Back in 2009, I partnered with Style Me Pretty on a fun idea to use their Style Circle members to showcase their inspiration boards, and then I chose one and created an invitation out of it. Probably most of you planning your wedding now have never heard of the Style Circle. Basically, SMP developed a way for users to create and save their own inspiration boards from photos around the web and their site, follow each other, and comment and discuss their saved boards. (Sound familiar? They are way ahead of the curve over there at SMP!)
We created a few fun invitations this way, and it was a great way to determine what Style Me Pretty's users were wanting to see more of in the way of invitation design. But more importantly, it was what the act of collecting and creating groups of images tells us about what is meaningful to us; it's that unique story, whether for an event, home design, spring fashion line, or vacation that it inspires.
I think this is an important step in designing anything. Where does it come from? Is it pretty flower, or is it the dahlias your father gave you on your birthday every year? A 3 letter monogram because that is what you think is traditional, or a custom crest that showcases you and your loves' interests, heritage, and personal history? The meaning behind the design is everything. It's why I design. I don't really care what's in style, or what other designers are doing. I take my own sensibility and pair it with what I care about.
Case in point: Seaglass
My seaglass collection is probably my most valued possession. And that's saying a lot- I don't really like stuff, so I put a lot of thought into what I have in my home. I have one special glass box to hold jewelry, and that's the only thing on my dresser. About seven pairs of shoes (but I love each one). A collection of books that I have read and loved over the years. Of course, my grandfather's china.
The importance of seaglass to me is the weathered beauty of a found object. Something that isn't supposed to be there, but made its way and became beautiful for trying. It's the memory of a childhood of summers, spent with my father on the beach, finding treasures in blue, green, white and brown. The time spent with my own sons. The surprise that seaglass exists on the shores of lakes, too.
So when I was developing the line of designs for this year's Ready Made Wedding Invitations, I knew that the place I came from had to make a stronger showing in the line. It's where I come from, and what made me who I am, and I wanted to share it with you. I hope you like it. :)
Invitation photography by Julia Franzosa