While formal wedding announcements may be forever lost to the digital age, there's a brand-new, beautiful market for them in luxury elopements. "In today’s world, most couples don’t send paper wedding announcements!" says Laura Hooper of Laura Hooper Calligraphy and Lucky Orchid Designs. "But it's different with an elopement, because most people literally won’t have known that the wedding was taking place." We tapped Laura to share her insights on some must-know facts about elopement announcements, so read up on the what's-old-is-new-again wedding trend that's currently making its mark, and be sure to check out our etiquette section for all of the rules related to elopements.
1. They can convey the style and tone of your elopement. The same way a wedding invitation provides guests with a pre-event glimpse of your wedding style and theme, an elopement announcement can reflect the location, charm, and level of sophistication of your nuptials. “Even if you eloped, you likely still have some sort of color scheme and wedding style, and this can be reflected in your announcement with scripts and colors that reflect you as a couple,” says Laura.
2. They can be as simple or as luxe as you like. “Just because you elope(d) doesn’t mean you can’t still splurge on luxury paper products – in fact, you will likely have more funds available to do so!” says Laura, who is known for her high-end designs as well as her exquisite hand-lettered calligraphy. “You can work with a stationer and go for letterpress printing on 2-ply card stock, or order online from a large shop.” It's not too late for a custom monogram, either (which you can use throughout the decor of your post-elopement celebration).
3. They can be ordered in advance. “You will want to send out your announcements as soon as possible after your elopement, especially if you have been publicly engaged and people might be wondering about a wedding and trying to save the date,” says Laura. “If your elopement is planned, you can order your announcements as soon as the date is confirmed.” Just drop them in the mail as soon as you return home, or better yet, take them with you and mail them right from your elopement destination, complete with exotic postmark and local postage.
4. An elopement photo can be worked right into the design. “You will definitely want to discuss the timing of at least a sneak peek of photos with your photographer so that you can get a couple images back shortly after the fact. If you are working with a stationer, you can get the entire announcement designed with a placeholder photo and drop your selected photo in once you have it. If you are ordering online from a large shop such as Minted or Wedding Paper Divas, their production turnaround is very quick, so you could order after the elopement just as soon as you have a photo.”
5. You can mail as many as you like. Elopement announcements don’t bring with them the obligation of a gift the way wedding invitations do, and are simply meant to let people know your new status. “You can definitely send your announcements to anyone who would have been invited to your wedding, but you can also include people that may not have been included had you had a traditional event, such as colleagues, family friends, etc.” Laura says.
6. You can use them as your reception invitations. Many couples host a post-elopement celebration with family and friends, and if you want your announcement to do double duty, simply adjust the wording to reflect this. “Just make it really clear that you are already married and want your guests to celebrate that fact with you!”aurara