The Stationer

Photo: Katie Murray

Mackenzie Sala of KenzieKate

How did you get into the stationery business?
I started KenzieKate in 2006, and it is a hybrid of all the things I’ve ever done. I worked in a wallpaper studio right out of college, which I went to for illustration; I worked at the Smithsonian and for a design firm in New York. I was in between things, working at this coffee shop in Brooklyn, and I was really unhappy. One day, a customer was so mean to me, and I decided I had to make it happen. In six months I had my company.

What are the hot trends right now for wedding invites?
People are leaning away from the formal and traditional and going for a hand-drawn aesthetic—something that looks more casual, more personal. Kind of the stationery equivalent of comfort food.

Are save-the-dates still necessary? Or are couples skipping it?
Save-the-dates have actually been super-popular lately, though you don’t necessarily need to have one, as long as your wedding is not scheduled for a major holiday or a crazy weekend like New Year’s.

What comes in a typical suite?
Invites, envelopes, reply cards, and reply envelopes, plus additional cards you can use for reception info, accommodations, or directions. We also supply an enclosure folder, so when you open the envelope a lot of stuff doesn’t fly out at you.

Did you design your own wedding invites?
I did, long before I started KenzieKate. They were these elaborate, origami-inspired folded pieces that had to be individually cut with an X-Acto blade. I’m lucky to have married a super-patient guy who spent about 40 hours one week helping me do it. We had spray mount in all the wrong places and got cuts on our hands, but we were really happy with them. We did a light blue and burnt umber color scheme, since it was a fall wedding.

What are some of the more unusual invites you’ve done or requests you’ve had?
We had this one great bride who was so fabulous. She was having the biggest wedding and wanted to put “Vegas, Baby!” on the top of her invitations. And we did. We put it right in there. On the response cards, she wanted the affirmative to read “Hell, yes!” That’s not for everyone, but it was in keeping with who she was and what she wanted her wedding to be.

Anything couples should avoid doing?
I think the key is to know what the rules are, which is my job. It’s the client’s job to break the rules judiciously. But one thing I hate is putting “no children” on the invitation. I recommend making a phone call rather than writing it on the invite. And sometimes people want to put registry information on there. I’d say make that a phone call, have the mother of the bride spread the news, or put it on a website. That one I haven’t really heard a good excuse for yet.

use your dollars wisely

“If you’re on a budget, skip save-the-dates in favor of an exquisite menu or a place card that will have a little more impact at the reception.”
Photo: Henry Hargreaves/New York Magazine


The Stationer