Tried and True: Vintage Wedding Invitations from Invitations by Dawn

When it comes to wedding invitations, vintage is in! The paper pros at Invitations by Dawn say couples are currently gravitating toward old world charm and traditional touches. Brides and grooms are loving laser-cut lace, rustic details like burlap and wood grain, and beautiful botanicals like peonies and garden roses.

vintage Wedding Invitations

Photo by Artsy Vibes 

Today, we’re showing off our favorite vintage wedding invitations from Invitations by Dawn and sharing some fascinating stationery traditions that have changed with the times…

1. During the Renaissance period, most wedding invitations were delivered verbally because paper was expensive, most people couldn’t read or write, and weddings were generally local affairs. Nowadays, paper invitations are certainly the norm — and digital printing is usually the most affordable option.

2. The phrase “the honour of your presence” is typically used for religious wedding ceremonies, while “the pleasure of your company” is the traditional wording for secular ceremonies. Some couples opt for the American English spelling of “honor,” but the old English spelling is typically still used on stationery in the States.

vintage wedding invitation

3. The nobility used a wax seal of their family crest to close their wedding invitations — a sign of wealth and privilege. While traditional wax seals would break easily in our modern mail system, flexible glue gun wax and self adhesive seals are a safer option.

4. Lithographic printing was invented in the late 18th century and paved the way for affordable printed wedding invitations. These days, in addition to lithography, the most common print methods for wedding invitations are digital, thermography, letterpress, engraving, embossing, and foil stamping.

vintage wedding invitation

5. In the 1600s, most invitations were printed using engraved metal plates. Because the ink from these plates could easily smudge, a small piece of tissue paper was placed over the printed invitation. Many stationers will still recommend that couples include tissue paper with thermography and engraved invitations.

6. Because the postal service was unreliable in the early 20th century, invites were often hand-delivered by messengers. But couriers traveled by horse, so mail didn’t always arrive in the best condition. To ensure the wedding invitations arrived looking their best, they were sent wrapped in two envelopes — a tradition that continues today, especially for more formal affairs.

7. In the 1700s, the bride’s mother usually hand-wrote a note to each guest inviting them to attend her daughter’s wedding and guests would send back a note on their personal stationery advising whether or not they would attend. Now, nearly all couples include an RSVP card with their invitations.

vintage wedding invitation

8. The bride’s maiden monogram was often printed on the formal wedding invitations of decades past — but never her married name. To use a married monogram before the wedding day was, and still is, considered very bad luck.

9. Letterpress printing was first invented in the 15th century, but surged in popularity among marrying couples in the 1990s.

vintage wedding invitation

Whether you love vintage invites or a more modern style, Invitations by Dawn offers a variety of styles and price points and their consultants are incredibly knowledgeable and super friendly, making the selection and ordering process simple and fun. Aside from their amazing customer service, they offer a large variety of invitations and free samples so you can really get a sense of what you’re ordering before you commit to anything. Be sure to check out more of our favorite vintage wedding invitations from Invitations by Dawn below and bundle your favorites!


The Loverly team