Inspriation

Corinna & Matt's Wedding

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This past year I worked on designing wedding invitations and stationery for a winter wedding that took place in Stowe, Vermont. Corinna's love of reading the Old English classics such as Charles Dickens and her love of Christmas were two themes that would easily gel together. Corinna and Matt went all out in preparing for their big day. From having their dog Pericles as the ring bearer, a scavenger hunt after the ceremony to reindeers by the festive fireside patio these guys made sure their wedding was going to be remarkable and fun!

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We designed a slew of stationery for Corinna and Matt. Starting with beautiful save the dates magnets as seen in our last blog post. Corinna & Matt's invitations were elaborate and detailed geared with the perfect amount of information for their guest including map and event's card.

The design process for the invitations reflected an Old English vibe starting with fonts and style. We then brought in great colourful vintage Christmas illustrations. The search for these illustrations were so fun, we even managed to find these cute Christmas bunny illustrations which fulfilled Corinna's love for rabbits.

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Save the Dates!

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If you're getting married this year or next you might want to start thinking about your wedding invitations. But foremost you may also want to consider getting save the date cards mailed out. These don't have to be too elaborate if you don't want them to be. They can be simple with maybe a few of your own personal custom twists.

Save the dates will simply tell all of your family and friends to book the date for your big day. That way if other events pop up at their end your wedding date will be saved in their books!

Last spring I met with Corinna and Matt to discuss their big day. Corinna was very much into the ideas of getting magnets custom designed for her save the dates. We soon established that we needed to stay away from the cheesy promo fridge magnet companies. Corinna's musts for the magnets were a larger size and good quality. We chose to work closely with New and Blue and developed great looking sparkly magnets. The design included a lovely photo of Corinna and Matt showing off the picturesque mountains of Stowe, Vermont where the wedding took place.

Please stay tuned to view Corinna and Matt's wedding coming up in our next blog post!

Hot Colours of 2018

We are soon coming to another year's end with memories of many beautiful weddings for 2017. When December rolls around I'm always keen to find out what new colours fresh crop of colours  will  be for the upcoming year. 

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About the 2018 Colour Palette: “The colour palette showcases an appreciation for the complexity and distinctiveness of colour and the expression of it, which is something that evolves and can be played with. Consumers need more variety, and this expanded palette embraces the lack of gender and seasonal borders we are seeing within the wedding industry.

Meadowlark
The bold and lively Meadowlark, a confident and outgoing bright yellow shade highlights the spring 2018 season, glistening with joy and illuminating the world around us.

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Cherry Tomato
Impulsive Cherry Tomato is a tempestuous orangey red that exudes heat and energy. Demanding attention, this courageous, never to be ignored shade is viscerally alive.

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Little Boy Blue
With the expectation of the clear blue sky, Little Boy Blue is no longer for little boys only. Suggestive of expansiveness and continuity, this azure blue shade reassures us with its promise of a new day.

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Chili Oil

Seasoned yet season-less, Chili Oil is an earthy brown based red that adds flavorful definition to the spring 2018 palette.

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Pink Lavender
Pink Lavender is a soft and romantic violet rose that charms with its soothing sense of quiescence.

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Blooming Dahlia
With its seemingly suggestive scent, the subtly alluring Blooming Dahlia beckons us with its understated appeal.

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Arcadia
Hinting at retro yet at the same time modern, Arcadia is a cooler, cleaner take on green; its tinge of blue undertone takes us into a new direction for the spring 2018 season.

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Ultra Violet
Conveying originality and ingenuity, the magical Ultra Violet is a distinctive and complex purple shade that fascinates and intrigues.

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Emperador
The rich chocolate infused brown Emperador adds strength and substance to the spring 2018 palette.

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Almost Mauve
With its gentle petal like touch, delicate and ephemeral. Almost Mauve adds a sense of nostalgia to the spring 2018 palette.

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Spring Crocus
Witty and expressive, Spring Crocus is a flamboyant and tantalizing fuchsia shade that summons you in with its beguiling charm.

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Lime Punch
Sharp and pungent, Lime Punch hits a chord with its strident and striking citrus like presence in the spring 2018 color palette.

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The Classics of 2018: Everyone relates to classic colours. These are usually known as neutrals, timeless and tasteful. These often time play a critical role in many weddings.

Sailor Blue
The navy like Sailor Blue anchors the palette.

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Harbor Mist
A mid-tone dove gray, Harbor Mist solidifies the spring 2018 palette.

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Warm Sand
Warm Sand is a comforting neutral shade that effortlessly connects the seasons.

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Coconut Milk
Coconut Milk represents the classic mainstay of a white and/or off-white for the spring 2018 season.

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Platon: Photography

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From the series Abstract the Art of Design Platon Antoniou photographer. Born in London in 1968, Platon was raised in the Greek Isles until his family returned to England in the 1970's. He attended St. Martin's School of Art and after receiving his BA with honours in Graphic Design, went on to receive an MA in Photography and Fine Art at the Royal College of Art.

After working for British Vogue for several years, he was invited to NY to work for the late John Kennedy Jr. and his political magazine, 'George'. After shooting portraits for a range of international publications including Rolling Stone, the New York Times Magazine, Vanity Fair, Esquire, GQ and the Sunday Times Magazine, Platon developed a special relationship with Time magazine, producing over 20 covers. In 2007 Platon photographed Russian Premier Vladimir Putin for Time Magazine's Person Of The Year Cover. This image was awarded 1st prize at the World Press Photo Contest. In 2008 he signed a multi-year contract with the New Yorker.

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As the staff photographer, he has produced a series of large-scale photo essays, two of which won ASME Awards in 2009 and 2010. Platon's New Yorker portfolios have focused on many themes including President Obama's Inauguration, the U.S Military, portraits of world leaders and the Civil Rights Movement. The following year, Platon teamed up with the Human Rights Watch to help them celebrate those who fight for equality and justice in countries suppressed by political forces. These projects have highlighted human rights defenders from Burma as well as the leaders of the Egyptian revolution.

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Following his coverage of Burma, Platon photographed Aung San Suu Kyi for the cover of Time days after her release from house arrest. In 2011, Platon was honoured with a prestigious Peabody Award for a collaboration on the topic of Russia's Civil Society with The New Yorker Magazine and Human Rights Watch.

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Platon's first monograph 'Platon's Republic', was published in 2004 by Phaidon Press. To coincide with its publication, the work was exhibited internationally, in London at the ex-Saatchi Gallery as well as the Milk Gallery in New York. His second book, 'Power' - a collection of portraits of over 100 world leaders - was published in 2011 by Chronicle and following its success was selected by Apple to be released as an app. The book includes portraits of Barack Obama, Mahmoud Ahmedinejad, Dmitry Medvedev, Benjamin Netanyahu, Hugo Chavez, Mahmoud Abbas, Tony Blair, Robert Mugabe, Silvio Berlusconi, and Muammar Qaddafi. In recent years, public speaking has progressively played a major role in Platon's career as communicator and storyteller. He has been invited to be a keynote speaker at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Yale, the London School of Economics, the National Portrait Gallery in London and the International Center of Photography in NY. He has also appeared on a range of television media including Charlie Rose (PBS), Morning Joe (MSNBC), Fareed Zakaria's GPS (CNN) and the BBC World News. Between 2011-2013, Platon's work has been exhibited in galleries both domestically and abroad. He has exhibited in New York at the Matthew Marks Gallery and the Howard Greenberg Gallery, as well as internationally at the Colette Gallery in Paris, France. The New York Historical Society also exhibited a solo show of Platon's Civil Rights photographs, which remain as part of the museum's permanent collection. Other permanent collections holding Platon's photography include The Florida Museum of Photographic Arts in Tampa, Florida and The Westlicht Museum for Photography in Vienna, Austria. Platon's advertising credits include the United Nations Foundation, Credit Suisse Bank, Exxon Mobil, Diesel, the Wall Street Journal, Motorola, Nike, Converse, Verizon, Vittel, Levi's, IBM, Rolex, Ray-Ban, Tanqueray, Kenneth Cole, Issey Miyake, Moschino, Timex and Bertelsmann among others.

Platon lives in New York with his wife, daughter and son.

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Christoph Niemann - Illustrator

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Christoph Niemann is an illustrator, graphic designer and author. This past year I recently came across him watching "Abstarct the Art of Design" on Netflix. I fell in love with his work and clever ways to illustrate the world around us.

After his studies at the Stuttgart Academy of Fine Arts in Germany he moved to New York City in 1997. His work has appeared on the covers of The New YorkerTimeWiredThe New York Times Magazine and American Illustration, and has won awards from AIGA, the Art Directors Club and The Lead Awards.

Niemann’s corporate clients include Google, Amtrak and the Museum of Modern Art. He is a member of the Alliance Graphique Internationale.

Since July 2008 Niemann has been writing and illustrating the whimsical Abstract City, a New York Times blog, renamed Abstract Sunday in 2011, when the blog’s home became The New York Times Magazine.

For his column he draws and writes essays about politics, the economy, art and modern life. He has drawn live from the Venice Art Biennale, the Olympic Games in London, the 2012 Republican Convention and he has drawn the New York City Marathon - while actually running it. Niemann is the author of many books, most recently Abstract City. In 2010 he was inducted into the Art Directors Club Hall Of Fame.

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Carte Blanche Design - Wedding Invitations Toronto

Paula Scher

I recently watched "Abstract The Art of Design" on Netflix. I fell in love with all of the 8 designers from the series. Paula Scher was especially inspiring... here's her story as one of the top graphic designers world wide.

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Paula Scher moved to New York City and took her first job as a layout artist for Random House's children's book division. 

CBS Records
In 1972, she was hired by CBS Records to the advertising and promotions department. After two years, she left CBS Records to pursue a more creative endeavor at a competing label, Atlantic Records, where she became the art director, designing her first album covers. A year later Scher returned to CBS as an art director for the cover department. During her eight years at CBS Records, she is credited with designing as many as 150 album covers a year. Some of those iconic album cover designs are Boston (Boston), Eric Gale (Ginseng Woman), Leonard Bernstein (Poulenc Stranvinsky), Bob James (H), Bob James and Earl Klugh (One on One), Roger Dean and David Howells (The Ultimate Album Cover Album) and Jean-Pierre Rampal and Lily Laskin (Sakura: Japanese Melodies for Flute and Harp). In addition her designs were recognized with four Grammy nominations. She is also credited with reviving historical typefaces and design styles.

Russian Constructivism
She left CBS to work on her own in 1982. Scher developed a typographic solution based on Art deco and Russian constructivism, which incorporated outmoded typefaces into her work. The Russian constructivism had provided Scher inspiration for her typography; she didn’t copy the early constructivist style but used its vocabulary of form on her works.

Koppel & Scher
In 1984 she co-founded Koppel & Scher with editorial designer and fellow Tyler graduate Terry Koppel. During the six years of their partnership, she produced identities, packaging, book jackets, and advertising, including the famous Swatch poster based on previous work by Swiss designer Herbert Matter.

Pentagram
In 1991, after the studio suffered from the recession and Koppel took the position of Creative Director at Esquire magazine, Scher began consulting and joined Pentagram as a partner in the New York office. Since then, she has been a principal at the New York office of the Pentagram design consultancy.

Educator
In 1992, she became a design educator, teaching at the School of Visual Arts (SVA) in New York. She received more than 300 awards from international design associations as well as a series of prizes from the American Institute of Graphic Design (AIGA), The Type Directors Club (NY), New York Art Directors Club and the Package Design Council. She is a select member of Alliance Graphique Internationale (AGI) and her work is included in the collections of New York MoMA, the Library of Congress in Washington, DC, the Museum für Gestaltung, Zurich and the Centre Georges Pompidou". As an artist she is known for her large-scale paintings of maps, covered with dense hand-painted labeling and information. She has taught at the School of Visual Arts in New York for over two decades, along with positions at the Cooper Union, Yale University and the Tyler School of Art.

Print
Paula Scher has contributed to numerous issues of Print. Her first Print cover was with her friend Steven Heller. Together they created a parody issue in 1985, a genealogy chart of graphic design.

Branding & Identities Systems
In 1994, Paula Scher was the first designer to create a new identity and promotional graphics system for The Public Theater, a program that become the turning point of identity in designs that influence much of the graphic design created for theatrical promotion and for cultural institutions in general.

Based on the challenge to raise public awareness and attendance at the Public Theater along with trying to appeal to a more diverse crowd, Scher created a graphic language that reflected street typography and graffiti-like juxtapostion. In 1995, Paula Scher and her Pentagram team created promotional campaigns for The Public Theater’s production of Savion Glover’s Bring in’Da Noise, Bring in ‘Da Funk that featured the wood typefaces used throughout The Public Theater’s identity. Scher was inspired by Rob Ray Kelly’s American Wood Types and the Victorian theater's poster when she created the cacophony of disparate wood typefaces, silhouetted photographs and bright flat colours for the theater's posters and billboard. Scher limited her colours to two or three while highlighted the play’s title and theater logo that surrounded the tap artist in a typographical be-bop. The design was to appeal to a broad audience from the inner cities to the outer boroughs, especially those who hadn’t been attracted to theater.

From 1993 to 2005, Scher worked closely with George C. Wolfe, The Public’s producer and Oskar Eustis, who joined as artistic director during the fiftieth anniversary in 2005, on the development of posters, ads, and distinct identities. As part of the anniversary campaign, the identity was redrawn using the font Akzidenz Grotesk. The word “theater” was dropped and emphasis was placed on the word “public”. By 2008, the identity was even more definitive as it used a knockout font called Hoefler & Frere-Jones which provided affordable and accessible productions.

New York Shakespeare Festival in Central Park
In 1994, Scher has created the first poster campaign for the New York Shakespeare Festival in Central Park production of The Merry Wives of Windsor and Two Gentlemen of Verona, and was borrowed from the tradition of old-fashioned English theater style. This laid the foundation for the new overall identity and visual language that came to define the Public Theater for the rest of the decade and beyond. The designs for the Shakespeare in the Park campaign went all across New York, like the buses, subways, kiosks, and billboards.

Scher’s Shakespeare in the Park campaign had become a seasonal tradition in the city. The identity has progressed over the years which redesigned The Public Theater logo in 2005 and 2008. The campaign in 2008 for the productions of Hamlet and Hair, utilizes the strict 90 degree angles of a De Stiji-inspired grid, a pattern in Manhattan’s streetscape. The identity is like New York itself, constantly evolving.

In 2010, Scher designed the New York Shakespeare Festival in Central Park poster has presented powerful productions of The Winter’s Tale and The Merchant of Venice, starring Al Pacino as Shylock. Scher’s festival promotional campaign focuses on the reminiscent language in both plays by pulling lines from each production to meet in a dimensional expressive of words and typography. This campaign was award for Print Regional Design Annual 2011.

The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA)
The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) is one of the most recognizable logotype in the museum world. In 1964, the Franklin Gothic No.2 logotype was originally designed by Ivan Chermayeff. By 2004, Matthew Carter redrawn a new custom typeface named MoMA Gothic. Although MoMA core identity is well developed iconic museum but the applications like the web, print, and physical environment has not been unified or visionary like the museum itself. In order to continually carry the spirit of the institution, the museum hired Pentagram to design a more powerful and integrated comprehensive system.

To create a new approach that modernizes the institution’s image, Paula Scher designed a complete methodology for the new system to work at any scale, from an exterior banner to a print advertisement in the newspaper. Scher designed a strong grid to uniform placement of images and types. The artwork is being cropped to maximize visual and each quadrant of a page or a banner has specific function. A particular image is selected as the signature focus for an exhibit and list of upcoming events unrelated to the featured into a text block. The black on white logotype placed at vertically position whenever is possible and always bleeds off an edge. Julia Hoffman, MoMA’s creative Director for Graphic and Advertising and her internal team have used the new system and brought the system to life in applications from larger banners and subways poster to the website.

The Metropolitan Opera
Paula Scher and Julia Hoffman has designed the new identity for The Metropolitan Opera. The Metropolitan general manager, Peter Gelb proposed to rebrand the institution and reach a wide audiences like the younger generation that never set foot inside the opera hall. The identity is set in Baskerville and Avenir and the campaign features performance of “Madama Butterfly”. The print ad campaign launched on August 20, 2006 and according to Thomas Michel, the Metropolitan’s marketing director, it was a successful sales day in the history of the organization.

New York City Ballet
Paula Scher has designed a new identity and promotional campaign for the New York City Ballet, one of the largest and well-known dance company founded in 1933 by Lincoln Kirstein and George Balanchine. Scher designed with Lisa Kitchenberg of Pentagram and the NYCB’s Luis Bravo, to create an identity that links the company’s legacy and location to a modern and dramatic new aesthetic. The logo is set in the font DIN that appears slightly stacked on each layer. The palette is composed of black, white and silvery grays, in the way it resemble to the buildings of New York appear sometimes. It has a softened transparency and a subtle gradation of colour that will include shades of blue blacks, green blacks and red blacks. Scher also cropped the images of City Ballet dancers to create more tension and drama. The new identity and graphics appeared on bus shelter, subway poster, magazines and newspapers ads, in the company’s programs and website, and in environmental graphics at the New York State Theater at Lincoln Center where the company performs.

Environmental Graphic Designs
In 2001, Paula Scher created an interior design for the New Jersey Performing Arts Center. In the design, there are words running along the walls; tubes and balconies reflecting with vast letters that gives a joyfully effect to represent the shows performance in the building.  It was signature and environmental graphics for the Lucent Technologies Center for Arts Education, a school affiliated with NJPAC.

Achievement First Endeavor Middle School
For the Achievement First Endeavor Middle School at Clinton Hill, Brooklyn, a charter school for grades 5 through 8, Paula Scher has created a program of environmental graphic that helps school interiors to become a better learning environment. She created vibrant space with bold typography font of Rockwell and simple paint to change the life of its students. With the help Rogers Marvel Architects, who designed the school as a refurbishment and expansion of existing building. The design was based on Endeavor’s teaching philosophy and series of motivational slogans used by its teachers. Scher has enlarged these concepts into super-graphics that help define the interior spaces. The graphics appear as an equations form (“Education = Choice”, “Education = Freedom”) in the hallways and quotations running around the wall of gymnasium and staircase which encouraging student to do better and create a unique environment of their own.

Microsoft
Scher designed a new logo for Windows 8 and also the logo of Office 2010.

Maya Stendhal, The Maps
In 2006, an exhibition at Maya Stendhal gallery in New York City, Paula Scher painted two 9-by-12-foot maps that resembled patchwork quilts from afar, but contain much textual detail. She created lines that represented the separation of political allies or borders dividing enemies. Scher created the maps into layers that reference what we think when we think of Japan, Kenya, or the Upper East Side.

For instance, The United States (1999) was painted in blocky white print and full with list of facts that comprehend when we think about cities. Africa (2003) represented in a stark black and white palette, hinting at a tortured colonial past. The land of the red rising sun represented when we think of Japan (2004).

This was Scher's first solo exhibition as a fine artist and sold every piece between $40,000 to $135,000. The Maya Stendhal's owner decided to extend the exhibition for four weeks, until January 21. Therefore Scher decided to produce silk-screened prints of 'The World' that contained large-scale images of cities, states, and continents blanketed with place names and other information. It's full of mistakes and misspellings and visual allusions to stereotypes of places such as South American, painted with hot colours and has two ovaries on the sides. It was not created to be a reliable map but convey a sense of the places that are mediated and mangled.

NYC Transit & Manhattan
In 2007, Paula Scher had created screen-prints of NYC Transit and Manhattan that is printed on hand-made deluxe Lana Quarelle paper. NYC Transit portrays the island of Manhattan as a busy destination crisscrossed by a subway system of loopy, colour-coded lines and stations. It also shows the Manhattan night famed neighborhoods.

Limited Edition Print Map
In 2008, Maya Stendhal released a limited edition print map of China and renowned artist Paula Scher. The map is 48.5 x 40 inches, printed on deluxe Lanaquarelle paper, hand-made in the Vosges region of France. Scher collaborated with Alexander Heinrici to convey the hand-painted map to represent the rapid economic growth, booming industry, the success of Olympic bid, and superpower status on China.

Personal life
In January 1970, Paula Scher first met Seymour Chwast when she was a senior at the Tyler School of Art. They met each other through an interview at Pushpin, arranged by an art director named Harris Lewine, where she took her portfolio to him. In 1973, she and Chwast married, and divorced five years later. They remarried in 1989.

Awards
Art Directors Club Hall of Fame 1998, Chrysler Award for Innovation in Design 2000, AIGA Medal 2001, National Design Award (Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian) 2013 Honorary Doctorates from Corcoran School of Art, Maryland Institute of Art and Moore college of Art.

Awards for graphic design; American Book Award nominations for best book design, and for best compilation of written and graphic material, both 1981, both for The Honeymoon Book: A Tribute to the Last Ritual of Sexual Innocence.

The School of Visual Arts grants a Master Series Award, showcase of Make It Bigger
Awards: Print's Regional Design Annual 2011 for Shakespeare in the Park 2010 campaign, Map Murals for Queens Metropolitan Campus, and Environmental Graphic for Parking Garage at 13-17 East 54th Street.

And finally I'm including a series of logos Paula designed as well as a few other famous pieces you may recognize.

5 Influential Patterns for Wedding Invitations

Depending on what I'm working on I often find adding a pattern or two to my custom invitations personalizes and finesses the overall look of each package. I love mixing organic and symmetrical patterns together as it creates a great contrast. I recently did a search for new and interesting patterns for 2017 and I was happy to find new innovative patterns. I'm personally finding those trendy water colours and certain painted florals are started to look dated. The patterns below I find are fresher and different then what's out there. Have a look it may influence you to add something similar throughout your wedding invitations and stationery design.

Meadow

Great combination of wild floral mixing, botanical studies, minute flowers, floral bouquets and romantic styling. 

 

Jungle 

Beautiful trendy seamless  jungle patterns. Colourful  tropics, palm leaves, plants, hibiscus in bouquet and exotic print.

Tibetan

From Tibetan rugs and fabric, large variety of patterns and symbols. Iconographic design patterns and rules, weaves, florals, elements of nature and strong geometrics.

Geometric

Balancing colours, prints, and textures in a seamless manner. The bold pattern creating a minimal unique modern look. 

Vintage Outlines

Often seen in wallpapers and clothing from the 60's. This pattern brings back the past with funk. The outline creates a bolder pattern with definition. 

Discover more at Pattern Bank a website featuring hundreds great pattern of all styles and colours.

Cake and Lace Feature

Carte Blanche worked with a team of Toronto vendors this past winter on a style shoot titled "White and Greenery Classic". The shoot made it into the fabulous Cake and Lace - how exciting! A romantic indoor winter shoot with greenery, soft tones and hints of luxe gold. Please see more about vendors involved below.

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Cake and Lace January 26, 2017 feature:
White and Greenery Classic

List of talented vendors involved:
Coordination & Planning
Lindsay Plank Events

Table Decor & Decor Creative Direction
Tableauscapes Coordination & Planning

Cake Design
Cocabella Cake Studio

Floral Design
Mint and Magnolia Floral Design

Hairstylist
Dylan Dias

Makeup Artist
Amy Pigeon

Photography
Verveine Studios

Dress Designer
Catherine Langlois

Jewelry Designer
Laurajaynebride

Stylist
Ashley Galang

Model
Vasy Corestone Models Inc. 

 

 

 

Hot Colours of 2017

The collection this year is quite a vibrant one but has been cleverly mixed with some more relaxing colour that give designers and stylists a great range of colours to choose from. 

Primrose Yellow
y contrast, Primrose Yellow sparkles with heat and vitality. Inviting us into its instant warmth, this joyful yellow shade takes us to a destination marked by enthusiasm, good cheer and sunny days.

Pale Dogwood
ontinuing the tranquil mood, Pale Dogwood is a quiet and peaceful pink shade that engenders an aura of innocence and purity. The unobtrusive Pale Dogwood is a subtle pink whose soft touch infuses a healthy glow.

Hazelnut
Rounding out the spring 2017 colors is Hazelnut, a key neutral for spring. This shade brings to mind a natural earthiness. Unpretentious and with an inherent warmth, Hazelnut is a transitional color that effortlessly connects the seasons.

Island Paradise
Island Paradise is a refreshing aqua that calls to mind a change of scenery. A cool blue green shade that speaks to our dream of the great escape, Island Paradise is emblematic of tropical settings and our desire to unwind.

Greenery
Bringing forth a refreshing take, Greenery is a tangy yellow-green that speaks to our need to explore, experiment and reinvent. Illustrative of flourishing foliage, the fertile attributes of Greenery signals one to take a deep breath, oxygenate and reinvigorate.

Flame
A red-based orange, Flame, is gregarious and fun loving. Flamboyant and vivacious, this wonderfully theatrical shade adds fiery heat to the spring 2017 palette.

Pink Yarrow
Tropical and festive, Pink Yarrow is a whimsical, unignorable hue that tempts and tantalizes. Bold, attention getting and tempestuous, the lively Pink Yarrow is a captivating and stimulating color that lifts spirits and gets the adrenaline going.

Niagara
Comfortable and dependable, Niagara leads the PANTONE Fashion Color Report as the most prevalent color for spring 2017. Niagara is a classic denim-like blue that speaks to our desire for ease and relaxation.

Kale
Evocative of the great outdoors and a healthy lifestyle, Kale is another foliage-based green that conjures up our desire to connect to nature, similar to the more vivacious Greenery. And, just as we see in nature, this lush and fertile natural green shade provides the perfect complementary background to the more vibrant tones in the palette.

Lapis Blue
Conveying even more energy is Lapis Blue. Strong and confident, this intense blue shade is imbued with an inner radiance.

 

Carte Blanche Design ~ Wedding Invitations Toronto

Winter Weddings

Winter if here and I thought I'd feature ideas for great looking winter weddings. Winter wedding can be unique as they have a certain peacefulness and elegance about getting married in the winter. 

The following photos feature a winter blue palette. Sophisticated and elegant these colours will keep your wedding cool calm and collective. For the bride who wants to add a little colour to her winter wedding.

Golds will create a warm romantic setting. Sparkles and metallics will take this neutral colour to another level. The use of lots of lights or candles will make your ceremony or reception look absolutely spectacular. For the bride who wants to shine in more ways then one.

White and winter greens for an outdoorsy elegance. I love how the winter greens are strategically place in each picture... from outdoorsy to country to glam it all works like a charm. For the bride with a green thumb.

Icy blush, gold and eggplant is a great combo for a winter wedding if you're looking for something cool yet a bit different. This is a good example of mixing cools and warms. For the bride who likes to think outside the box.

Fall Colours

Riverside
Earmarking the importance of Blue in the palette, the new blue shade of Riverside undeniably takes precedence in the fall collections. Cool and calming, strong and stable... it displays a subtle vibrancy and sophistication. Borders on exciting, yet maintains a sense of constancy.

Potter’s Clay
An added degree of sophistication and layering. Elements of russet Orange in its undertones, gives a grounded feeling that’s anything but flat. Neutral earth tone; expected for fall and winter palette. A shade with real substance; a strong foundation.

Aurora Red
This colour adds a welcome punch. A bold Red that is warm, sensual and immediately pleasing to the eye. Gets the metaphorical blood of the palette pumping... exciting and dynamic, breeds unmistakable confidence

Spicy Mustard
Bounces elegantly off other colours from this year's Fall colour palette. An exotic addition adding another splash of uplifting vibrancy. A spicier, zestier Yellow than previous seasons... unexpected and unusual. Comes through in both the abstract and geometric accents that designers employ.

Lush Meadow
This colour brings fresh botanicals and foliage to mind. Rich and elegant, vibrant and sophisticated... this shade displays a brightness, panache and depth of color that elevates it from more natural greens. Elevates the overall elegance woven through this season’s collections.

Bodacious
Bodacious speaks to the gender fluidity we continue to see. Lends itself to vibrant colour combinations. This colour is unexpected in fall. Its versatile; can be used with Pinks and Reds. Bright, rich Purple, with hints of a more sophisticated Pink. Turns fashion accents into fashion statements.

Airy Blue
Lofty nature evokes feelings of lightness and freedom. Designers seeking weightlessness in a world heavy with conflict. Blue tones appear in nearly half of the designs. Airy Blue nods to Serenity.

Warm Taupe
Hearty, pleasing and approachable neutral that pairs well with each of the top 10 shades of the Fall 2016 season. Suggests reassurance and stability, trusted, organic and grounded. Departs slightly from the foundations of the Fall 2016 palette... timeless.

Sharkskin
There’s an edge to Sharkskin, and yet it manages to remain neutral. Pair-able with almost any fall color, bright or muted. A color that the rest of the palette can literally and theoretically rest on. Showcases practicality through a dependable but contemporary lens

Dusty Cedar
A fall and winter version of the Pinks we’re used to seeing in spring. Dustier rose-toned Pink shade with some complexity. Exudes warmth and welcome.

Jennifer & Tim's Wedding Invitations

Living an urban life in Toronto Jennifer and Tim wanted their wedding to be casual and outdoorsy. Sharing their engagement in Niagara on the Lake they decided to have their big day at the beautiful Ravine Vineyard Estate Winery. Jennifer was an easy going bride with great ideas and good taste. Together we came up with the following design. My creative process usually includes 5 steps... take a look below:

No. 1 - COLOUR 

Jennifer & Tim's colour palette was composed of soft champagnes, blush pinks with greys. Soft colours were found in the floral pattern with a bold charcoal when it came to fonts.

No. 2 - STYLE / THEME

Jennifer and I discussed a more casual look with a vintage flare since their big day was to take place at a vineyard. We kept the overall style simple, classic and whimsical.

No. 3 - DESIGN

Jennifer had a specific look in mind… she wanted to have a certain amount of floral without making to much of a bold statement as well as keeping the overall look light and casual. Once she found the perfect pattern she sent it my way so I could redraw it to fit within her custom package and convert to her unique colour palette. I really like the fonts found in this invitation design. Jennifer purchased a font she fell in love with… a lovely calligraphy font full of personality.

No. 4 - PAPER GOODS

Being from the US Jennifer had plenty of guests coming from a far. That said we had lots of info to include in this invitation package such as invitation and reply cards, map cards as well as accommodations. Once I made sure the over design flowed nicely from one card to another these were all assembled and inserted into soft champagne pocket enclosures. 

No. 5 - SPECIALTY FRILLS

A simple craft colour twine was tied to the exterior of the pocket enclosures in order to keep each package nicely sealed. Craft paper outer envelopes were ordered keeping the over all look on the more casual side. Blush pink reply envelopes where also ordered. I love mixing two different colour envelopes when it comes to the outer and reply envelopes. I find it adds a little more depth and fun.

Katherine and John's Wedding Invitations

Being world travellers Katherine and John recently hosted their wedding in Monemvasia, Greece at the beautiful Kinsterna Hotel. Sending out over 150 invitation packages for their destination wedding one year in advance these guys were after some serious attendance for their big day overseas! Below is a little poem found amongst the couples invitation package. I thought it would be fun to share some of Katherine and Johnny's story...

In the fall of 2011 two people crossed paths on the other side of the world. They knew immediately that it wasn’t just a chance meeting. This was the start of something much more. The beginning of a love and friendship fuelled by adventure. Two people addicted to travelling the world. Two people addicted to experiencing the new and unknown and most importantly, two people addicted to each other. As our first chapter comes to a close, we’d like to welcome you to join us in celebrating as we turn the page and begin our next chapter...

 

 

 

 

Toronto Weddings Invitations

Over the years I've designed invitations and stationery for many weddings in Toronto. Being a designer in Toronto makes my job that much more interesting given the large amount of cultural variety and the large scale of wedding venues. I connect with brides with new ideas, brides open to creative concepts, brides who appreciate good design and most of all brides who make tasteful choices. Custom designs are often set with a personal brand for all of my couples starting with a monogram or personal icon or theme... we then explore colour and appropriate design elements such as pattern textures and decorative graphics, paper goods, printing etc... Below are examples of some of my Toronto weddings.

Andrea & Ian's invitations from my "off the rack" collection. The couple's wedding was hosted at Bohmer Restaurant on Ossington Avenue just West of downtown Toronto.

Jennifer & David's Distillery inspired invitations. Both ceremony and reception took place at the Fermenting Cellar in the Distillery District in the East end of downtown Toronto. 

Arden & Tyler's invitation package for their downtown wedding taking place at Toronto's Luxurious Shangri-la Hotel. 

Meaghan & Ben's Breakfast at Tiffany's inspired wedding invitations for their big day taking place that the Old Mill Inn and Spa in the West end of Toronto.

 

 

 

Tracy & Rob's Invitations

This past weekend Tracy and Rob got married! They had a 4 day event at Deerhurst Resort up in Muskoka with a ceremony at Hillside Farms. Since this was an out of town event their invitation package was sent out mid March. For out of town weddings, invitations are generally sent out 3-4 months before the wedding date. This gives guests plenty of time to plan.

A personal monogram was initially designed making this invitation design uniquely for Tracy and Rob. At our first design consultation Tracy and I established a pocket enclosure was a must. Since these guys had lots of info to deliver to all of their friends and family. A pocket enclosure is a great way to display and well package your wedding invitations. This piece usually works best when a couple needs to include 3 cards or more. So that said along with their invitation card Tracy and Rob had a reply card, detailed map card and an events card.

These guys really went all out... they had a "welcome dinner" the first night, a golf tournament with beach party and lobster cook out on day 2 along with their big day followed by a "goodbye brunch" on the last day. 

Their design theme was very Muskoka... I found an old fashioned map of the Muskoka region with lovely graphics and illustrations that suited their outdoorsy theme. Blues were used a favourite colour of the couple followed by browns to keep everything nice and casual.

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French Antique Flare

Earlier this year Carte Blanche Design was part of an elegant photo shoot that took place at beautiful Hart House in Toronto. After having a conversation with Hart House's event planner Valary Thompson I was given a colour palette, a few words and sent a Pinterest board. This French inspired elegant stationery included menus, place cards, ceremony programs, mini dessert cards and more...

Photos were published in Elegant Wedding Magazine based out of Montreal.

Given the team had never met or worked together the overall outcome was quite stunning! The team of wedding professionals involved in the shoot were photographer Christopher Jay of Boston Photography, stylist Valary Thompson at Vivid and Vogue, fashion stylist Felicia at the Fashion Conspiracy, make up Tanya at Brides Etc... and beautiful floral design by Covers Couture.

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Top Tips for Wedding Invitations

Just getting started with your wedding invitations? Find out everything you need to know to get them ordered, sealed and delivered.

Define Your Wedding Style

The invitation is your guests' first peek at your wedding style. You should have an idea of the type of event you're throwing -- classic and elegant, or glam and modern -- before you start shopping for stationery, so you can choose an invitation style that hits the same note. Then browse wedding invitation photos and stationers' websites and gather inspiration so you can give your stationer an idea of what you like.

Know Your Colours

Choose a colour palette that will reflect your big day. Again browse along for inspiration. You may want to incorporate your colours into your wedding invitations and then carry both through to the rest of your wedding paper (like the escort cards, menu cards and ceremony programs) for a cohesive look. While ivory, cream or white card stock paired with a black or gold font is the classic choice for formal wedding invitations, you can also brighten your invites with colourful or metallic fonts, paper stock, envelopes and liners. Stay away from colour looking too playful... make sure your colour palette is fresh and tasteful.

Think of the Shape and Size

A 5"x7" inch rectangular card is the traditional size and shape for wedding invitations. But couples are also channeling more playful or modern vibes with circular, scalloped and square invitations. Keep in mind: Veering away from the standard envelope size can increase the cost as well as the postage of each invitations -- bulky or extra-large invites may cost more to send.

Legibility is Key

As you consider colours and patterns, don't forget about the text -- the information you put on the invitation is the whole point of sending it out in the first place. Your local stationer can help, but in general, avoid light ink on light backgrounds and dark ink on dark backgrounds. Yellow and pastels are tough colours to read, so if you're going with those, make sure the background contrasts enough for the letters to pop, or work those colors into the design rather than the text. Also, be wary of hard-to-read fonts like an overly scripted typeface -- you don't want to sacrifice readability.

Choose Your Words Wisely

Learn the rules to wording your invitation. Traditionally, whoever is hosting is listed first on the invitation. Customarily, you should spell everything out, including the time of the ceremony. On classic wedding invitations, there's always a request line after the host's name -- something like so and so "request the honour of your presence." (Read Wording Invitation Samples for all the details.)

Don't Crowd the Card

List only the key points on your invitation: ceremony time and location, the hosts, the couple's names, the dress code (optional) and RSVP information. Trying to squeeze too much onto the invitation card can make it harder to read -- and it won't look as elegant. 

Get an Early Start

Your save-the-dates should go out six to eight months before the wedding. It can take anywhere from a few days to a few weeks -- or longer, depending on how fancy you go -- to print them. While your save-the-dates don't have to match your invites, ordering everything from one stationer can save you money and make the invitation process easier on you. So start scouting stationers 9 to 11 months before the wedding. Aim to order your invitations about four to five months out so they're ready to mail six to eight weeks before the wedding. If you're having a destination wedding or marrying over the holidays, send out your invites even earlier (10 to 12 weeks before the wedding).

Get Your Dates Straight

Include your RSVP information on the bottom right corner of your invitation or on a separate enclosure, and be sure to make the deadline no more than three or four weeks after guests receive the invitations -- check with your caterer first to find out when they'll need the final headcount. The more time you give guests to reply, the more likely they are to forget, and you'll need time to put together the seating chart. 

Consider Costs

The price per invite can vary widely -- anywhere from $1 to more than $100. It all depends on the design, ink, typeface, printing process, paper and quantity. Top-of-the-line papers, color ink, formal printing techniques (like letterpress and engraving) and custom design will add to your costs, as will decorative extras like envelope liners and multiple enclosures. That's why it's important to research your options ahead of time -- so you can pick your priorities, whether it's sophisticated printing and a custom design or multiple enclosures. 

Triple-Check the Proof

Before your invitation order is printed, your stationer will send you a proof (either a hard copy or an email attachment of the invite mock-up). Don't just have your fiance and mom read it over. Ask your English-major friend or a grammar-savvy bridesmaid to check the proof before you okay it. You'd be surprised at the things you may miss (pay special attention to details like date and time and spelling). Borrow a tip from copy editors and read the proof word for word from right to left so you don't accidentally gloss over any mistakes.

Count Your Households

You don't need an invitation for every guest. Take a look at your guest list and figure out how many houses need invitations before you give your stationer a number -- you might be able to cut your order in half. Cohabiting couples get one invitation; for couples living apart, you can either send one invite to the guest you're closer with (and include both names on the inner and outer envelopes), or you can send out separate invitations. Families get one invitation (addressed to "The Smith Family," for example). The exceptions: Children who don't live at home (like college students) or anyone over 18 who lives at home should get their own invitation.

Order Extra

It's expensive to go back and print more invitations after the fact. Order enough invitations for your guest list , plus 25 extra in case you need to resend an invitation, want to put some aside as keepsakes (trust us, your moms will want at least a few) or plan on sending invitations to a "B-list." Tip: If you have a lengthy B-list, consider ordering a second set of invitations with a later RSVP date. And even if you're hiring a calligrapher to address your invitations, ask for extra envelopes in case of returned invites or addressing mistakes (calligraphers generally require an extra 15 to 20 percent).

Don't Forget Day of Stationery

Order your menu cards , programs and thank-you notes with your invitations. That way, your stationer can include all of the pieces in one order, which may save you money and time. It's also a good way to ensure all your stationery has a cohesive look, even if you want to vary the design slightly for each element (by switching the dominant color or alternating between two patterns, for example). Also, don't forget those little items like favour tags and welcome bag notes.

Remember Your Thank-Yous

Track RSVPs as they come in using a guest list manager tool or spreadsheet. Include a column where you can note what each guest gives you. Then, as the wedding gifts start rolling in, begin writing your thank-you notes so you don't fall behind. For any presents received before the wedding, you should send a thank-you note within two weeks. For those given on or after the wedding day, give yourself a month.

Put a Stamp on It

It may seem obvious, but it's easy to forget: If you want guests to mail back their reply cards, include stamped (and addressed) envelopes. That way guests don't have to pay for the postage. Traditionally, the return envelopes should be addressed to whoever is hosting the wedding; however, if your parents are technically hosting, but you're keeping track of the guest list, you can use your address instead. 

Do a Weigh-In

While you probably can't wait to drop those wedding invitations in the mail and check another thing off your to-do list, weighing a sample invitation (enclosures and all) at the post office first could save you many more to-dos later. Trust us, you don't want to deal with the hassle of invitations being returned because of insufficient postage .

 

 

Wedding Save the Date Ideas

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If you're getting married in the spring or summer of 2016 you might want to start thinking about your wedding invitations. But foremost you may also want to consider getting save the date cards mailed out. These don't have to be too elaborate if you don't want them to be. They can be simple with maybe a few of your own personal custom twists.

Save the dates will simply tell all of your family and friends to book the date for your big day. That way if other spring or summer events pop up at their end your wedding date will be saved in their books!

Over the years I've done my share save the date blog posts. So this time I thought I would see what's out there when it comes to fresh ideas.

First off I founds this wonderful DIY save the date card on B. Loved Blog I thought were quite creative and fairly easy to recreate with perhaps using your favourite font and wedding colours. blovedblog.com

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Wedding Colours

This Spring 2015 - En plein air!This season, cooler and softer colour choices with subtle warm tones follow a minimalistic "en plein air" theme... nature inspired.

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If you're starting to think about your wedding you may want to think about colours. Weather you choose 1 colour or 4 this new hot colour palette of 2015 might inspire you. Once you've made your choice you will want to apply these throughout different aspect of your wedding. From your save the dates, wedding invitations, florals, decor, wedding attire, cake design, menu cards and even ceremony programs.

Printing Styles for your Wedding Invitations

Thinking of your wedding invitations? What about print medium? If you didn't know this digital printing is the most economical form of printing when it comes to your wedding invitations. Especially if you're having a small wedding. But if you're in need of 100+ invites you may want to consider the following printing mediums.

1- Off-set printing This form of printing is very similar to digital printing. Its flat but printed on a high end press. Plates of made of your wedding design and then imprinted onto your wedding cardstock. I usually suggest this form of printing for couples who are after a full dark colour something like black or navy for their wedding invites. A variety of metallic colours are also available - something digital printing cannot achieve.

2- Thermo Engraving I usually suggest this form or printing when a couple is after a simple classic or modern design for their wedding invitation. Thermo engraving puffs up and is often referred to as raised ink. It is a classic and probably most common form of printing when your parents and grandparents got married. If you're looking to luxe up your invitations you may want to consider this form of printing.

3- Letterpress This is the oldest form of printing and one of the most classic. As opposed to thermo (raised ink) letterpress leaves a lovely imprint like effect. If you have the cash and you're after something timeless and elegant letterpress might be something to consider.

4- Foil Stamping This is by far my fav if you're looking to glam up your wedding invitations. Foil stamping is called dry printing because it does not use any sort of ink for printing purposes. It is a dry stamping process where ink, magnetism, or plates are not used to print letters and pictures as is used in traditional printing methods. In place of all these things, foil stamping uses dies or carved metal plates, heat, and foil in the stamping process. A definite classic!

I love printing. It's a real craft especially if you're into specialty printing. Over the years I've built wonderful relationships with all of my printers. They are passionate, knowledgable, reputable and located in Toronto and surrounding areas.