It's hard to deny that wedding invitations set the tone for your big day. After all, it’s the first real glimpse guests get into the aesthetic of your wedding. Is it super formal or more casual? Is it whimsical or modern? What season will it take place in? They also help guests get an idea of how they should dress, and they establish the look of the rest of your paper goods for your wedding day like signage, menu, programs, and seating cards. But, more importantly, it’s an expression of the couple’s personality and how they want to present themselves to loved ones.
“You should be thoughtful about your invitation, but don’t overthink it,” advises Elyse Dawn, one half of the sister wedding-planner duo behind The Wedding Planning Guide. “While making sure the color, art, and font match what you would like to use throughout the wedding, also think about wording that reflects you as a couple and the formality—or lack thereof—for your day.”
Meet the Expert
Elyse Dawn is a wedding planner and co-owner of The Wedding Planning Guide.
It’s also important that your invitation matches the season. If you are planning a fall wedding, burgundies, oranges, and golds are a no-brainer color palette. But, there are plenty of ways to interpret those autumnal vibes. Planning a wedding in fall 2021? “We are seeing, and loving, deep earth tones with mixed warm metallics. We’re also seeing a lot of dried flowers and natural paper vibes,” says Dawn.
She adds some tips for couples on what to include in their fall invitation suite. “If you’re feeling stuck on invitation wording, try looking through sample invitations on wedding-stationery websites to get inspiration,” Dawn advises. “Also, don’t forget to include your wedding website information. We really like the use of a website to provide hotel, meal, and RSVP info and tools for guests.”
Whether your wedding is a rustic farm event, a posh metropolitan affair, or a crisp evening on the coast, here are 20 ideas for your fall wedding invitation suite.
Give a Nod to Nature
For this October wedding in the mountains, the couple chose to really accentuate nature in their announcement—after all the elopement took place in the woods. Green is an obvious choice for an outdoorsy wedding, but the real wow factor is the lining of the envelope. The illustrated fauna is not only a beautiful detail that shows the couple really put thought into it, but it also immediately puts friends and family in the right state of mind for the wedding. Another thoughtful detail? Adding in hand-drawn calligraphy and stamps to match the vibe.
Don’t Be Afraid of Pink
Pink may not be the first color you think of when you think of the fall season—but why not? If rosy hues are your favorite, there’s no reason to shy away. This couple chose to pair pale-pink stationery with rust colored texture to break up the pastel and give it an earthy look fitting of a Lake Tahoe event. We are obsessed with the textured paper and topographical map of Lake Tahoe with hand-dyed and laser-cut pieces. The invitation matched the motif of the floral arrangements at the wedding, which were designed in shades of muted pink, deep red, and white.
It’s All About Texture
Fall is marked by its signature colors, but it’s also all about crispy leaves, cozy layers, and soft textiles. This textured off-white paper with raw edges really evokes that. Styled here with delicate dried flowers, you really get fall vibes. One of the most beautiful details of this invitation is the embossed illustration of the couple’s venue in Guatemala; it’s a classy and elegant way to really personalize an invitation. A black wax seal and delicate burgundy strings bring the look together.
Evoke Preppy Pastoral
Dark green and leather accents make this invitation the perfect one for a preppy pastoral event (horse illustration is optional). This look is perfect for a rural New England wedding or one down South in Kentucky. This color palette could translate to different seasons, but we love the earthy hunter green and brown hues for early fall, and rich textures like velvet and leather drive home a cozy vibe for a crisp day.
Reds and oranges are quintessential fall colors, and this invitation suite uses shades of both, plus some pretty florals in the lining, to create a colorful and modern approach to a rustic look. The vintage-inspired wax seal and stamps evoke a country vibe, while more contemporary touches like the fun illustrated map of the venue and bold typed letters add a touch of trendiness to it. Red was incorporated throughout the wedding’s decor in the flowers and tablecloths. The day's color palette was inspired by the bride’s favorite book. "I’ve never seen such a perfect palette in all my life," she shared.
Go For a Deep Denim Hue
While crisp, clean navy is timeless and always in season, this slightly distressed blue really evokes the coziness of fall. Paired with gold accents to warm it up and styled alongside deep burgundy flowers, you can really get into the vibe of this Napa Valley event. A sketch of the venue and a custom crest combining the pair’s first initials really personalize this invitation. "It was one of the first design elements that fell into place," Elsa Madeline Design said of the crest. "We loved it so much we included it everywhere we could–on our save the date cards, on our cocktail napkins, [and] on our escort cards."
Go Monochromatic For a Modern Look
Fall doesn’t have to mean warm colors. If your aesthetic is modern and simple, a monochromatic color scheme will do the trick. This couple planned a chic wedding on the beach in Santa Barbara and opted for an elegant and simple black and white motif for the invitations. Rather than a traditional cursive, this bold print sets the tone for the contemporary event. The cute little bird illustration softens the aesthetic and inserts a bit of romance.
Go For Gold
Don’t be afraid of a golden invitation. Incorporating gold does not have to be over-the-top or gaudy. This couple paired metallic gold writing with raw-edge invitations to create a beautiful juxtaposition of glam and rustic that really mirrored the tone of their wedding, which took place at an antique Italian villa. This approach could be done with any metallic, but gold and copper are great choices for fall.
Gravitate Towards Earth Tones
I bet we didn’t even have to tell you this wedding took place in the desert. That’s the result of a well-planned invitation that really evokes the mood of the event. For fall, this muted taupe color is a beautiful choice. In this case, it pays homage to the color of the desert, but it could serve in an autumnal beach setting as well. This couple gave more nods to the magical feeling of the desert with a feather detail and textured pages that were meant to mimic the shape of the canyons. The laser cut overlay is elegant and modern just like the event itself.
Be Bold with Burgundy
As we mentioned, red is perhaps one of the most “fall” colors. For a late autumn wedding, this couple opted for black and deep red to invite guests to their cosmopolitan Washington, D.C. wedding. While black and red could skew more winter-y, choosing the right shade of burgundy—like this one, which almost leans towards rust—is key. The bride mimicked the color palette of her invitations with a burgundy bouquet and manicure. The bridesmaids wore black, completing the color palette.
Fall by the Beach
If your happy place is on the coast with your toes in the sand, that doesn’t mean you can’t have a fall wedding. After all, the beach is gorgeous all year round. The trick to an autumnal beach wedding invitation is to create a nautical, beachy look that doesn’t make your guests think they are in for piña coladas and sun bathing. For their destination wedding in Portugal, this couple achieved this by layering rich textiles like rope and natural paper. They paired an ocean blue color with warm earthy tones for a cozy yet coastal feeling.
Tone Down Your Blues
This invitation suite feels very old world in distressed slate blue and off-white paper with raw edges. It fit the tone of the couple’s outdoor wedding in West Virginia. The place settings included blue napkins that match the invitation and menus were featured in the same distressed paper. If blue is your favorite hue, opt for this tone for a fall wedding as it feels warmer than a brighter or crisper blue.
White is Always in Season
For a wedding, clean white is never out of style or out of season. This gorgeous all-white wedding invitation is simple and elegant. The laser-cut lace on the envelope makes for a sophisticated and classic detail. This style is perfect for a black tie affair or a traditional formal wedding.
Go with Classic Black
You also can’t go wrong with black. For a sleek look, this couple opted for this minimalistic style of cursive on a black background. The wedding featured dried florals in muted tea tones, which pair beautifully with the stationery. The base of this look could be incorporated into both cosmopolitan and rustic weddings—personalization is all in the details.
Warm Up Your Metallics
Distressed parchment paper, a bronze wax seal, rich satin textiles: these elements make for an impressive invitation suite for a fall wedding. In many parts of the country, the season is marked by chilly days, longer nights, and fiery leaves. This Michigan couple evoked that with their color palette and choice of warm metallics. The drama of the invitation was mirrored in the bride’s oversized bouquet and intricate gown.
Use Gray as a Neutral
If you prefer cooler tones, gray is a perfect base color for sleek, modern invitations like this one. This couple chose to add a fun element of surprise with a gray and pink marbled design lining the envelope. The font and the marbling all point towards a trendy, contemporary wedding. The chic event took place in Chicago and featured a simple white cake with a modern topper.
Choose Simple Romance
Getting married in the fall does not have to mean that’s the theme of your wedding. This couple opted for classic white and blush tones to evoke an ethereal and romantic vibe that’s relevant all year long. After all, no matter what month your wedding takes place in, it’s all about the love you share, not the leaves on the trees. But adding dark brown lettering rather than classic black does give a subtle nod to the earthiness of fall.
Add a Little Velvet
For their ethereal barn wedding, this couple chose an invitation suite that highlighted their use of flora and fauna throughout the event. The beautiful watercolor detailing would work in any season, but by adding some richer elements like a black background, warm metallic gold leafing, and a velvet ribbon, this invitation becomes appropriate for an autumnal affair.
Consider High-Quality Embossed Paper
Minimalists will love this invitation suite because it doesn’t have too many bells and whistles. A design like this could be customized for any season in one simple detail: the font color. This couple chose a muted, dusty pink, which works well for fall. The embossed paper is elegant and really shows guests that they are receiving a high-quality invitation. Plus, how cute is that little illustration of clinking champagne glasses?
Simple Details Go a Long Way
This rustic invitation with a watercolor-painted detail and casual script writing is perfect for a rural wedding in a barn or on a farm. We can envision stripped down wooden tables with greenery and dried florals at this event. The slate gray envelope could work for almost any season (in fact, this wedding took place in spring), but we still love it for fall.