Stationery for the Seasons

At Ananya, we love working with our clients to incorporate the time of year of their celebration into their designs, as subtly or as vividly as they wish – whether it’s with colours, motifs, or wording, there’s lots of ways to let your stationery echo the season. We always ask our clients questions about the season and location of their event, and together brainstorm ideas for stylish and sophisticated nods to their surroundings.

Spring

Spring is a return of warmth, and a time for renewal, hope, and colour. Nature awakens and flower gardens take on a new life, while greenery becomes lush and rich with new scents. Our suites for Spring celebrations will often embrace all the new pastel colours of the countryside, the botanical revival, and the world in bloom – with lots of florals all round. Pink remains a firm favourite for the season, in both its dusty and more vivid shades. We love working with organic, wild, delicate visuals that echo nature itself, as more of our couples and clients choose al fresco celebrations under the stars.

Photography by  Rupa Photography

Photography by Rupa Photography

Photography by  Fiona Kelly Photography

For example, our tulip themed suite, inspired by the film ‘Tulip Fever’, featured delft blue and white tulips, and was paired with Perspex décor and a canopy of crisp white tulips. With a crisp colour palette in centre stage, the effect was fresh, clean, and perfect for Spring.

Summer

Summer is a time for dancing in the streets, pool parties, outdoor festivals, fruity cocktails, and lots of sunshine. We love working with tropical vibes and bright colours, and patterns inspired by the rise in temperature. Shades of yellow, green, orange, and fuchsia are some of our favourites, often as watercolours or vibrant contrasts. Fresh fruit, beachy looks, and destination weddings become the words du jour, with more of our couples and clients taking their guests on fantastic experiences abroad. This is a perfect time of year for including playful descriptions of the dress code, like ‘beach chic’, ‘summer chic’, ‘summertime soirée’.

For example, our ‘Trio of Life’ suite features a palette of ochre, hot pink, and turquoise, one for each of our three animals – the parrot, the elephant and the fish, often found in Indian wedding stationery. For this suite we created complementary save the dates, invites, menus, table numbers, coasters, advice for the newly-weds cards, thank you cards, and favour tags.

Ananya_pink parrot wedding invitation.jpg
Tropical

Autumn

The leaves change, and colour palettes get darker and moodier in the beautiful season of Autumn. With Halloween and Thanksgiving, and the lead up to Christmas, this festive season is all about family, friends, and fun in the crisper, cooler air. Earthier, dustier colours like golden beige, caramel, rich maple, copper, auburn, amber, chestnut brown, and shades of green and turquoise take over our design studio – and we love it! Visuals like falling leaves, pumpkins, terracotta, and rustic woodlands are favourites for this time of year, with our clients embracing all things cosy. As this season is all about the trees and changing leaves, why not replace paper with some natural props, like creating place cards out of pine cones or leaves with some beautiful calligraphy? If your venue has an outdoor section, or you plan to serve your guests some drinks or canapés outside, think about giving them a heads up to bring a shawl or coverup against the chilly wind – or, even better, why not provide them with some beautiful embroidered blankets or white pashminas?

Autumn kraft wedding invitation_ananyacards.com.jpg

 For example, for our Autumn Wreath suite we chose to print directly onto kraft paper to give it a rustic, earthy look perfect for the colder seasons. For the floral wreath illustration, we used muted burgundy, dark green, and navy, all natural colours inspired by the leaves of Autumn.

Winter

Winter is a time for resolutions and new starts – a time for hot coffee, winter jackets, wool socks, and spicy peppers. Winter celebrations will often use monochrome palettes paired alongside striking metallics, with imagery of snowflakes and snow, fairy lights, pine cones, shimmering branches, berries, and leafless trees. Hand-finished touches like wax seals, crystals, and metallic foil are perfect for this time of year, as the glitz and glamour of Christmas and New Year’s parties spreads the festive cheer. We also love how wintery colours like shades of black, rich burgundies, midnight blues, and sultry indigos start making an appearance, and how liberally sequins and sparkles embellish the season. We also have lots of clients escaping the cold for some winter warmth, lighting up their guests’ mailboxes with bright, sunny palettes inviting them to a holiday in the sun!

Winter_Wedding Invitation1.jpg

For our Snowflake suites, we used a winter wonderland inspired design with silver or gold metallic foil twinkling on backdrops of midnight blue or deep black, perfect for those darkening evenings.

Do you have a favourite time of year for your special celebration? Please share with us how you incorporate elements of the season into the celebration.

5 not-obvious things you NEED to ask your wedding venue before booking: Part one

Finding  that  utterly  perfect  and  spot-on  location  to  host  your  wedding  celebration can  be  a  tough  job.  The  choice  is  limitless  and  if  you’re  not  tied  into  a  specific  geographical  area,  then  the  world  is  quite  literally  your  oyster  and  your  hunting ground! It should  be  a  fun  part  of  the  planning  and  once  you  have  found  and  secured  that  ideal  venue,  many  other  parts  of  planning  your  vision  do  click  into place. It is  the  biggest  part  of  the  planning  and  so  important  to  get  right,  so  Ananya is delighted to be  hearing  from  wedding  venue  consultant  (and  former  luxury  wedding  planner),  Kelly  Chandler of Kelly Chandler Consulting who  shares  her  tips  with  you  in an in-depth, two part blog, on  some  of  the  things  to  check  before  you  secure  your  venue  to  be  absolutely  sure  it’s  for  you;  there  is  no  right  or  wrong  to  some  of  these  suggestions  and  restrictions, and  some  will  be  fine  for  you,  others  not  -  the  aim  with  this  feature  is  purely  to  give  you  the  knowledge  to  ask  the  questions  of  the  things  that  are  hot  on  YOUR  priority  list.

Kelly Chandler

Kelly Chandler

Part One

1. Exclusivity  and  Venue  Use

Warmwell House
Warmwell House, Dorset

A  great  many  wedding  venues  now  offer  exclusivity  or  some form  of  exclusive-use  such  that  you  are  the  only  wedding  on  that  day  in  that  venue.  This  can  however  mean  different  things  within  different  venues  so  don’t  be  afraid  to  ask  and  get  specific  on  things.  For  some  locations  exclusivity  can  mean  you  have  exclusive  use  of  a  certain  dedicated  banqueting  area  but  say  not  bedrooms,  for  other locations, it  can  be  full  exclusive  use  of  an  entire  home,  gardens  and  grounds,  for  others  it  can  be exclusive  use  between  certain  hours  and  not  others. Do  find out  when  your  exclusive  use  starts  and  ends  as  every  venue  should  have a  policy  on  this  and  sometimes  it’ll  be  for  the  day  from  early  start  and  sometimes  it’ll  include  an  overnight. Find  out  what  their  policy  is  on  other  events  and  other  clients  and  if  they  run  exclusive  use  events  back  to  back  (or  not);  don't  be  afraid  to  ask  about  supplier  access  too  -  in  some  cases  venues  will  allow  suppliers  to  gain  access  early  to  set  up  the  design,  in  others  it’s  a  strict  access  time  for  anything  to  do  with  your  wedding.

2. Recommended/Preferred and Approved  Supplier  List   

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Outdoor seating

Get  super  clear  on  a  venue’s  policy  with  working  with  suppliers  and  outside  wedding  professionals  and  see  that  it  works  for  you.  There  is  a  difference  between  a  recommended  or  preferred  supplier  list  where  the  venue  is  usually  giving  you  the  benefit  of  their  tried and  trusted  list  that  you  can,  but  are  not  obliged  to,  use  and  an  Approved  Supplier  List  which  is  usually  where  you  MUST  pick  from  that  list.  It’s  quite  customary  for  a  venue  to  have  an  Approved  list  you  must  use  in  the  areas  of  catering,  lighting  and  production  and  entertainment  and  marquee  build,  when  you  consider  these  are  the  areas  which  require  a  lot  of  equipment  and  run  the  greatest  degree  of  risk,  it’s  vital  that  venues  have  control  over  the  quality  and  professionalism  of  who  works  with  them  in  order  to  protect  their places  and  spaces  for  all  clients. Many  venues  will  be  more  than  happy  for  you  to  use  your  own  chosen  suppliers  in  many  areas  - do  ask  if  and  how  they  will  be  able  to  obtain  access  to  view  the  venue  in  advance  of  the  wedding  as  this  can  be  needed  in  the  case  of  for  example a  florist  who needs  to  see  a  new  space  before  coming  up  with  full  designs  for  you.  

3. Rules and Restrictions   

It’s  quite  usual  for  venues  to  have  some  rules  and  restrictions  around  the  following,  so  do  ask  away  to  see  what  your  venue  policy  is  and  if  this  works  for  you. Do  bear  in  mind  that  most  rules  are  there  to  protect  the  fabric  of  the  building  in  the  case  of  heritage  properties, to  ensure  guest safety  and  to  ensure  that  the  venue  can  continue  to  operate  in  the  case  of  noise  restrictions  - venue  operators  can  have  their  license  removed  if  noise  pollution  becomes  an  issue  so  understandably  they  need  to  enforce  some  restrictions  to  protect  against  this: Confetti  throwing - is  it  allowed? Sometimes  biodegradable/real  petal  variety  is  in  some  parts  of  the  venue,  but  often  not  on  gravel  or  on  floors that  may  stain. Naked  flames - many  venues  ban  candles  entirely  or  limit  the  use  of  free  standing  candelabra  and  naked  flames  not  in  safe  containers. Dark  drinks - in  some  heritage  buildings  red  wine  &  berry  based  drinks  are  forbidden  except  at  seated  dinners  because  of  the  spillage  and  staining  risk. Dancing - often  this  will  need  to  take  place  in  certain  parts  of  the  venue only  and  between  certain  hours - do  check  and  also  if  you  need  to  install  and  pay  for  a  dance floor. 

Seating

Fireworks - often  these  are  not  allowed  due  to  disruption  to  livestock  and  damage  to  grounds  but  some  venues  have  preferred  suppliers  who  can  work  on  their  property  if  you  have  your  heart  set  on  this  - do  ask. Sound  limiters - noise  pollution  is  one  of  the  biggest  risks  to  a  wedding  venue  not  being  able  to  continue  to  operate  so  owners  and  managers  take  this  seriously. Sometimes  they  are  required  to  install  an  actual  sound  limiter  within  the  property,  other  times  it’s  monitored  more subjectively  but  do  ask  what  sound  limits  exist  within  your  preferred  venue  and  what  entertainment  most  couples  choose. If  you  have  your  heart  set on a 10 piece  big  band  and  your  venue  has  a  fierce  sound  meter, this  is  unlikely  to  be  a  match;  most  venues  with  sound  limiters  tend  to  lean  towards  DJs  rather  than  live  bands, that said live bands can and do perform  within  the  limits of sound, it will be important to work with a professional band who takes  this seriously and prepares in advance in terms of their instruments and kit - it usually makes sense to work with the venue's preferred list in this case as the band/DJ will  have worked there before. 

Thank you Kelly for the insightful and informative first three points on booking a venue. We at Ananya love working with venues and are delighted to be a preferred wedding stationery supplier for some.

Part Two will follow shortly, so stay tuned.

Photo credits: 

Headshot photo of Kelly Chandler: http://www.annelimarinovich.com

Venue: Warmwell House, Dorset: https://www.warmwell-house.com

Photography: Imogen Xiana https://www.imogenxiana.com

Florals: https://www.marthaandthemeadow.com

Cakes: https://www.fanciebuns.co.uk

Bridal Accessories, Hair and Make up: http://www.victoriafergusson.co.uk

Model (bride): http://www.tanyalouisecumberland.com

Bridal gowns: http://www.naomineoh.com

Silk ribbons and silk runner: http://www.pompomblossom.com

Furniture - white chairs for ceremony: http://www.thewhitechaircompany.co.uk

Cross back chairs & wooden bar unit for cake/champagne station: http://dpmarquees.co.uk

Write here…

Which Type of Wedding Stationery Will You Choose? An Essential Guide

So, it’s time to choose wedding stationery and all things gorgeous for your day! But, do you know your laser cut from your letterpress? No? Don’t worry, you aren’t expected to unless stationery and printing is your business! But, when it comes to your wedding, you want to be able to make the right choice. Read on for Ananya’s essential guide to wedding stationery types.

Letterpress

Letterpress party invitation

Letterpress party invitation

Let’s start with Letterpress. It's the ‘Grand Dame’ of printing in that it’s one of the oldest stationery printing techniques in use. Essentially, letterpress is a ‘relief printing’ technique, in which the design is ‘raised’ on a metal plate. Using a printing press, an impression is made into the paper by pressing into it from one side. It’s usually done with ink but can also be without ink. If you run your hand across the finished print you can usually feel the indentations in the paper.

Letterpress printing is high in quality but is slower than other printing methods. For example, the printer has to place each letter of type into a special holder that they also have to place ‘mirror image’ to what the finished print will be.  In other words the type for the press has to be set left to right and upside down. Wow, that’s a lot of work!

Taking letterpress from assembly to proof and then to print is time consuming without a doubt. But, on the upside, it is lovely for a vintage style or traditional wedding. 

Screen printing

Ananya''s 'Trio of Life' bespoke screen printed wedding stationery: parrot  Photography by  Fiona Kelly Photography

Ananya''s 'Trio of Life' bespoke screen printed wedding stationery: parrot

Photography by Fiona Kelly Photography

Ananya's 'Trio of Life' screen printed bespoke wedding stationery: elephant  Photography by  Fiona Kelly Photography

Ananya's 'Trio of Life' screen printed bespoke wedding stationery: elephant

Photography by Fiona Kelly Photography

Screen printing is one of our favourite mediums of printing at Ananya. We love it! Many of our favourite designs, especially using metallics such as gold or silver, use the screen printing technique, including Mandala Love and Trio of Life.

In screen printing, ink is pressed through a mesh screen using a rubber blade or ‘squeegee’ to move across it and fill the open ‘windows’ with ink. When the blade is reversed back across, the screen touches the paper (or media) that’s being printed on to create your design.

Ananya's 'Mandala Love' screen printed wedding stationery

Ananya's 'Mandala Love' screen printed wedding stationery

For Mandala Love, the screen printing for the delicate hand printed mandala motif required an exceptional level of technical skill. Ananya’s craftsmen had to print each piece four times no less; a single colour printed each time. Deep blue and gold are the feature colours of this design, with the deep blue printed first, followed by the gold elements of the mandala. Yellow was applied after that and finally cyan. Accurate positioning without overlap or gaps was critical to ensuring that each element of this intricate design printed perfectly. The design really pops with its vibrant colours and juxtaposition of matt and metallic elements. Only hand printed silk screen in our opinion at least gives that level of covetable artisanal quality.   

Offset printing

Offset/Litho printed wedding invitation

Offset/Litho printed wedding invitation

In comparison to letterpress printing, offset printing is a more indirect print technique. It’s popular for big volume production, and is also known as ‘flat printing’ or ‘litho printing’. Offset, by the way, is just another way of saying ‘transferred’. So, essentially, images on metal plates are ‘offset’ to rollers (or rubber blankets). Once that’s done, the image is printed onto the paper or print media that you've chosen. The metal plates and paper (or other media) don’t come directly into contact with each other during the process.

Digital printing

Digital printed floral wedding stationery

Digital printed floral wedding stationery

Modern, fast and accurate, digital printing is almost the polar opposite of letterpress! Digital printing uses tiny dots (a lot of them of course!) to create text and images. Digital printing is good for smaller quantities and is cost effective. What are the disadvantages? It’s likely that there'll be limits to the type of paper that you can use. This technique tends to suit thinner paper styles and quality can be variable dependant on the printer. Digital printing is also not suitable for accurately printing metallics – for example, you will not get a shiny bright gold or silver but instead a duller brown gold or grey silver.

Laser cut

Laser cut wedding stationery

Laser cut wedding stationery

When it comes to Laser cutting it’s a whole different world of precision and design. Creating and cutting out paper into different shapes isn’t new of course. In China they create ‘Jianzhi’, intricate symmetrical designs created with knives and scissors. And who hasn’t created their very own ‘origami garland’ as a child? Laser cutting definitely moves those hand created designs on a few millennia! Fast and accurate, laser cutting enables the production of intricate designs on an industrial scale.

How is laser cutting done? It’s a non-contact process utilising a laser to cut the material i.e. paper. Directing the laser beam through a nozzle to the media or material, a combination of heat and pressure creates the cutting action. Laser cutting is popular for the modern and vintage bride. It's good for delicate lace designs and works well with 3D designs such as cityscapes or representations of your wedding venue.  

Embossing and Debossing

Embossed notecard envelope

Embossed notecard envelope

Embossing produces a raised textured image or text. But, unlike letterpress, it uses two engraved metal moulds to create your chosen design. The moulds used are often copper or brass, designed to fit into each other. During printing, the raised mould forces the paper into the recessed mould and creates the embossed impression of your design, as you can see on our envelopes for our notecards and personal stationery.

Debossing creates an indent in the paper rather than a raised design. Both of these techniques work well with a personal monogram design. Another of Ananya’s favourites! 

Engraving

Engraved monogram wedding invitation

Engraved monogram wedding invitation

Engraved personal stationery

Engraved personal stationery

And finally, we must mention engraving. It’s perhaps the most formal and classic of the printing styles for wedding stationery. It’s also one of the most expensive! During engraving an etched metal plate is used to create the design. When pressed into the back of the paper it creates raised lettering on the front which you can feel and leaves a slight indent on the back. The printer will apply ink to the raised lettering afterwards. Impressive to receive, we love luxurious engraved stationery at Ananya.

Which type do you think you are? Whatever you choose, Ananya would love to help you design your perfect wedding stationery. Say hello at info@ananyacards.com  and let’s talk!  

Vaishali x

10 Tips for a Successful City Wedding

When it comes to planning a successful city wedding, you’re almost overwhelmed with choice. So, good planning and ‘insider information’ is essential for your dream day. London or Paris, Manchester or Milan, you can have a fabulous city wedding.

1.              The Venue

First up, you need somewhere to hold the ceremony and have a great party afterwards. We spoke to Lisa of Carmela Weddings for her take on city weddings. She has oodles of experience and 'insider knowledge'. Says Lisa, “when you're on the hunt for a great city wedding venue, we recommend thinking beyond the standard registry office. Albeit, there are a couple of standout registry offices too! The swift popularity of urban weddings has created amazing choices for stylish wedding couples. There are now warehouses, rooftops and railway arches that are ready to work with you to create a fantastic unique wedding”.

We couldn’t agree more! But as Lisa also mentions, if your style isn't 'industrial', take a look at boutique hotels. In London try Town Hall Hotel. It’s vibrant and gorgeous. Whilst in Manchester for example there’s Great St John Street hotel. In the heart of the city, it’s small but perfectly formed. Wherever you are, there’s bound to be a gorgeous boutique style hotel. 

We couldn’t resist asking Lisa if she has a favourite city venue. Says Lisa "I have so many favourites, but there is a new city wedding venue that has recently caught my eye. It’s God’s Own Junkyard, which is what it says on the tin! It’s a warehouse full of neon scrap, which sounds odd but is the epitome of city wedding cool!”

2.              Venue Style

Do you want sophisticated style, urban chic or urban boho? Or do you hanker after old style glamour and a grand affair?

Lisa at Carmela Weddings recommends a bold approach if you favour an industrial setting. Bring on the eclectic tables, the chairs that you love and a statement bar! It'll certainly give you that edgy city style look. Fantastic!

It’s essential to also think about lighting. Lisa says “Festoons and Edison Bulbs look amazing draped down from open warehouse ceilings". The exposed pipes and brick walls (crumbling or otherwise) are a great backdrop. And if you’re going for old style glamour, Art Deco style is perfect in a city setting.  You only need look as far as The Savoy in London for inspiration! 

3.              A city wedding: Getting from ‘A to B’

When choosing a city venue, don’t forget to think about your guests and how they will get there. Of course, one of the great reasons to have a city wedding is the ease of public transport. But, that public transport may not necessarily suit your guests. None of us at Ananya would want to hack through the city on a public bus in 'wedding finery'!

It’s a real help to guests if they know the best route and transport options available. Be sure to include buses, tube stations, cab services and even chauffeur services. You might even consider whether you put on transport for everyone.

As for your own transport, ring the changes with something like a motorbike and side car. Granted that this type of transport works better with a short bridal dress or trousers! Are you more traditional? Go for a black cab (or a yellow cab if it’s New York). 

4.              Choosing Stationery for a city wedding

copper monogram stationery_ananyacards.com.jpg
metallic copper monogram table number_ananyacards.com.jpg
Photos by  Amanda Karen Photography  Stationery by  Ananya

Photos by Amanda Karen Photography Stationery by Ananya

When choosing stationery for a city wedding, let the city provide inspiration! Think geometric shapes, metallic elements and bold statement designs that are simple yet striking. For the font, how about something Art Deco style? It’s perfect for settings like The Savoy in London. And, Art Deco can look just as fantastic in an industrial warehouse. Ananya's bold copper and geometric design is beautiful and was recently featured on B.Loved. Want things a little less structured? Try a handwritten font in bold ink and a watercolour design

5.              Aisle style: The Dress and The Suit

For a city wedding it's time to embrace your 'inner fashionista'. We love the opulent and glamorous gowns at The State of Grace . But, if you want something completely different why not work the Bianca Jagger vibe? At Ananya we love designer Caroline Herrera’s trouser suit for spring 2018.

And for the groom, it’s time to look city sharp. Try fabulous groom style at Cad and the Dandy.

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6.              Fabulous Flowers

Whatever the setting, it's important that the flowers aren’t 'lost' in or overpower the room. Think perspective. For example if you’re using country flowers in an industrial setting, show them off as big and bold lavender plants in large terracotta urns. At Ananya we love the idea of masses of peonies. They’re a favourite of every urbanite on our team!

7.              Photography

When it comes to city weddings think iconic architecture, light, and urban life. Don’t be afraid to get ‘graffiti’ couple shots. Or, if you want something more sedate, talk a walk through the city streets – you won’t believe how many people will cheer and clap their congratulations. And, if you’re feeling adventurous, stop by a coffee bar and let the photographer work their magic whilst you take a break.

8.              Food for thought

Think catering that reflects the venue you’re in and your personal preferences. For example, a cocktail party at a riverside location is stylish and contemporary. And don’t forget the cake!  Source a local supplier nearby who can bring your ideas to life. In London we love Cakes by Krishanthi and Elizabeth’s Cake Emporium

9.              Let’s Drink

Photo by   Fiona Kelly Photography  Stationery by  Ananya

Photo by  Fiona Kelly Photography Stationery by Ananya

Drinks are the fun thing to organise for you and your guests. Simplicity is champagne and a selection of wines. But, for real style, offer a range of city cool cocktails, alcoholic and non-alcoholic.

10.              And one last tip for a successful city wedding…

Let the city you’ve chosen to get married in inspire you!

Stationery by  Ananya

Stationery by Ananya

Stationery by Ananya | Flowers by Ladybird Flowers | Cakes and cookies by Elizabeth's Cake Emporium

 

Choosing a Stationery Theme for your Event

Whether your event is a summer cocktail party, an anniversary or a grand wedding, choosing a stationery theme is meant to be fun and exciting. But as with most things, good planning is essential to getting the look and feel of your event right.

So, here are Ananya’s top tips for choosing the right theme for your event.

What’s the occasion?

Seems obvious but the type of event that you’re having and how you structure or design that event will have a big influence on choosing a stationery theme. The key is to know how formal the occasion will be. It will guide you with the structure of the design, typography, font and words.

 At Ananya we design stationery for all sorts of occasions, so here are a few of our ideas for different events:

Formal black tie event

We love to see stationery for formal events designed on crisp heavyweight paper, using classic colours and typography. It gives ‘gravitas’ and immediately let’s people know that this is a ‘grand event’. A great example is from Julie and Zak's wedding in Jersey.

Garden party

A garden party immediately conjures up summer days, green lawns and English flowers. At Ananya we have a range of floral stationery designs that embrace tea roses, cornflowers and everything in between!

purple_pink_floral_wedding-invitation_ananyacards.com-01.jpg

Teenager birthday celebration/coming of age

In many cultures, this is a serious event. For example, a 1st birthday in Asian cultures or a bar mitzvah/bat mitzvah in Jewish cultures. But it’s definitely a time for celebration and lots of fun. Invitations that are light hearted and embrace the jubilant nature of the party are a great idea. Think bold designs that embrace fun.

Intimate elopement (and ‘after party’)

I guess you might be asking yourself why an elopement needs stationery. Good question! Well, there is still the matter of witnesses and maybe you want to invite them to run away too? And when you come home to face the music you might just want to appease everyone by throwing a grand party to celebrate. Wouldn’t you agree?

Pearl anniversary

A pearl anniversary is perhaps less well known than silver, ruby or golden. But, at Ananya we love anything to do with pearls! We think it’s the perfect opportunity to embrace the precious pearl in your designs.

Who’s invited?

How many people you invite will influence cost and thus your theme, to a certain extent. The age range of your guests can also influence your choice of theme. An invite to a party to celebrate a child’s 1st birthday will be quite different to an invite to an elopement ‘after party’. Or at least you would like to hope so!

childrens-stationery-invitations-ananya-02.jpg
Photgraph by Holly Clark Photography

Photgraph by Holly Clark Photography

Colour me impressed…

Is there a colour or cultural theme to the day? For example, is it a golden wedding anniversary or a multicultural wedding? With Indian, Asian or multicultural weddings there may be restrictions on certain colours due to cultural requirements. For more information on this aspect take a look at Ananya’s article on Multicultural Wedding Stationery. http://secretweddingblog.com/multicultural-wedding-stationery-by-ananya-cards/

Most importantly, what’s your personal style? Are you flamboyant and colourful or more reserved but with a love of colour.  How will that influence your theme choice? Maybe you are more comfortable with a simple monochrome palette?

What do you need to include?

For a wedding you may need the whole range of stationery. This will likely include invites, RSVP cards, thank you cards, and an order of service, menu, place cards and seating plans; whereas for an informal garden party you may just want to limit things to an invite, RSVP, menu and place cards.

All this will influence your choice of stationery theme.

And finally:

Where will your design inspiration come from?

Is your event in an iconic space or building? Do you want design inspiration to come from your life and the key events that have brought you to where you are now? Or maybe you want it to reflect who you are, where you’re from and where you want to be. When Ananya celebrated its 10th Anniversary in 2016 we celebrated with diamonds! After all a 10th anniversary is something to really celebrate and diamonds are still a girl’s best friend, we’ll have you know!

We hope that you have fun choosing your theme and have a great celebration!

Love what you see on Ananya? Drop the team a line at info@ananyacards.com  and let’s talk about the design vision that you have for your event!

Vaishali x

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Launching the latest addition to our wedding range: The Mandala Love Collection

Ananya's alluring Mandala Love range featuring an eye-catching combination of intricate detail and rich, vibrant colours creates spectacular stationery to wow your wedding guests.

blue and gold mandala inspired wedding stationery

The word mandala literally means circle in the ancient Indian scripture, Sanskrit. It is a symbol of the universe derived from ancient Hindu and Buddhist culture. Mandalas represent harmony, peace and union, which is why they are perfectly suited to weddings - a joyful occasion when the ultimate union is formed.

The mandala pattern can be found in the natural world around us ­– in snowflakes, dandelions and sunflowers, spiders’ webs and the solar system itself; incorporating this iconic motif into your wedding day stationery, is a way of connecting with nature. The mandala motif is also found in Western architecture – most predominantly in stained glass windows.

The Mandala Love collection is at the forefront with the growing design trend for statement, geometric patterns. It bridges the gap between the old and the new, thereby appealing to both traditional and modern weddings. Whether you are a multicultural couple with a love for Asian design or you simply want a wedding invite that exudes charisma, the Mandala Love collection is the one for you.

pink gold lime mandala inspired wedding stationery suite

The stunning design in blue is hand printed using a silk screen, which is a process of great technical precision. Ananya’s skilled craftsmen print each emblem four times, layering the colours as they go. The mandalas must be perfectly aligned to prevent any overlap or gaps and keep a clean, crisp edge. By using silk screen printing, the Ananya team can ensure the work they produce is of optimum vibrancy – creating incredible stationery with prints that pop from the paper. The bold colours not only provide the promise of summer, but also the promise of a fun-filled, lively wedding day.

mint green save the date mandala inspired wedding stationery

Have you noticed any mandala patterns in nature? Which design from the collection is your favourite?

 

Ananya Reveals Wedding Stationery Trend Predictions for 2016

Set the scene for your special day with wedding stationery that is bang on trend. No matter your style preference, Ananya ensures there is a colour and style that is perfect for every couple. 

Meadow Botanicals

Meadow botanicals.jpg

Nature continues to be popular, but in 2016, it is all about wild flowers, meadows and the countryside. Floral themes have moved away from a uniformed style and take on a wilder and organic approach.

We will also see these floral themes combined with blurred water colour effects and bleached out petals. There’s something very gentle about soft focused imagery which works well with flowers in both bold colours or delicate hues. Just perfect for wedding stationery.

This theme is particularly effective with intricate illustrations and hand sketched imagery.The final result can resemble delicate filigree or a more rustic and raw finish.

As you would expect, shades of green will be popular when it comes to botanical themes. Green is a colour of nature, ecology, harmony, peace, growth, new life, and positive energy. In most western cultures green denotes luck. Green in wedding stationery can create a calming and restful mood with enough warmth to encourage a feeling of unity and togetherness among the guests.

Pink also works really well with green. Typically, pink represents universal love, romance, friendship, harmony and compassion. Pale pink emulates a gentle and loving vibe, while hot pink is bursting with energy and radiates more passion.

This trend would lend itself well to outdoor, rustic types of weddings. Imagine barns, gardens weddings and venues heavily inspired by nature.

Botanical theme in green; calming, fresh, new beginnings

Botanical theme in green; calming, fresh, new beginnings

Something Blue

In 2016 blue will be a increasingly favoured colour, and in particular, indigo. Indigo is a combination of deep blue and violet. It is said to represent dependability, trustworthiness and sincerity, and therefore makes an ideal colour for weddings and wedding stationery. Generally speaking, indigo is a cool and calming colour. In the chakra system (energy centres in the body), indigo represents the third eye for intuition and creativity.

Indigo is suitable for both men and women and is highly adaptable to one’s style preference to give interesting colour combinations and palettes.

  • Indigo and metallic silver or antique gold adds an extra sophistication and glamour.

  • Combine with white, yellow or green to create a fresh, crisp look.

  • Turquoise and grey work well with indigo and can brighten or mute your stationery.

  • Indigo and dark red are also a great combination; add sunshine yellow for those summer weddings.

  • Indigo and pink (pale or hot) create an energetic and warm ambiance.

  • Indigo, ruby and emerald can give a regal and luxurious look.

Paisley

Exotic and always in vogue, the paisley motif will be particularly on trend in 2016. The distinctive swirling pattern has a long and varied history, but its appeal is eternal.

It’s becoming popular for couples to adopt traditional patterns and motifs in their wedding and interpret them with a contemporary and personal twist. The paisley pattern is perfect for this and can be used for its traditional connotations or adapted and used in a more stylised, contemporary fashion. This is especially popular for multicultural weddings, where elements from both cultures can be seamlessly woven together in the wedding stationery.

The detail in the paisley design allows for a varied colour palette. It can be expressed in bright, vibrant colours to create a dramatic statement at a wedding. Tones of orange and yellow are on trend as positive and motivational colours and exude warmth and happiness. In particular, saffron is very popular (an auspicious colour in Hinduism) as well as toned down, earthier mustard colours.

Alternatively, soft and serene colours can convey both the joy and sanctity of the occasion. The paisley can be delicate, finely detailed or ornately swirly against a bold backdrop.

Regal tones of ruby and emerald, magenta and metallic also work well to convey opulence and grandeur through the ever-loved paisley.

Global Traveller

 

Destination weddings are on the rise and many couples are taking inspiration from their treasured travels for their wedding day. This trend presents the opportunity to combine colours and cultures. Wherever the couple would like to base their inspiration, this can be a great starting point for the wedding theme.

For the offbeat, bohemian or exotic bride, the promise of the East with its motifs, heritage prints, famed markets, intoxicating spices and boldly colourful tapestries is most alluring. Rich in inspiration, they are perfect for a gorgeous and opulent wedding when combined with intricate, vibrant, bold, jewel tones.

Moroccan palaces create the perfect silhouettes that can be emulated through wedding stationery. Inspiration from mosaics, tiles, traditional prints and patterns also presents and opportunity to combine bold and contrasting colours to evoke a rich atmosphere.

The colour purple is particularly popular in this trend. Purple has strong, historical associations with royalty, especially in sacred contexts. It is also the colour of magic, mystery and spirituality.

Geometric

For those who like to make a bold statement, the trend for geometric designs is a perfect fit. There are no rules when it comes to the design and colour combinations. Patterns can be as complicated, simple or ornate as you like. Be as bold as your personality.

From stripes and checks, to traditional mosaics and ethnic patterns, geometric stationery is the perfect way to set the scene for a contemporary wedding. Why not start with the shapes and try as many or as few colours as you like, to see how they alter the overall feel of the stationery. Soft pastels can emulate a dreamy fairy-tale wedding, while rich colours will create a more dramatic wedding day.

Geometric patterns are also great to use if your husband-to-be doesn’t want anything too flowery.

Foliage and Fruit

Vibrant tropical prints are on the rise and are great for a summer and exotic wedding. There has been an increased appeal for tropical flowers, lush foliage and orchids.

Even tropical fruit is expected to make an appearance in stationery as its popularity thrives in the fashion world. In particular, pineapple prints can be a fun way to have a tropical theme that suggests a far more relaxed and playful approach. Pineapples are also more than just a yummy fruit; they are also a symbol of hospitality and welcome - befitting a wedding theme.

Monochrome and Metallic

Black and Gold

Black and Gold


Rose Gold and Lace

Rose Gold and Lace

Monochrome stationery is a great way to convey elegance throughout a wedding. Black and white or black and champagne are very popular choices. Champagne is a lovely, elegant and sophisticated colour that has a slightly vintage feel. It works well with black and adds a warmer touch than white.

Other metallic colours are also popular throughout wedding stationery, in particular rose gold with its soft glow. Rose gold has definitely caught the imagination of the fashion world, and its popularity has encouraged its adoption into the world of wedding stationery. With its versatility, rose gold is equally stunning when combined with deep, rich colours such as claret, burgundy or even purple, as well as soft pastels such as peach, blush pink and grey. Rose gold is sure to continue to cast its spell in 2016.

Which of the trends above are you likely to follow? Do any of them represent your style and personality? We'd love to hear from you.

 

 

A Wedding Planning Guide For The Fridge Door

When you're planning your wedding, it's easy sometimes to feel rather overwhelmed by the whole thing. You might even be waking up in the night thinking "have I told the florist exactly which roses I want" or "did I book the photographer".

Okay, so you might have checklists galore, special apps on your phone and a long-suffering chief bridesmaid/best friend/mother to let off steam to.

The thing is, you're probably doing just fine. And it's important that you enjoy the build-up to your wedding because it's actually a very special time. You've a wonderful day ahead to look forward to, you've found the person you want to spend the rest of your life with ... so don't spoil it by getting over-stressed.

That also means not taking on too much. For example, you may be dreaming of having a DIY wedding and planning to make wedding favours, cakes, decorations yourself. This isn't a great idea because you'll almost certainly underestimate the amount of time all this is going to take you. So work out what is genuinely do-able and outsource the rest.

If you really feel the need for a visual checklist, then we've created these handy two visuals which you can print out and stick on your fridge door so that you can assure yourself you're doing all the right things by the right time.

planning_your_wedding_infographic_ananyacards.com

Look at it month by month and know that you're keeping up with everything (or there are a few things you still need to be thinking about).

wedding planning chart

For example, you don't really need to have sorted out a florist until about 9 months before the wedding - although if you're choosing one who is particularly popular it's best to sign them up as soon as possible.

Interestingly, one of the most important things to get sorted early isn't choosing your wedding dress, booking your venue or asking your friends to be your bridesmaids. It's actually setting a budget for your wedding day. It's key because it's actually going to affect many aspects of your big day - the sort of venue you can afford, whether you have a wedding breakfast and a dinner, how many guests you have, what wine you serve and of course, what you wear. So set a realistic wedding budget between the two of you and stick to it - you don't want to start off married life in debt.

Get everything sorted calmly and coolly before your big day and you'll see that on the day before your wedding you can actually have a bit of a relax. Help to decorate the venue and enjoy some beauty treatments (a mani-pedi - but don't have a facial the day before your wedding in case of breakouts).

We'd love to help you with your wedding stationery so if there is anything special you have in mind do get in touch.

In the meantime, cut out these two handy wedding planning guides and pin them to your noticeboard or fridge door!

 

Wedding DIY: Downloadable Bunting

Pack A Punch With Buntings; We Show You How Perfect for setting the scene at a wedding, buntings have become hugely popular as a way to add that all important personalised element. With a diverse range of uses and materials from which to craft buntings, you can use them to tell a story, display a symbolic message, or have the bride and groom’s names, as we show you how.

A big display of buntings will look dramatic in a large space, while small ones can stand on guest tables, and even on top of the wedding cake! Easy to put up, they can even be used as decoration for the bridal room. With the incredible choice of colours, fonts, textures and materials available, the possibilities are truly endless!

We at Ananya are all about personalising wedding stationery and below we show you how to create ‘bride’ and ‘groom’ buntings using our template. It’s fun and easy to do, and should get your creative juices flowing to add your own unique touch and flair!

Each bunting template is A5 in size and so there are two templates per A4 piece of paper.

free downloadable wedding bunting for outdoors summer wedding
free downloadable wedding bunting for outdoors summer wedding
free downloadable yellow wedding bunting for outdoors summer wedding
free downloadable yellow wedding bunting for outdoors summer wedding
free downloadable wedding bunting for outdoors summer wedding
free downloadable wedding bunting for outdoors summer wedding
free downloadable grey wedding bunting for outdoors summer wedding
free downloadable grey wedding bunting for outdoors summer wedding

- Download the templates and print on white cardstock. - Cut around the templates. - Using a hole punch, punch 2 holes along each corner of the top of the bunting templates (where instructed). - Using a long piece of string, thread through each bunting template, adding knots after each hole as you go along to keep each of the templates in place. - Carry on doing this until you have a sufficient length of bunting.

Please click on the links below to download your wedding bunting PDFs.

'Bride' bunting in green

'Groom' bunting in yellow

'Bride' bunting in pink

'Groom' bunting in grey

Enjoy! Please do send us some photographs of how you have used the bunting...we would love to see them!

Wedding Stationery Trends for 2013

2013 has arrived and with it, come the dreams and aspirations of every bride to have her perfect wedding. So what are the trends for 2013 that will help her create the wedding of her dreams and also one that is a la mode? Below are our thoughts... Glitz, Glamour and the Great Gatsby

Great Gatsby green and black wedding invitation
Great Gatsby green and black wedding invitation
Great Gatsby cream and gold wedding invitation
Great Gatsby cream and gold wedding invitation

With the much-anticipated movie the Great Gatsby finally being launched later this year, the 1920’s fashion has already begun to make an appearance. Translating this retro style into stationery will mean soft and shimmery backgrounds, dreamy and lace-textured looks and floral motifs - all heavily encrusted with crystals. Designs can also be bold and geometric and attention grabbing. Quite simply, a feast for the eyes!

Ombré: Shaded, Faded, Gradient

Ombre shaded wedding invitation
Ombre shaded wedding invitation
Ombré shaded green and brown wedding invitation
Ombré shaded green and brown wedding invitation

The shaded or Ombré look has definitely caught on, and will continue to be favoured in 2013. The dipped and dyed effect gives the look of colour graduations from dark to light. Often based on a monochromatic colour scheme, three different complementary colours can also be combined. The Ombré look has pervaded clothes, fashion accessories and even cosmetics and will be seen in stationery with dramatic effect.

East Meets West

Bespoke paisley lotus wedding invitation
Bespoke paisley lotus wedding invitation
Bandhani Bliss India inspired wedding invitation
Bandhani Bliss India inspired wedding invitation

The enduring allure of India and the East is such that time and again, top fashion and beauty houses such as Chanel and Boucheron have been drawn to its multi-faceted heritage for inspiration. This fascination with the East will continue to play an important part in 2013 because of its undying appeal.

Couples are not shying away from choosing strong, dramatic gemstone colours that are rich and exotic, and tones that spell opulence. The designs create a modern interpretation of traditional images and symbols, skilfully harmonising the East and West. Studded with crystal embellishments, they are Bollywood come alive!

Making a Personal Statement

Monogrammed crystal cake topper
Monogrammed crystal cake topper

Couples will want the stationery to be an expression of who they are. Whether adopting the latest on trend colour or other popular themes, they will want those themes to be intertwined with splashes of their own choosing – wanting the wedding invite to create the right tone – their tone.

Monograms will continue to be highly favoured as a way to express who we are and what we stand for as well as aspects that embrace our cultural heritage. They can also be adapted for use in a variety of ways to suit one’s needs. Monograms can become a work of art when embellished with crystals, adding that special exotic sparkle and shimmer.  It’s no wonder that such gorgeous invitations often become a keepsake – a fabulous souvenir to look back on with pride.

Cool Colour Hot Trend

Mint Modern wedding invitation
Mint Modern wedding invitation
Exotic Emerald wedding invitation by Ananya
Exotic Emerald wedding invitation by Ananya

The soft and soothing colour of mint looks all set to become a hot trend in 2013. After the fiery, passionate, colour palette of 2012’s Tangerine Tango, the cool, crisp and fresh tones of mint will be most refreshing. Emerald, Pantone's Colour for 2013, will also be a very popular choice. Cool and serene or majestic and mesmerising, Emerald can be used as an accent colour to add that all important sparkle or as a predominant colour, as deep and vibrant as the Amazon jungle. The main colour can be carried through the entire suite of stationery with variations on tones.

Fantasy and Fairy Tale

Pink butterfly wedding invitation
Pink butterfly wedding invitation

Given the uncertain and volatile nature of the events of 2012, weddings in 2013 will be a great excuse to escape from the concerns of everyday living. The stationery will reflect a fantasy world full of magic and beauty. Soft colours, birds and butterflies, layering of designs and a touch of sparkle will create romantic and captivating stationery.

Classic and Always in Fashion

Classic monochrome wedding invitation
Classic monochrome wedding invitation

For those of us who like simple and understated chic, the classic look will always be in style - a relaxed feel with timeless designs and quiet luxury that speaks volumes. Soft colours, monochromes, monograms, minimal fuss and beautiful.

What are your favourite trends for 2013? We'd love you to share your ideas with us.

Credits: All invitation designs by Ananya

Pretty In Paisley

The paisley pattern, known as mankolam in India, or mango pattern, stands out as one of the most easily recognisable motifs in the world. It was created in the 1500s in Persia (now known as Iran) and used to decorate royal regalia. The intricate tear shaped pattern made its way to Europe thanks to the East India Trading Company as they imported products from India. The design gained its English name from the town of Paisley, Scotland, where, in the 1800s, weavers became the primary producers of paisley patterned shawls. In the 1960s and 70s paisley made a comeback as it represented the Bohemian culture of the time. John Lennon even had his Rolls Royce custom painted in a paisley pattern!

Once again, paisley has come roaring back into fashion, with many of the major fashion designers showcasing an array of paisley themed pieces in their autumn/winter collections, such as in the Etro ready to wear collection. Paisley is set to continue through spring and summer, with many designers gaining their inspiration from the 70s, creating whimsical, bohemian inspired pieces. Anna Sui’s spring collection included multicoloured paisley patterned dresses and leggings, while Emilio Pucci has mixed paisley prints with beautiful psychedelic colours and chiffon materials to create light, floaty dresses perfect for the summer.

Pretty In Paisley
Pretty In Paisley

Paisley really is a very versatile design, so it is no surprise that it has lent brilliantly to many of the bespoke wedding stationery we create at ananya. We have found that the paisley motif is not only an elegant and vintage design but that it is also rich in spiritual significance. In Indian culture, the paisley signifies the time of harvest and prosperity. In Oriental traditions, the two paisleys represent the yin-yang symbol, a sign of equilibrium and balance. The flow of the two polar energies, Yin (Female) and Yang (Male), seek balance in the natural flow of the universe, constantly replacing each other and eventually, becoming each other. The paisley thus makes a wonderful motif to symbolise the union of two individuals in a marriage!

Until next time...Namaste and enjoy ananya life!