After I did the envelope printing I figured printing place cards would be no problem. I mean, I just did about 700 envelopes, 200 place cards, cake walk. You see where this is going right? Yeah, nowhere good.
I ordered the seating cards in cream and brown metallic paper from here. The place cards I ordered were supposed to come with a template, but the template was actually just a piece of paper that told you what size the place cards should be set up, but they did not take into account the margins between each place card. Serious PAIN!! I spent one night on the phone with customer service and had no luck. Basically, I was on my own.
However, I did just look at the downloadable template they have on their site now and it would work perfectly. Making this process seriously 10 times easier now. Honestly, it took me about 4 nights to figure it out. Four night about a month before your wedding is a TON. There were tears (everybody that knew me), there was blood (mine), there were curse words (mine), and I almost gave up and had my mom handwrite them, but I persevered and finally had 200 place cards printed.
Once I had a working template I was able to use mail merge on Microsoft Word to get my very very HANDY excel sheet. I had a column for inner envelope which is also the same as place cards.
After I had them all printed out I (with the help of my mom) started gluing them to the larger pieces of brown metallic paper that I cut out. I used this tape because I hate glue. I also used a paper cuter for this project to make sure all the brown pieces of paper were the same size ( I started cutting paper about 6 months before the wedding, it was an easy mindless task to do during the lull in planning).
Two days before the wedding my caramel apples came in huge boxes. I ordered my apples and the individual plastic bags from here could not have been happier with them. The apples came in boxes of three and three days before the wedding we started packaging them up. I had about four people helping at any given time and they took about 2 hours to complete. I used red ribbon to tie them up. I also found these brown little jewels at Michaels a few weeks before the wedding and was feeling extra crafty and added them.
After the actual printing fiasco making the place cards was one of my favorite tasks. It was the ONLY task that waited until last minute(due the perishable nature of the apples), but it was well worth it.
If you are printing place cards I would give yourself some time for perfecting the process. Don't wait until the month before just because you want to wait for the final guest list. There are people that you know will be there like you, practice with those names so that you are all set to go when you start getting the RSVP cards.
all images via Anthony Vazquez