My dear cousin, Adrienne, is expecting this fall! A little girl is on the way, and we couldn't be more thrilled. My sister and other cousin, Christie, and I banded together to throw a shower - happening next month - and I eagerly jumped on the chance to make the invitations. I love caligraphy, typography, design, paper - everything about stationary - and couldn't wait to make the invites myself. I bought a pack of 50 white blank note cards and envelopes from Hobby Lobby for all of $3.50 (half off!) and then got out my tools for developing a layout and deciding on content, design, and fonts.
Pilot Precise Rolling Ball Pen Extra Fine (addicted since junior high, I have always owned one - thanks, Papa Milo)
Extra Fine DecoColor Liquid Gold Opaque Paint Marker
Itoya Doubleheader Calligraphy Marker
Medium Point Pen-touch Marker in Gold
My two rules: keep it simple and make it pretty. Megan Hunt (aka Princess Lasertron) taught me long ago the value and philosophy of Make it Pretty. Adopting that mantra has served me well over the years as I've put more thought and care into the little details when gift-giving. I want the receiver to feel loved and thought of. For these invites, I wanted everything down to the envelopes to be special, so that they were excited to open it.
I also wanted to keep it simple. So many invites have cutesie or precious designs, extraneous information, and multiple pieces of paper. Stop the maddness! That's a lot to sift through. For these invites, I wanted clean, simple, pretty - no more, no less. Only the information they needed, only the design that would best set the tone. If you're in the art world, you've probably heard something to the effect of: "Perfection isn't when you can add something else, it's when you can't take anything else away." That was my goal.
After doing some preliminary inspiration research on Pinterest, of all the hundreds of ideas floating out there I could only find one invite that quickened my pulse.
These invites on Oh So Beautiful Paper were just what I was looking for: simplicity, great fonts, unique wording.
Having a starting point, I was able to draft my own. and after an hour of creative problem solving (and half a dozen practice invites later), I finally decided on "the look."
$3.50 + 6 hours of work = 25 beautiful invites
As a stay at home mom, I can more freely spend time than money, so although the invites were laborious and intensive, it was worth more for me to make them than buy them. And I know what you're thinking - 6 hours! But every polka dot, every change in font, every change in color, every pen placement, every loop and swirl required great care and attention. I couldn't afford to make an error and risk starting over. I executed them assembly-style, so for each line or segment I did that one over and over on each card til they were done. And then I'd move on to the next block or design. Not the most fun job, but rewarding all the same. If I could just design one instead of 25 I'd be even happier.
In the end, it was fun to dabble in stationary and even more fun to make something special in honor of my cousin and her new babe.
Thank you, Mom, for donating the lovely floral stamps! They were the cherry on top :)
Here's to making things pretty.