WOW! We have had such an amazing response to our unveiling of our new favorite thing! It has been wonderful to see both new clients and other professionals comment and share in our joy for our new planner! We have even had some inquiries from our peers on how we got the whole thing made, so we thought we’d share how we made it happen. Well first of all… Move to Kenya for 9 months… haha! Not really, but while in Kenya we started writing for that planner (and by we, I mean Laura… I wrote a little, but nothing compared to my wonderful wife!).
We were married just a few years ago, and still remember all the hustle and bustle of planning something like a wedding (this huge event you have to plan even though you have zero experience as an event planner!). So we started there, writing about the entire wedding experience, starting with the excitement of engagement photos through the planning, with our own little tips and tricks we knew (or now know), and all the way to you walking out of your reception as a newly married couple. We even go a little further than that, talking about the first year of marriage, and ways to love on your spouse! We wrote a lot, in fact too much, and when we started to lay out all of the pages, we realized that our planner was too much.. it was huge. Nearly 100 pages completely packed with text. Butwith the help of our amazing designer (aka Laura’s SUPER talented sister), we started cutting some of the unnessessary fluff to make a planner that was not too long (52 pages is plenty!).
After creating our first draft, our amazing designer (designer/sister) created some page layouts for us in Adobe InDesign. I had prior experience with InDesign, but for those things I didn’t know, the internet helped. You can find free user tutorials on just about anything online, or even pay a little money to get the full learning experience with places like Lynda.com (these videos are seriously amazing.. even Laura was using InDesign after these videos. And she is not the technical savvy one!). Here, they walk you through entire programs from start to finish, and even give you files they are using at the same time to practice on while the video is going on. But if that still feels too daunting don’t worry. There are other professional photographers that are selling their templates for their own planner or places like Design Aglow, so all you have to do is place your own photos and text in, and it should be ready to go.
After several drafts had been created, we started looking around for printers to produce this book we were so very proud of. We knew that we wanted somewhere that would give us high quality printing, but also the flexibility to buy any amount without charging us a fortune for ordering too low or too high. We settled on Mag Cloud (their prices are good for small quantities, yet they also offer a discount for orders over 20 books!) because they were the most reasonable, with complete flexibility on the number of pages and copies, simplicity of uploading the book, and they partner with Blurb, another company that we have worked with to produce some of our personal items like our honeymoon book (we’ll talk about them later). And we could not be happier with the way our planners turned out. The print quality is great, and it looks like any other professional magazine, but with our imagery and text in it!
We ended up spending the last 9 months on this planner, and though it took that long, we are so, so excited to share it and serve our clients with it. It’s our goal that this planner alleviates some stressors for our couples, but also that it brings them JOY planning their wedding together. We want to be a resource for our couples, and be there for them throughout the planning process. We never want to walk into a getting ready room on a wedding day and feel like just another vendor. We want to walk in as friends. And we are hoping that this planner brings us one step closer to serving our clients-turned-friends the best we possibly can.
Let us know if you are creating your own planner and have any questions! Good luck!!!