Today we have the huge privilege of having Irina of Crocus Paperi with us! Irina tells us more about what she does, and provides tips for couples when working with a wedding stationery professional in Finland.
Enjoy the interview~ 🙂
WW: Hello Irina! Can you tell us more about yourself and Crocus Paperi?
Irina: Hello! I think “company” is too big of a word for what I do=)
It’s just me drawing and designing things like invitations for weddings and other events, greeting cards, logos and promotional materials.
Drawing is a key part of my design process as whatever I do is hand – drawn first. It makes my works more personal both for me and my clients.
As for me, I came to Finland in 2012 to study and ended up staying here and doing one thing I love the most=)
WW: Do you have any tips for couples when choosing a wedding stationery vendor?
Irina: I think stationery and paper products (like posters and signs) make an important part of a design of a wedding in general. They help to create the wedding mood and theme long before the actual wedding day.
So, I would suggest ordering (or creating yourself if you feel crafty) a custom made designs that reflect the wedding theme.
Pre-designed items can be very beautiful and of so many styles but it’s hard to find one to correspond to your wedding design perfectly.
WW: How do couples usually decide on the kind of style for their wedding stationery?
Irina: They usually go from the wedding theme, the season when the wedding takes place, the venue. In most of the cases a couple comes with a colour palette in mind, which is great and very helpful.
WW: What background information would you recommend a couple think about prior to contacting a wedding stationery/favours vendor?
Irina: As mentioned, to know a general theme is great, and if a couple can name some colours they like it’s perfect.
The texts, the dates, the number of invitations to be produced – all this is important but at later stages of the process.
WW: What is the price range wedding stationery in Finland?
Irina: Beautiful and modern pre-designed invitations that one can buy online can be about 3 – 5 euros per piece.
Smaller formats (place cards, table numbers) are cheaper.
With pre-designed stationery the price mainly depends on the style and size.
As for custom designs, I can only speak for myself. I charge an hourly rate and the final price depends on the amount of time I spent on drawing and editing. I don’t charge for printing as I work with a printing house, and the client pays as much as the printing house states.
In this case 10 A5 size one sided cards can cost about 15 euros.
WW: What are some signs a couple should look out for to tell a reliable wedding stationery professional from another?
Irina: Hmm, I know that there are quite few stationery designers in Finland, and all of them are amazing=)
From what I noticed, all of us have different styles, so the couples can check our previous works and think if our style would be a good match to their ideas.
WW: How can a bride best work with a wedding stationery professional such that the work would turn out nice?
Irina: Sometimes brides get overwhelmed with emotions and it becomes challenging for them to explain what they want. So, in this case I start asking questions to direct the bride and get the information I need for primary sketching. I would advise to carefully answer the designer’s questions whatever little details they may be about. It’s all important=)
WW: What would you advice couples to not do with wedding stationery professionals?
Irina: Well, I would name a thing I would recommend brides to do – trust the designer.
I’m always happy to correct the designs and try various things. But the more you change the better you understand that the first idea was the best.
So when a client makes an order, they have already seen the designer’s previous works, they love the style, so I would ask them to trust the designer’s competence and taste.
WW: What are common mistakes that couples make that you see?
Irina: Well, I can’t think of an actual mistake one can make while ordering invitations. Ordering them too late may be? But I’ve never had a couple who would do that.
WW: Can you share with us an example of a most unforgettable experience you have with a couple?
Irina: I think my first order was very memorable because it all went so smooth and the way it was supposed to that I thought something was wrong, ahaha.
The bride had a great vision about the cards, she even provided me with some images for guidance, she loved the first version of the design, I got everything printed and it all took about 4 days.
Later I realised it was a common situation. My Finnish brides (I think as well as all Finns) are very quick at replying to my emails with sketches, photos and designs, so it allows me to work on one order at a time.
And this is the greatest experience I can have.
WW: Can you share with us any examples of how you helped solve a couple’s problems?
Irina: Hmm, not sure if I have ever done this. Usually brides order stationery well in advance and they have good ideas about what they want, so I’ve never heard of any problems or helped solving them.
WW: On a parting note, do you have any advice for couples in Finland?
Irina: Stay as cool as you are!
All photos courtesy of Crocus Paperi, Irina Skoliarova, Iris Rangil, Studio Happy Moment.