It used to be that you only had three choices for designing save the dates: buy a ready-made design, spend thousands to hire a graphic designer and professional printer to execute a custom design, or go for a complete DIY, which requires your own graphic design training.
But now there’s a fourth option that’s both affordable and wonderfully creative.
Here’s how you can upload your own save-the-date design to Truly Engaging to create unique stationery that won’t break your overall wedding budget.
Step One: Find or Create a Save the Date Design You Love
Many couples have an image of the perfect save-the-date design in their brains. You just need to somehow get that dream design onto paper, or into the computer, as the case may be. If you’re already a design pro, you know how to create an image suitable for print. But if you’re new to the world of DIY design, you may want to hire a graphic designer or use a pro-level program like InDesign or Photoshop to ensure optimal results.
Next, review our design standards so you can be sure the design you create will meet Truly Engaging's minimum print specifications. Things like the size of your inner margin may not seem like a big deal, but being off even a little bit could affect the overall look and feel of your save-the-date magnet.
Note that the easiest file types to upload to the Truly Engaging site are .jpg or .png. You can convert other files using design software or hunt for a free file converter online, but double-check the final result to make sure the converted image is still clean, crisp, and legible.
Step Two: Preparing for Your Upload
When you’re ready to upload your design to the Truly Engaging site, you’ll need to head to the main save the dates page and click on the very first option — this should be a white rectangle that reads “Upload Your Design” in black lettering.
You’ll quickly arrive at another page dedicated to your design upload. There, you’ll see lots of options for customization, including:
The type of save the date you want to create (magnet, cards, or postcards)
Target size (the default size for save-the-date magnets is 4” x 5.5”, but there are other options and various orientations available as well)
Quantity (remember, the more you order, the lower your per-piece price will be!)
You can also add other suite items to match your custom save the dates. From label and seal sets to return address printing, these little extras can go a long way to saving you time and money in the long run.
Step Three: Time to Upload!
Next, click the blue and white “Personalize” button and you’ll be taken to Truly Engaging's integrated online editor. This is a “what you see is what you get” or WYSIWYG editor, meaning you’ll be able to see the changes you make reflected in the template in the middle as you use the editing options on the right-hand side of your screen.
Now click on that middle graphic — it’s the same “Upload Your Design” rectangle from before — and choose which design file you’d like to upload.
Step Four: Dialing in the Details
You’ve got your custom image, but now you can customize the other parts of your personalized save-the-date design, too. If your uploaded image takes up the whole screen and includes essential info like your planned wedding date, your names, and the city and state where the big day will take place, you may not have much left to do.
But if your upload is just an image, like a photograph or digital drawing, or if you want to accent your uploaded design with additional embellishments, now’s the time. Click the “colors” tab in the editor to change the color of your background and/or text. And speaking of text, you can write whatever you want in the provided text box and tweak a variety of characteristics, including:
You can also insert symbols such as simple shapes, icons, and special characters to make your text stand out or to indicate an Instagram or Twitter handle.
Once you’re happy with your colors and text, click “Apply” and you’ll see your changes reflected in that central graphic.
Step Five: Troubleshooting Any Errors or Issues
The upload, design, and editing processes on Truly Engaging are fairly straightforward, but you still may run into issues when you’re first learning the system or if the design you’ve chosen to upload doesn’t quite meet our specifications.
If that happens, your upload will be met with one or more red boxes marked with an exclamation point icon to ensure we get your attention. Messages like “The image isn’t covering the whole box” are easy to fix — just use the slider bar at the bottom of the screen to increase the image’s size until it fills the provided template.
Other messages, like “The resolution of this photo is too low to print well at this size” are harder to fix because they indicate you’ve uploaded a photo that isn’t high enough quality to create a legible save-the-date magnet or card. If you have another image you want to try, click on the “Choose Another Image” button to the right of your existing image and upload an alternate design.
Once you’re happy with what’s in front of you, click “Apply” on the upper right-hand side of your screen. You’ll note that the platform won’t let you continue if you still have errors that need to be corrected — this is to protect you from paying for a subpar print.
Step Six: Perfecting Your Design
Your custom save-the-date design is finally on the Truly Engaging site and ready to print… or is it? Suddenly you realize that there’s something in the photo you don’t love, or you want to add an element that isn’t there. No worries. Just click on “Add a Design Request,” and a text box will pop up. There you can ask one of Truly Engaging's resident designers to tweak your save the date. Just remember that this extra layer of customization takes time; orders containing design requests are put on hold for 4-5 business days while a designer works through the requested changes.
Step Seven: Choosing from Our Extras and Add-Ons
As part of your Truly Engaging custom save-the-date magnet design, you get to design your own envelopes too. This means choosing everything from colors used for the envelope and envelope liner to opting for guest and return addressing or selecting labels and seals for that perfect finishing touch. Some premium options like pearlized paper and patterned envelope liners add to your base cost, but many people feel that the extra pizazz is well worth the additional expense. Imagine letting the professionals take care of all your addressing needs instead of painstakingly addressing every envelope by hand!
Step Eight: Proof Approval
Before you can add your design to your virtual cart and complete your purchase, you’ll need to review and approve the items you’ve just created. Click on the items to be reviewed and double check your proofs for any spelling issues, typos, and missing information. The editing interface helps you out by including a few prompts that act as a sort of review checklist:
Do you have the correct text?
Are all your images high-resolution and good quality?
Is every element legible?
Also check that your design is within the proofing safety lines so nothing gets accidentally cut off during the printing process. Finally, add your approved design or designs to your cart and check out.
A Few Extra Tips
Make the DIY process even easier with these extra tips from our experts.
Take Your Time
You have all the time in the world to play with your custom save-the-date design — or at least all the time left before you absolutely need to give guests a heads up that your big day is on the way. With that in mind, know that you can save your design while it’s still in progress by clicking the “Save & Exit” icon on the upper right-hand corner of the website window. This is especially handy if you realize you want to try out a different image or if you're not quite done editing and it’s time to run off to a cake testing or venue tour.
Skip Unnecessary Details
You only have so much space on a save-the-date magnet, and this is supposed to be a basic heads up — not a novel-length invitation listing all of your wedding-day specifics. Leave off your gift registry info, save RSVP requests for your wedding invites, and if you’re not positive about a venue, just list the city and state instead.
Look for Help — It’s All Around You!
As you go through the upload and edit process, keep your eyes peeled for small dark circle icons with a white question mark inside. These are help buttons; click on them and you’ll be rewarded with a pop-up window offering extra insight into the corresponding action, such as how to use that particular editing function or how to create a custom color instead of relying solely on the swatches provided.
When you’re done reviewing the provided info, click on “close” in the upper right-hand corner of the pop up and you’ll be taken back to the main editing page underneath.
Excited about creating your own save-the-date magnet from scratch? Keep the creativity flowing with these other options for DIY wedding stationery that include the ability to upload your own design and tweak as desired.