I know, that title may sound a little snarky, but hear me out. That little phrase, "stay in your lane", runs through my head daily. A lot of times, especially when you are a creative, it is hard to stay true to yourself and your own designs. Even though you love the ideas you come up with and even have others tell you the same, you still see so many other creators having great success with the more "popular" designs. Don't get me wrong, I also LOVE those pretty light and airy designs with minimal details and hand torn edges...I am ALL ABOUT those hand torn edges! BUT I realized not long after I started this business that what really gets me excited and makes my wheels turn is all of those handmade details, pretty colors, and the challenge of combining those things to make something unique.
It is so tempting when you see someone becoming super successful with all of those popular ideas to follow and do the same, but remember...STAY IN YOUR LANE! Now of course if you are wanting to make a living, you do need to pay attention to what your ideal customer is looking for, but still stay true to yourself or none of it is worth it. I have to remind myself daily when I am scrolling Instagram or Facebook to simply "stay in my lane." Whether that be about parenting and doing what I know is right for my son, no matter what I see others doing, or maybe it is how someone else's relationship with their husband appears to be in those pretty squares, or yes, even when it comes to seeing other beautiful designs created by other super talented stationers. God made us all just the way we are supposed to be. He made us with our own likes/dislikes, our own style, our own gut feelings, and he made us to fit perfectly with our spouse. How boring would it be if we were all the same? We are all made to be unique and bring unique gifts to this life. I had coffee with a wedding planner friend a few months back and we started talking about how it really does take all kinds of kinds to make the world (and wedding industry) go around. What you may be good at may not be what someone else has a niche for. Or what you may like may not be someone else's cup of tea and guess what...THAT'S OK!
I say all of this because I recently had an incident where my work was not appreciated and it was taken advantage of. I'll be honest, I was so angry and it made me second guess everything I have done for the last 5 years. Why was mine thrown out and that other style put in its place? Why was I lied to? Is this how everyone feels about my work? BUT YALL!!! It took me a couple of days and lots of prayers but I soon realized one thing, I stayed in my lane, was true to myself and my design abilities and it did in fact turn out beautifully. It may not have been that person's favorite, but to each their own. What truly matters at the end of the day is that I stay true to ME and the gifts that God has given me. I won't let it tear me down and stand in the way between me and the success and promises that the Lord has given me. So, if you struggle to show your uniqueness and tend to try to blend in...don't! You are fearfully and wonderfully made just the way you are. Show it and be proud of it. God gave YOU those gifts and talents for a reason, God gave YOU that child because He knew you would know exactly what to do, God made that special person just for YOU because he knew YOU would know how to love them. Stay in your lane and if you try to get over, at least put your blinker on!!!! :)
How many times have you heard "Oh it's just a piece of paper".... or "They're just going to throw it away anyway" when it comes to invitations for any type of event?
That is such a common myth when planning a party, but especially for your wedding. I am here to tell you that that is exactly what it is..a MYTH! When planning your wedding, you, your soon to be spouse, family, and friends deserve for you to give your stationery some thought. Here are a few reasons why your invitations are way more than just a piece of paper!
1. Your wedding invitation sets the tone for your special day! - Your invitations are the very first look into your wedding and the first glimpse of what you have planned for your guests. If you are having a very formal black tie event with a sit down dinner, your invitations should reflect that with a more formal and custom look. If you are having a low key barn wedding with a BBQ buffet, your invitations should reflect that with a more relaxed handmade feel. You don't want to spend $50,000 on your wedding only to send out thin, light weight invitations that only include your first names and no details. On the other end of the spectrum, if you're planning a $10,000 back yard wedding, you don't need to send out gold foil invitations with ribbon, double envelopes, envelope liners, etc. You should base your invitations on the feel you are going for for your big day. Do you want your guests all dressed in cocktail attire, or are jeans acceptable?
2. They're not all going to be thrown away! - While yes, a lot of invitations will be thrown away, I can promise you that there will also be a lot of your wedding invitations that are kept in frames, photo albums, keepsake boxes, etc. Your family members and close friends will want to keep something to remember from your special day. And, if you're like me, when everything settles back down and your getting the hang of the married life, you will want to make a shadow box of your most cherished wedding day items. Your wedding invitation will definitely be one thing you will want to look back on for the rest of your life. Your invitation suite is something you can show your children one day as you tell them the story of when mommy and daddy got married.
3. Create a cohesive look throughout your entire wedding! - When thinking of your wedding stationery, you will want to think about what you have planned from beginning to end. In order to create a cohesive look, it is best to be sure that your invitations match your wedding day items such as your programs, menus, table numbers, favors, etc. You're a bride and you have put so much time, sweat, tears, and love into planning your wedding so make sure that shows throughout the entire day. I promise that your guests will notice that you took the time to ensure that the florals on your invitations matched the florals on your program fans.
So there you have it, there are so many reasons why you shouldn't save your invitations for the last detail to pick out, and why you shouldn't designate the smallest portion of your budget "because they'll just be thrown away." I firmly believe that no matter your wedding budget, every single bride deserves to have beautiful wedding paper and to feel good about what they are sending out to their guests.
Thank you so much for stopping by. I am SO excited about the launch of my new website and finally writing my first blog. This has been such a long time coming! I am excited to share with you just how I got here and the journey along the way. By all means, owning a business is a marathon, not a sprint, and I can't wait to see what the next leg of this race has to hold.
My name is Meagan Kirby and I have always loved to craft and make things with my hands. I have always been the type that wanted to make my own decorations, my own gifts, literally anything I could make, I'd do it. Every Christmas I always asked Santa for some new crafting toy (and a babydoll of course)! When I became engaged on July 7, 2012 to my high school sweetheart, Austin Kirby, it was no surprise that I couldn't wait to get started on making every single aspect of our wedding myself. It was while making our wedding invitations that I realized I had a real love for paper and all of the different possibilities it held. After getting married on November 2, 2013 and returning from our honeymoon (pleaaasseeee take me back to Jamaica!!!!) I had so many family and friends recommend that I start my own business, so I started an Etsy shop called She Said Yes. SYS included so many different products because I just loved to craft ALL the things! However, I decided in 2015 that paper and stationery was my true love, so I changed the name to The Invitation Loft and solely started to focus on invitation design.
While trying to grow my business I was also working a full time job in insurance. While I LOVED the people I worked with and the friends I had made, I was constantly day dreaming of the day I would be able to do what i truly loved, full time. Some days it was so exhausting trying to run my own business and work an 8-5 while still trying to keep up a household and spend time with my husband. There were nights I would stay up until 2 and 3 in the morning, pack up my stuff, get a few hours of sleep, then head to work. On my lunch break I would work on orders as fast as I could and scarf down something to eat. I seriously had the best co workers because on their own lunch breaks, they would help me as well. I couldn't have made it through those three years without them.
On December 19, 2016, after 16 months of trying, fertility meds, and lots of prayers, we found out we were expecting. We were so excited and couldn't wait to meet our sweet bundle. It was then that I started praying for the opportunity to stay at home, raise my boy, and really be able to focus on my own business. Rance Austin Kirby was born on August 22, 2017 and was 7lb 13oz of pure perfectness. I was so excited for this new journey and for God's faithfulness. On November 11, 2017, I called my boss and told her I would not be coming back from maternity leave. It was scary, my heart was racing, yet I was at peace all at the same time. I knew that this was the plan God had for me. Fast forward a little bit and that "day dream" I had wasn't quite what I thought it would be. Rance HATED sleep. He had the hardest time sleeping at night and just flat out hated naps. It was a very long 10 months until he finally started sleeping through the night. All my energy had been spent on keeping up with him and napping with him because it was the only time either of us would sleep. I became discouraged and even told my mom that maybe God was telling me to focus on being a mom and let my business go for now. I didn't understand it and I was heartbroken, but God knew I needed to go walk at the lake with my mom that day and that I needed her advice. We talked for a while and a new sense of energy and excitement came over me, I knew exactly what I needed to do.
I started working on new designs and a new plan for 2019. I started praying like I had never prayed before. I caught myself worshiping while I painted my office and just talking to God about the dreams I had and the promises he had given me. All of that preparation and prayer led to this. This website, this blog, this new season of life. I am so excited to see what 2019 has in store for me, my business, and my family. I know that God has a plan for me. Every day when I pray, I tell him that I KNOW he gave me this passion, desire, and talent for a reason. 2019 WILL BE MY YEAR. I will finally begin to live every aspect of that 'day dream.' I hope you will follow along and be a part of this crazy dream of mine.