Modern brides and grooms have more choices when it comes to all aspects of wedding planning. From the location of the ceremony to the flavor of their cake, couples can choose from more options than ever before. Despite all of these options, most couples still prefer traditional wedding invitations.
Whether traditional or not, wedding invitations are a reflection of the couple and of their wedding. A very formal invitation, for example, suggests to guests that the wedding itself will also be formal. The carefully selected details of the invitation, such as the paper texture, all illustrate how special this day is going to be for you.
Traditional wedding invitations are usually oversized and engraved. Couples usually choose a high-quality paper stock, generally in ivory, white, or cream because these colors are more formal and because they allow the ink to show up clearly. The font style is usually very simple so it is easy to read and is printed in black ink. These invitations usually include a piece of tissue paper placed over the printed wording to protect the ink from smudging. Depending on the paper and ink you choose, the price does vary from $1 to $10 per invitation.
Remember that traditional wedding invitations include other elements as well. First, traditional invitations should be mailed with both an inner and an outer envelope. This Victorian tradition started to protect the actual invitation from being damaged during its postal transit and, even though the postal system is more reliable today, this is still a wise precaution to take. Plus, it makes your invitation look more elegant.
In addition to the invitation itself, a response card (RSVP) should always be included. These cards should be pre-addressed and pre-stamped so your guests won’t have to do any guessing about where to mail them and won’t have to spend their own money to respond. Yu should also include a deadline for responses so your guests won’t wait until the last minute.
An optional inclusion for traditional wedding invitations is the reception card. Reception cards are important under two circumstances: 1) Your reception is not being held in the same location as the wedding ceremony and 2) Not all of your wedding guests are invited to the reception. On the reception card, you’ll list the location for the reception, as well as the time it is scheduled to begin. If your reception is being held in the same location as the ceremony, simply include the message “Reception immediately following” on the invitation itself.
Traditionally, all of your wedding stationery should match, including your thank you cards. That means you should try to order everything at one time, if possible.
Slightly Less Traditional Invitations
While traditional invitations are still a favorite with couples, some brides and grooms opt to create invitations which are a little less traditional. There are a few ways you can do this.
You could choose a more colorful paper, such as a pastel pink or a mint green, instead of the traditional white, ivory, or cream. However, all of the other elements are kept pretty standard. Or you could keep the standard paper colors, but be unique with the ink color. Instead of using black, you might pick a red, a blue, a green, or some other color that matches your wedding colors. Just be sure that the color combination will be easy to read and won’t strain your guests’ eyes.
Another way to make a traditional invitation less traditional is by making the copy more informal. Instead of using the formal language found in most invitations, you could write in a more modern style.
If you want semi-traditional invitations, the key is to choose one aspect of the invitation to make less formal or traditional. The other aspects should stay traditional. Also, these invitations should include all of the elements of a traditional invitation, including the double envelopes, tissue paper, and response card.
If you don’t want to be traditional – and there are plenty of couples out there who opt for something a little different – you can choose something more unique. A photo wedding invitation might be one idea. You could use your engagement photo or photos of the two of you as children on the invitation. Not only will the invitation let people know about your big day, but it can also serve as a special keepsake for all of your guests.
You could also choose for your invitations to reflect the theme of your wedding. You might have custom shapes, colored paper, or other design elements that let give guests a hint of what you have planned.
Remember that even with unique invitations you need to include a response card, tissue paper, and a reception card (if applicable). Double envelopes are also a good idea.