Avoid the wedding program blahs

Posted by rnewton on Apr 30, 2009

“Programs are the place to introduce the wedding party, list reading and readers, and explain traditions”

blah blah blah….  yawn!

Think of your program as an opportunity to dazzle.  to surprise. to enlighten.  to bring tears to the eyes.  And guess what?  It does not need to be 8 inches tall and 4.5 inches wide with a ribbon and tassel on the side.  Not too long ago one of my clients printed a beautifully calligraphied poem on a single sheet of card stock.  This was their program.  Few words, yet it said everything about this wonderful couple.

pic by r. newton

But sometimes the opposite approach is the right one.  Typical of this is an upcoming wedding with two ceremonies, a Filipino one to represent the bride’s culture and traditions followed by a Hindu ceremony that will celebrate the groom’s heritage.  In this case, it makes sense to explain what’s happening.  Yet we are taking it even further.  We are printing a book that will be full of stuff, ranging from the explanations to pictures of the couple and their friends (and of course it will include the program.)  The bride and groom – who have a wonderful sense of style – are designing it themselves, using an online “POD” (print on demand) company.  It’s not as daunting as it might seem.  My favorite PODs are www.blurb.com and www.mypublisher.com, and the cost for a full color book is about $12 each.

Here are some final thoughts about wedding programs:

  • content – short or long – is king.  Don’t pick a style just because you like it if it won’t allow you to say what needs to be said
  • if you prefer traditional, it’s nice to keep the style consistent with the invitation style.  You may save money if you have them printed at the same time (you will need to print program covers as you won’t have the content at that time.)

    pic by tracy toler

    pic by tracy toler

  • one program per couple is usually sufficient, but make sure you put a few aside.
  • Start planning your program early, especially if you plan to include pictures.

I would love to see what some of you weddingaces readers come up with!  And I plan to blog about the best ones.