Save the Date – A complete how -to ! You’re engaged! Congratulations! You may have been planning your wedding since playing with dolls and getting married in the school yard, or you might be trying to dole out duties to anyone who will listen so that you can sit back and relax…Either way, no matter how much you and your partner plan with family friends, nothing knocks your wedding into full fledge reality like sending out your save the dates. Now it’s time to get your A list guest addresses together…..** (tip- have the addresses saved in a spreadsheet- it will save stress when it comes to invitations and you can email it out to your bridal/groom party for showers and any other events that will be planned in your honor). Once you send out a Save the Date, you are putting your plans into print and letting guests know that this.thing.is.happening! Don’t start to sweat yet, this is actually going to be one the the most relaxed and fun elements of your wedding planning! Your Save the Date is a great opportunity for you and your partner to express yourselves and take chances you might not be comfortable taking with your formal invitation. A Save the Date is the first official notice to your guests about the date and location of your wedding (a little more official than your insta stories of your venue and tweets about setting a date ;)) but it is also a chance to be less formal and more expressive of your personalities along with a reflection of your wedding venue and attire. A Save the Date can be a fun way to let guests know about a destination wedding or any unique attributes of your wedding like a eccentric theme. For instance, if you are having a destination wedding in Cape Cod, you could use an artistic map of the town as a Save the Date, or for a ski weekend wedding in Aspen, maybe a vintage postcard to tie in the travel theme. How about your engagement photos in beautiful, meaningful locations taken by a professional photographer? Your Save the Date could be the perfect platform to show those shots off! There may be a trendy theme that you’re in love with but you are just not quite ready to use it for your formal invitation You can use your Save the Date to test the waters and see how you feel, then reel back the colors and patterns for your invite. Some things to keep in mind: Information on the Save the Date: Your names (include your last names somewhere) THE DATE! City and country if it’s in another country. Your wedding website Optional: Accommodation information: If you have already blocked rooms at a hotel, you can include the name of the hotel A note that a formal invitation is to follow Addressing the envelopes: Your choice as far as formality of guests names- remember this can be less formal than your wedding invitations will be. When to send: Six to Eight months before your wedding- unless you are having a destination/out of the country wedding, then you can send them out ten months to a year before the date. If your wedding is taking place over a holiday/three day weekend, it can be helpful to give guests a heads up and send out around the eight month mark to help with work and vacation scheduling. Sending out a Save the Date will affect when you send out your invitations. If you have not sent out a Save the Date, you will want to get your invitations out sooner than the advised six to eight weeks before the wedding. So, whether your Save the Date is hand letterred, touched with glitter, a magnet or a faux plane ticket, have some fun and let the celebrations begin!