Happy Wednesday Friends! Today I have an interview for you with Dallas wedding stationary designer Katy, with LaneLove Paper Co. I came to her office and we spoke about her craft and business. Here Katie is sharing her journey, talking about her style, designer process, trends, invitation etiquette and what you as a bride need to know before you order your wedding invitations! Keep reading to learn about the world of wedding stationary!
Hi! I’m Katie the owner of LaneLove Paper Co.
We are a local Design + Print company that focuses on beautiful paper and print quality to set the tone for weddings and special events. LaneLove creates polished designs for the modern and sophisticated Bride. We enjoy working with clients who love our design style and value tangible goods.
Katie, tell us when and how did you start?
I started LaneLove in 2012 to stay at home with my baby (now two babies). After going to school for graphic design, my friend asked me to design her wedding invitations. After that, I was hooked on the process and started an Etsy shop of digital invitations for all occasions. When my ONE wedding invitation out sold all the rest of my inventory, I switched my focus to weddings only. After a couple of years, we closed up shop on etsy and now work with (mostly) local clientele.
What services do you offer?
LaneLove offers semi-custom suites that can be chosen from our in-house design books, as well as, completely custom design. We print letterpress in house and digital-flat white ink. For all other print methods we closely work with suppliers.
We Completely assemble all of our paper goods in house so we can ensure the best quality. Also we offer a stuff/seal/stamp/ship service to our clients where we will mail to guests on our clients behalf.
What’s your style and how are you different from other designers in the industry?
My design style is minimalistic | modern | polished – I love to illustrate with line based art specifically for Letterpress printing and pair that with a hand painted watercolor floral element as a liner or bellyband.
Please tell us, about your work process? What should couples expects when they book you?
When we receive an initial inquiry we send over our design guide that outlines our process and lists out our pricing. From there we normally meet with our client in person so they can look through our design books and see our print quality in person. We create a custom timeline for each client based on the event date so the process is simple and stress free. Throughout the process our clients receive questionnaires and digital proofs via email. I personally work one on one with each client to achieve their vision for their wedding stationery.
Once we have the design perfected, we begin print + production. I am personally overseeing all printing and then I hand over the goods to our in house production manager to finish with assembly! When we mail invitations to guests on our clients behalf, we have a close relationship with our local post office that ensures the utmost care in the handling of each invitation going in the mail.
Please tell us about your designer process!
I truly believe invitations set the tone and get people in the door for every event. When care and quality is put into the paper- you know it is an event you don’t want to miss. I keep all of this in mind throughout my entire process. I begin my designs with the clients color palette and mood they’re trying to create, choosing the best fonts and layout for the body of the invitation. For design elements, I use a combination of hand painted watercolor artwork with line-based illustrations that I draw directly in adobe illustrator. Each element of the invitation is put together by hand- from layering of cardstock- lining envelopes- and tying ribbons, everything is done with careful attention to detail.
What are some current trends?
Currently trending is the use of acrylic and vellum for your invitations and wedding day design.
What trends do you see way too much?
When I first started my business everything was chalkboard style (chalkboard backgrounds with white lettering) – Although I have a place in my heart for these because they put me on the stationery map, I still cringe at those startup designs I created in my beginning.
What would you like to see a little more often?
Because of my love for letterpress, I’d love to see the use of letterpress on wedding day items a bit more. Letterpress is more of an investment because each design and color requires a custom plate- but I’d love to see more of this print method used on menus and programs as opposed to just invitations!
How far in advance do they need to book you? (how much time do you need to design everything and how long is production stage. Any rush fees?)
We prefer to book our clients around 6-9 months out for custom invitations, 9-12 months if they plan on sending save the dates. But we can reduce that time significantly for semi-custom designs. We do have the ability to do things in a quicker “rush” if needed, and we normally charge a 25-50% rush fee dependent upon the turnaround time.
Do you recommend to order any extra invitation?
Yes! We always recommend ordering a minimum of 10-15 extras! Why? USPS is a third party service that is out of yours and our control. Invitations WILL get lost, damaged, and/or marked as undeliverable (even when addresses are correct!). In addition to that, you will want one to keep at home for keepsakes, one to take on wedding day for photos, and a few more for any last minute additions- or anyone you accidentally left off your first list (sorry Great Aunt JoJo).
What does the couple need to know before they come to you?
They need to know their wedding date- and most likely their wedding venue/location. We finalize all the other details about time/wording as we begin design (about 4-6 months out from wedding day).
What questions should they ask you/stationery companies in general?
Clients should be asking their stationer about turnaround time and how their design process works. We always encourage Brides to meet with their stationer in person so they can see print + paper quality. This is very important and can make or break your overall design aesthetic. You’d be shocked by how many inexperienced stationery “companies” are printing at the local staples. Leaving you with shiny ink, and horrible paper quality.
You can also ask your stationer about their advice for wording for particular circumstances. Experienced designers will help explain wording for when parent(s) are contributing to wedding day expenses, as well as, offer fun wording suggestions for a less formal affair!
Can you give any advice on how to choose the Right stationery designer for your wedding invitations?
Start with your personal style- how you dress or how you decorate your home – that normally directly corresponds with how you want your wedding day to look and feel as well. Whether you’re self-described as romantic, traditional, modern, boho, rustic, etc. Explore on Instagram and/or Pinterest for invitations that you love and that fit your desired style. Reach out to that designer directly.
Disclaimer: Please do not ask a professional stationer to duplicate a design you found on Pinterest/Instagram/etc. Unfortunately there are unethical designers out there who will copy another artists work at the drop of a hat for a sale- but we, as well as any experienced designer, would encourage you to seek out the designer whose style you love if you love everything about a particular design that you find online. Inspiration is everywhere, and we will gladly use any photos you find as inspiration only 🙂
What is your recommended timeline for ordering and sending out save the dates and invitations?
My Recommended Timeline is:
If sending save the dates, contact your stationer 9-12 months out
If sending Invites only, contact your stationery anywhere between 6-12 months out
Mail your invitations 4-6 weeks before your RSVP date
Your RSVP date is typically 3-4 weeks before your wedding date!
I don’t know how about you, but I personally learn a lot of new and exciting things about wedding stationary!