One of the first impressions an engaged couple makes on their guests is the invitation suite, so it only makes sense that a little bit of thought should be put into the design. There are plenty of traditions when it comes to invitation suites, but it’s my job to give my brides insight on which traditions are important to keep and which are unnecessary. Below, I address many of the issues brides and colleagues have brought up over the years….
#1. The invitation suite should match the style of the wedding. TRUE.
As I stated before, the invitation is the first glimpse your guests get into your event. The graphics should flatter the atmosphere of the event. For example, if your wedding is going to be a rustic down-home party in a field, then adding elements like twine, sprigs of lavender, lace, burlap, printing the invites on wood veneer, using casual wording and fun fonts are expected. On the other end of the spectrum, if your wedding is going to be a formal event that your great-grandmother needs to approve of, you should have traditional wording, tissue paper in between each enclosure, addresses in calligraphy, and a timeless design. Even if you know the elements and details of your wedding but still can’t decide what the invitation suite should be like, look to the professionals. They’ve done and heard it all so they will undoubtedly be able to steer you in the right direction!!
#2. Every detail of the wedding weekend should be included in the invitation. FALSE.
Often times, people make the mistake of overwhelming guests with multiple enclosures and too much information. A simple card can be included in your wedding suite that advises guests to visit your wedding website. On this website you can include details (and links!! so convenient for guests…) like the hotels where you’re blocking rooms, dress expectations, directions to venues, where you’re registered, music requests, and menu options. Having a wedding website will cut your printing costs too….
#3. You have to include a response card and envelope for your guests to RSVP. FALSE.
Many people these days are opting out of the traditional response card and return envelope in favor of e-mail responses. They save paper and are a very quick and easy way for guests to respond…giving you a quicker head count for your event! What I typically tell brides who are worried about this idea is that they elect a close family member to follow up and call the guests who haven’t responded (and the elderly who may not know how to use e-mail).
#4. Your invitations need to be selected from and printed by a professional invitation design/printing company. FALSE.
In complete honesty, companies like Wedding Paper Divas and Hello Lucky are perfect for brides with small weddings or brides who want to limit their involvement in the design process. For couples who want a larger wedding, getting a designer (or even a family friend…) to create your invitations may actually save you money! I have designed many invitation suites for brides, many of whom elect to print, cut, and assemble their own invitation suites. For example, a wedding suite (invitation, rsvp, detail card–not including envelopes) of 100 from a site like WPD can cost brides up to $350 dollars. A local graphic designer would charge somewhere around $100 to create this suite and set up your printing pages so that you can print multiple cards per printed page (decreasing printing costs dramatically…think $.40/page with 2 invites on it as opposed to $1.65 per invite). The labor will obviously increase with the cutting and assembly, but isn’t that what family members and bridesmaids are for? You also have the opportunity to create something custom and unique and add your own touches.
#5. All of your wedding graphics should compliment each other. TRUE.
The invitation suite and the graphics that are displayed at the wedding should definitely match and/or work well together. These other graphics include things like table numbers, menus, ceremony programs, favor tags, escort cards, thank you cards, food labels, picture labels, etc. A graphic designer may be necessary to complete this task, but like I said before….there’s definitely ways to cut costs!!
Finally, here are some examples of ahhhhmazing graphic suites…found on the beloved Pinterest.