You are cordially invited…

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It seems the world of communication has been overrun by the digital, and it’s not hard to guess why. We no longer have to spend those awkward minutes pressed up against the back of a hairy men we don’t know, hoping to get five minutes of a bank teller’s time.

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Nor do we have to navigate the labyrinth that is the airport to locate airplane tickets. All these logistics can now be taken care of online, leaving only the fun stuff to be done in person. When it comes to weddings, the same thing applies.

There is no end to the options we now have for planning weddings digitally; apart from a host of gorgeous wedding related websites, we now have digital wedding planners, online registries, and of course digital wedding invitations. Digital invites provide a convenient, potentially very cost effective and eco-friendly alternative to the traditional paper invites, and for couples willing to take this route, the possibilities are virtually endless. Of course having your invites printed, made up and posted by hand can be incredibly special too. There are beautifully creative and eco-friendly ways for those wanting a more traditional invite. I’ve done some research on both digital and traditional invites and am delighted to share the information.

 

Wedding websites

Setting up a wedding website of your own can be a great accompaniment to your wedding invites, whether you choose traditional or digital. Wedding websites are excellent way to share your wedding story and keep guests clued up about wedding arrangements. There are a host of online options that will allow you to set up your own personalised site, no technical savvy needed. Many of the sites have sections that allow you to share your story, details about your bridal party, your photos and inspiration as well as all the nitty-gritty details such as dates, times, directions and accommodation details where applicable. These sites are a wonderful tool to keep track of your guests list and where you stand with RSVPs.

You’ve got mail

Sending your wedding invite as an email is possibly the easiest and most efficient way to get the invite to your guests. The great thing about mailing your invites is that you are able to provide a number of links to information such as registries or your personalised website that guests will be able to access immediately. At first the idea of an emailed invitation might sound incredibly uninspiring and impersonal but in reality there is no limit to how creative you can get with this. You can go straight forward and simple with an attached invitation that is beautifully designed, sparing you the trauma of dealing with printers. Then again you can go with more elaborate digital invites. Examples of this might be an interactive PDF; an invite that guests will be able to navigate and interact. There is also the opportunity to incorporate music and video into your invite; this can be a short video showcasing your wedding story, or for the more adventurous couples it could involve an animation. Though these ideas might sound very complicated, they are actually extremely easy to execute. Do some research and ask around with a few freelance designers if you are interested in going this route. If you don’t know any designers personally, ask around at a printer near you; printers often do work with several graphic designers and are likely to be able to point you in the right direction.

The paper route

Despite the convenience and low-costs of digital invitations, there is something irresistibly romantic about paper invites. Receiving a physical invite, being able to smell the freshly printed paper, and unfold the exciting information within lends a cordial feel to the whole affair. There is a wealth of inspiration out there when it comes to printed invites and you can get some really quirky, unique results with careful consideration of the various printing and finishing methods in regards to your theme.  One example of a truly unique invitation I’ve seen was for a woodland wedding; the invite layout mimicked a field guide, with an illustrated map, all tied together with rustic looking string, inside a little wooden box. I’ve seen other invites that were printed using embossing, spot varnishes and dye-cuts with very successful results. Just be warned that the process of printing, assembling and distributing physical invites could be very time-consuming and could get very, very costly. There is also great room for disaster in terms of misprints, bad cropping, and the chance of your guests never receiving their invites.

One way of avoiding these disasters would be to hire a freelance designer to design your invites, and have them printed for you. This might hike the costs up by a bit, but the room for error will be lessened dramatically if you have a professional aiding you. Before you decide to go with conventional paper invitations first consider your guest-list; if it consists of everyone from you grade three netball coach to your granny’s gardener, totaling about five hundred guests, you might want to reconsider the paper route.

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