Confession: the stationery store experience was completely overwhelming.

And I didn’t even make the first go-round of selections!

My oh-so-gracious mom took a good hour out of her busy schedule to flip through some wedding books at The Little House Shop in Wayne, PA (and no, no relation to a certain Little House on the Prairie or Big Woods for that matter).  I knew her tastes would skew to the traditional, and she ended up picking up some interesting papers and layouts from the Crane and William Arthur books after an hour of parsing through them.  Armed with her notes, page numbers, and a free afternoon  during the holiday rush, she and I then headed to Papyrus at the King of Prussia Mall.  Ugh, that was a lot of links for a paragraph.

Image from Philly.com

I love the King of Prussia Mall.

Because it is King of Prussia, we have multiple options to pick out stationery, and because I figured I would get to see other brands besides Crane’s, I picked Papyrus in favor of it (and its close location to the super-nice food court certainly helped…mmmmmm….mozzarella sandwich on ciabatta….but I digress).  Browsing for about ten minutes as they helped another custom stationery customer, I started flipping through some of the books that were on display and immediately felt flummoxed by ALL OF THE OPTIONS.  That dude wasn’t kidding about The Paradox of Choice.

Plopping into the cushy leather seats when it was our turn, our consultant first retrieved the two books my mom had paged through and we quickly found the styles she liked.  It immediately brought me back to my days as a CopyMax girl, helping people page through the custom book for office letterhead or even wedding invitations.  The first Crane’s layout she showed me ended up being my favorite–the ivory was perfect, the inlaid ivory trim gave it a gorgeous sheen, and when the text would be in navy, I knew that it would look amazing.

But the text itself left little to be desired–I’m not a fan of the uber-traditional script that appears on so many invitations and generally my eye is pleased by simple, sans-serif fonts like Futura and Helvetica (heck, I have a whole blog that’s partially devoted to my love of these two fonts).  So I flipped through more books…and flipped, and flipped, and flipped.  Though I knew that my mom would bristle at the thought of a hyper-modern invitation (we once got into a debate over this when watching one of the Today show’s “Let’s Plan a Wedding!” segments), but I was determined to get something that would reflect my aesthetic and could be a compromise between the two.

And then I found this gem of a suite:

 

Image from Crane’s:

While I hated the layout and design (completely irrelevant to my theme, and I just didn’t love the color), I immediately fell in love with the fonts.  So much, that when our consultant checked in on us, I mentioned how much I liked the fonts from this book and how great it would look using the paper and design my mom had picked out (the problem, I thought, was that they were in different books and therefore non-transferrable)…and then I was given the best book of all.

The Design Book. 

It was filled up to the wazooo in fonts (including, for the record, Futura–but I knew that was better left unmentioned).  What was turning into a two-hour process was quickly finished in about fifteen minutes as I picked the fonts, picked the design and shortly thereafter we had paid the deposit and were headed to the food court for some mozzarella sandwiches of victory.

The fonts that made my heart go pitter patter?  Here they are:

Also from Crane’s, obviously.

As for the final invitation design….stay tuned!

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