When it comes to save-the-dates there are a couple of things I recommend:
- Keep it cheap - there is really no need now-a-days to have an elaborate save-the-date when all of the information your guests need can be on your wedding website.
- Postcards or magnets are the best - I have seen everything from a photo of the couples date in the sand at the beach turned into a postcard, to a print of a Nantucket basket turned into a magnet and then there are the hundreds of wedding sites where you can buy them if you aren't that creative. But if you can do it yourself, it can be a great way to save money.
- Build a wedding website - This is a must have. You can find them for free by registering on TheKnot.com or by mooching off of one of your friends or relatives that know how to make them. I would not recommend spending money here if you can. On your site you can include a page for the day of festivities and where they will take place, a page for places to stay near the event, a page about you and your finace, links to your registries, travel options if necessary, and things to do around the area for those that are traveling. If you want to go crazy you can add a page about your wedding party with crazy pictures and stories of them, a virtual guest book (free on TheKnot.com), and any other special/crazy things about you and your event.
Send out your Save-the-Dates about 9-12 months before the wedding. If it is a destination wedding - which a lot of Cape Cod weddings are - the sooner the better.
Good luck and have fun!