Basic Invite [Wedding Invitations & Custom Design Event Stationary]



When my wife and I got married, I thought it would be a fun idea to handmake our own wedding invitations — not so much to save money, but to create something custom and unique to us.  We bought all the supplies from the craft store… papers, glues, ribbon.    Then, we spent time designing a layout, selecting typeface, printing up all the various inserts that make up the invite.  Cutting and pasting all the pieces together.   Sure, creating the prototype was rewarding, but then came the task of mass producing the ones for the mailing.   Craft 30+ more invites by hand — hmm, okay. Cut, paste. Done. Cut, paste. Done. Wait, someone else is coming to the wedding? Dig out all the supplies again (if you didn’t run out) and make another. Cut my finger with an X-acto knife and my wife calls an ambulance. Yes, it happened. A real Red Wedding for sure!

I’m still all for crafting your own invitations, but rather than making them by hand (and going to the E.R.), I highly recommend using a service that enables you to create a custom product in a timely fashion, all while letting a third party handle the materials and production. That’s where the good folks at Basic Invite come in.



I often work with third party vendors during the production of wedding albums and photographic prints. I’ll custom design the layout for an album, and then I hand off the digital design to the vendor to print, bind, and produce the product. This is a huge time saver — allowing a vendor to handle the physical production of the product so that my time can be better spent on customer service and image creation. The same goes for wedding invitations. Time is limited when planning your wedding, so why not hand off your ideas to a skilled third party to produce the invite and open up your calendar?

When Basic Invite reached out to me to consider their stationary, I was all for giving them a chance in hopes they may be of service to me, my clients, and those who come across my blog. Though this is a sponsored post, the opinions expressed here are all my mine. And, of course, the absolute best way of giving their product a fair shake was to order some custom samples of my own!


The first takeaway you’ll notice from Basic Invite is that they are more than just a wedding invitation service. In addition to some of the best wedding invitations available online, Basic Invite offers stationary for events, showers, newborns, graduations, birthdays, and engagements, to name a few. Products include invites, thank-you’s, postcards, announcements, customized wedding coasters, keepsake guest books, save-the-dates, envelopes, reception menus, magnets, and even wedding website ideas. Once you select your event and product, you’ll find a wide array of starting-point templates, which you then can easily customize through their web interface.


You’ll modify the content to the specifics of your event, all while being able to tweak colors, typeface, type placement, paper type, invite shape, and on many templates, include a photograph. It’s the very availability of this multitude of options that effectively allows you to generate a signature product that is unique to you and your event. Don’t care for the results? Try another template - no materials or effort wasted in a prototype you’re not fond of.


Once your design is complete, you have the option of ordering a custom printed sample to see if the result is to your liking before making the final quantity investment. For my test, I ordered a collection of varied designs (wedding invitation, wedding save-the-dates and thank you, coasters, magnets, graduation announcements), using my own photographs in the templates so I could have a better sense of the print quality and detail. The results were professional and of really high print quality. Text is sharp, paper quality is substantial, and most important — image reproduction is really spot on. Whether printed on matte or glossy stock… whether the product be an invite, magnet, or coaster… the image is clean, with accurate color and detail on par with the press printed albums and books I often order from album vendors.

Definitely check out Basic Invite and consider giving them a shot. Your fingers will thank you!


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Aimee + Som [South Natomas Community Center Laos Wedding]



One of the rewarding perks of wedding photography is the exposure to cultures and customs outside the day-to-day reach of my Western comfort zone. I've documented Chinese, Japanese, Filipino, Vietnamese, Korean and Indian wedding celebrations, and, had I not been the photographer for these events, I'm not sure I would have had the opportunity to experience the uniqueness each has to offer. And so when I was approached by Aimee & Som to photograph their Laos wedding, I jumped at the chance, as I knew it would be an introduction to a wonderfully new set of details, colors, rituals, and bonding — and let's not forget tasty cuisine!  Yes, it was my first Laos (aka Lao) wedding, but new experiences make for a hungry eye, and I couldn't help but snap everything up and share in abundance with you!

I arrived early that crisp morning at the South Natomas Community Center to capture family staging the ceremony decor and putting the final loving touches on arrangements.  Aimee wore the traditional Lao silk sinh (Lao skirt), with Som dressed in the loose-fitting salong (pants).  As is customary, the groom's family must first bargain and negotiate with the bride's before the groom is allowed passage into the ceremony room. Levity ensues, a karmic cover charge is paid, and Som enters to join Aimee for the baci ceremony.   Designed to enrich the newlywed couple, the baci ceremony involves the tying of strings around the wrists of the bride and groom, inviting a unity of spirit and soul.  Though this may be a Lao custom, the crisscrossing of threads really made for a striking image and served as a reminder that the crux of all weddings really is the spinning of a renewed web between family, friends, and couple.  

Mother Nature blessed Aimee & Som with a full bloom of cherry blossoms, and we finished our day by taking advantage of all the glorious color. Thank you again Aimee & Som for having me not only as your photographer, but welcoming me as a participant. I'm so glad I made the trip up your way. Best wishes to you always!

Ceremony + Reception: South Natomas Community Center | Those Yummy Cakes: Ettore's European Bakery & Restaurant