Invitations might feel like an afterthought when planning your wedding, but these paper goods are crucial to creating the first impression for your guests.  

“Invitations are the first tangible piece of your wedding that your guests get to experience, they let you set the tone for what's to come and get people excited!” says Crissie Vitale, owner and artist with Crissie Vitale Creative in Chicago. 

Plus, invitations are “one of the few pieces of your day that really lasts forever,” adds Vitale. “Flowers wilt, the cake gets eaten, but your invitations are a keepsake that you can hold onto, a tangible memory of your big day.”

To help you design memorable stationery to match your once-in-a-lifetime event, here are some of the latest trends in wedding invitations. 

1. Custom Artwork

Give a sneak peek of your wedding by drawing inspiration from your venue (literally) for your invitation design. 

“Venue sketches, illustrations and paintings are showing up more and more on invitations. They add a personal custom feel to any design!” says Vitale.

Another fun approach: commission an artist to create art for your stationery based on your hometowns, your pets or anything else that is meaningful to your life together as a couple. 

2. Mixed Materials

Who says stationery has to be made of paper? An increasing number of couples are printing their invitations and more on unexpected materials. Think embossed leather menus for a rustic affair, laser cut wood invitations for a woodsy wedding, or palm leaf escort cards for a beachside soiree. 

3. Modern Minimalism

This trend strips away the fuss for a streamlined look that pairs perfectly with a contemporary-style wedding. That means subtle fonts instead of swooping calligraphy and a monochrome color palette in place of bright, bold hues to create a chic, sophisticated design. 

4. See-Through Stationery

Another non-paper material showing up in wedding stationery: anything transparent. While vellum is the most traditional, couples are also playing with acrylic in their invitation suites to add a bit of texture and a modern twist. 

5. Vintage Throwbacks

If your style leans more toward vintage than contemporary, consider finding inspiration in two different decades that are currently trending: the roaring ‘20s and the psychedelic ‘70s. 

From the 1920s, you could draw on the decade’s glitz and glamour with stationery gilded in gold or covering in art décor patterns. For a 70’s style invitation suite, you could utilize the era’s funky fonts and warm color palette (i.e., oranges, browns, reds and yellows). 

6. Shapes and Sizes

“We've also been seeing unique sizes and styles gaining popularity – especially folded invites, that allow you to include more artwork and information,” says Vitale.

So, don’t be afraid to step out of the box (or rectangle) and create invitations in other shapes, like circles, octagons or diamonds, to express a more whimsical vibe to your guests.

7. Natural Inspiration

There’s no better artist than Mother Nature, so consider utilizing her creations as a muse for your stationery. For instance, if you’re hosting a backyard garden wedding, you could add watercolor floral details to your invites. Or, if you’re tying the knot in the Pacific Northwest, consider using an evergreen color scheme. 

Even if you’re saying ‘I do’ in an urban mode setting, you can still get in on this trend with abstract nature-inspired patterns, like marble or geodes. 

Whatever you choose for your stationery, remember, “consistency is key!” advises Vitale. “Keeping design elements and fonts the same across all your stationery will give your wedding a more cohesive look. And, don't forget to order matching 'thank you' cards!”

©CTW Features