentiment caught on paper, and one all guests could touch, hold, and feel forever.

2Ecruwhite Royalty Wedding Invitation

Though it may not have been love at first sight for these two, they appear a seamlessly complementary fit to one another. With a wedding that fully articulated their styles, they approached the look and feel with a sort of casual formality that made their day equal parts lovely and luxurious. What all started at a business conference led to a candle-lit proposal, and then to an incredible wedding that included a surprise serenade by Jens at their reception. This beautiful couple planned quite the event – and it all started with their invitations.

3Ecruwhite Royalty Wedding Invitation

So let’s get to know them a little bit more in depth. We promise it will only prove that, though pretty on paper, they’re even better in real life.

5Ecruwhite Royalty Wedding Invitation

Tell us a little bit about yourselves! What type of couple are you – adventurer-seekers, or the popcorn and movie night type?

Jens: We both have hectic jobs that require quite a bit of travel, so when we happen to be in the same place and not working, we really like to just enjoy our time and not be too scheduled…so that could be a bottle of wine at home, a nice dinner out, or hitting the gym. One of my favorite times is our Saturday mornings when we spend hours reading the weekend papers and having breakfast together before working out. We also make sure to have at least one ‘date night’ a week.

Amol: I love our relaxing weekends, and weekly date nights, but when we’re not at home we love traveling (Jens especially!). Over the last two years we’ve been to places like South Africa, Turkey, Belgium, Mexico, the Dominican Republic and the Maldives. Our favorite place is Mexico, for the resorts (Jens) and the spicy, veggie food + margaritas (Amol).

Tell us how you and your partner met, and what was the proposal like? Give us all the details.  

Jens: We met at a networking conference when Amol was in business school and I was representing my employer at that time. Needless to say I was all business and made a bad impression…a couple of months later when Amol was in New York I wrote him to see if he wanted to catch up over a drink. He only realized it was a date about an hour in! The proposal was just as much a surprise to Amol. He had just accepted a new job offer, and I had told him I would come home to cook a celebratory meal. What he didn’t know was that he would be walking in on 400 tealight candles and 1,000 rose petals, as well as a wedding proposal.

Amol: I remember when I first met Jens, and I was so put off because, despite having mutual friends, he wouldn’t talk to me because I wasn’t interested in consulting! I nearly didn’t make it to what turned out to be our first date because it was a cold evening in January, I was coming back from a dinner with a couple of friends, and couldn’t find a cab. I’m glad I made it though! The moment Jens proposed was so indicative of how he is in general — the surprise, the bottle of Dom Perignon he had saved for that very occasion (before he met me, he had that bottle planned), the hundreds of tealights in our apartment. It all felt so perfect and amazing.

Tell me about the process of choosing your wedding invitations and did you have something in mind when you first approached Crane.com? What drew you to Crane.com? Did that change?

Jens: I’ve always used Crane for my personal stationery. I like the combination of a non-fussy design with the formality of the high quality paper stock for a written thank you note. For the wedding we were looking for the same kind of casual formality: black tie dress code at the Harvard Club of New York, but with guests truly enjoying every moment rather than being uncomfortable or bored. The invitation we chose fit with the venue and dress code: heavy paper stock with a very traditional font type and wording. We also worked with a calligrapher, Ashantai Yungai, that came recommended by Crane. He was the cherry on the cake, making sure our invitations wowed people as they received them.

4Printed Ecruwhite Save the Date Card

Amol: We’ve always used Crane stationery at our house, so choosing Crane was our number one choice. Our invitations were hand-calligraphed in navy blue ink, which was one of our wedding colors, and we really wanted them to feel special.

6Printed Ecruwhite Save the Date Card

Was there anything about the process of choosing your invitations that you weren’t expecting?

Jens: I didn’t realize there would be so much choice! Nor did I expect that, once presented with all the choices, I actually had strong opinions about wedding invitations. I was also shocked to see how much (or how little) some of the invitations cost. Crane was a great choice for us: I was very familiar with the quality of their products, and it allowed us to get a very luxurious invitation suite without exploding our budget.

7Ecruwhite Royalty Wedding Invitation

Do you have any advice for couples on the invitation process?

Jens: One of the best tips I received when picking our invitation, was to remember that for months, the save the date and subsequently the invitation are really the only tangible part of the wedding for all of your guests, so you want to set the right tone and create the right expectations. That’s why, for example, we made sure to use a calligrapher for both the save-the-dates and the actual invitations.

Amol: Completely agree. Not skimping on the invitations was one of the best decisions we made. I still have a copy of our invite, which we saved with our album.

Tell me about your wedding! What was your favorite moment?

Jens: The ceremony was actually my favorite moment of the day. We had a dear friend officiate, and the whole ceremony felt very personal. I really liked that we both wrote our own vows. I’ll remember those forever. I also really liked the speeches. We went light on the number of speeches and how long they could go, and everyone did such a great job at keeping them short, sweet, and funny.

Amol: My favorite part of the day was a surprise piano performance by Jens of John Legend’s song, “All of Me.” Jens had every single moment of the wedding planned out, so I was completely taken aback when suddenly this big piano rolled into the room, and Jens sat down to sing and play that song. He serenaded me in front of all our guests and loved ones, it was so beautiful — I was completely struck by how emotional and happy I felt. To this day, whenever I hear that song, I think back to our wedding day, it was really special.

Credits:

Photos by STAK Studios.

Kara Neff lives in New York City by way of Los Angeles and Washington, D.C. She can be found writing freelance for beauty, fashion and interior design outside of her full-time job as a fashion writer. 

Are you a bride, groom or stationer who has a Crane & Co. wedding invitation you’d like to have featured in Real Weddings? Email us at submissions@crane.com.

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Real Weddings: A Bride Bets on Tradition

paper-merchant-naples-invitation-blurredWe often say that Crane is a name that is passed down from generation to generation. But we’re still always delighted when we meet someone—especially a bride—who chooses our stationery because it was given to them by a beloved older family member.

Bride Liana wanted to do just that after her mother gave her Crane stationery when she began college.

“She told me that I could write to her, in addition to calling home, if I ever felt homesick,” Liana said. “I loved that paper set, and knew I wanted to go with Crane for my wedding invitations.”

Here, Liana advises on who brides should take with them to their invitation appointment and her stationer—Corinne of The Paper Merchant in Naples, Florida—shares why traditional invitations are making a comeback.
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Real Weddings: For the Love of Layers

paper-merchant-genevaEach month our factory sends us a big box of wedding invitations—samples of orders we print for couples surely anxious for those blue boxes to finally arrive. When the box arrives, it truly feels like Christmas as we hold each invitation to admire. Not only are these the invitations we choose our Real Weddings features from, but they are also how we pinpoint trends in what brides are ordering.

One trend we are seeing a lot of these days is layering. Just like with hair, layers give invitations dimension and volume. For this process, our finishing department applies a process called duplexing: the larger card serves as the bottom layer, and the smaller—most often a different color—is affixed to it. Couples love the look because of the thickness it creates as well as its ability to showcase a wedding color palette while keeping the design classic and elegant.

Such was the case with Erika and Ryan, who enlisted the expertise of stationer Sarah at The Paper Merchant in Geneva, Illinois to create their ecru-atop-navy invitation. Not only is it layered, but it also features a gilt edge, a detail that adds such a stunning touch. Here, we talk to both bride and stationer about, among other things, creating this timeless look.
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Real Weddings: A Truly Touching Tale

shannon-and-chuck-invitation-blurredIt isn’t often we are treated to the backstory of one of the couples for whom we are printing invitations. Yes, we see their names and where and when they are getting married, but unfortunately there is no “get to know the couple” space on the order form. So when Georgetown stationer Just Paper & Tea reached out to us with exactly that when a particular order needed a bit of TLC, we had that rare opportunity to learn a little bit more about Shannon and Chuck, and their truly touching tale.


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Real Weddings: Capturing Your Wedding Style with Stationery

We always say that the save the date and invitation are a guests’ first hint as to what to expect on a couple’s wedding day. They set the tone and also reflect their personal style, be it modern, classic or somewhere in between. For bride Jennifer and her groom-to-be, a blind embossed background that evoked a beautiful lace pattern matched their wedding, which had a vintage feel “with a lot of lace and soft pastels,” Jennifer said. Here, she shares with us what impressed the groom and why brides should think decades ahead.

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The Bride: Jennifer

How did you and your fiance met, and how did he propose?
My husband, Chris, and I met online. On my online dating profile, I mentioned I liked to play Scrabble and wanted to learn how to golf. My husband, being an avid golfer, challenged me to a game of Words with Friends. If I won the game, he would give me a free golf lesson; if he won, then “I still might meet a nice guy out of it.” I won the game of Words with Friends, got my golf lesson and seven months later we were engaged.

Chris proposed on a road trip we took in August of 2012. We were going to drive up the California coast and make our way all the up to Vancouver, Washington. The first stop was in Monterey. Chris proposed on our way to dinner in the fisherman’s wharf area, on the corner of Wave and Prescott streets. We spent the rest of our road trip celebrating our engagement!

Tell me about the process of choosing your wedding invitations and did you have something in mind going into your first appointment? Did that change?
Chris and I both like things that are very classic and timeless. With the theme of our wedding being sort of vintage with a lot of lace and soft pastels, we knew we wanted invitations that went along with this style.
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Real Weddings: An Invitation Inspired by Something Borrowed

Sometimes, one doesn’t have to scroll through endless Pinterest boards and magazines to find inspiration for the perfect wedding invitation (though it sure is fun). Sometimes, the inspiration conveniently arrives in your postbox. Such was the scenario for new bride Amanda. She loved the design of a family friend’s invitation so much, she made it her own—and we couldn’t blame her. Classic with just the right amount of modern, our ecru paper was paired with an elegant gold script that perfectly set the tone for the romantic Black Tie spring wedding.

* All photos are courtesy of Bonnie Sen Photography.

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How did you and your fiance meet, and how did he propose?
Mike and I met junior year of college at an event my sorority was throwing. After college, we dated long distance for five years until I decided to move to Washington, DC. Finally (phew!), after seven years of dating, Mike popped the question at my parents’ house on the 4th of July. It was a private, sweet and simple proposal, which was perfect. We spent the rest of the day and night celebrating with lots of family, friends and fireworks in the sky.

Tell me about the process of choosing your wedding invitations and did you have something in mind going into your first appointment? Did that change?
Going into the process, I knew I wanted an invite exactly like what I ended up with. I actually have a close family friend who used the same invitation suite, and I loved it so much. I tried really hard to find something different, that had the same look, but I could not find another invite I loved as much as this Crane & Co. invitation.

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Real Weddings: On-Trend and Original, So Happy Together

lettered-Lily-Closeup

Couple Jessica and David’s wedding invitation is proof that it is possible to be both on-trend and completely original. For their charcoal-atop-pearl white invitation, they incorporated not one but two of the most popular trends we’re seeing these days—monograms/duograms and calligraphic typestyles. However, instead of choosing a duogram design from our album, they chose to have one custom drawn. Below, Taylor of The Lettered Lily in Salisbury, North Carolina shares the details and Jessica shares the importance of sticking to your vision—and always agreeing to go see a turtle.

The Bride:
Jessica 

Tell me how you and your fiance met, and how did he propose? 

David and I met when we were six years old. We had the same group of friends. Although we spoke to everyone in the group, we never spoke to each other. It wasn’t until we were 21 that we said our first words. His older brother was in a horrible car accident three months prior. My father was his neurologist. He and his family were spending some time at their river house near Camden, South Carolina and invited my family to visit. When I arrived, David was playing horseshoes with his father and mine. I walked down the stairs and gave my dad a hug, said “hi” to David’s dad, and then turned to David. I said, “Hello!” He simply looked down at his shoes and replied, “Hey.” We spent the rest of the day talking and the rest is history.

For the next four years, David and I were inseparable. We saw each other as often as we could, mostly on weekends since we were finishing college. We spent many hours on the golf course near his house. One night, before David was set to move up to Washington, DC and start his new job, he and I started watching a movie at his house. His mom went out and his sister, Leigh, went out for a run. About 10 minutes after Leigh left, she called David. She had found a huge snapping turtle on the golf course. We rushed over to see it. (Their grandfather had put one there when they were young. Could this be the same one?)

By the time we got to the spot, the turtle had swum away. David called my name. I turned around. We were eye-level, which was weird since he is about 15 inches taller than me. He told me that I was the most beautiful woman he had ever seen. He loved how we had intelligent conversations and still found time to be silly and ridiculous. He loved me! He wanted to spend the rest of eternity with me! I was stunned. The evening sun was just beginning to set as I said “yes,” not even noticing that we were in our spot at the golf course. We hugged and kissed, completely forgetting Leigh was standing right there. We turned and thanked her. She had been taking pictures. No, there was no turtle and we were eye-level for a wonderful reason!

jessica-and-david

Tell me about the process of choosing your wedding invitations and did you have something in mind going into your first appointment? Did that change?
My mom and I had been referred to The Lettered Lily for our save the dates and invitations. We both wanted something simple and elegant and went to our first appointment with open minds. Continue reading

Real Weddings: Andriana and Alexander

We always say that a couple’s wedding invitation should set the tone for the big day. Which is why for Andriana and Alexander’s wedding in Santorini, a city that exudes classic, traditional elegance, only a stunning script engraved atop our ecru paper will do. With the help of Bruce Ebling at Siegrist Engraving in Kansas City, the couple chose just that. Here, the seasoned stationer shares his opinion on invitation style and the bride talks about falling in love and finding “the one” (perfect invitation, that is).

andriana and alexander

The Bride: Andriana

Tell me about the process of choosing your wedding stationery—did you have something in mind and did that change?
Siegrist Engraving in Kansas City, Missouri was absolutely wonderful! Bruce Ebling was so accommodating and we had a fabulous time pouring over all possibilities before finding “the one.”

Describe the stationery you ended up with and why you fell in love with that design.
The invitations we selected were very classic and stunning. I immediately fell in love with these invitations! Our invitation created an atmosphere and inspired our selections for every last detail of the wedding. When I was first able to see my invitations and touch them, it almost brought me to tears because they were so gorgeous.

Was there anything about the process of choosing your stationery that you weren’t expecting?
I was not expecting to receive so many phone calls and compliments regarding the invitations. I thought they were amazing, but I did not expect that the invitations would make such an impression. Continue reading

Real Weddings: Avo and William

Every couple’s invitation ordering process is a unique experience. While some may prefer to order them online from the comfort of their couch, others would rather spend time browsing invitation albums in a store, where they can touch the paper, see the details of each design up close and have the professional guidance of a retailer. Most, however, choose a combination of the two. They’ll peruse various wedding invitation sites online, discover what they like (and don’t like) and then head to a local stationer to see samples and place their order.

QuYinfeiNewlyweds Avo and William first visited our website, found a design they liked and then worked with the team at Paper Source in Austin to make it their own. Here, the couple talks about the importance of quality paper, while Laurie, the stationer who helped them, shares why Avo and William’s design choice was right on-trend.

The Couple: Avo and William

Tell me how you and your fiance met, and how did he propose?
My fiance and I have been very close friends since we first met at his mother’s birthday party in 2009. After this long-term friendship, we started our relationship with our friends’ and families’ blessing. In February 2014, we went on a trip to Alaska, and my fiance proposed to me in the snow under the magical northern light. I still feel the excitement every time I recall that scene!

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Real Weddings: Kate and Kevin

Perhaps just like “the one” (in this case, that would be Kevin), bride Kate says that when it came to selecting a wedding invitation, she “would know it when she saw it.” And, well, she did: A Crane invitation with a beautiful gold crest, elegant navy script and delicate frame. Anne, manager of Paper Source’s SoHo location, helped with the process. Here, they talk to us about proposals disguised as lobster rolls, the importance of time frames and the person in the wedding party she’s seeing a lot more of these days. 

View More: http://ginabrocker.pass.us/kate-and-kevin-wedding

View a similar wedding invitation design to Kate and Kevin’s. 

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