In October, I had the opportunity to teach a breakout class with my sweet friend, Natalie Franke, at the Showit United Conference in Arizona. In the class we taught our attendees all about styling the details. Well, one of my favorite details to photograph on a wedding is a wedding invitation suite. There’s so much beauty in the simplicity of hand-calligraphy invitation and it’s the first thing that sets the tone of what the wedding will be like. That invitation will one day serve as an heirloom to the bride and groom’s grandkids, showcasing the style of the wedding and the beautiful wedding date. The problem is that so often, the invitation suite can be a bit tricky to style. There’s a lot of pieces, a lot of extras we can add, and usually only a few minutes to do it all in!
So today I’m sharing my top three tips for better styling of the invitation suite:
- Remember that We Read Left to Right. Just like we’re reading a book, humans read images from left to right and top to bottom. We want to make sure that once the reader is entering our image they aren’t immediately stopped on their way to the main event. If the photograph I’m creating is one that is highlighting the invitation suite, that should be the first thing on the top left side that the reader encounters. If a flower is there instead, it could stop them from being able to read the whole image. Keep that in mind as you start using extras to style your pieces with.
- Enhance, Don’t Distract. I don’t know about you, but sometimes I have a tendency to put too many items in as I’m styling… “but that ribbon would look perfect there with that flower on top of the paper with the ring on top.” By the time I add all of my pieces together I’ve forgotten which image I am actually supposed to be photographing… is it the invite, the ribbon, or the ring? When choosing details to add to your images, you want to make sure that you enhance the item you are featuring instead of distracting from it. Most often it helps if your little extra is added to the bottom right corner and redirects the audiences eye throughout the image.
- Style for the Mood. When it comes to styling any tip of detail set- but especially invitation suites, we always want to be able it to help tell the story of the whole day, not be an outlier. We can avoid that by paying attention to the mood of the day and styling it accordingly. Utilizing similar colors, tones, and extra pieces can help. For example, in one of the images below you’ll see a bit of a “moody” image in which the extras I used a dark navy ribbon, and a simple wedding band in the ring box. These both give a more masculine and simple feel to the image, versus another image that is much more light and airy.