save the date


Brian-and-Yang-Save-the-DateRemember how several weeks back I was severely off my blogging game because I was quote – “working on something special”? Well, the Save the Date you see before you is that something special, and I’m so very excited to finally share it with you, especially now that 2015 is upon us. I hope you’re impressed!

If it looks at all familiar, it’s because it should. It was inspired by the iconic New Yorker magazine cover, “View of the World from 9th Avenue” by Saul Steinberg (a Jew!), and is one of my absolute favorite pieces of art ever created. I wish I could take credit for using it as the inspiration for my Save the Date, but I can’t. I saw it done many moons ago, and knew then that I would want the same for mine. Whereas the STDs (ha!) I saw were commissioned, I made them my own by making them myself. Read along to see how I did it. 

You see, once upon a time, I was a bit of an artist. Painting and drawing were big passions of mine, but the supposedly more practical fields of  journalism and economics eventually took over and any artistic talents I had went to the wayside. Rusty doesn’t even cover it, but after purchasing an expensive pack of colored pencils, lots and lots of scribbling, consulting of Google Maps, erasing and trial and error, I eventually hit my stride and am so very pleased with the results. 

Brian and Yang Save the Date WIP
Here you see the STD as a work in progress. Like a mad woman, I scribbled all over a printout of the original to help me find the right colors and match elements as best I could, while customizing other parts to make them specific to Cleveland. The idea, if you couldn’t already tell, was to showcase where Brian and I are getting married (the Cleveland Museum of Art), the city we’re getting married in and the cities and countries of special significance to the both of us.


The foreground is my attempt at replicating our ceremony location on the museum’s South Terrace facing the picturesque Wade Lagoon. Weather permitting, fingers crossed. 


Behind that is a not-to-scale and not entirely accurate depiction of downtown Cleveland, complete with The City Club building where Brian’s dad works, three of the city’s tallest buildings, Cleveland Browns Stadium, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the Goodtime III boat cruise.


The rest is our call to action in that classic New Yorker font, the date of our wedding and location in lieu of the publication date and magazine price, the countries of special significance to us (I was born in Australia and my family’s in China, Brian’s heritage traces back to Israel, Hungary, Russia and then Czechoslovakia), and on the map of the U.S. you can see where we’ve lived, will live (Atlanta), where I want to live (L.A.) and where certain members of the family live.

Must. take. a. breath. A lot of history jam-packed in a little 5×7 card. 

New Yorker style Save the Date Postcard
Now, while I did hand draw the piece myself, the Save the Dates were very much a team effort. Sure, I can hold a pencil, but I can’t hold a candle to the Photoshop and Illustrator skills of my brother Bowen and my dear friend Megan (who happens to be starting a wedding invite business – so excited!). Together, Bowen taking the first stab and Megan completing the look, they successfully designed what I can objectively call a beautiful postcard back. Paired with the front (Megan helped there too – text and color correcting) and I had myself a piece of wedding paper that I could truly be proud of. Thanks again to Bowen and Megan. 

To actually print these babies, I used on the recommendation of our friend Errin who designed and printed her own beautiful wedding invites. Catprint is affordable, easy to use and I plan on using them for all of my other wedding printing needs. The one thing I’d change is I would have picked a cardstock that came with some sort of coating. The Ultra Card Stock I used is nice and thick, but because it came uncoated, cards that got a little wet in winter transit, got a little smudged as a result. Lesson learned. 

So, if after all of this, you love the idea and want to consider drawing your own set of New Yorker-inspired Save the Dates for your own wedding, go for it! It was a huge labor of love, but so worth it in the end. You can download The New Yorker font for free here and the Derringer Serial Medium font for the date and location. The rest is all in your nimble and capable hands. 

Happy weekend!

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11 Responses to save the date

  1. It looks AMAZING. So impressed. Incredibly creative and thoughtful :)

  2. Chloe Joy says:

    Wowwww!!! You did such an amazing job! This is by far my favorite save the date that I’ve ever seen. It’s unique, personal, informative, and beautiful – stellar work!

  3. Sarah says:

    Yang! When I first saw the save the date I thought “oh my gosh…yang made that herself…because it’s yang and she is amazing like that.” Then I kept looking at it and thought “no way could a mortal do that themselves…a professional team of artists definitely did that…” You are incredible!!! Bravo bravo bravo!

  4. Teesa says:

    unBELIEVABLY thoughtful and meaningful. i had no idea how much megan and bowen were also involved in creating the STDs…an amazing finished product!

  5. Sheila says:

    Hi! I came across your blog while I was looking for how to make my own save-the-dates — and was thinking something like this too! May I ask how you managed to get your art from paper to a digital version — ie. did you just scan it? Im a bit worried that if I scan my artwork, it will look “scanned” when it actually gets printed on the post card, so Im trying to figure out how to do it neatly… Thanks in advance!

    • Yang says:

      Hi Sheila – Sorry for the late response. I love that you’re doing your own save the dates! To answer your question: yes, I did just scan my art from paper to a digital version. I had those same quality concerns, but as long as you’re using a pretty large dpi setting, you should be good to go. Not sure what scanner you’re using, but you should have the option to scan a higher quality image. I’d go that route. Best of luck!

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