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Sunday, October 2, 2011

31 Days: Day 2 - Invitations

Ack! Blogging everyday has already got the best of my and it's only day 2! It wasn't that I didn't have the time earlier today I just let myself get distracted. Urgh. Anyway. On to today's theme - Invitations!

The invitations are the first thing any of the guests see and they are your first opportunity to start setting the mood for the party. Once I have gathered a few ideas for my theme it's pretty easy to start picturing what sort of "look" I want for the party. I narrow it down to a specific color theme, look around for a few clipart ideas online, then I'm ready to design.

For the fish theme, I decided to go with multiple shades of blue (Kaitlyn's favorite color right now) and white. I Googled fish clipart and found some cute options, and as soon as I saw this pretty little fish I knew that was what I wanted to use on the invitations. Now, the more invitations and cards I do, the easier I tend to make them as I know that I quickly get sick of the duplication process. So I did the background and wording in Paint (still working my PhotoShop skills grr) and printed it off, 4 to a page. In order to match the color of the fish, I just took the color dropper tool and grabbed the darker color from her tail. Then I used the paint roller thing to turn the background of a new file a solid blue in that color. It was a simple matter of adding a few white circles for bubbles and typing in the details of the party.

Remember: the only things you truly need on the party invitations are the Why (ie: Kaitlyn's 8th Birthday), When (date and time of party) and Where (location and directions, if needed). RSVP and a contact number are optional, but I generally like to put them on there. I have to note that failure to RSVP is something that gets me every time. I generally don't rely on the RSVP count very much and just plan on about half (or fewer) of the people invited showing up. If you get a better response than that, consider yourself lucky. People lead busy lives - don't be offended. I always have plenty of extra food and a few more favor bags than I think I will need on hand and have never had any problems.

Other than that, the rest is just fluff. I try to find a cutely worded intro to it all, then leave it at that. The less said on these things, the better. People have very short attention spans.

Once I had the basic design of the invitation the way I wanted it, I saved the file as a jpg. It was then a simple matter of copy/pasting it into Word to print it out. And to give it that little extra pop, I printed out a page full of the fish clipart, cut them out with scissors and added them to the invitation with dimensionals so that the fish stood off the background a little bit.

(don't mind the paper scraps - I didn't want to have to go back in and edit out the phone number and address after taking the photo)

I was going to do a big round-up of fun invitation ideas for you, but it's almost bedtime for the kiddos and I need to get off the computer for the night. I'll leave you with a photo of the invitation I've had the most compliments on to date - Tyler's Dump Truck party (age 2).

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