A carefully designed and executed wedding invitation is not only a keepsake you’ll treasure for years to come, it’s a symbol of the gesture you’re making as you ask your loved ones to come to your event. The perfect invitation will spur a sense of excitement and anticipation in your guests, adequately express your desire to have them come, embody the spirit and style of your big day, and be a souvenir that you’ll always return to with joy. Here are some of the latest styles in wedding invitations, as well as some useful guidelines in creating and sending them.
Before shopping, ask yourself the following questions:
- How traditional is your wedding going to be? This determination doesn’t have to guide all decisions you make regarding your invitations, but if your wedding is going to be a backyard casual event, or a traditional church affair, you want this to be reflected in the invites.
- What are your theme colors? These hues will be incorporated into all elements on your special day, and as such you want to make sure they’re represented in your mailings.
- Do you have a motif or symbol you want to include? Is there a specific image or monogram that’s relevant? You can put these on several wedding parts before, during and after the day to create continuity throughout. For example, an evening wedding could incorporate a moon and stars design.
- Do you have some samples for inspiration? Those who feel overwhelmed by the process of choosing a design and style can get ideas from other sources such as other invitations, ads from magazines, pieces of artwork, and more. Once you have several pieces, it’s easier to go hunting for the right invite, as you have a better idea of what you like.
Consider using one or more of the following current trends in your cards:
This style is very hot right now and it gives a great nostalgic look to any wedding invitation. For couples who go for simple and classic designs, chalkboard lettered summonses can be a great choice. Depending on your personal style, you can find versions that look more traditional (e.g. cursive) or modern (e.g. block lettering). Some types use complementary colors (keep it simple if you opt for this) and some stick to plain chalkboard background with white font.
While traditional wedding invites were done in more muted hues such as ecru or white, some modern couples are shying away from that in order to make a stronger statement with colors that stand out. Evergreens, deep blues, and even black are being employed in order to evoke a unique ambience. Use jewel tones as a beautiful complement to fall and winter weddings. Make sure it’s not too dark by adding some metallic or contrasting ink.
For couples that love a little sparkle, this trend is right up your alley. Showing up in all cards and stationery for all sorts of events, this element can be used in minimal or elaborate ways. You can employ it as a design motif, in a frame or trefoil pattern surrounding your words, or use it solely to highlight your wedding date or names.
Consider a Different Shape
Standard wedding invitations are postcard or folded items, but as new technology arises that makes unusual shapes easier and cheaper, more and more couples are choosing to think outside of the box. Those who want something just a little bit different can opt for clipped or rounded corners, and more daring planners can select bracket, scallop or ticket styles, among countless options.
- Keep It Simple: Even though the design and color palette is crucial, the words are conveying important information and you don’t want this to get lost in the overall picture. Avoid using dark ink against dark backgrounds or the reverse – using lighter ink colors necessitates the use of a dark enough background to make the letters pop. Also limit the amount of text – stick to the basics (hosts, couple’s names, dress code if desired, ceremony location and time, RSVP information) and resist the urge to embellish.
- Have Addresses Handwritten if Possible: This is a relatively minor expense that has a huge impact on the look and feel of your mailings. It not only looks beautiful, it also conveys a more personal feeling to your potential guests.
- Order Extra: Plan for 25 extra invitations so that you can resend ones if necessary, add more people at the last minute, and/or have extra ones for souvenirs. It’s very pricy to order just a few later, and easily avoidable.
- Add Something Special to Your RSVPs: It’s a little known fact that many people send back their cards but forget to write their name, write it illegibly, etc. You can prevent this from being an issue by penciling a small number on the back of each card and having a corresponding list of numbers with guests’ names so that you know whose card you got.
- Check Postage and Mailing: It’s a huge and preventable hassle to receive 150 invites back from the post office due to improper postage. Be sure to have your envelopes weighed and priced correctly.
With careful planning and design work, your wedding invitations can be something your proposed guests will ooh and ahh over in addition to something you’ll keep and feel proud of forever.
Bryan Passanisi is online marketer and writer living in Redwood City, CA. He graduated from The University of San Francisco with his Bachelor’s Degree in Marketing. Bryan has managed a popular wedding blog and has created viral content. He currently is a blogger for Shutterfly.