Summer sees the world open and lively, filled with warmth and bright colors. It’s a beautiful season, no matter how you spend it. Sparkling beaches beckon and city streets fill with life. What better time of year to celebrate your love?
Summer feels full of potential, and so does a summer wedding. It’s only natural to want to share the beauty of your summer celebration with the people you care about. To make sure everyone’s in the loop, you’ll want to put thought and care into your wedding invitations.
There are several factors you’ll want to consider when designing your summer wedding invites.
What makes a successful wedding invitation? Its mission is two-fold:
From color schemes to decorative flourishes, there are many design techniques you can use to customize your dream summer wedding invitation.
While the visuals are exciting to think about and can often take center stage, make sure not to leave any vital information out of your wedding invitations.
Here is some crucial information to include on your wedding invitations, no matter which design choices you make:
Your wedding invitation is likely the first taste your guests will get of your summer wedding celebration. That’s why you want your invitation to offer a preview of your special day. There are many aspects of your wedding you can reference when choosing the design elements that will decorate your summer wedding invitation.
By the time you’re designing wedding invitations, you’ll probably have a venue secured (and if you haven’t, Zola’s community of pre-screened wedding vendors makes it simple for couples to search for the perfect option for their wedding venue). If you love the summery aspects of your venue, why not hint at your beautiful venue through your invitations?
Here are a few ideas to inspire you:
Beachy Summer Invites: If you’ll have sand between your toes when you head to the altar, a beach-themed invitation would be perfect for your special day.
A Summer Wedding in the Garden: Are you holding your ceremony in a lush garden? Florals are at their most resplendent in the summer. Decorate your invitations with the stars of summer gardens: gardenias, dahlias, hydrangeas, and irises.
Destination: Summer is the perfect time for getaway weddings. If you’re saying “I do” in a far-off locale, add hints of the region to your invitation. For example, if your venue is at a Tuscan vineyard, grapevine designs and a warm color palette will enchant your guests as soon as they open the envelope.
Tip: If your venue is particularly stunning, why not include a professional picture of your venue as the backdrop to your invitations? Reach out to your venue to see if they have any high-resolution photos on hand or arrange for a photo shoot.
Coming up with a summer wedding theme is a stylish way to help you make many wedding decisions. Here are some wedding themes that are broad enough to make your own and work beautifully for a summer wedding:
Bohemian: Loose clothes, dining beneath the stars, and the peak time for wanderlust—summer is certainly the most bohemian season. There’s no better time of year for a bohemian-themed wedding than the freewheeling, inviting months of summer. Bohemian themes invite artistic takes on wedding traditions but just as much (if not more) romance. A mix of neutral shades and jewel tones in your wedding color palette (and invitations) will evoke a bohemian aesthetic effortlessly.
Fireworks: It’s hard to picture July without the bright pyrotechnics of Independence Day. And if you feel fireworks explode in your chest when you think of your soon-to-be spouse, then this theme might be a perfect one for your wedding. The bright colors of a fireworks display make for a beautiful wedding invitation.
Seasonal: You can also draw direct inspiration from the summer season when planning your wedding theme. If you’re sticking to a traditional venue and celebration but you still want to capture summer’s warmth and energy, your wedding invitation design is a great space to do so.
Seaside: Golden sand, crashing waves, beaming sun—these are some of the first things people think of when they hear the word “summer.” The beach provides a joyful setting for your summer wedding. It also has many aesthetic qualities that you can incorporate into your invitation design, such as gold foils reminiscent of coastal sunsets.
Choosing a color scheme for your wedding invitations is a stunning way to reflect the beauty of summer.
Couples can bring a summer feeling to their wedding invitations with bright colors like sky blue, gold, yellow, and orange. You can use these colors in bold hues for an invigorating invitation or in subdued pastels for something that feels hazy and dreamy.
Here are a few classic color combinations for summer weddings:
While deciding on what colors to make your invitations, you may want to keep some of the following design strategies in mind:
Complementary Colors: In design, pairing a color with its opposite on the color wheel is a common technique to create an eye-catching contrast. This is a great way to go if you want a bold and bright wedding invitation. The complementary color combination of blue and orange feels especially reminiscent of summer and can give your invitations a fun, beachy feel.
Analogous Colors: Analogous colors are three colors placed next to each other on a color wheel. This means they have the feeling of flowing into each other and can blend nicely on a wedding invitation. Consider using analogous colors like varying shades of summery blues if you want your invitations to have a smooth, relaxed feel, like waves quietly lapping on a shoreline.
Accent Colors: Even if you want to stick to more subdued hues for the background and text color of your invitation, you can still add a bright note with an accent color. Accent colors are generally the boldest and brightest color in a color scheme and appear in small amounts in a design to accentuate the beauty of the other colors.
Warm vs. Cool Colors: Warm colors are colors such as red, orange, and yellow. Think of a summer sunset or a glowing campfire. Cool colors, on the other hand, are purples, blues, and greens. You can always mix these colors (especially if you’re using complementary colors), but for a summer wedding invitation, you may want to lean on a warm color scheme to bring out the warmth of the season.
Try to select a few colors that stand out to you and rely on those throughout your color scheme. Like too many different paints that mix into brown on a canvas, adding too many colors to a wedding invitation can overwhelm the design. A simple color scheme is often the most powerful and eye-catching.
Planning a wedding can often be a balancing act—you and your partner may want to splurge on certain things, such as an extravagant honeymoon or custom-made wedding attire. This means you will likely want to reduce costs on other aspects of your celebration.
However, keeping the cost of your wedding invitations low doesn’t mean you have to skimp on style or quality. There are plenty of ways to work within your budget while still choosing wedding invitations that embody the beauty of your love story.
Kelley Nudo, client manager at Momental Designs, told Brides Magazine, “There is no general standard when it comes to invitation pricing, but overall stationery is usually about 10 percent of the overall wedding budget.”
While not the majority by any means, this is a significant percentage of what you will spend on your wedding.
Here are some cost-affecting factors you may want to consider:
Save Details for Your Wedding Website: If you have more wedding details than can fit on your enclosure cards, pare down your invitations to only include the essentials. Save the rest for your wedding website. Zola makes it easy to build a free wedding website that will provide your guests with all the details they need to enjoy your celebrations, from directions to dress code.
Plan in Advance: In general, planning ahead is a good rule to follow when it comes to your wedding. In terms of your wedding invitations, make sure you have everything ready to go in advance to avoid paying any rush fees on the production or shipping of your invitations. It can also save you from stressful situations before your big day.
Streamline Your Design: Flourishes like foil and calligraphy will likely add to the cost of your invitations. However, adding too many design elements at once can also overwhelm the information on the invite and muddle the theme. If you’d like to add a design flourish to your invitations, try to choose one that really stands out and speaks to you.
If you have your sights set on an in-demand, iconic venue or have been dreaming of lavish floral arrangements, here are a few ways Zola’s wedding invitation service can help you can save on your wedding invitations:
Free Design Samples: It’s natural to not want to settle on a design until you see it with your own eyes. When you design your invitations with Zola, we offer to print up to five free wedding invitation samples so you know exactly what you’ll be getting.
Free Envelopes: When planning a large celebration such as a wedding, the little costs can add up. With Zola, free envelopes allow you to save on a necessary item that will keep your invitations safe and looking lovely when your guests receive them.
Free Guest Addressing: Can you feel your hand cramping up just thinking about writing your return address on envelopes over and over? No need to fret—Zola also offers free guest addressing with our wedding invitations.
When spring is in the air, everyone gets excited for the summer ahead. The warm weather is refreshing and reminiscent of fun times spent with people we love. What better time of year to get your loved ones excited about your upcoming summer wedding?
You’ll want to make sure you have your wedding invitations ready to go well in advance of your wedding. This can save you both stress and money.
Ideally, you should have your invitation designs locked in at least six to eight weeks prior to the desired mail date.
You don’t want to leave things to the last minute, for your printer’s sake and for your own. Having your design finalized several weeks in advance will allow you to feel sure of your decision, rather than rushed.
You also want to think critically about when to send out your invitations. It’s appropriate to give your guests enough time to RSVP. However, you don’t want the wedding to feel too far off in the future.
According to Martha Stewart Weddings, it’s ideal to send out your wedding invitations six to eight weeks before your wedding, since that gives your guests about four or five weeks to RSVP.
It is polite—and often necessary—to give your wedding guests advance notice of your wedding date. Whether or not it’s a destination wedding, many people may still need to organize travel arrangements to be there on your big day. They could also have to take off work or figure out childcare if they have young children who will not attend the wedding.
On the other hand, you need to know in advance how many guests will be in attendance at your wedding. This is necessary information when putting the final touches on your wedding menu, seating arrangements, and more. Setting a deadline a couple of weeks in advance of your wedding date will allow both you and your guests ample time to work out the necessary arrangements.
There’s a lot to consider when planning your wedding, and designing your invitations is one of the first steps on the exciting journey to your big day.
Summer is a special time of year—it’s full of beauty, joy, and celebration. It makes sense to celebrate your love story and enter a bright new chapter during this season. When you work with Zola to design your summer wedding invites, it’s a simple task to capture summer’s easygoing charm.
With our various design templates and customization options, you’re sure to end up with a summer wedding invitation that’s not only worthy of a lovely season but is worthy of your unique love story.