Let me start this off by saying that I LOVE invitations. I love making them, I love sending them, and I especially love getting them! :) Many people don't give very much thought to invitations; they view them merely as a means of communication. Basically, they're just a way to tell guests what's going on and when and where to go. But I believe that a beautiful, meaningful invitation can convey so much MORE to your guests. Think of an invitation as a first impression. The type of invitation you send is the first impression that your guests will have of your event. A good quality, hand-assembled invitation conveys the message that you care deeply about the event and that it is very important to you. It's the type of invitation that your guests display proudly on their refrigerator during the weeks leading up to the party, rather than writing down the information and immediately tossing into the trash. It's the type of invitation that your guests will be flattered to receive. And for you, the sender, it's the type of invitation that will serve as a wonderful memory of this special event. It's the type of invitation that will be saved in a scrapbook or photo album for years to come, along with photos of the guest of honor celebrating his or her special day.
Of course, the type of party you're hosting will influence the look and style of your invitation. An invitation to a child's birthday party is likely to be brightly colored, fun, and festive, while an invitation to a baptism or retirement party is usually more elegant and sophisticated. However, even an invitation to a party with a SpongeBob SquarePants theme can be worth keeping, if it's well-crafted and attractively designed! (This may have to be my next challenge - ha, ha!) Regardless of the theme, a personalized, quality invitation implies the message that this is an important event, and that your guests' attendance is important to you. And isn't that the message you'd like to send?