Traditionally, written invitations are used for larger scale “life cycle” events such as weddings, anniversaries, important birthdays or baby related events such as a baby shower. How did all of this get started? Here is a brief overview of the history of the written invitation!
• Written invitations to formal events got their start in the middle ages.
• Wealthier families would commission monks who were skilled in writing calligraphy to craft their notices one at a time.
• By the middle of the 1600’s the most popular method of creating invitations was engraving. A metal plate would be hand engraved in reverse with the necessary text and then invitations would be printed.
• To protect the ink from smudging a piece of tissue paper would be placed on top of the invitation. That’s where the tradition of adding vellum or tissue paper to invitations began
• In the 1600 and 1700’s invitations were delivered on horseback, as the postal system was very new at the time and unreliable.
• To protect the invitation during its travels an outer envelope was used, this is where the double envelope tradition began. Fast-forward a few centuries and the wedding and event invitation industry, as we know it today began during the middle of the 20th century with the invention of Thermography.
• Thermography is a printing process that produces raised letters on a sheet of paper without any etching or engraving. It made invitations very affordable for everyone.
• Now, it’s popular to buy invitations from either a catalog or the Internet.