Everything I saw in the magazines and the blogs proved that I'm drawn to the style of a small, intimate wedding. You can personalize everything and put a lot of time and thought into the details. Unfortunately, I wanted to invite everyone I know to our wedding--I have a huge family but most of them live on the other side of the world, so there have been enough four-person Thanksgivings and Christmases for me to long for the fun that a big celebration brings. We were shooting for a "small-for-an-Indian-wedding," with about 250-300 guests.
After we got the letterpress invites back from Debbie, we had to figure out how to put it all together. My main struggle during this whole planning process was to rein in my devotion to all things Indian and find a happy medium. So when it became clear that there just wasn't any room for Hindi script on the invitation, we opted for an orange band to hold all the pieces together within the envelope. But we wanted to keep each envelope as small and light as possible, essentially the opposite of the ornate and sizable Indian-style invites we're used to getting in the mail.
My friend EB has this amazing cutting machine that can help make all kinds of beautiful fonts/shapes cut out of cardstock. But Hindi doesn't smoothly flow together like D'Nealian (which, did you hear, they are no longer teaching in schools!?). The Hindi-ish font was really nice, but if we had to pop out the letters for every single invite, people wouldn't get them until after the wedding. So we had to lose the orange band.
Here's the prototype, a little beat up after the chaos of planning. Another reason it wouldn't work: With the belly band around everything, the invite wouldn't fit into the envelope.
I wasn't giving up on getting some kind of Hindi in there. I was researching having our names in the script printed on ribbon, and seriously considering writing it out on each envelope, when an express package came in the mail from my Vinu Moushi (My mother's younger sister).
She had someone make two custom Hindi-script wooden stamps that say "Karen Nedita D'Souza with Jonathan Henry Muller" and airmailed them to us. I don't even want to think about how much that cost her. The guy forgot to add a tiny dot. I just added the dot (which is the difference between a "z" sound and a "j" sound) with a pen. No big deal. But my aunt went back and chewed him out just the same.
Jon made envelope liners for each card and stamped our names on each one before cc, madelyn and I glued them in. I'm not sure any of our guests even noticed the stamp, but I knew they were in there. And that's all that matters.