Ellen Stoehr Design
freelance creative director \\ designer


Thoughts become things


This is an opinion blog

about typography, design, and the challenges or innovations across different projects as entrepreneur but it also hosts personal challenges, wins and opinions.

May you learn from my findings and lessons. Proceed with caution.


Save the Dates for Brooke and Sam

I was having dinner with my dear friends Brooke and Sam who recently got engaged, to be married in September. After multiple questions to Brooke on the wedding color palette, dress, location, and food, I asked, “When are the Save the Dates going out?” Brooke looked at Sam and it was evident that they didn’t plan on sending out any Save the Dates—only the invitations. It was at that moment I insisted to design the Save the Dates on their behalf because I know how quickly calendars fill up in September due to weddings and other weekend events. September be cray-cray.

Color: Brooke has mentioned that her bridesmaids dresses were shades of red wine, which allowed for me to have a broader exploration in color. When considering colors that express Sam and Brooke, oddly enough, I thought a lot about the colors they wear. Brooke has beautiful white skin with black hair and red lips, often wearing black and white. Sam, with his animated facial expressions and brown beard, wears dingy old band t-shirts and different colors of pants he finds at thrifts stores, often making him look like he has a permanent sepia filter on him. Together, they are alternative, loud, extraordinary people who love film, music and socializing. If I had to summarize the couple in the form of colors, those colors would certainly be red, burnt-orange and black. Luckily, the third party that did their engagement photos totally aligned with these colors.

Brand and Typography: I love branding people, so I used Brooke and Sam’s Save the Date design to explore branding options. I ended up using typefaces Abraham Lincoln for Brooke’s name and Carton for Sam’s name complemented with a scripted “and” ornament.

The Outcome: One obstacle I often deal with in designing wedding collateral is what language to use in writing. To the family members and friends who are receiving this piece: How do we want to speak to them? Formally? Informally? Playfully? Seriously? Do we want to tell them about how you met and where you’re at in life or do they already know? Do we want to keep the message about the wedding simple or complex? We ended up using a simple message and using semi-formal language for the audience.

We used Vistaprint for print productions, using 5x7 dimensions and a matte finish. They turned out great and we are currently working to explore coaster options, deck of cards, and other branded collateral.