Wedding Q & A

Along with all the good ideas that our readers send us we also get quite a few questions. Here are some of them and our replies.

Subject: invitations
Date: 19 Jun 2000
From: Stacey V

i have a dumb question. on ur wedding invitation page u say that u can print two invitations to a do u go about doing that? Do print one image, cut it then run the halved page through again? or is there a way to set the margins so that the image/font prints off to the side to fit another one? if you could give me the steps u took to print 2 images that would help a lot. sorry for the ignorance!

Love, STacey

All you have to do to print more than one invitation to a page is set it up so that the invitations are side by side. Then when you print you only have to run the paper through the printer once!

Subject: (no subject)
Date: Wed, 12 Jul 2000

I was just wondering where you bought your wedding gown at. I have been looking for one just like your, but have been unable to find one. If you could write and and tell me where you found yours it would give me a place to statred looking. Thank YOu very much. You have a wonderful site. The most helpfull one I have found. Thanks again

I got my dress at a department store in Connecticut called Cohoes. It is an upscale sort of store (they sell name brands like Calvin Klein and Liz Claiborne) but the prices are somewhat discounted. My dress came from the formal wear department.

Subject: where did you get married?
Date: Tue, 9 May 2000
From: Larkin, Chris

I was reading through your website, and as I read the prices you paid, my first question was, "Where did you get married?" Those prices are amazing!!!!

Secondly, my fiancee and I are getting married outdoors in Vermont and we also need porta potties, any idea where to get info on these?

Chris and Rachael

We got married in western Massachusetts. The Taylor Rental in our area supplies porta potties. Subject: Wedding ceremony program
Date: Tue, 23 May 2000
From: Kathy Englert


I've briefly read over your site. I have a question that I can't seem to find the answer to anywhere. Hope you can help.

My son and his fiance' are getting married June 3rd (next weekend!). We want to type our own ceremony program to hand out as people arrive at the church for the wedding. I can't find a sample copy to follow or what is considered proper etiquitte. The bride not only wants the religious ceremony included, but also wants to include the names and relationship of the entire bridal party in this program.

Any suggestions or web sites that might be of assistance to me. I'm getting desperate! You may post the answer on your website, but I'm so busy I don't know if I can get back to your site as quickly as I can check my e-mail so would you also please e-mail me your response or any of your viewers, if they may have some suggestions.

Thanks so much for your help.

Congratulations to you and your husband. I wish you years of happiness and love.


We suggest looking in wedding invitation catalogs. There are usually a couple of different programs in them that you can go by. Also many churches have programs you can look at. Subject: Officiant Dispensation in MA
Date: Wed, 14 Jun 2000
From: Amy Banzhaf


I just found your website and have been enjoying all your tips! I am getting married in October in Massachusetts and am trying to keep it as frugal and personal as possible. I would like a family friend, who is not a JP or member of the clery, to be my officiant and you mentioned that you could get a permit called a "One Day Dispensation to Solemnize a Marriage" for this purpose.

Do you have a phone number or other contact method for the government office I need to contact to get this permit? Any further information you could provide to help me track down how to get one would be extremely helpful.

Thanks very much,
Amy Banzhaf

The number to call in Massachusetts is 617-727-5787. At the time of our wedding the cost was $25. Subject: I LOVE YOUR SITE
Date: Mon, 22 May 2000
From: Bebop


Unfortunately no matter how you phrase it some people will feel that a pot luck reception is tacky. Our best suggestion would be to call people on the phone, explain that you would like them to bring a food item in lieu of a gift and to heck with those cranky people who can't handle something a little bit different!

Subject: Invitations!!!
Date: Thu, 16 Mar 2000
From: Athena


My name is Athena and I have thankfully come across your webpage. I am from Canada, and I am getting married in June, 2001. What I want to do is make my own invitations and get them to look as "au naturel" as possible. I am going to make my own paper this summer, and print on them (if they are too thick, then I want to print on tracing paper and attach the tracing paper to the hand made paper background like you did yours (with a ribbon or something on the top). I also want to press gazillions of forget-me-nots and glue them sparingly, all over the paper that will have the writing on it. For the outside, I am going to make a fake parchment-type of covering by gluing with a weak solution of plain white glue and water, 1-ply tissue to wax paper. I am also going to put pressed greens and forget-me nots in between. You let it dry and then press it et voila. I will put the fake parchment under the actual invitation, and fold it over the invitation on each side, and tie it with either ribbon or that straw-looking stringy stuff.

Now for my question: Canada for some reason, especially Vancouver, BC (West coast) does not make things very accessible and cheap sometimes. I am wondering if you can provide me with some numbers that I can phone for some catalogs for paper products (I may not bother making the paper if I can buy stuff that looks handmade or parchment-stye that I can wet the sides of and tear). Here, you cannot get much selection for bulk paper products at a good price. I also need lined envelopes for the invitation and reply cards. I have even gone so far as to try to find stuff on the web in Oregon, but to no avail. Can you help me???


Subject: Invitations
Date: Sun, 12 Mar 2000
From: Thomas Root

I am trying to keep my costs down for my wedding but I am finding it difficult to find that necessary things that I am looking for. Do you know where I could get without having to make natural paper for my wedding invitations? We are having a outdoor wedding and I thought the wedding invitation should reflect the natural setting. So far I have found stationary from World Paper Inc. while I was shopping at school, that would work. The only problem is that they are $1 just for the RSVP and envelope! What do you suggest? I cannot find the company on the web and I was hoping to be able to order wholesale. Should I just give up and go with the plainest thing I can find?


Our advice for anybody looking for paper is to go to a printer's supply store first. You'll be surprised at the variety of papers and envelopes they have and all at really reasonable prices. You can also send for a Paper Direct catalog, they have a nice selection but their prices are fairly high.` Subject: Frugal in Fresno. please help ;)
Date: Fri, 11 Feb 2000
From: Antoinette

I had a blast reading your web site. :) I have been looking at making my own invitations, but have been a bit hesitant. But now that I went to your site I know I can do it. I am planning a fairy tale type wedding, yes "Cinderella", not for the reasons you may think, but because in fact my life story has been almost exactly like "Cinderella", equipped with the wicked stepsisters. Anyway, I have finally met my prince charming, who has also had a very difficult life, so I truly feel that we are like the characters in the fairy tale. I am the "frugal" queen, I cannot see paying ridiculous prices for things that I can get at a much cheaper price if I can. The Disney invitations, are extremely expensive, and I really want to try and make my own. I did find some clip art on the web, that I am going to try to use. I sure would appreciate your help with any other suggestions that you may have to help with this project. By the way "I LOVE WALMART". :) I am not quite sure what you mean by "stock" paper, is that a weight?? Well I sure am going to put this into my favorite places, you two are great! :)

Frugal in Fresno,

I guess we're not always as clear in our explanations as we think we are! By stock paper we mean the size of the sheets, not the weight. Some stock sizes are 8 1/2 x 11 (letter size) and 8 1/2 x 14 (legal size). We recommend buying these sizes because they are cheaper and they are easier to send through your printer than pre-cut invitations would be. Antoinette's reponse to our clarification follows:

Subject: Re: Frugal in Fresno. please help ;)HI again!
Date: Sat, 12 Feb 2000
From: Antoinette

See, you are absolutely wonderful. Thank you so much for your immediate response. I feel like such a novice regarding paper, but I am sure that now with the information you have given me on sizes and weights, I will be able to conquer my invitation adventure. May God bless you a million times over for all of the dedication and wonderful information you have given to all of us panicking brides. I hope that someone as wonderful as you, was able to help you at your wedding. I will be sure to pass your website to everyone that I know. I will let you know how my "Cinderella" invitations turn out and my fairy tale wedding.

Frugal in Fresno: Antoinette :) Subject: Wonderful site!
Date: Sun, 6 Feb 2000
From: Zaliena


I'm sorry that I don't have any great frugal tips to add to site but I was so impressed by your practical but elegant ideas for weddings that I wanted to ask you for some advice on themes for a Fall wedding. My wedding is in early Oct. of this year and I am clueless about what to choose. I want to coordinate it like you did, with invitations, centerpieces, and dresses that all tie together........but I'm not sure what to choose. I truly hope you can help, although I'm sure you're pretty busy responding to your tons of other fan mail!


Our suggestions for a fall wedding are to dress the bridesmaids in fall colors (burgundy, brown, gold)...maybe even one BM in each color like a bunch of autumn leaves. Use potted fall flowers like crysanthemums for centerpieces. You can also use colored leaves...they will stay fresh for quite a while if you press them between two pieces of wax paper with a warm iron. You could also use pumpkins and/or gourds for centerpieces. Make your invitations with a border of colored leaves and acorns. Subject: mother performing wedding
Date: Tue, 1 Feb 2000
From: Sarah

I have a question on having my mother perform our wedding ceremony.

My mother and my family lives in Maine. I just moved to Ohio with my boyfriend. We plan on getting married and want to have the ceremony in Maine. My mother is a Reiki master she is non-practicing minister. I don't even know where to start to have her certified to do our wedding. Any suggestions on where to research or what she needs to do to be able to do this?

Thank you for any help or advice you may have.

Your website is a great help to us frugal type!!


In Massachusetts you have to get a document from Boston called a "Special Dispensation for the Solemnization of a Marriage". The best way to find out what you need in your state would be to contact your state government.

Subject: Niece's Wedding
Date: Sun, 16 Apr 2000
From: Crafty Auntie Lisa

Dear Frugal,

My sister-in-law asked me last night if I would help plan or make a receptacle for the cards. I've been surfing for 1 1/2 hours and haven't found anything even remotely inspiring. Yes, I have found a birdcage and a mailbox, but those things are sooo done and tired. I need a unique idea. Please help me if you can.


Crafty Auntie Lisa

Subject: gift card boxes
Date: Fri, 28 Jan 2000
From: Den05

I really enjoyed your site. It held a lot of useful information.

I am looking to purchase a money card holder for the reception site for guests to place their envelopes in. I am particular interested in unique pieces other than a wishing well or mailboxes and I would prefer the item to be of a table top nature.

Do you have or know where I could purchase such an item.

I would certainly appreciate any assistance in this regard.

Thank you for your time and attention.

We used a hatbox for our cards. I cut a slot in top for the cards to go in and after the wedding I glued the piece I had removed back in place and we now use the box to store our cards and other "souvenirs" of our wedding. We have also heard of people using a wicker birdcage

Subject: your wedding web site
Date: Thu, 27 Jan 2000
From: Danielle Gallo

Hi Debbie,

I am getting married in September and have a castle theme for my wedding. I was looking on your page and found that your theme was very similar. I think your centerpieces and cake were beautiful. I was wondering if you could give me any ideas for castle-themed centerpieces or you could tell me where you got the ceramic castle you put on your cake.


We got our castle at a local country fair. I had just about given up hope of finding a castle cake top at any kind of a reasonable price when there it a booth where kids could paint ceramic things to take home with them! It only cost $4.00. I painted it with pearly looking acrylic paint.

This particular email has led to quite a few messages between Danielle and I. One of the fun things about having this website is you never know when you'll find a new friend!

Subject: bridesmaid dresses
Date: Tue, 29 Feb 2000

Could you please tell me the style number of the bridesmaid dresses? So you know where I could get them, or are they out of stock now. Thank you.

Patty Neff

Subject: bridesmaid dresses
Date: Sun, 16 Jan 2000
From: Jenn S.

i was does one get thier hands on a fredrick's of hollywood catalog? i need to get a bridesmaid dress for my friends wedding and dresses are waaaay too expensive. i like the style of your's and need one in black also (we all get to get different dresses)

if you could let me know i would appriciate it.


You can order a catalog from the Frederick's of Hollywood website...the dress style seems to reappear in the catalog frequently along with a few others that would also be suitable for bridesmaids...just try to ignore the interesting underwear ;-)

Subject: help!!
Date: Sat, 15 Jan 2000
From: Kathy

Just a quick question for you where do did you find the gifts for your children?? We also have 4 kids and feel that it will be important to share this day with them!

Thanks in advance for your help.


We got Celtic knot medallions for our 4 children (2 are Debbie's, 2 are Ron's) at a small, local store called the Huntington Country Store. They have website.

Subject: invitation question
Date: Wed, 29 Dec 1999
From: Cassandra Kesler

I really like the invitations you made with white cardstock on the bottom and the invitation text on top of that on tracing paper. How were you able to print text on the tracing paper? Can tracing paper go through the computer's printer (we have a laser printer)? It looks like vellum, but I bet it's much cheaper.

Cassandra Kesler

We printed the text with an inkjet printer on ordinary tracing paper. You may need to put the tracing paper through the printer with a piece of regular typing paper if your printer refuses to accept it alone.

Subject: wedding invitation question
Date: Tue, 16 Nov 1999
From: Cassandra Kesler

I found your information on making your own invitations incredibly helpful. I would like to make my own also. The problem is finding premade envelopes. Can you tell me where you purchased yours from? Also, did you send your invites in two envelopes?

Thanks for taking the time to answer my question.

Cassandra Kesler
marrying my Prince Charming on March 11

We got our envelopes at Staples and made the invitations in the correct size to fit the envelopes. We didn't use two envelopes. For Tony & Paula's invitations (the ones with the rose garland border) I wrapped each invitation in pink tissue paper before putting it in the envelope.

Subject: Ivy Border
Date: Sun, 26 Mar 2000
From: "Carly"


I was very impressed with your Wedding Invitations! My daughter is getting married in October, 2000 and her theme is Ivy. I have been searching for an Ivy Swag type border in clipart site after clipart site. I do not have CorelDraw and I am wondering if you would be able to send me a downloadable image of that Ivy Border? I would be so thrilled and thankful. I am creating Wedding scroll favors to save money, but now that I have seen your site I just might make the invatations too. Thank you for such an inspirational web page.

Carly Baker

Subject: Invitation to wedding
Date: Mon, 20 Mar 2000
From: "Anita Berg"

Hello Ron & Debbie,

I bookmarked your page for a while back, because I think you have made a very nice invitation to your wedding. We are going to be married in June, and we have soon got to send out the invitations. I really loved the Ivy border that you used on you invitation, and I have looked for it everywhere. I even have "Corel Gallery 1,300 000", but I can't seem to find it. Please, do you have a tip where I can get the Ivy Border? I would be very happy if you have the time to respond this mail.We really have to make the invitations very soon.

Anita Berg, Stockholm, Sweden

Subject: ivy border
Date: Thu, 11 Nov 1999
From: Myriam Levy

Hi there,

Nice site. I just love your invitations and was truly inspired. Ivy will be the theme for our wedding (and it happens to be my moher's last name, in French!!). We're having a not so frugal wedding but I want to keep costs down. So I am using some of your ideas and making my own invitations. I would love to use the border that you used for your invites. Any chance that I could get them from you? Or if you know of other resources where I can get ivy stufff? I'd appreciate it greatly.


The border came from CorelDRAW. Carly, who asked one of the above questions later sent us the name of a website with lots of Ivy graphics We also received so many requests for the rose garland border on Tony & Paula's invitation that we posted it on the website for downloading.

Subject: Love your site!
Date: Thu, 9 Sep 1999
From: Jill Lehmann


I am having a fantasy-themed wedding with castles and fairies and dragons. I love your invitations. I was wondering where you got the castle image. It's just perfect!

~Jill (marrying Jeff on 9/1/01)

We sent Jill the castle so she could use it on her invitations too!

Subject: Question on Invitation
Date: Thu, 30 Sep 1999
From: Lorraine Lee

Hi Ron and Debbie,

I enjoyed looking over your site a lot. You guys really know how to save on different things. I'm trying to use your tips for my wedding.

I have a dumb question about the invitation you made. Did you own a color printer yourself? I don't own one and I don't know if it is worth while to get one just for printing the invitations. If you didn't use a color printer, did you go to a printer and have them print it for you?

Personally, I really like those invitations with a photo of two little kids holding hands, but I don't think I can make them myself since these photos are probably copyrighted. Any ideas?

Thanks a lot and I'm really glad you guys posted all these tips for people like me who don't know where to begin.

Lorraine Lee
Toronto, Canada

We owned a color printer already when we decided to make our invitations. Considering our frugality I doubt we'd have invested in one just for that! We suggested to Lorraine that she "borrow" a couple of little kids from a friend or relative, dress 'em up cute and take her own picture!

Subject: question about flowers
Date: Wed, 14 Jul 1999
From: Cindy Mata

I noticed that you used Ivy for your centerpieces. What does the ivy symbolize? I came across the information somewhere that it is the traditional wedding flower, but now I cannot find that information of what it symbolizes. Hope you can help, My husband are celebrating our 10th wedding anniversary with a renewal of our wedding vows on July 31st. We were not married in a church and had no family around when we married, that is why we are renewing now. Thanks for your help.

Cindy Mata

We responded to Cindy that ivy symbolizes fidelity.

Cindy's question also inspired us to add a new page listing plants and flowers and their meanings (see link at left).