I thought it would be fitting to write my inaugural post about the first wedding invitations that Tyler and I ever worked on together-- our own.
After college, I moved to Ann Arbor to finally be with Tyler after years of Skype calls and too-short visits. It was a homecoming of sorts, but uprooting yourself from the place you went to college is tough. All of the connections made and professional and personal relationships forged in Seattle don't get you a job on the other side of the country. In my new home, I ventured into laughably short careers in the service and retail industries until the fateful evening I took a class on wood engraving in the basement of the shop where I worked. I sat surrounded by antique cast steel machines, ink, and paper and learned to create something real from the seed of an idea. That was my game-changing moment. I decided that day that someday I would own my own business and I began doodling, planning, and dreaming my way through work in a little orange notebook (oops, sorry boss.) The idea of working for myself and #girlbossing my way into the future gave meaning to the days of restocking shelves and sweeping floors.
After living there for a year, Tyler asked me to marry him. It was May 3rd, 2013. Not wishing to dive back into long distance again and with Tyler's impending move to Atlanta on the horizon we decided, with the encouragement of several enthusiastic family members, to just go for it. We mulled over an iPhone calendar for about twenty-five minutes and set the date for July 27th, not quite three months away.
With the help of our dear friend Rachel at Sincerely Ginger Weddings, we put together a plan for a ceremony and reception that were truly DIY in nature, but with an aesthetic as far from DIY as possible. Tyler and I were blessed with a slew of helping hands and having a photographer brother, a caterer sister-in-law, musical friends, and a cake bakery on my resumé definitely didn't hurt.
Tyler and I wanted to design and print our invitations together. We headed over to the basement studio where I had first learned of letterpress and spent days paying homage to tradition by setting our own type. We searched for each lead character in their skinny flat-file homes, manually adjusted the kerning (or spacing between each letter) with thin slivers of copper, and began to build a design that captured the spirit of our celebration.
Today, I keep a copy of our invitation in a gold polka-dotted box with my wedding dress, a relic of this season of excitement and discovery.
We view the letterpress process as a marriage of sorts: the blending of traditional practices and fresh design-- created with intentionality and built to last.