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Tag: wedding invitation design

When to Send Your Wedding Stationery

Finally now that the wedding industry has nearly rebounded from last year, it’s time for brides and grooms to get a move on locking down venues, sending out engagement announcements, and eventually save the dates and invitations too! Follow along for an ultimate timeline and guide for when you should be sending out your gorgeous wedding stationery to your guests.

Engagement Announcements

The sooner you can design your dream engagement announcements the better, especially if you are planning your wedding in under a year. If you plan to throw an engagement party as well you can opt to combine the announcement with the party invite for added savings and convenience.

Save the Dates

Mailing your save the dates anywhere from six to eight months before the big day should give guests ample time to make any arrangements necessary. Those hosting a destination wedding may consider sending save the dates even a month or two earlier than this to ensure affordable travel can be booked and time away from work can be approved.

Invitations

As a general rule of thumb it’s best to send out official wedding invitations six to ten weeks before the wedding day. This ensures they’re not sent too early, but early enough for guests to make any final adjustments to their plans and for RSVPs and meal selections to be mailed back to you.

Thank You Cards

Brides and grooms who create online registries are often surprised to see some gifts being delivered before the wedding. If this happens its common courtesy to respond with a thank you card within two or three weeks of receiving the gift.

For all other gifts received on or after the wedding day there is not nearly as much of a rush with this. Since newlyweds are often busy honeymooning, moving, and adjusting to marriage sending out thank you cards anywhere from one to three months after the wedding is perfectly acceptable.

Final Thoughts

Designing and mailing wedding stationery can be one of the most exciting parts of wedding planning, plus it’s often the very first taste guests will get of your wedding colors, theme and style. Contact the design experts at Forever Friends for 100% custom wedding stationery including announcements, save the dates, invitation packages, thank you cards, programs, favors and more!

History of Wedding Invitation Design

Wedding invitations didn’t always contain pop-up flowers or the words “Mr. and Mrs.” in embossed letters. To dive into the fascinating story of how wedding invitations changed through the ages, we must investigate some ancient manuscripts and practices. Below are some of the notable highlights.

Minimalistic and Lead

First, we must look at the earliest surviving letter from ancient Greece, which was that of a worker in the northern Black Sea during fifth century B.C. The design seems to have been minimal, since the letter was written on a simple thin sheet of lead. There is no opening or closing, unlike the dramatic envelope tearing that we have today. In ancient Greece, this type of minimalism was especially strong when it came to wedding invitation letters, as epitomized by their short notices. For example, one letter simply states:

Dionysios asks you to dinner on the occasion of his children’s marriage in the house of Ischyrion – tomorrow, which is the 30th from the ninth hour.

Theon, son of Origenes, invites you to the wedding of his sister – tomorrow, which is the 9th of Tubi from the eighth hour.

Despite such simplistic designs, receiving a Save the Date seems to have mattered a great deal socially, as there was even a contemporary myth about Eris (the goddess of discord) being refused admittance to a wedding banquet because she didn’t have an invitation.

A metal spoon with melted lead.

Printed and Tinted

Believe it or not, town criers were the primary way of making wedding announcements for most during the early and high Middle Ages, since many were illiterate. (The wealthy put family crests on the letters to accommodate such guests.) In 1440, however, German goldsmith Johannes Gutenberg came up with the printing press, revolutionizing letterpress forever. (Yes, Chinese and Korean printing methods did exist, but they lacked a metal alloy that melted and cooled speedily.) This innovation enabled many Renaissance writers to publish books in the vernacular and the Protestant Reformers to make the Bible uncensored, both of which encouraged people of all socioeconomic strata to become literate. Printed works could now have color illustrations and pages with as many as 42 lines of type. With the rise of capitalism, the emerging middle class employed the mezzotint technology, which enabled engraving via pricking a metal plate with little holes designed to hold ink. To prevent smudging, a tissue paper would be placed on the engraving, a practice which is common even for wedding invitations today.

The Gutenberg press.
The Gutenberg press.

Two Revolutions Later

After the Industrial Revolution, wedding invitation design became even more specialized. Thanks to lithography, or the act of creating ink impressions via a special stone, the mass production of printed works took off. Still, the postal system wasn’t quite what it was today, which meant people had to send invitations on horseback. As precautions against inclement weather, the invitations were sealed twice; the outer envelope took the beating, preserving the integrity of the inner envelope. After the Internet revolutionized the commercial world, RSVP cards became even more personalized. Today, online retailers that specialize in stationery receive all kinds of requests for customizations.

Carrefour de St Jean et Paul (lithograph)
A 1835 lithograph in color.

Conclusion

Thanks to all the advances in wedding invitation design technology, making a card in an Art-Deco-styled format or with a thermographic typeface is not difficult today. If you’re interested in getting that perfectly styled wedding invitation, simply let Forever Friends lend a hand today!

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