The days of a white card tied with ribbon are over. I’m saying this very firmly, as so much creativity and imagination can be poured into the theme of this week’s Wedding Wednesday post – stationery.
One of the first things to set the theme, tone, style, and even colours, of a wedding is your stationery. Before guests have even thought of dusting off their hats, or looking up your venue on google, a little piece of your wedding will fall through their letter box and set the scene for your special day.
But it was not always so…
Weddings used to be announced rather more publicly by a town crier, stalking through the busy streets of your town, ringing a large bell, and inviting all and sundry to join the party! However, the invention of the printing press put a stop to this rather medieval tradition, though it did remain popular for couples to put a notice of their impending nuptials into the newspaper.
The invention of metal-plate engraving made invitations a lot more stylish than the ordinary print of the printing press. An artist had to hand engrave the text in reverse onto a metal plate, using a carving tool, and then the plate was used to print the invitation.
In 1798, along came lithography, and with it the dawning of mass-market wedding stationery. Lithography produces very sharp and distinctive lettering without the need for engraving.
Modern techniques include thermography and Letterpress, as well as laser-engraving which can produce quirky wood-based invites. The internet has provided the modern-day bride with a huge catalogue of potential invites to browse through, as well as providing the opportunity for many budding entrepreneurs to launch their own stationery business and send orders all over the globe.
One such person is Geri Jewitt, of The Languid Lion. She spends her time designing, illustrating & creating eco-friendly handmade stationery, as well as decorations, art prints, and a long list of other creative endeavours! All of her invitations & reception suites are hand designed –
“drawn first on paper, then again with my stylus into Illustrator”
They are then printed, cut and finished, solely by Geri, onto 100% recycled stock so, as she says “they are all near and dear to me!”
I asked her…
What is your favourite wedding invitation, that you’ve designed?
1) My own wedding suite was my favourite simply because it was so special to us! Even though it’s a little basic, it really was the kickstart to what I do now (13 years later) full-time, so it willalways hold a special place in my heart.
What’s the quirkiest wedding invitation you’ve ever seen?
2) Hmmm… This is a loaded question! Once I received an invitation that was completely made out of reclaimed driftwood with the information etched into it! That was pretty quirky, and not to mention unique. It was a very small wedding and everyone was local, so the couple was able to hand-deliver these treasures.
I love the Hampton suite which is brand new for Autumn. It looks so elegant, and has a real 1920s feel, which would be perfect for any Gatsby or Downton themed weddings. Make sure you have a browse of her shop & why not leave a comment on her blog – The Lion’s Den?
These days couples don’t just send out a solitary invite. There’s a whole plethora of other stationery to design and create, including RSVPS, menu’s, or for the very organised – Save The Date cards.
(I will confess, we left it too late to send these out, but I’m sure you’ll be far better prepared!)
Save The Date cards often go out a year in advance, and are the first warning that you’ll have to push back that camping trip or holiday to the South of France… Here is a tutorial on how to make some pretty Save The Date’s without spending too much time, or more importantly when you’re saving for that amazing dress, money!
You Will Need –
Patterned Tissue Paper
1) Cut out one of the shapes from your patterned tissue paper. Cupcakes, birds, keys – anything with a pretty, vintage feel will work well. Make sure it’s reasonably large – about 10cm wide.
2) Cut out a square of coloured card slightly bigger than your tissue paper shape.
3) Using your stencil and fine-liner, write out ‘Save The Date’ & the date itself. Make sure it’s within the confines of your shape, so that when you place the tissue paper on top of the coloured card, it neatly covers all the writing. If you have nice handwriting, you may want to do it free-hand!
4) Cut out a thin strip of complimentary coloured card, slightly longer than your original square.
5) Using a matching mini wooden peg, clip together the two pieces of card and your tissue paper shape.
6) If wanted, add little hearts or decorations to the corner of the base card,and write the name of the ‘Save The Date’ recipient along the thin strip of card at the top. There – easy to make ‘Save The Date’ cards that look super cute!
As I said at the start of the post, an invite is often the first indication of the theme for your whole wedding, so make sure you have plenty of ideas how it’s going to tie in nicely with everything else you’re planning! My own invitations were library cards, tucked into a customised Agatha Christie novel. This was a perfect indication to the day we’re planning – which is not that far off now! – as it’s all going to be book-related (we met in a library)! We hand-made our invites and you can view a post about them here!
If your wedding had a rustic, owl theme, here’s how you might style it to match your invites…
Make sure you stick all your ideas and inspiration for your stationery into your scrapbooks. If you’re not sure what I’m talking about, head back to last week’s post and go and have a catch up!
I’d love to hear about your wedding invitations and stationery, which theme you’ve chosen, and if you’ve hand-made or designed them yourself!