Often, the first real indication your guests will have that you are planning your nuptials is when the wedding invitation lands on the doormat. The style, paper and appearance of your invitations makes a statement, and says a lot about the overall theme of your upcoming wedding. Here are five top tips to bear in mind for your wedding invitations:

1. Legibility

If your font is not legible, your guests will not be able to ascertain exactly where and when you are getting married. The last scenario you want is somebody turning up at the wrong date or time because a number one looked like a seven, or at the wrong address because a looped ‘F’ looked like a ‘P’. Some popular choices for printed fonts that are both stylish and easy to read are Alex Brush, Aphrodite and Coneria Script, among many others. It’s worth printing onto blank paper for a trial run before committing to a particular style. If you’re opting for a calligrapher, discuss with them the importance of legibility and ask to see samples of their work.

2. Theme

If you’re planning a specific theme for your wedding, it’s a great idea to incorporates hints of your chosen theme into your wedding invitations. If your wedding is set to be a very formal, traditional affair, heavier paper with an appropriate ornate calligraphic style will mimic the theme. You could even seal the envelopes with a custom-made wax seal for an added layer of elegance. Likewise, a funky, modern wedding would benefit from a more light-hearted and fun font and a less formal choice of paper.

3. Content

Deciding what to include on your invitations is important. Obviously, the necessary information includes the date, time, location and names. You may also wish to mention points like the event being adults only, or any dress code requirements. Optional extras could include directions to the venue, and if there are choices for the menu, you could enclose a tick box list. Don’t forget to tell your guests to RSVP by a given date.

4. Proofreading

It doesn’t look great if your invitations are riddled with spelling mistakes, and this is particularly detrimental if it affects the date, time or location. Make sure you ask your calligrapher or printer for a proof copy, and look over it with several pairs of eyes to ensure everything is correct before you give the go ahead for the whole batch to be made.

5. Timing

If your wedding is particularly far ahead in the future, then your invitations will be preceded by save the date cards, so your guests will already know to expect the invitations. If your wedding preparation time is quite short and the big day will take place within just a few months, it’s better to bypass the save the date cards and skip straight to the invitations, which you can send out two to six months before the wedding.

It’s important to make the right impression, so don’t skimp on putting thought into this necessary wedding stationery. Your guests will appreciate the effort you have made, and it will show that you value their attendance on your special day.

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