There is an elongated list of things to do in advance of your big day. Creating wedding cards can perhaps seem like the easiest of those, but it is one of those tasks that can become more complex the more time is spent thinking about it.
In today’s digital age, the wedding invitation is one of the few things we still insist on communicating through pen and paper.
Wedding cards are essential to your big day plans, since other things such as catering and table arrangement cannot be finalized until you have a final headcount.
Although no one is going to reject turning up to your big day based on invite design, here are some tips for nailing wedding cards.
Through your design, you want to give the recipient no reason not to display it on their mantel piece or pin it centrally to their noticeboard. Or eat it (all will be explained shortly).
Wedding cards should match the style of celebration you want. You want it to be a teaser for the big day and therefore the venue, destination, or season should be reflected in your design. Perhaps you will be walking down an aisle of golden sand, or tying the knot amongst the trees. Whatever you choose to do, the invitation should reflect your theme.
The personality of you and your fiancé and the type of atmosphere you would like to create on your big day should also be reflected. For this you will need a good idea of what you want the style of your ceremony to be like.
Sometimes less is more. An easy way to make your invite look clean and crisp is to use a minimalist design, keeping the colours subtle and message succinct.
Font is a great way to establish style. Typography is another way through which to create personality and reflect the atmosphere and level of formality you would like to create on your big day.
The next point should be a given. If you have the sort of handwriting that looks like it was produced whilst riding through a bunch of turbulence and sneezing at the same time, then it’s probably best to opt for typed text. Don’t leave the recipient with a quasi-Morse code puzzle to decipher.
Even if you are fond of your own handwriting, typed text always looks more professional and it’ll save you having to write what could easily be over 50 invites by hand.
Your invitation might not be the only one landing on the doormat of the recipient. If you want to be unique and different, ditch the pen and paper.
First decide whether you want your wedding cards to be something useful, something edible, something fun, or something to display. If your choice is the latter, then using higher quality paper can really give your design a cutting edge; none of that common white sheet from Officeworks.
If you instead would like to go for something less conventional, fun ideas include sending your invitees a balloon to blow up before the details are revealed; an edible bar of chocolate with a customized wrapper; a mug with a message emblazoned on the side; a coaster; or a handkerchief or tea towel with the details stitched.
How much writing to include is the key question here. Not too much is the answer.
You don’t want your invitation to look like a hymn sheet by overloading the space with text, nor do you want it to look like the front cover of your autobiography by having too little writing.
Obviously, a marriage invitation is useless without date, time and venue details, so make sure they’re on there. Also don’t forget to include an RSVP date. This should be at least a fortnight before the big day and within a month of sending the wedding cards out so that you can reach a final headcount, inform your caterers, and finalize table arrangement.
When to distribute
With the design finalized and message written, in whatever creative or minimalist way chosen, the next decision becomes when to distribute your art.
Too early and you’ll get yourself too excited too early and end up becoming impatient as you realize the big day is still 40 weeks away. Too late and well, while your family and friends are sure to attend whatever, Judy that you always stop to chat to at the local grocers might already have committed to other plans.
The general rule of thumb is to distribute wedding cards at least 2 months in advance but earlier if you are holding your ceremony abroad to allow for invitees to save money and book flights.
You might even want to send out Save The Date cards before your invitations as an appetizer and so these will need to be distributed several months in advance.