I’m so excited to share this post with you!
Mel and I have been furiously making plans for our wedding and the first family party that we’ll be having. When I announced our engagement, I mentioned we would probably end up doing a very small ceremony, with the bigger events being family parties in each location where we have a lot of family, and that’s exactly what we’re going to do. We’re trying to keep everything as casual and low-key as possible, and that’s all working out just fine.
Once we conferred with several important attendees on a date for the party, my mind went into overdrive to design an invitation. We had just under two months before the party date. Designing something for yourself, your own harshest critic, on a really strict deadline? Not easy.
But somehow, just before VLV I hatched the perfect idea for the invite. I knew it was going to take some work. The time frame was going to be tight: we get home from VLV on a Thursday. We go to work Friday. We go out to Mel’s parents’ house on Saturday to discuss party plans (since they are hosting the party) and completely firm up the date. Sunday we start taking photos for the invites, I design the invite, and I send it to Moo to get printed on postcards by Monday night.
It sounded crazy. No way could I whip up an invite in Photoshop in one day. I am not a graphic designer by trade and though I’ve had lots and lots of experience designing things over the years, it usually takes me a little while until I get into a rhythm with a project. One day to find the rhythm and get it all done? Yeah right.
And what if the photos came out crappy? Or the lighting was bad? That’s a problem I have a lot in our condo, which is where we were planning on taking the photos because we needed a solid-colored background and didn’t have enough time to inquire around for alternate locations, and no time to even get to and from an alternate location with me still having time every other waking moment of the day to design, anyway. There were a lot of things that could have gone wrong.
But you know what? It went off like clockwork. Mel’s photos came out great. I managed to design an invitation that we are still both giddy about and that everyone so far has loved. My hair didn’t dry after setting it a bit too late on Sunday, but that was no matter as I set up the tripod after work on Monday, worked on my photo that evening and submitted the design to Moo before my self-imposed deadline. The cards even came 4 days early so we got them in the mail sooner than we planned, stuffed in brown postcard-sized envelopes with National Park stamps. And the invites looked freaking amazing. It was meant to be!
While I have you on the edge of your seat, I’ll first run through my inspiration for our wedding invitations. Though technically, these aren’t wedding invitations, they are invitations to the party, the first of which will be held the day after the wedding. We’ll reuse the design, altering time and location information on the front and back for the other parties later in the year. (Moo will print runs as small as 20 postcards, which is perfect.)
I wanted the invitation to look like an old west show poster. Great fonts, somewhat sensational writing style, the whole bit. Something like this…
No small order. We also wanted to slip in a little reference to our favorite postcard. Our friend Jen sent us this vintage postcard after the first time she went camping with us a couple of years ago. She replaced the name on the front with our names, as you can see.
And last but not least, we were inspired by this particular photo of everyone’s favorite vintage Western couple, Roy Rogers and Dale Evans. I loved how they were standing back to back, giving each other a sly little eye. And I just love Roy and Dale, anyway.
I also wanted the photos to look a bit like hand-colored vintage photos, to be more in keeping with the idea for the rest of the invite.
And this is what I came up with! First, the photos we took.
This is Mel’s original photo (well, after Photoshopping out a light switch and nails in the wall). Before…
And my after…
And the grand finale, the front of our finished invitation! (Last names blurred. 🙂 Hopefully this won’t be a letdown after my big buildup, hee hee!
Isn’t that so us?? It feels great to have designed something I am truly 100% happy with, for such a special occasion—our special occasion! 🙂
This is sooo cute! I love it!
You had me on the edge of my seat as you were going through all of your inspiration posters too. 🙂
Ahh, these are the cutest wedding invites I’ve ever seen! Usually I find them kinda cheesy, but this is seriously awesome!!
Oh, and congratulations!!
It looks so fabulous! Great hats too!
Congratulations to you both.
PS. What will you be wearing for the big day??? I guess that’s probably a secret….
@zilredloh Thanks Liz!
@Dakota Thanks, we were certainly going for something non-traditional and fun!
@Anita Thanks! I am actually planning a post about my (casual!) outfits for both the wedding and the first party. I will probably keep the whole actual dress (I am 80% decided on which one) a secret until after, though I’ll probably post a picture of the fabric or a detail of it or something. 😉
Wow, it looks so good! It looks a lot more fun then standard wedding invites 🙂
Tallulah May Vintage Socialite. says
Well done you two for designing a wedding invitation that is so you.
Congratulations and thank you for sharing this special moment with us.
holy smokes, that is just fantastic!
my husband and i designed our own invites too, and you’re right, it’s so much pressure! we printed ours as postcards as well, and saved a bunch of money 🙂
Ahh, love it! You did such a great job on such a short schedule. I agree, designing something for yourself is the worse, but you really created something great looking and functional for the series of parties you are having. Bravo.
That turned out fantastic! And I say that as someone who IS a graphic designer by trade. 🙂 You totally nailed it and I love how you incorporated all your inspirations in so seamlessly. I can’t wait to see and hear more about the other details.
Your invitations are soooo cute!
Miss Katie says
That is fantastic! I can’t believe you did that completely yourself, it’s so good! And it’s so right for you both, I can see why you are so happy with it 🙂
Lenora Le Noire says
I just squeeled out loud!!! This is the most fantastic thing I’ve seen in ages. SO you, so unique… What a total package you two are! Congrats on the outcome!
What beautiful invites! You are a clever pair; they look great!xx
Ivy Black says
Oh that is brilliant! I’m so impressed…I take my stetson off to you both. Congratulations too.xxx
the perfect drug says
congratssssss! kisses from Portugal!
They’re adorable! Congrats to you both!
BRILLIANT. LOVE IT!!! Great job!
Ohh Tasha, it’s so lovely! It’s just PERFECT!
Oh my they are divine! I prefer the made it yourself wedding invites – we made ours with a stamp and a post card!
You’ve done a marvellous job!
Welcome to DeluxeVille says
LOVE it!!!!! Happy happy to you both!!!
Oh that looks fantastic!! =D Congrats to you both. Thank you for sharing this with us.
Bloody brilliant, that will certainly put a smile on everyones face, what a treat getting one in the post!! Congrats! 🙂
Miss Emmi says
Oh wow, I love it! It has so much of your personality and unique relationship in it, which is what weddings should celebrate!
This is SO WONDERFUL!!! Oh my gosh, I love it so much!
Moxie Tonic says
How great would the invite be printed out poster size & framed?!?!
Best wedding invitation ever, you did such a wonderful job capturing the spirit of the vintage Western and the spirit of you two as a couple. And yay! Weddings are supposed to be fun – I think you are on exactly the right track 🙂
I’m dying – so much fabulousness. Gaymazing even!
Ahh I love it! It’s brilliant. I know your secret surname, tee hee 😀
I LOVE IT! Turned out so awesome. Probably helps that I’m a huge fan of anything western, especially vintage western. Congratulations, you absolutely nailed it.
Mouse in a Blouse says
Adore!!! Super fantastic in every which way!
Wow! That’s the way to do it! I take my hat off to you both (or I would if I had a hat)! Fabulous!!
Thank you guys all so much!! ♥
@Moe Yay, thank you!! That means a lot to me coming from someone who knows what’s good and what isn’t. 😉 I do think it really captures all my ideas, and us as well!
@Moxie Tonic Ooh, that is not a half bad idea. Well my mom did request two, one to see the front and one the back, and I know she’s framing them. LOL
@Jess High praise indeed coming from you, since you are the owner of one of the coolest vintage Western rooms I’ve ever seen! 😀
ohmagad! Your invitations are SO cute!!!!
Very cute! Love it!
Miss Margarita says
Great idea and it looks very authentic! You sure did a good job! 😀
Andi B. Goode says
These are AMAZING. I love them. <33
The invitations are fantastic 🙂 I think they absolutely suit you both- what a great idea!
Lauren Hairston says
Fabulous idea! Bestest wishes to you both!
I’m a bit late, but I wanted to say that this is possibly the cutest invite ever! Such a great idea–and I love how beautifully you’ve done the poster (for not being a graphic designer by trade, you sure are talented! ;). It looks like it’s going to be a great party!
Cécily Devil says
So lovely !
This is SO FABULOUS! I love it so much!!!! YAY!
Cheri Pinktrix says
This is an amazing invite!! I hope to do a similar concept for the one for me and my fiancee’s wedding! We won’t be wild west themed, though.
Jessica Cangiano says
There really aren’t words enough for how terrifically fantastic these darling, utterly adorable wedding invites are!
Thank you for sharing the inspiration process behind them and the end results with us! I’m tickled pink for you both about your upcoming nuptials!
Big hugs & joyful Tuesday wishes,
♥ Jessica from Chronically Vintage
Straight Talking Mama! says
I’m a bit late to this, but had to comment, the invite is FABULOUS!
I know I am so late to this post but wow-ee-wow! That is one neato invite! Love, love, LOVE it!!! Congrats on the upcoming wedding! SO excited for you both!!
Oh my gosh, I’ve been so out of the blog loop, I missed your engagement. SUPER CONGRATS! And this is quite possibly the cutest engagement announcement/wedding announcement I HAVE EVER SEEN. Congrats to both of you! So cool!
Thanks everyone, so so so much! ♥