You know what they say, “First impressions last.” This is why wedding stationery should never be overlooked; invitations provide a glimpse of what your special day will be like. On a practical level, they also contain important information for your guests.

To help us make sense of wedding stationery, Natalie Reidy of A Tactile Perception shares her industry expertise. She is passionate about being creative with paper and stationery, providing a totally touchable experience for her couples over anything digital. When she’s not designing, Natalie enjoys being at home with her partner, two children and two-step children, and baking something chocolatey in the kitchen!

In this chat we discuss:

  • When to look for a stationery designer
  • Different kinds of printing
  • Planning a cohesive aesthetic
  • Inclusions of a basic stationery set suite
  • How to personalize wedding stationery
  • 2023 trends for wedding stationery
  • Eco-friendly wedding stationery
  • Addressing and wording the wedding invites
  • Other stationery to consider

As a general rule, you’ll want to start looking for a stationery designer eight to twelve months before your date. If your wedding falls on a public holiday or if it’s being held at a specific destination, it might be a good idea to have save-the-date cards. Otherwise, they aren’t necessary.

It can be overwhelming to try to understand the specifics behind the paper and printing, so let your designer guide you in the process. Having a mood board definitely helps convey the aesthetic you’re going for. Your stationery designer can also create the menu, name cards, welcome sign, and table numbers to help make everything look cohesive.

For the invites, you can go with formal or fun wording, but make sure you do it in your voice. Indicate the details for the dress code, gift registry, and ceremony to avoid confusion. For other details that can be found on your wedding website, you can provide the link or QR code.

Links & Vendors Mentioned:

A Tactile Perception

Find Natalie Reidy: 

On Polka Dot Wedding: A Tactile Perception

On Instagram: @atactileperception

Find Dorothy & the Polka Dot Wedding team:

On Instagram: @polkadotwedding

On the website:

This podcast was produced by Polka Dot Wedding

The Polka Dot Wedding team is honoured to conduct our work on the land of the BoonWurrung, WoiWorung, Eora and Kuring-gai people. We honour the traditional Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders custodians of the land and pay our respects to Elders past & present.

Episode Transcript

Dorothy  00:01

If you’re looking for a wedding podcast that’s not just fun but goes a little deep, then you have found it. We’re the Feel Good Wedding Podcast by Polka Dot Wedding. My name is Dorothy and I am also known as Miss Polka Dot. I am the founder and editor of Polka Dot Wedding and I have been writing about weddings for 16 years. The Feel Good Wedding Podcast dives a little deeper than the stories. Of course, we tell the stories. We tell plenty of them, but we’re also talking about vendor advice, we’re also talking about business advice, and we’re also diving a little deeper beyond those stories. We’re diving into the mistakes and I-wish-I-did and the problems and the qualms that these couples have, and that vendors have to. We’ve got so much in store. We’re jumping into season two and we can’t wait to have you along for the ride. Keep on listening and we’d love to hear from you, so make sure you stick around.

The Polka Dot Wedding team is honoured to conduct our work on the land of the BoonWurrung, WoiWorung, Eora, and Kuring-gai people. We honour the traditional Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander custodians of the land and we pay our respects to elders past and present.

It is often said that wedding stationery is the first moment your guests get an insight into the way that your wedding is going to work. It’s the first impression if you will. It sets out the style and the dress code and all the formality of the wedding to your guests, but it also sets the expectations for how the day is going to unfold. It’s important to get it right, but not only that. In 2023, there is so much more to wedding stationery than just an invitation because there are things like wedding websites that we now have to accommodate.

On the day itself, there are also things like wedding signage and place cards and order of service and the guidance that you give your guests using paper pieces. Today, we invited Natalie Reidy who owns a beautiful wedding stationery business called A Tactile Perception.

Now, Natalie creates almost works of art with her paper pieces because she even paints some of them. They’re just these beautiful, complete suites that really have thought put into them. Natalie knows a lot about wedding stationery, of course, so today she’s going to dive into all of it with us, the nitty gritty, the “How do I do this and what do I do here?” and I’m really looking forward to understanding a little bit more about the paper pieces that I love so much at a wedding. Let’s get started. Natalie, thank you for joining us today. I’m so thrilled to talk to you all about wedding stationery.

Natalie  02:34

Thank you so much for having me. I’m excited to be here.

Dorothy  02:36

Now, let’s kick it off with an introduction because you have an amazing background. Not only are you a wedding stationery owner, which I’d like to hear all about how you started that one, but it’s a little-known fact that your background is actually as a neuropsychologist and you only recently went full-time, didn’t you, with A Tactile Perception?

Natalie  02:57

I did. Yes. It’s been a bit of a journey.

Dorothy  02:59

How did you start going from your professional background or your more scientific background, I should say, to stationery?

Natalie 03:08

Yeah, well, certainly wasn’t that much of a leap because I’ve really been designing and having that in my blood for my whole life. Really, it’s been a bit of a long road. If I think about what I was doing in high school, I was taking graphic design and physics and Japanese and a whole range of things. My careers counsellor laughed at me because I wanted to be a pilot as well. I liked everything and I still like everything. I decided not to be a pilot and I went to university and studied neuropsychology. I found neuroscience and neuropsychology and absolutely loved it, and so got my Masters and PhD in that field and worked in hospitals for 10 years.

Even though I had that as my day job, I’ve always been creative. I’ve always really had that. I say it feels like my soul’s work. I know that sounds really corny, but I’ve always been drawing and creating and painting and making jewellery and scrapbooking and all sorts of things at different ages. When I was really little, I was probably in grade one or grade two, I was teaching my classmates origami so I’ve always been a bit of a creative nerd. As I said, I really really loved neuropsychology and I still very much identify as a neuropsychologist. In about 2015, I decided to, after making my own wedding invitations, start a business in wedding stationery. I really loved it. The plan was to have it as a side business and I had two children and the idea was that after I had the two kids, I would stop neuropsychology and really just be at home with my kids part-time and work on stationery part-time.

Actually in 2016, after the birth of my second son, my marriage ended. That really turned my whole world upside down. I had two babies to look after. I had a mortgage to pay and I couldn’t leave my day job, so that plan went out the window. A Tactile Perception stayed open the whole time because I really had to have that as something that was for me. I really, really needed that. Couldn’t just be working, looking after the kids. I was really running myself into the ground, but I really had to have that as an outlet, as something that balanced out that hospital work and let me have that creative outlet every day. That was really, really important to me. Fast forward to 2021, at the end of 2021, I fortunately was in a position to leave neuropsychology. And so I was able to spend more time with the kids that had been in care for so long and before school care, after school care. Now, I can pick them up from school and work on A Tactile Perception or wedding invitations while they’re at school, and then help them with their homework after school and spend time with my new partner and spend time with the family and really have a really nice balance in life, so life’s looking good.

Dorothy  06:01

Well, how wonderful too because I remember we’ve worked with you for a really long time at Polka Dot Wedding with your business. The evolution of that, of being able to go full-time with your business and spend more time with your kids is just so special and so wonderful and why so many people get into weddings, as well as to be able to fulfil their creative side of things.

Natalie 06:22

Absolutely. Yeah.

Dorothy  06:24

I know you put a lot of thought into your stationery designs and I’ve said they’re practically works of art because there’s ones that you even paint and it’s just so beautiful. How have you seen those designs evolve over the years, the many years you’ve been creating them?

Natalie 06:39

Yeah. Look, I’ve certainly seen my designs evolve over time. Over the last seven years, my skills certainly have grown. I think any stationery designer talks about how you look back at your first designs and cringe a little bit. My skills have grown, but also trends have changed a lot and I’ve evolved with that a little bit as well. I think back when I first started, a lot of designs were really about watercolour and about florals. I still do incorporate graphics or images, graphics in the stationery, but now I also focus a little bit more on the typography as well.

The designs have certainly evolved. One thing that really has stayed the same for me actually is coloured cards. I really like to use coloured card and textured card. Love to incorporate that rather than just using plain white and it gives you real pop of colour in the card, in the envelope, and that sort of thing. That’s been really, really good. I guess that’s how they’ve evolved over time.

Dorothy  07:41

Wedding stationery is really the first inkling that your guests will get about what your day is going to be like. I feel like there’s so many layers of what we have to consider with it. How do we decide what we need for our stationery suite? You give, obviously, your couples a lot of guidance because it’s not just about the invitation, but it is overwhelming because there’s just so many bits and pieces to consider. Where do we start and where should we start when it comes to looking for our wedding stationery and when?  You don’t have to think it all through because that’s what your stationery presumably is going to be able to help you with.

Natalie 07.57

Yeah. Look, it absolutely can be overwhelming for people. They’re already trying to plan their whole wedding and they’ve got a sort of a quite a list of things that they have to go through and then they get down to stationery and think it’s just invitations, and then they realise that it’s save-the-date cards and it’s table seating charts and it’s menus and it’s all this stuff, and it can absolutely be overwhelming. What I would suggest to people is that I first like to educate them around the timeline. You mentioned, “And when do we even do this?” Some people do leave it to the last minute. I would actually recommend thinking about are you going to do save-the-date cards? If you are, you want to be thinking about a stationery designer 13, 14 months out from the wedding because save-the-date cards can go out around 12 months beforehand. Definitely think about that. If you’re not intending to do save-the-date cards, start thinking about a stationery designer six to eight months beforehand. Definitely getting onto that. In terms of actually choosing a design, I find that couples tend to be one of two types. They either come to me having no idea what they really want because you know, this is the first time they’ve planned invitations like this, or you might find someone who says, “This is a picture. I want this. This is my mood board. I’ve got all the details. This is what I want. What can we do?” and that’s really good too. I can work with either type of those kinds of people.

The advice I guess, I would give to people then is not necessarily just to find a style you like. There’s so many beautiful styles out there, but find a style or a design that matches the overall aesthetic and mood for your wedding. By the time couples choose stationery, most people have an idea of colours and the mood or the vibe they want and they have maybe a mood board or a Pinterest board. Then, you want to choose a supplier who you click with, who communicates really well with you, who’s willing to help you and answer your questions, and whose previous designs you really like. That’s where I would get people to start, and picking pictures off their website or off their Instagram or something like that that you can then start from because then you really should be guided very directly by your stationery about what the next steps are. Try not to go too much into overwhelm.

Dorothy 10:18

So you don’t have to think it all through, because presumably, that’s what your stationer is going to help you with.

Natalie   10:36

Absolutely, yeah. I wouldn’t recommend it, that people try to research too much into it because there’s so many specialty finishes. There’s so many paper options. There’s so many different combinations and things we can do. Don’t get overwhelmed with all of that. I definitely think that starting with a mood board or an image of something that we can go off is really important. Obviously, if you’ve got a picture of an invitation, no designer is going to copy a design, of course, but you can come with an image and be like, “Oh, I like this. I don’t really know what it is,” and I might say, “Oh, that’s letterpress. We can do that.” Come with an image because that’s much more able to convey the type of colours, the style, the vibe that you’re looking for. We can really go off that and go from there because a good stationery will guide you. Rather than saying, “Here’s 100 options. Pick one,” will say, “Okay, based on what you’ve given me, here’s two or three things that you might like and let’s go from there.”

Dorothy  11:38

Yeah. Speaking of the details and speaking of letterpress which I love, if you’re not really familiar with wedding stationery, there are all these terms that are used that you’re like, “I have no idea what that is.” Talk me through the different kinds of wedding stationery available. There’s difference between the flat printing, the letterpress, the embossing, the blind embossing, all that kind of stuff. What are the differences? How can we really figure out what is right for us, aside from choosing that first picture that’s inspiring?

Natalie  12:06

Yeah. Absolutely. The most common type of printing you’ll see is digital printing. You can print in different colours, in black, and you can also do digital printing in white ink, which looks really, really beautiful. That’s the digital options. The next most common is probably letterpress. That’s where they actually get a metal plate and imprint the design into the paper. You have that tactile sensation that I, of course, love, given my business name. That’s really beautiful. It adds an extra touch of luxury. It pushes it through the front of the page.

You talked about blind embossing. Blind is where you don’t use any ink to do the impression. You just get that really subtle printer impression, whereas you can do letterpress with ink as well. The other thing that I often recommend to people as an option is hot foiling. That’s where you get that metallic, shiny foil pressed into the page as well and that’s really beautiful too. In terms of trying to figure out what’s right for me, I definitely think that you want to try and think about your wedding overall as a cohesive event and go, “Okay, what’s the vibe? What’s the style? What’s the aesthetic? What do I love? What do I really, really like? What kind of impression do I want to give to my guests before they come to the wedding?” Are we doing something really formal and sophisticated, in which case I would recommend something like letterpress? Are we doing something that is really fun and funky and we might do some hot pink foiling, that kind of thing? Do we want to keep it really simple, minimalistic? You can do a digital print. Of course, if you want to do something like a really colourful graphic, then I would recommend digital printing as well. Again, it all comes down to what kind of impression you want to give your guests.

Dorothy  13:53

How do we ensure then that the invitation and the stationery coordinates with the rest of our day so that it does look all cohesive and beautifully pulled together?

Natalie  14:02

Yeah. Definitely using that moodboard, that Pinterest board that you’ve got to actually give to your different vendors to make sure that they’re all working from the same page. What I can do as well and what I often do is create a digital mock-up. Let’s say we’ve got a particular colour palette and some different options. People often have a lot of difficulty visualizing that. A lot of people aren’t visual learners or process visual information really easily. If we’ve talked about a particular colour and doing different combinations of colours or cards or envelopes, then I can do a digital mock-up of that and send it to the couple and they can visualize and I even do different options. “This is Option A with this envelope. This is Option B with a different envelope with a different style,” and they can look at those and more easily contrast and then go, “Oh, okay, cool. I like this one.” Then, you can actually use that and take that to other suppliers as well. You might take it to your stylist or to your florist or your cake designer and say, “This is what my stationery is going to look like. Let’s all work together to have that vibe permeate the entire day.”

Dorothy  15:08

With, for example, let’s go basic stationery set suite, what would that include? What items are included in the very basic one?

Natalie  15:18

I’ve found most recently that couples really are often doing a wedding website for their RSVP cards. I would ask people to think about whether they do want to incorporate that, so sending out paper invitations and then asking guests to RSVP via a wedding website. In that case, what you would have is your invitation card, the main envelope that everything goes in, and then another card that is either a traditional RSVP card that your guests are posting back, and in that case, I would put in an RSVP envelope, or you’d use that extra card to put in the wedding website or a QR code so that people can get all the additional information on that extra card. That’s what you’d have in a very basic stationery or invitation suite. In terms of other items, I’d certainly recommend a table seating chart. It’s necessary for having a sit-down wedding. With that, I would definitely recommend to couples that they do it with names in alphabetical order. Sometimes, you’ll go off to sit in table number order. The guests will go up and be peering all throughout the table seating chart through 120 names trying to find their own name, so if you do that, do it via alphabetical order. That’s a bit of a tip for you with that. That’s probably the bare minimum. There’s a whole other range of stationery you can get in terms of on the day and other cards and things you can do for your invitation. It really is personal preference.

Dorothy  16:48

If we’re looking at a basic stationery suite and say we have quite a low budget or a minimal budget for our stationery, what are some of the cost-effective ways we can personalise the look of our stationery rather than just in the wording itself?

Natalie  17:01

I would absolutely recommend to couples that they change the colour of the card and their envelopes. You might see a design that you really love, but you want to say, “Oh, I want that in green. I want that in pink.” Changes like that with me are at no additional cost, so you can pick a different colour or something that’s a different shade of white to match the dress, or something that’s more textural in the card because I really love that. You get to inject your own vibe that way and it’s no extra cost. With over 100 colour options, we really can make a unique colour palette for you. I talked about white ink before. White ink is one of those digital printing options. If you’re choosing, let’s say, to change the colour of the envelope, you might want to do bright pink or dark navy envelope. I would put white ink on there with no extra cost as well, which really makes that design pop when your guests have gone to the mailbox and pulled out their bright, beautiful envelope. That’s another option as well.

Dorothy 18:08

If I do have more budget and I’m working with someone like you who does make their invitations practically works of art, what are some of the other ways I could personalize my invitation beyond just the colours and the wording, if I’ve got more money to play with?

Natalie 18:20


The sky’s really the limit with this. I do have a collection that are a little bit like little works of art. The Artisan Collection are individually hand-painted wedding invitations and they’re really special. The paint allows us to incorporate any colour whatsoever as I hand mix the colour. I might match your moodboard or the envelope that we chose. Each invitation is that little bit slightly different. It’s really one of a kind and couples love this individuality. I actually had a couple in 2020 who were one of the first to purchase the Artisan Collection. She sent me this image of this beautiful pink cloud sunset with a blue and grey sky. I hand-painted the pink and blue on the pink invitation and we did a navy envelope. Later on, she told me that she had hand-delivered every invitation to her guests so that she could see their reaction and everyone just loved this and I loved hearing that story from her. That’s really why I do what I do. That’s an example of something that we can do. We can paint them if you want to add that extra budget to your stationery and really make your invitations really, really special.

There’s lots of other options. These are things like wax seals, vellum wraps, so a wrap made out of vellum, which is this transparent but cloudy white paper around the suite that hugs it, perhaps tied with the silk ribbon. We can even do the hot metallic foil that I talked about on the edge of a really thick card, which can add a really funky touch as well, which is really cool. Definitely things like letterpress and handmade cotton paper or options too. The other thing I like to recommend to people is that we do individual guests’ names on the actual invitations and that’s really special. You open up your invitation, you see your name on there, that’s really cool. It’s nice too. It’s a bit handy because then people know exactly who is invited to the wedding.

Dorothy  20:09

I was going to say, it makes it really clear then that there’s no plus-ones, for instance, on that wedding.

Natalie 20:14


Dorothy  20:16

For your fully custom-designed suites, you must be seeing a whole bunch of new ideas coming through. What are the new ideas and trends and things that you’re seeing that are really exciting you and that you’re loving at the moment in 2023 for wedding stationery?

Natalie  20:30

Look, I definitely love that texture and bright colours are definitely coming through. I’m seeing bright colours everywhere and I am all for that. I feel like I’ve been doing bright colours since the dawn of time, so if you want some vibrant, bright stationery, for sure. Honestly, I’m going to be a little controversial here and say that trends almost don’t really matter when one couple comes to me because every couple comes to me with a completely different idea of what they want. They aren’t necessarily following a particular trend. People don’t come to me and say, “Oh, I love this trend. Let’s do this.” They actually want something really individualised that feels like them. In the last six months, I’ve done one suite which was pearlescent pink with pearlescent gold and pearlescent white. It was all about the pearlescent. And then I did you know an Artisan Collection painted invitation with blue and red in a light gray sleeve. I did a really vintage brown painted suite with terracotta and cream. That was really gorgeous too. They’re so different. They’re completely different. This is why stationery and invitations are so special because the suite that you get in the end is intriguing, it’s special, and it reflects you as a couple on your big day, and it really does give your guests that window into what the aesthetic of the day is going to be like.

Dorothy  21:51

And I think that’s a really important thing because one of the things we always push is ‘do your day your way’. Listen to what you are rather than the trends and what is cool, etc. It sounds like, with your couples, especially, they are really honouring that personal belief in themselves of what they want.

Natalie  22:07

Yeah, absolutely.

Dorothy  22:09

Are you finding now that couples are becoming more attracted to the unique handmade aspects of what you do, such as the cotton paper, the hand-painted designs, as an eco-friendly option? I know eco-friendly weddings are now, I hesitate to say trend because I don’t want it to be a trend, but we’re more aware of the impact our weddings have on the world. How can we make our stationery more eco-friendly and more conscious of the environment?

Natalie  22:35

Yeah, there’s a few options with that. I actually do have lots of eco-friendly paper options that are partly recycled and mostly recycled. These cards are really good because they still feel exactly like the premium cardstock that I would normally use and there’s a really good range of colours and you would not be able to tell the difference at all, so that’s a really, really good option. It’s very flexible. But there’s also this special range of papers, they’re called biopapers, but they’re made from sustainable materials like grass and wheat. Let me tell you, they are so beautiful and they’re even more interesting than the standard paper, so I often recommend those to people as well. The wheat paper has this beautiful coloured fleck in it. It’s gorgeous. That’s a really nice eco-friendly option too.

In terms of planning your suite as well, I would also think about if you’ve got quite a few additional details or additional information, it used to be that you’re doing three or four cards with different pieces of information on each, but you don’t necessarily need to do that anymore. You could put all of your details on the one extra card, or as we talked about before, doing a wedding website where you just have that one extra card that has the web address or the QR code on there. You could even print your invitation double-sided. That just gives you the one card as well, so that’s totally personal preference. There’s quite a few options with eco-friendly options there.

Dorothy  24:01

I love the sound of the wheat and the grass papers. I haven’t heard of them before.

Natalie 24:05

So good.

Dorothy  24:06

I’m going to have to look for samples with them because the texture sounds amazing.

Natalie 24:11

Well, it’s textured as well, so you’ve got the look of it. It’s got this brown fleck in it and it’s a cream paper, but then it also has this ribbed texture as well. It’s gorgeous. I often show it to people and be like, “Please use this.” So good.

Dorothy  24:23

I love that. So nitty gritty. One of the questions that we both hear couples asking about is, “How do I word this or how do I word that and what is the right way of wording something?” What are the must-haves wording-wise we should include on our wedding invitation?

Natalie  24:38

It definitely, again, depends on what kind of vibe you’re going for. Think about if you’re doing something more formal versus something more fun. If you want to think about something more formal, there are very traditional rules. If you are going down that route of maybe putting your parents’ names on the invitation, if you’re a heterosexual couple, it’s tradition to put the female’s name first, but again, you definitely don’t have to follow that tradition if you don’t want to. Think about who is contributing financially. Again, you might want to put certain people’s names on there. That’s in terms of the naming conventions, but there’s other things as well. Please put a dress code. Some people don’t necessarily want a dress code, but please do it. Just takes the confusion out of things. Put a dress code on there. Think about what start time you want to put on there. Do you want to put the actual start time of the ceremony or do you want to maybe put 15 or 30 minutes beforehand, depending on how comfortable you feel about that? I guess thinking about if you want to include something like a whole bunch of options, depending on, obviously, your type of events. Are you having a gift registry or wishing well? Do you need a statement about whether children are invited? Are you putting down information about accommodation for your guests? All of that sort of thing where you want to give your guests as much information about the event itself as you can.

Dorothy  26:06

I know that tradition was always like, as you said, so and so formally invites you to the wedding of their children, etc., etc., but nowadays, with everything being so flexible, we can have a bit more fun with that wording. Is there a way to really craft that wording to be more personal to us and maybe less formal if we’re not having such a formal wedding?

Natalie  26:27

Oh, yeah, absolutely. There’s lots and lots of options there. Couples can either come to me and say, “Hey, we want a really fun wedding. Have you got any ideas?” I can, on request, give you some previous wording that I’ve done, but also Google is your friend. Google is your friend with this one. You can absolutely just Google some different wording ideas, come up with something though that ends up being what you would say, that feels like you, so that when your guests open that, they go, “Oh, yeah, this is going to be lots of fun on the day.”

Dorothy  26:57

I love that. The next really tricky part, because once you’ve got the wording down, is how do I tell guests about my registry and how do I say children aren’t invited or children are invited, the two really contentious, tricky parts with our guests? How do I explain them?

Natalie 27:13

Yeah, this is a really common difficulty. It is pretty standard though to have statements on the invitation regarding things like gifts and whether children are invited. I think most people respect the couple’s wishes on that. Just be really clear between the both of you around what exactly you want and then what you want to say and how you want to say it. If it becomes an issue with a particular guest, I think do what feels right for you. You might want to pick up the phone and have a conversation with that person, but honestly, it’s my view that it’s your day and if you make a respectful request on the invitation, like have a statement on there, then that should really be followed by your guests. I can again, absolutely give couples particular wording around what you want to say because you don’t just want to say, “Children aren’t invited.” Let’s make it a little more subtle than that.

Dorothy  28:04

Let’s make it black and white though. Sometimes it’s a bit confusing for guests, so black and white might not be so bad.

Natalie  28:10

You definitely want it to be clear, yes.

Dorothy  28:13

And I think that that’s where your wedding website can come into play as well because it can expand on those things. It might lead directly to your wedding registry or it might explain you might have a babysitter for guests or etc. for their children. It might expand on that a little bit more.

Natalie 28:27

Yeah. Having those individual guests’ names on the invitation and also on the envelope printing is really good too. That’s another little tip there.

Dorothy  28:34

Okay. Make it really clear, black and white.

Natalie 28:36

Yeah, put it everywhere.

Dorothy  28:38

There are lots of extra information when it comes to weddings for your guests. There might be accommodation. There’s the registry. There’s some notes about children that we just mentioned, wedding websites. How do we include all of that in an invitation suite when we’re putting it to our guests?

Natalie  28:51

Yeah. Again, you can go one of two routes. Definitely, the wedding website that we’ve talked about can have all of that on there, which is really cool. I have done a few QR codes lately that make it even easier for people to visit that website. If you are doing different cards, absolutely trying to maybe put them all on the one card. If you’ve got extra information, you want to have two cards or a double-sided card, that’s really helpful. Sometimes, people have multiple parts to an event and you therefore might want to do a timeline. You can just lay it out with each time and each part of the event. That’s really cool too. What I’ve done before is a custom map as well, so some people will have different events at different locations. There might be ceremony reception, and then even the next day brunch, and so you can do a custom map showing all of those locations as well and we can put that on an extra card too.

Dorothy  29:48

I love that. Is there any tips for if you have a lot of older guests that may not be au fait with wedding websites to accommodating perhaps some of your guests but not all of your guests with that extra information who may not be able to make use of a wedding website?

Natalie  30:05

Yeah, absolutely. Sometimes, people will come to me and want some wording for some of the invitations or part of the order and different wording for a different part of the order. I can definitely accommodate that at no extra cost because it all has to be printed and written out. We could do, say, half of it with one particular wording. Maybe we do send a traditional RSVP card with an envelope. And then maybe for the rest of the order, we do a card with a QR code or something. I think luckily, over the last couple of years, we’ve all gotten pretty au fait with QR codes.

Dorothy  30:41

That’s true. I forgot that part about the QR codes.

Natalie  30:44

Yes, that is pretty easy. I’ve done a few QR codes lately and they’ve been really good too.

Dorothy  30:50

I love that idea of accommodating your guests’ needs based on you don’t have to do the same thing for everyone, especially if you have guests that may not be able to access a website or may need other things with the invitation.

Natalie  31:04

Yeah. People have come to me and said, “Oh, we’re having a really small ceremony, and so we want to send out this invitation to these people that are coming to the ceremony and the reception, whereas we’re inviting more people to the reception, so we want to send out this invitation to these guests. And so, you’re able to do both of those things.

Dorothy  31:24

What about addressing our invitations? I know, particularly in the U.S., there used to be outer and inner envelopes. It was all very formal, etc. Do you have any tips for addressing them to our guests and the envelope situation?

Natalie 31:38

Yeah, we don’t do outer envelopes and inner envelopes in Australia. We haven’t really seen that in Australia.

Dorothy  31:45

We don’t. It was such a big thing, but I don’t really see it. I think it might have been an old school thing.

Natalie 31:51

Yeah. Yeah, absolutely. In terms of addressing the envelopes, I would definitely recommend that we print on them rather than hand addressing them. You don’t want to have this really beautiful suite with custom design and gorgeous finishes and then hand address the envelope. It just doesn’t match. Definitely printing the addresses on the envelopes and not just the guest addresses, but also the return address. You don’t want to be handwriting 100 envelopes as well, so it definitely saves you time to do that. Just really making sure that, obviously, if you’ve got a darker colour, we do the white ink. The other tip I have is that if you are doing the traditional RSVP card with the envelope, what you want to do is ask your stationer if they can actually put your address on the RSVP envelope.

Dorothy  32:45

Yes. Make it really easy.

Natalie 32:47

What that means is that when they’re sending it back, they don’t have to look for what your address is and actually write it themselves. It’s already printed on there.

Dorothy  32:55

And look, anything that will make guests RSVP faster, you could even stamp that in an envelope. Let’s be honest. Make it quick and easy.

Natalie  33:02

Definitely put a stamp on it, for sure.

Dorothy  33:05

So we’ve got our suite, we’ve got our envelope, but as you said earlier, stationery at a wedding is so much more than just the invitations. There’s so much to consider. Say, we have an enormous budget or even a small budget. What is the other ideas for stationery when it comes to the day itself?

Natalie 33:24

I would definitely recommend like we said before about the table seating chart. Definitely doing that is kind of a must. Other things that people like to order too are welcome signs. They’re really popular. Other things like menus and place cards for the table and these can be combined into the one item which looks really lovely. Table numbers, bar signage, vow booklets, order of service booklets, the list really does go on. Making sure you across all of that. You want to make sure that everything matches as well. If you’ve done an invitation in a particular style, you really want to have all of the on-the-day stationery in that same style, same font, and things as well. There’s a difference between getting the white table numbers and the white menus from your venue versus keeping that colour cohesive throughout the event and choosing the stationery with those colours and that style for your reception as well.

Dorothy  34:26

And I think that’s where it comes in handy, using the one stationery designer who can keep that consistent, the printing consistent, and the colors consistent.

Natalie  34:33

Yeah, absolutely.

Dorothy  34:35

So the age old question, why is wedding stationery so important at a wedding? Silly question to the stationer.

Natalie 34:44

I know. Look, I am biased, but I believe that stationery is one of the only parts of your wedding that your guests get to hold in their hands. I tell couples to make them memorable, make them you. The amount of couples that have come back to me and said, “I guess they opened the invitation and they could tell that it was us. They could tell before they even saw the names that it was from us.” It just makes it so special because it starts that excitement. Like I said, I’m biased, but that’s definitely such an important part and it’s so special. This is one of the only events in your life where you get to make such a beautiful little package of paper that comes in the mail.

Dorothy  35:25

And look, people often say, “Well, look, wedding stationery’s not worth it because it just gets thrown in the bin.” I have got invitations literally when I was five. Obviously, I’m a wedding blogger, I don’t count in that sense, but people do hold on to them as keepsakes, so they are special.

Natalie 35:40

They absolutely do have them as keepsakes. I see online a bit where people say, “Oh, no, I’m not going to throw them in the bin.” The amount of people I’ve actually spoken to, not even clients, just anyone day-to-day who say, “You know, I’ve still got this invitation from even my friend’s wedding or my family or whoever it is.” They keep them after the fact, absolutely, which is really lovely, but they’ve also got them on their fridge or next to their keyboard for four or five months before the wedding, going, “Oh, yeah, that’s coming up.” That’s really exciting.

Dorothy  36:12

And in a lot of ways too, a lot of couples are doing edible favours now. Once you’ve got rid of the edible favour, you’ve eaten it, etc., the one thing that remains apart from the photos for the guests is that piece of paper. I keep all of my invitations because they don’t take up much footprint. It’s a piece of paper, but it does hold all those memories, so for me, it’s a keepsake of “Oh, remember that beautiful day,” and I don’t have anything else tangible from those weddings.

Natalie 36:37

You don’t because you’re eating the cake and you’re not wearing the dress again and the flowers don’t last. None of it lasts, frankly. It’s not just the invitations. You can keep your invitations and you can keep your place card too. What I’ve seen that’s really special is some people will actually either print or handwrite an individualised note for each guest. You might have a piece of card that has the guest name at the top and acts like a place card that actually has a note to the person from the couple, which is so special, because they’re going to keep that as well and they don’t just get thrown away.

Dorothy  37:11

And I think the more warm fuzzies we can keep around ourselves, the better, so I’m going to keep the celebration going and keep the memories of it. Have you got any last words of wisdom when it comes to wedding stationery?

Natalie 37:22

Oh, okay, I’ve got two tips. Don’t leave stationery until the last minute. Please get on to it eight months out from your wedding so you have time to select what you want and go over the options and meet with your stationery designer and potentially have a custom design, that kind of thing. Make time, put a little spot in your diary to online stalk your favourite stationery designer, and really get on to it. Reach out and get the ball rolling, ask some questions and be like, “I’m not sure where to start, but can you help me?”

The other piece of advice is to intentionally choose whether you want to send out save-the-date cards. People will come to me and say, “Do I need to have save-the-date cards? I don’t know.” If you’re having a wedding around a public holiday or if you’re having a destination wedding or if you’ve got guests that are coming from overseas, a lot of those, you would certainly need save-the-date cards. That will be recommended. Other than that, you might not necessarily need them because you’re often verbally telling people when the wedding is anyway, so they’re saving the date already. Keep that money that you would spend on save-the-date cards and put it into your invitations. The other thing with that is that if you are doing save-the-date cards, then you need to actually finalise your guest list more than about 12 or 13 months out from the wedding. Some people just aren’t prepared for that, so really choose intentionally whether you want to have save-the-date cards. If you don’t, that’s fine.

Dorothy  38:48

Yep, because it’s a bit awkward to send a save-the-date and then reverse it when you’ve decided that actually, you’re having a smaller wedding.

Natalie 38:55

You don’t want to get a save-the-date card 12 months out and then be like, “Oh, actually, no. You’re not invited.”

Dorothy  39:00

And then you see pictures of the wedding go up and you’re like, “Okay, well, clearly, I wasn’t invited.”

Natalie 39:05

That’s right. So unless you really have to, maybe just go with the invitations four months out.

Dorothy  39:11

Yeah. Awesome. Well, thank you so much for sharing so much of your wisdom when it comes to wedding stationery because it is so tricky and overwhelming. I know the advice today was so useful, so thank you so much.

Natalie 39:22

You’re welcome. I hope it has been useful. I like to give all this information to people because it really can be a lot.

Dorothy  39:29

It is a lot but it’s so worth it when you have those beautiful paper pieces. If you’re a paper lover like me, just love every bit of them.

Natalie 39:38

A lot of people are paper lovers and you get your delivery of all the invitations in the mail and you open up the box and just go, “These are amazing.” It’s really special.

Dorothy  39:47

There’s something really special about that old school paper invitation, isn’t it?

Natalie 39:52

Yes, absolutely.

Dorothy  39:53

Well, thank you.

Natalie 39:54

You’re welcome. Bye.

Dorothy  39:57

If you want to find out more about Natalie’s beautiful work over at A Tactile Perception, of course you can find it over on We have shared a full written transcript of today’s episodes plus all the links including to the Tactile Perception website.

Now, we would love your reviews on the Feel Good Wedding Podcast. We’d love hearing your feedback and your thoughts, and we would love to know what you’d like to see, so drop us an email or send us a message because we’re always open to your feedback. We’re really looking forward to the next episode and we’ll see you then.