Wedding Invitations: Choosing Your Design

Today I have the first post in a two-part series about wedding invitations! Invitations can seriously be one of the trickiest and most stressful aspects of planning a wedding. There are so many options that choosing a design can be a daunting task. They can be ridiculously expensive. And invitation phrasing and etiquette... well, that's just about the most confusing thing ever. Where do you even start?! Well, let me tell you. You pick a killer design, and then you go from there. And I'm here to tell you how to do just that.

How to Choose Your Invitation Design

1. Pick Invitations that Fit Your Theme. Your invitation suite (what they call the invitation and all the cards that come with it - RSVP card, directions card, etc.) should set the tone for your wedding. It should give your guests an idea of your wedding colors, style and theme. For instance, if your wedding colors are blush and gold, you sure as heck shouldn't send out green tie-dye invitations (surely NO ONE would ever do that, but you catch my drift). And if your style is glam or elegant, sending out rustic tree-inspired invitations might make your guests show up in jeans and boots instead of something a little more fancy!

2. Start EarlyI'm pretty sure there are millions of options out there, and the chances of you finding the right one immediately are pretty slim. You need to give yourself plenty of time to look through lots of invitation websites! Waiting until the last minute to choose your invitations could be a total catastrophe. I'd suggest starting your invitation hunt as soon as you decide on your colors and theme. 

3. Order Samples. When you find a few options that you really love, order samples. Some invitation samples are free, and sometimes they're just a few bucks. It's totally worth spending a little bit of money to see your options in person! This allows you to make sure you like the colors, as well as the weight and size of the paper (which sounds insane and nit-picky, but trust me, this is something to be a little particular about!). If the invitations you like have a pocket or any sort of embellishment, you will without a doubt want to see them in person before you drop lots of money on them!

Liz Chrisman Photography , from  Katie + Joe 's wedding at The Barn

Liz Chrisman Photography, from Katie + Joe's wedding at The Barn

4. Email Invitation Designers. When I was searching for my invitations, I finally found a design I loved, but the colors were totally off. So I sent the designer a quick email asking if I could pay extra to have the colors changed. To my surprise, she told me she'd change them for free! If you find invitations that are almost-but-not-quite-perfect, shoot the designer or vendor an email asking to make the changes for you! They'll most likely be willing to work with you on minor changes. 

Shingleur Photography , from  Lindsy + Keith 's wedding at The Barn

Shingleur Photography, from Lindsy + Keith's wedding at The Barn

5. Know Where To Look. Some of my favorite invitation shops are:

*Minted. There are so many beautiful designs to choose from, and many of them are quite affordable. Plus, the quality is excellent.
*Etsy. Your options are just about limitless. A lot of sellers will customize your invitations, and you can also find designers who will design custom invitations from start to finish for way less than you can find just about anywhere else. Plus, there are lots of sellers who will sell you the design, which you can then print yourself or have printed at a print shop. 
*Wedding Paper Divas. This website has some seriously fun invitation designs. If you want a design that's a little bit quirky, you just may find your invitations here. The paper and printing quality are top-notch. And they also have lots of cute paper details for your reception (think napkins, programs, menus, etc.). 
*Vistaprint. If you're looking for modern, colorful invitations, Vistaprint is a good place to start. The have more affordable options than many other websites, as well. 

Melissa McCrotty Photography , from mine + Richard's wedding at The Barn

Melissa McCrotty Photography, from mine + Richard's wedding at The Barn

Next week, we'll talk about invitation etiquette, and I'll give you a few tips on cutting invitation costs! If you've got questions, let me know in the comments! I'll do my best to answer them. :) Y'all have a nice day!