I had planned to post about all of the wedding stationary in one post, but there was just so much! So, I decided to break it down into two posts, which will now likely be more like three posts. Part I described the save-the-date cards and invitations.

When we began to put together the wedding program and menu, we were walking a very fine line. We had made it clear in the save-the-date postcard that we were going to have some fun with our theme. Then we sent out these elegant invitations. I looked all over the Internet for program ideas, and quite frankly, I found them so entirely boring (Pinterest, you failed me!). So, after many back-and-forth discussions, we decided to just go for it and have some fun.

Photo courtesy Margaret Belanger Photography

Looking back, there are a few points during the wedding, where I was hidden away, that I wish I could have had a hidden camera on my guests. Seeing them open the program for the first time was definitely one of the points I wish I could have seen. I mean, doesn’t it just look lovely, elegant, and in tune with the invitation? It sits in that basket, looking so very benign. Then you open it for quite the surprise. Below, Noodle shows off the inside…

Photo courtesy Margaret Belanger Photography

On the left, we printed “Our Secret Code,” a little poem we found on a bus roll that we kind of claimed as our own from the moment we saw it:

Our Secret Code

Welcome to this humble home
Full of every days
Full of mundane chores
And the buzz of regular life
Which is really a secret code
For here lives
The most magical of creatures
And superheroes
Living the greatest love story
Of all time.

-K. Barteski

The middle and right had our ceremony program and wedding party, but really they were just an excuse to take up most of the page with Lloyd’s drawing of our Superhero wedding party.

The bride’s attendants were based on characters from Jacky Davis and David Soman’s Ladybug Girl series, while the groom’s attendants were based on classic superhero characters. Introducing, from left to right, Jon (Val’s youngest brother), as Owen (appropriately, the little brother); Ashley (Val’s sister-in-law) as Butterfly Girl; Robin (Val’s cousin) as Dragonfly Girl; Ben (Val’s brother) as the officiant (’cause that’s what he was); Cooper (Val’s nephew) as The Question, who really would prefer to be Superman; Jan (Val’s best girl and partner in crime) as Bumblebee Boy (yes, you read that right. We go WAY back as being Ladybug Girl and Bumblebee Boy together); Me as Ladybug Girl; Lloyd as Batman, of course; Toto as Toto the Wonder Dog; Chris (Lloyd’s best friend) as Superman; Papa (Lloyd’s Dad) as Alfred; Bruce (Lloyd’s nephew) as Robin; and Paulie (Lloyd’s long-time friend) as Green Arrow. For further introduction to our attendants, you can visit the Sidekicks page, where we describe a little bit more about each superhero.

I can’t help but smile every time I look at the program. The juxtaposition of the elegant with the downright silly so perfectly fits us. Ok, I’m not sure we’re elegant, but I do think we are well-rounded, silly and fun, while still enjoying the finer things in life, as well.

*You can click on any of these images to see the full-size version.

The program even made it into the opening of the Charge to the Couple:

Chances are good that, if you have known Val for a while, or if you’ve known Lloyd for a while, or if you’ve known Val and Lloyd as, well, Val and Lloyd as a while, you know very well that they take this superhero business pretty seriously. Don’t believe me? Open your wedding program. See what I mean?

I think what I love most about our program, though, is that it’s not boring. It’s not just pretty. I imagine that most of our guests did eventually toss the programs in the recycling bin, but I also imagine that they thought two seconds before doing so. Members of our wedding party have requested copies of just the drawing (which is still coming guys, I promise!). And I know for fact that the program is still stuck to a few of our guests’ fridges.

But wait! There’s more! (Sorry, I had to sound like an infomercial for a bit there.) There are two panels of the program that you still haven’t seen. The panel guests saw opposite the poem, as they opened the program, was our Thanks page.

We have continued to feel so blessed by those who love and support us. Our “thanks” never seem like quite enough, but we felt it so important to give thanks to those who have blessed us with so much. We also chose to make a donation in the name of our guests, rather than having a tangible wedding favor. First Book is an organization that I have believed in and supported for many years. I adore their mission–get books to children who otherwise wouldn’t own their very own books. They also supply books to low-income school libraries, and have started branching out to many other types of literacy-engaging activities. When I told Lloyd about First Book, it became a very easy decision to make that donation. We knew our guests would want nothing more than to see our love of creativity, books, and literacy passed on to children who otherwise may not have that opportunity.

We also wanted to clearly note those whose presence was deeply missed. There will be more about that in another post.

The back panel of the program shared our menu–listing the hors d’oeuvres that would be available throughout the evening. It made the most sense to make the menu available right on the program, with the format of our evening. Mostly, though, it was an excuse to have one more drawing by Lloyd–Batman and Ladybug Girl driving off into the evening, headed back towards Gotham City in the Batmobile.

So, yeah. Not boring. Totally us. Enchanting. We probably broke every rule that exists about wedding program design, and we couldn’t be happier about that. What’s the point of a wedding if you don’t actually celebrate the true nature of the bride and groom?