Taking it back to our tour with the oh-so talented Sara Fitz (O’Brien) of Sara Fitz Watercolor Stationery, previously Griffin-vites Studio. Her new brand offers the same beautiful watercolor prints, custom invitations, save-the-dates, cards and now complete collections. Be sure to see her latest work, and read more about how she got her start in the Maine wedding industry!

Sara and Sadie<br><a href=http://www.genevehoffmanphotography.com target=_blank>Geneve Hoffman Photography</a>
L&L: Tell us a little about you and how Griffin-vites got started.

GRIFFIN: Let’s see, what can I tell you about myself?  I live in York, Maine with my husband, our new baby son and our two rescue pups, Griffin and Sadie (and, yes, Griffin-vites is named after our scruffy guy!).  In my spare time (ha!), I love nothing more than being with family; whether it be simply hanging out around the house, or meeting up with our friends for a dinner out.  My passion for the arts has been with me for as long as I can remember… and is right up there with my obsession for architecture, interior design and writing.  I enjoy living in Maine more than anywhere else—the people, charm and beauty of this state still impress me every day.

Griffin-vites was founded in 2007, conveniently, while I was planning my own wedding.  I was on the lookout for a stationery suite that really reflected us as a couple, as well as our vision for the big day.  I knew we wanted something truly unique!  Because I’ve always been an artist (watercolor, my medium of choice), I decided one day to (attempt to) create our save-the-date cards.  Well, one thing led to another, and pretty soon, I’d not only designed our entire paper suite, but others’ as well!  The ball has been rolling ever since— and I’ve never been happier!

blue hydrangea invite<br><a href=http://www.genevehoffmanphotography.com target=_blank>Geneve Hoffman Photography</a>

L&L: Describe the range of products and services Griffin-vites offers.

GRIFFIN: Griffin-vites Studio offers everything one would need in the wedding paper department!  From hand-illustrated save-the-dates to invitation suites, shower & rehearsal dinner invitations, maps & direction cards, table numbers, escort cards, menus, favor tags, misc. signs, thank you notes… and the list goes on!  We also provide printed envelope calligraphy, as well as a variety of (envelope) liner options!

I’d also like to mention a non-wedding related product that I’m especially proud of: Griffin-vites ‘Pet Notes’.  These custom cards capture the personalities of beloved pets and are a perfect gift for animal lovers!  (And the best part?  A portion of their proceeds will go toward animal rescue efforts!)

Pet notes<br><a href=http://www.genevehoffmanphotography.com target=_blank>Geneve Hoffman Photography</a>

L&L: Your wonderful talent really comes across in your work!  What is your favorite part of your job?

GRIFFIN: Firstly, thank you very much for the kind words 🙂  There are many aspects of this job that I love!  The ability to work with clients on such a monumental event as a wedding, is a huge honor in itself.  It’s so wonderful getting to know our couples and finding out about all those little details that they’ve planned for their event.  And the fact that I’m able to combine my love of painting, design (even writing) into one, is an incredible luxury.  My days are never boring; with constantly evolving design concepts, colorful palettes and new inspiration!  It’s sort of a dream job!

Crab and weathervane invite<br><a href=http://www.breamcdonald.com target=_blank>Brea McDonald Photography</a>
L&L: Is all of your work custom?

GRIFFIN: The majority of our work is custom, yes.  Most often clients hope to convey, through our papers, a bit of who they are, their wedding spot or a particular ‘theme’ that runs through the decor.  Our studio has designed such a wide variety of stationery; from sets with architectural renderings of estates, landscape elements from properties and detailed maps illustrating favorite landmarks!  We’re able to create paper suites that have a more formal edge, as well as those with a fresh, casual look. While most of our projects are completely custom, it is absolutely possible for a couple to choose from an existing collection.  There are times when one of our sets fits right into a client’s vision ‘as is’… and we go from there!

Polka dot escort cards<br><a href=http://www.tiradophotography.com target=_blank>Rene Tirado Photography</a>
L&L: How does your creative process work?  Should a couple have something in mind before they contact you?

GRIFFIN: It is always nice when a couple comes to the table with some ideas.  However, it’s not necessary for our clients to know exactly what they’re looking for!  Many times, couples gain inspiration from browsing through our portfolios— whether it be in the way an illustration is positioned on a card or a particular color scheme of a suite… the design concepts come to us as the conversation progresses.  It’s a pretty natural process, with lots of chatting, sketching (and, hopefully, laughing!)

Rustic Autumn menu<br><a href=http://www.genevehoffmanphotography.com target=_blank>Geneve Hoffman Photography</a>

L&L: When should a couple contact you to get started on their wedding stationery designs? How long does the process usually take?

GRIFFIN: This varies greatly from project to project.  The time frame for a couple to contact us is dependent upon the extent of design required for their papers, the amount of items they’ll be needing, as well as our studio’s work calendar at that time.  I always say it’s better to start too early than too late!  If a client is beginning their process with save-the-date cards, we could easily be working together a year or more before their wedding date.  The same goes for a fully customized suite.  Whereas, a set that incorporates our existing artwork, or an order of small size, may take substantially less time to complete.  It’s best to touch base with our studio to discuss a schedule.  We try to be as accommodating as we can, and understand that time is not always on our side!

Sara on the job<br><a href=http://www.breamcdonald.com target=_blank>Brea McDonald Photography</a>
L&L: What is a typical budget for wedding stationery?

GRIFFIN: Again, this really depends on what a couple has in mind… the size of their wedding, the amount of design work and the number of pieces they’re ordering.  Our clients usually take their stationery seriously; it’s a priority item on their wedding ‘wish-list’.  We encourage clients to contact the studio for our rate sheet, if interested!

Nantucket hydrangea invite<br><a href=http://www.genevehoffmanphotography.com target=_blank>Geneve Hoffman Photography</a>

L&L: How do most of your clients find you?

GRIFFIN: A lot of our couples come to us through word-of-mouth, either from past clients or fellow vendors.  The neat thing about stationery, is that it gets sent all over the country… all over the world.  We, in turn, have the privilege of meeting couples not only from New England, but from California, Hawaii, even Alaska!  Many clients also find us, locally, through our print ads/press, and non-locally, by way of the internet (blogs, etc.)

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