Sonntag, 16. Mai 2010

Our Invitations - a Journey

After waiting anxiously for any indication of the location of our invites, I finally caved and called the German Customs office and lo and behold, they had my package. I took advantage of my day off on Wednesday and made the trek out to the Zollamt - and it really was a journey. Of course it's located completely on the outskirts of the city, in fact it's not even in the city but rather in a neighboring suburb, tucked between delivery trucks and gas stations. The kind of place that makes you feel like the only person walking around - and totally not pedestrian friendly. The name of the street was even "Diesel Straße". Very fitting.
does this look like a customs office?... (on the way there)

When I got there I went through the usual procedure - get in line, wait, get in line again, wait, go to small window and pay, wait again. I also, of course, got accused of cutting in line by a very harried woman.
can you just sense the lovely atmosphere?

The whole thing made me very nervous - an endemic ex-pat reaction to being in a government office. Inevitably we learn to expect the worst and the totally ridiculous and unexpected - I imagined all potential disaster scenarios and developed a huge lump in my throat, but in the end when I showed them my paypal slip and matching invoice, they were happy to charge me taxes and let me leave. 27 Euros poorer and a whole lot happier, I practically skipped to the Ubahn, barely resisting ripping the box open only because it was drizzling and it really would have been a shame to get those babies wet…

I made it to the subway stop and attracted a lot of attention as I attempted to fight my way through the miles of customs office tape holding my previously opened-and-snooped-in package together. I finally tore my way through and beheld our beautiful invitations - and they were even nicer than I expected!

A big happy shout-out to Ashley and Joel of This Paper Ship - they not only designed our beautiful invitations but set them in THREE languages for no extra costs, and dealt with our various (and many) requests and tweaks and confusing Polish characters with weird accents. We were extremely satisfied and I can really recommend them - but you'd better hurry up as I think their incredible design talents are being discovered big time and before we know it they will probably be super fancy and totally booked.

Continuing on…on my way home I picked up all my supplies - envelope liner paper, double stick tape, address labels, a paper cutter - and got right to work.

First, I lined the envelopes - this was such an easy project with a huge impact. I had found an adorable paper by a Munich artist that matched our invitation suite perfectly and I spent the next couple of hours tracing and cutting.  I can really recommend making your own envelope liners!!  (Note to invitees - open your envelopes carefully and admire my handiwork! :) )

The next project was making the invitation inserts for our after-civil-ceremony reception, our welcome BBQ and our post wedding brunch (in 3 languages!) - after designing them I printed, cut and corner punched to my (ha!) heart's content. Our corner puncher did not want to cooperate but I finally developed a way of turning it upside down to actually see if I had lined everything up right and protecting my "pushing" hand with Mr. S's oversized hood sleeve. Worked like a charm.

Then, I developed a lovely way to bind them all together - a combination of blue and white baker's twine, little punched out edelweiss images and double stick tape - and turned my attention to the luggage tags, which required even more punching, cutting, tracing and double sided taping. Then I bound the whole shebang with green organza ribbon and secured with a glue dot (those things are GENIUS). All in all they are BEAUTIFUL and we are so happy with them.

When I was all finished with the first mockup, I got out our kitchen scale and a ruler and calculated that weight-wise we were just under the limit for letter post BUT our envelopes were .4 cm too big. This is SO SAD because the €2.20 stamps are actually edelweiss stamps which we were so excited to use, AND the next level of postage costs €6!!!  So our plan B is going into action - I am fedexing the finished invites to my mom in an overnight document bag and she will send them out from the states. What will we do with our 30 edelweiss stamps?

 We're thinking for our thank you notes! It's still sad though, but there is no way I am risking having all our invitations sent back to us.

The invitation process has been such a whirlwind - we literally just got them 36 hours ago and they are close to being finished - which is because we are in a hurry but maybe it's a very good thing because we are super motivated!!

I am now sitting in the train on our way to Buchenberg to meet with the Rathaus tomorrow and finalize details of our ceremony and to check out the ceremony room - and on saturday I have my hair and makeup trial. So busy busy but at least I can stop stressing about the invitations - I can't wait to deliver our first copy to Mr. S's parents!!!

Anyone else dealing with the woes of shipping internationally?

2 Kommentare:

shoestring jetsetter hat gesagt…

so 1) that customs office looks way nicer and not nearly as depressing as the Berlin one! so there's a plug :)
2) i can't wait to see my beautiful invitation!!!!! wooooo!!

Anonym hat gesagt…

I am taking my invitations with us this summer to Sweden to avoid paying extra to send them from the states, such a smart idea!!

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