Getting Started on Planning my Event

WOW!  Last week I had one of the best weeks a girl could ask for.  I was able to plan three different events on Thursday, Friday and Saturday.  Sound crazy?  Well it could be a little crazy, but with your creative juices flowing and the right planning your event can turn out          amazing

So you have a party to plan or your wedding (which might I add, will be the most important event of the century). You have this vision of what you want it to look like in your head but you don’t quite no where to start!  Well you’re heading in the right direction.

It is so important that I stay with my client’s vision so that their event can have the “look and feel” they’ve dreamt about.  Below are three key elements I start with to get my creative juices flowing while planning an event.

Event Theme

The theme should be something that is significant to you.  It can be a hobby, a favorite sport, or even a certain era in time, such as the Great Gatsby era.  Once the theme is identified, it is important to pull the concept into every design element starting with the Save the Date cards through to the party favors.  Next we focus on…

Great Gastby Collage

Color Scheme

The color scheme is sometimes derived from the theme you’ve chosen.  Choosing the right colors is important because you want it to be representative of your personality and it will drive all of the design decisions made.  I love working with multiple colors in a palette and encourage my clients to pick one or two dominant colors, a sub-dominate color, and two accent colors.  Below is the color scheme chosen for the Great Gatsby event I am working on.  You’ll see black and gold has been used for the dominate/sub-dominate colors and are often associate with the Great Gatsby era.  Next we added a splash of deep red and black/white diagonals as the accent colors because the couple wanted to add a twist on the traditional Great Gatsby concept.  And lastly is your

Great Gatsby Color Scheme

Guest Takeaway

How do you want your clients to feel when they leave your event.  Do you want them to say that was the most awesome party in the world?  Or that it was the swankiest event of the century?  Or we partied like a rock star?  What ever you choose it should be incorporated in the elements you choose for your wedding.

As an event planner, I love being able to create the vision boards for my clients and rely on my past events and other event resources to find the perfect elements to complement their day.  One of the first sneak peeks your guest get into your wedding is the stationery.  There are so many great resources that provide Save the Date Cards, Invitations, and your other stationery needs.  I love to rely on my friends from Paperless Post when my creative juices start flowing because they have so many wonderful items to share.  Some of my faves for a Great Gatsby Themed Wedding from Paperless Post…

Paperless Post Konfetti Gold by Kelly Wearstler

Save the Date from Paperless Post

Konfetti Gold by Kelly Wearstler

Paperless Post Josephine Baker - BlackGold

Invitation, Menu Card, and Wedding Programs from Paperless Post

Josephine Baker also available in Black & Gold

Looking for more design inspiration? Check out these wonderful wedding invitations” target=”_blank”>wedding invitations and other stationery options that are sure to get your juices flowing from Paperless Post.

Are you hosting a party?  Would love to hear about your design ideas?

Take Care,



Pantone’s Color of the Year Marsala – A Slam Dunk

Pantone Color of the Year

When Pantone introduced its new color of the year I was immediately captivated.  It’s a color that may be familiar to many of us, but I honestly haven’t taken advantage of the fullness of it’s beauty.  In fact, I can only remember having one client who used this color and I think it makes for a wonderful color palette.

Per Leatrice Eiseman, Executive Director of the Pantone Color Institute, “Marsala enriches our mind, body and soul, exuding confidence and stability. Marsala is a subtly seductive shade, one that draws us into its embracing warmth.”   And I totally agree, when I look at Marsala I get a cool feeling and can see it being used for invitations, bridesmaid dresses, groomsmen attire, linens, and so much more.

Marsala can be paired with so many other colors such as oranges, yellows, lavenders, and even reds to give it a vibrant pop.  Pantone even recommends the following options for Wedding Color Palettes.


So what’s all the buzz about?  Take a look and see how so many have been inspired by Marsala…

I love how the designer of this invitation paired the Antique Gold color with the hot sultry color Marsala

Pantone invitation

Check out this beautiful nail color by Essie, a nice touch for any bridesmaid or a bride who wants to add a splash of color to her nails on wedding day.

Pantone Nail Polish


Give me a splash of this lip color any day!

d and g lipstick

Now that we’ve seen some items to accessories ones beauty let’s take a look at some of the attire.  I love this bridesmaid dress.


Being a shoe girl myself, I couldn’t quite decide which pair I would wear, so here’s an idea why not buy them both!



And now something for the bride, she defintely would be the center of attention with this awesome bridal bouquet


And lastly check out these awesome wedding decor ideas




I don’t know about you but I am even more inspired by this wonderful color.  I can see myself using this color in wedding decor, home decor and even fashion in the near future.  Well I hope you guys have something planned this weekend.  After the launch of the color of the year, I realized that I have a purse in that color scheme that I will toting this weekend.  I am so excited and can’t wait.

I hope you guys have an awesome weekend and I look forward to talking to you soon.

Take Care,


Photo Credit: InvitationNails, Lipstick, Bridesmaid Dress, Shoes Photo 1, Shoes Photo 2, Bridal Bouquet, Wedding Decor 1, Wedding Decor 2, Wedding Decor 3

Wedding Invitations 101 – Assembling Your Invitations

Assembling your wedding invitations closes out our series on Wedding Invitations 101.   It’s a simple task right?  All you have to do is put the invitation in the envelope, seal, and send.  Well yes, but keep in mind, your invitation is the first sneak peek your guests see of your wedding day.  Don’t you want it to be the best impression that can be made?  It’s not just about making a good impression, but assembling the invitation wrong defies the laws of nature :).  Well not actually, but it makes it a little easier for your guests when opening the invite.

Assembling your invitation:

  • Lay your invitation down with the wording face up if it is a folded invite, insert the folded edge first, if it is a single card invite, insert the left edge.
  • Next start placing your enclosure cards on top of the invitation in size order with the smallest on top and wording face up.
  • For the response card you will need to tuck it under its envelope flap, also wording face up.
  • If you have tissue paper, then you would put a piece on top of the invitation packet and then slide into the inner envelope.
  • The unsealed inner envelope is then placed in the outer envelope with names facing upward so when the envelope is opened the names of the guest are visible.

Wedding Invitations

But we’re not done.  It is also important to address both the inner and outer envelopes correctly.

Addressing your inner envelope:

The inner envelope lets the bride and groom signify exactly who is invited to the wedding.  If you have a family of four that has two children your envelope would be addressed as such:

Mr. and Mrs. Bowers
Brandon Bowers
Gabrielle Bowers

*It is also appropriate to write names informally such as Uncle Tony and Auntie Erika

Addressing your outer envelope:

The outer envelope is professionally using proper titles, first, middle (optional), and last names.  Titles are abbreviated, however, words in the address are spelled out such as Fourth Street or Begg Boulevard.  Children’s names are not included on the outer envelope, their names would be on the inner envelope if they are invited.

Married Couple:  Mr. and Mrs. Anthony Bowers

Married Couple (wife outranks husband): Dr. Shondalette Adams and Mr. Desmund Adams

Married Couple (both doctors):  The Doctors Adams or Drs. Desmund and Shondalette Adams

Single Woman:  Ms. Kimberly Isaac or Miss Kimberly Isaac (under 18)

Divorced Woman:  Mrs. Willie Mae Owens, Ms. Willie Mae Owens, Ms. Willie Mae Parker

Widowed Woman: Mrs. Charles Owens

Separated Woman:  Mrs. Charles Owens, Mrs. Willie Mae Owens, Ms. Willie Mae Owens

*You should never address an outer envelope with “and guest.”  You should find out the guest’s name and use the unmarried couple living together naming convention if the couple shares a home, if they don’t, you should send the guest a separate invitation.

Hope this helps you on your quest to complete your invitations.  I would love to answer any questions you may have.  Please feel free to contact me.

Have a great day!



Wedding Invitations 101 – Recap

Invitations are a very important aspect of any event, especially your wedding. The invitation gives your guest a glimpse into what’s to come on event day. It denotes the style, the formality, and most importantly the color scheme of your wedding.

20140221_221558 - updated

We started a series called Wedding Invitations 101 to share what we feel are some important aspects of choosing your invitations.  The first post on Wedding Invitations 101 – Invitation Styles which discussed my three favorite invitation styles, The Wedding Card, The Folded Card, and the Pocket Fold.  In that post, I also discussed the printing options available; Engraving, Thermography, Letterpress, Foil Stamping, Digital Printing.  Check out our post from  May 29th. 

Next we did a post called Wedding Invitations 101 – Etiquette which looked at invitation etiquette answering questions such as “Should invitations be hand delivered?” “Can you put “Wishing Well Wedding” on your wedding invitation?” Well can you? “Can You have two guest lists?” No, no, no.  And one I see all too often, “Is it okay to add “and guest” on your invite?”

We have two more aspects to view for our Wedding Invitations 101 series.  We will next look at Wedding Invitations 101 – Ordering Tips answering questions such as when should you order and even how much you should order.   Then we will look at Wedding Invitations 101 – Assembling Your Invitations looking at things such as which way should the invitations face when placed in the envelope.

We look forward to you stopping back by!  The goal for me at Erika’s Elegance is to breathe life into your dreams….I would love to work with you on any project, be it a wedding, birthday party or event corporate meeting.  I’m your gal!

Take Care and Have a great day!

Take Care,





Wedding Invitations 101 – Invitation Styles

If you’re a bride, I’m sure you’ve been busy planning your wedding. And by now, you know there are many decisions to make from choosing a wedding style to determining what song you will walk down the aisle on.  One of the biggest decision (I’m sure you’ve said, they are all big decisions) you’ll have to make is picking out your invitations.

Your invitation will be the first “sneak peak” into your wedding for most of your guests. The style of your invitation helps set the tone for your entire wedding.  In the past, for formal weddings, a traditional invitation was engraved or printed in black ink on high-quality white or ivory paper. However, with the growth in technology there are so many more options to choose from.

First you will want to pick the type of invitation you want. There are so many options to choose from. Below are 3 of my favorite styles.

The Wedding Card is a single layer invitation that can range in size, I typically create this type in a 5X7 size. This card can be printed just on the front side, or I have had fun with creating a fun design to include on the back. If you want a little more depth to your invitation you can also add an invitation mat to the invite.




Thanks to Krista Mason Photography for capturing my Cinco De Mayo themed invitation

The Folded Card invitation looks like a card and you open it to find the invitation. I create this invitation in either a 5X7 or 6X6 size. I like this style because it gives you the look of the pocket fold, but doesn’t require you to use all of the inserts. You can also add additional adornments such as a mat, belly bands and monograms if you want a little more spice to your live.
The Pocket Fold I believe is by far my most favorite invitation to create. I love the ability to create various layers to this invitation. There are so many sizes and variations to the pocket fold but I often use the 6X6 square pocket fold or the 5X7 rectangle option. Can’t you tell that these are two of my favorite dimensions?   With pocket folds the sky is the limit and the possibilities are limitless.

Custom Stationary by Erika's Elegance

I love peacocks which was the inspiration for me creating this invitation.

Next you’ll want to decide what type of printing you want for your invitations. The printing often signifies how formal your wedding will be. Also the printing you choose will impact your budget, help determine the paper options, and determine turnaround time.

Engraving is the printing method were the letters are raised on the front of the invite which creates an indention on the back of the invite. This is one of the oldest printing methods around. This technique is used for a very formal wedding and is one of the most expensive printing options. This process can take anywhere from 4-6 weeks to complete.
Thermography is very similar to engraving in that the letters are raised on the front of the invitation and are often shiny, however the back is smooth. This is accomplished by printing the invitation and then adding a powder while the ink is still wet to give it a raised look. The beauty of this process is that it is typically 30-50% cheaper than engraving. Turnaround time for this option is about a week.
Letterpress is an even older printing option than engraving. It consists of letter being indented on the front and slightly raised in the back providing a textured look. This is another costlier printing option. This process can take up to two months.
Foil Stamping is a paper-like foil that leaves a metallic look. It leaves an impression very much like letterpress. The process actually does not use any ink and is called “dry printing.” This is by far the priciest printing option. This process can take over two months.
Digital Printing is what we use here at Erika’s Elegance. There are many font options available that can give you the look of calligraphy without the actual cost. More and more brides are opting for this type of printing because it gives you elegance at a fraction of the cost. Turnaround time for this type can start at a week.

Lastly you will need to decide how you want your invitations worded. It is very important to word the invitation correctly. Your stationer can help you with this process. Invitation Consultants is a great website to refer to for writing samples.

At Erika’s Elegance we love to design an invitation that will fit your personality and wedding style. We would love to work with you. Contact us today!

Stay tuned as we cover wedding invitation etiquette.

Take Care,