Design a Wedding Invitation in Adobe Illustrator: Start to Finish | Melanie Yarbrough | Skillshare

Design a Wedding Invitation in Adobe Illustrator: Start to Finish

Melanie Yarbrough, Hand letterer, illustrator, and designer

Play Speed
  • 0.5x
  • 1x (Normal)
  • 1.25x
  • 1.5x
  • 2x
9 Lessons (46m)
    • 1. Introduction

      1:26
    • 2. Pinterest review

      3:23
    • 3. Downloading fonts

      3:15
    • 4. Selecting fonts

      6:04
    • 5. Illustrating design elements

      10:30
    • 6. Layout composition

      9:32
    • 7. Extras: RSVPs

      2:31
    • 8. Extras: Save the Dates and Thank You Cards

      4:40
    • 9. Exporting files

      4:09

About This Class

Explore how designer and illustrator Melanie Yarbrough takes a wedding invitation from moodboard to finished product. In 45 minutes, you'll get an in-depth view into her workflow—from deciding on an aesthetic, choosing fonts, composition and layout, tweaks, and final file prep.

This class is for the aspiring designer or the DIY bride or groom. In the last part of the class,  Melanie will show you how to take your design elements and create save the dates and thank you cards!

Whether you have little to no design experience or you'd like a glimpse into the world of wedding stationery design, this class is for you. Familiarity with Adobe Illustrator is a plus, but not required. You can download a 30-day free trial of Illustrator and get all of your designs created in enough time to cross another wedding to-do off your list.

Other resources:

Skillshare Wedding in the Woods Inspiration (on Pinterest)

Dylan M.'s class: Sending Work to the Printer

Transcripts

1. Introduction: Hello. My name is Melanie Yarborough, and I am a self taught hand letter illustrator and graphic designer, And I'm based in Arlington, Mass. Um, this new class is all about designing wedding invitations from start to finish, So I will show you my process. I'm starting with picking fonts on coming up with different wording layout, composition, color illustrating middle elements to go in your design. And then I also show you have to expand all of your elements and your fonts into a whole wedding suite. So thank you, card. Save the dates and the list is endless. So we'll be designing an invitation for a wedding set in the woods for Richard and Calvin. Um, but if you have an actual wedding that you would like to design for whether it's your own friends or your own aesthetic that you want to bring to life, feel free to just go off, um, off book and make your own design. And I'm so excited to see it, I hope you share in the class project, so join me in the next lesson will get started 2. Pinterest review: so to start, I want to take you quickly through my inspiration process. I work primarily in Pinterest. I find it a great way to organize my inspiration. Um, and I know where it is at all times. If you're more of a physical, medium type person, you can print things out. You conceive them on your desktop, anything should work. So I'm just gonna take you through my pictures board. So this is just the home page, and I encourage you to come up with your own search terms because we'll be designing an invitation for a wedding that's happening in the woods. I'm just gonna search forest wedding invitations. And it also helps if you see it pops up these recommendations. So enchanted. If that's kind of the mood you're going for, would d i Y rustic. There's so many ways you could specify and really get very narrow down results. I usually just flip through. I look for illustrations. I like fonts. I like, um, composition, color, those kinds of things. I'm pretty pretty loose. Um, when I'm saving a pin. So here I really like the hand, the hand drawn aspects of it. I like the map. Um, that you don't have to really be very selective when you're doing this. Just find things that capture I on. And then later on, you know will narrow down what caught our eye about it. And then we can figure out, um, how to incorporate those kinds of aesthetics into our own design. So I have a board on Pinterest that I'm sure with you called skills still share wedding inspiration. And as I look at the general, um, beans that I see on this board, there's a lot of monoline. There's a lot of backgrounds with white text. There's a lot of this illustrations of trees and forests kind of framing the bottom or the sides of the invitation themselves. A little woodland creatures throughout a lot of hand lettering. Um, just little illustrations that really make it particular to the couple in the event. So once I have this together, you know, kind of walk through and I make a list of the things like I just listed, you know, white against colored background trees, framing the bottom hand lettered fonts and just have those in the back of my mind. Um, I love this map. schedule of events that also kind of serves is like the little you know, You can glance at this and really know what to expect from the weekend. Um, so I love stuff like that. So once you have that list in hand, yours will look different than mine will look different than other students. What do you have that in hand? We're ready to start looking for fonts and start working on composition and layout, so I'll see you next lesson. 3. Downloading fonts: the first thing I like to try to wrangle together are my fonts. As I mentioned in the last lesson, I noticed that I liked a lot of monoline thoughts. So I'm just gonna search for monoline fonts free. Um, there are a lot of great font foundries and artists and tie park offers making incredible thoughts for Price. I'm and I fully believe in paying for these. Let me just show you one of my favorite places to find fonts, especially by you know, people like you and me is creative market. Um, and you can also search here, see what they have. Yeah, so you can just go through here and find all kinds of incredible fonts that are exactly what you want. Now, these air for a cost, um, it's usually worth it. $15. $20 is a steal for handmade fought. So I would recommend, you know, if your clients willing to pay for it. If you have room in your budget for this kind of thing, to look through creative market and really support that community. But if you're just playing around, if you're just working on the assignment for this class, you can totally use a free font. So I realize immediately. My mistake is I just searched for modeling Fox. And really, I want, um, online script fought. So I'll update my search terms, and I'll just start downloading the ones I like. Like making Lee. This one's really cool. Not sure if it'll go with our aesthetics, but can't really hurt downloading Abigail script. Sure of that. Sacramento is great. So one thing to keep in mind is that some free fonts are available as a teaser. Um, And in order to get all of the features that you get usually when you buy a full font Um, yes, it's is a purchase spot. In order to get all the features you want, you're gonna have to pay. So features that I'm talking about are not, you know, lifts or flourishes but simple things like numbers or Amper Sands. So just be aware of that when you're working with three fonts. Um, a lot of times you can go in here, Um, a switch. It was the 1001 pots You can type in what you wanted to show just to make sure that it has all of the characters that you want or that you'll need. So hasn't ampersand has numbers? Um, so this one should work. Would you decide to use it? So just go ahead and download those, add them to the fonts on your machine, and then I'll meet you in the next lesson and will open up illustrator room get started. 4. Selecting fonts: Okay, So first will set up will open up illustrator and for this class were going to create an art board that's five inches by seven inches. But if you have pretty expects from your chosen printer or different size in mind, feel free to create an art board of that size instead. So I won't be covering choosing a printer or sending files to a printer in this class. But Dylan Myers, once he's class on the subject, covers everything you ever need to know. Um, and I'll link that in the class description. So the first thing I like to do when I'm in illustrators pick a couple of fonts. Um, these can change is your design evolves, but it helps with layout and composition when you have your funds chosen. So for this invitation will start with the text eso that shortcut. I just did. Um, I hit tea on my keyboard, and it brings up the text tool. You can also find it here on this toolbar. Take tool and you can see right next to the name. It has tea, and that's the shortcut. So you hit t on your keyboard and then just click anywhere and it'll bring up Lauren. It's in here, so type out your text. So for this invitation will start with the text You're presence is requested at the wedding of and then we'll have a separate text box that just says Richard and Calvin. So I'll, um when you see me click and drag here, um, and duplicated, I'm just holding down option on a Mac or Ault, um, on a PC. And so for the second option, I'll just change this and to an ampersand. So that way you can see the way that these look in all the different fonts. So I like to select the names first and flip through my fonts. So if you've downloaded specific fonts for this, um, I know we had Sacramento. You can go ahead and choose those. Let's make these a little bigger, so they're easy to see with. So you can either, um, take them straight into your character box here where the font name is, or you can select it and just click in there and then use your up and down arrows to go through your different fonts. This is kind of fun. If I have no idea where to start, if I have. No, Um, you know, I haven't decided on monoline or Sarah for San Serif. It's kind of fun to just go through the fonts that you already have and see how it looks. Um, but for this one, I've already created here in this art board, and I've gone through some of the information. I have the date here. You can see all the different ampersand, some of them that don't have ampersand zones. I just typed out and, um and like I said, some free fonts, they don't offer number. So you want to check, um, that you like the numbers that they have numbers in their font? Yeah. So all of these are looking pretty good. Um, so for this, it's try, um, you were presence is requested at the wedding, going off screen at the wedding of So I really like this font. Um, but I want to compare it to the Sacramento fought, So I just replace it. Um, so these air to good monoline script fonts, I think this is a little more in line, um, with our aesthetic and also I just like, um, the connections of the letters better. It's a little cleaner, and so we'll go with the, um, Sacramento font. So I'll just move this over here, since that's the one I've chosen. And then you can start to bring the name in and see. See how things look together? Um, it's a desert. It's a little too much. Um, think we need something really bold. So see how big John looks up here. Remove these numbers. So I really like how that looks together. I think the bold, um, contrasts nicely with the the monoline font that we have here. Just, um, center these space. No extra space here. Um, so just make that bigger, and I really like that. So I think we've chosen, um, two of our funds. We may add more. We may change them as the design evolves, but this is a great place to start. Um, so I'm meeting in the next lesson to start layout and composition 5. Illustrating design elements: Okay, so now that we have the fonts chosen here we have Sacramento and Big John three downloaded . Um, it's time to draw the little illustrated elements that will go on our invitations. So this design is for a wedding in the woods. Um, and we're gonna use two shades of 100 green. And I like to make little squares, Um, for my color palette So you can just go through, look at all the different shades. Um, that one actually. Delete this, and then you can just choose a color that's along the same line. There we go. So these aren't quite the same colors, but, um, get the idea. So we're going to draw a ribbon, some trees and another little, um, ribbon element. We're gonna use our pen tool. Just come over here. It's right here. It looks like the tip of, ah, calligraphy pen. And the shortcut for that is P. So if you hit piano keyboard, you'll see, um, that little cursor pop up, so I can I just start drawing? So you ca Ndri? Aw, a little triangle. And then we'll drag and drop that down and then do that a couple times and then for this. If you hold down option shift and then drag out from one of these points, it'll drag it from it will keep it in the same position and moving outward from all the points. Whereas if you just click and dragged from here, it will just move it from that particular point. So for this, we're gonna hold down option shift, drag Well, that down a little bit. Do the same from up here. Me a little smaller in the bottom one. Show me that down. And if you hold down shift when you're dragging, it will keep it in the same line. This one might be fine, So just write that down a little, pretty happy with that. You can also just do 1/4 1 depending on the size of tree you want. So I think this looks good. So right now, these this is for separate pieces. So if you select all of these, um, and then come over here to your Pathfinder tool gives you all these different options for shape modes. You can unite them minus the front, which will remove the front. Whatever shape is in front from whatever shape isn't back. So it's just due to copies Do so. This shape is in the front right here. This bottom one. So if we did minus front, it would remove that whole shape, including what was overlapping this back shape. Um, so I'll show you what Intersect does. It just removes everything that was not overlapping and leaves whatever shape was overlapping. And then this one is excludes. It'll just remove what is overlapping and leave the rest. So it's funded, like, play around with these different things, Um, and see what you can come up with. So I'm just gonna choose all of these, and this one is called Unite, and it basically just takes all four different pieces. And now they're one shape. So you don't worry about accidentally moving one went away. So I want to do a little to tone tree here, So let's make this the start green color and we'll click and drag to get a 2nd 1 Make it the second color, and I'm sure there are better ways to do this. But my way of doing it, um, is I just make a little, um, rectangle that overlaps. It might be easier if it's a different color overlaps right at the middle, and then you can use the minus front tool. And now you just have half of a tree, and you can just It's that on there. Um, you can also use it, create, like, a little shadow. You just play around with it. So for these, I'm gonna group these together, and I have my little tree. So for this design, we're gonna dio, um, three trees together so you can do three like that where they're overlapping in the four. The one in the forefront is, um they get closer to you. Um, said you can move awesome of this one to the back. So I just right clicked on this, um, with this tree selected and I'll go to arrange send to back, um, you can also make that in a little smaller. So it's just all kinds of options. Um, when you're creating these designs, I don't like those white spaces that were happening right here. So move those in, so these you can just play around with ease. Once you're happy with your design, I would suggest grouping them together so that they stay in that formation great. So now that we have our trees of those suicide, we're gonna work on our ribbon, um, which we're gonna sort of create in the same way. Um, there are a couple actually there a couple ways. You could make it so creative rectangle here. And I used the rectangle tool, which is m on her keyboard, and then come appear to the sheep. Um, the shape options. And if you select the star tool, if you click and drag, it'll give you this star. And then if you press your down arrow key, it will remove the points one by one. Up. Eric, he adds thumb. So come down to a triangle and actually, let's make that a different color, and then we'll just turn it well, flip it to the other side, arrange transform, actually reflect and then vertical. So you can also preview it, and that's how we want it. And just bring it in right till it overlaps with those corners. Be a little bit more, and then we'll just do minus front. So now we have this little ribbon shaped, um, and he can change the shape. And the last thing I was gonna draw was this little ribbon here, but it's kind of a flourish, I guess. It's sort of what, um, and this I would just draw using the pen tool. So make a point on the bottom and then straight up, if you hold shift, it'll keep your, um it will keep it out. 45 degree angles, um, or within 45 degrees, straight up and down. And then when you click, hold down, shift and then drag. So that should be good. And then just head back and point there. So now you have a soul T drop shape, teardrop shape. Um, and I just like to hold down shift and turn it to one side. And then we go back to your pen tool. Strong, little, a little flourish off of that. So we'll just group those together for now. And then you can just copy and drag and then will transform this and reflect it vertically , and then just bring it over here. And now you have this little ribbon shade one group it all together and as you make it smaller, looks like a little ribbon. So now that we have these elements drawn, I like to keep them on a pace board on the pace border just off to the side so that I can pull from them as I need as I'm working on my design So we'll just straggled these over here. I also have this, um, just circle in the green color at 10% a pass ity. You'll see how that comes in later. So just yeah, so just have these within arm's reach on your paste board, and we can duplicate and drag as we're working on the layout and composition. So that's what we'll do in the next lesson. So I'll meet you there. 6. Layout composition: so to start, I like to test layouts with both vertical and horizontal layout. So if you come over to this art board tool, you can duplicate and drag um, like anything else. So this is the art board tool right here. Once you click that, you can select them so you could change sizes by pulling and dragging Oregon Jane sizes by typing it enough years. Want to go back to five inches by seven inches and you can change? I could change this to seven by five. Um, or you can click and drag. So holding down option and just clicking and dragging. So once that's do you have many art boards? I like to have several laid out so that, um so that I can just get started. I also want to see this text at an ark, Um, just to see how it would look. So you want to select the tax box, and then if you go up here to effect come down toe warp, see all these awesome options, But we're going to just do arc, and it starts off with 50% which is a lot, So I usually bring this down to 10%. And if you're a little preview button is checked, you can see it there. So bring it up to 15. 15. Might be fine. Um, Blitzer it a 10. So once you're happy with this, once the design is finalized, we will expand this, um, text so that it will be an image. Um, right now it's still a font. So when you hover over, you'll see the text in a straight line. And that means that basically just means that that's the text that exists right now. Um, and it has put it in an arc of 10%. But if you change this text to say Richard and Calvin, it will be much smaller, but it will still be a 10 10% art. So, um, so you can edit this all day long. It's just put that in there. But once you once you expand it and making an image, you won't be able to edit the text. So I'm just gonna leave it like this for now. Um, it's a little distracting when you hover over it, but generally, not a bad, um, thing. I'll speed this next section up as I just play around with layouts. Um, and I usually leave the text over here and then just, um, duplicated drag. Great. So we have a few good options here that I'm pretty happy with. Um, they'll need a little tweaking, but in my usual process, I would send these options to a client or my friend. Or when I was working on my own wedding invitations, I showed them to my spouse and just ask for feedback. I like to ask for things that they particularly like or dislike. Um so say, for instance, they hate this script front that I know that I need to either go completely different way or just use all non script fonts. So things like that will help you really tweak it and get it to where they're happy or you're happy if I've done my homework collaborating with them on the aesthetic, they're usually pretty happy with just a few tweaks. Um, in the next lesson will explore ways to expand these design decisions into a whole wedding suite with RCP, save the dates and thank you cards. Before I do that, I just wanted to show you, um, some other designs, So these were some other. Uh, obviously, these aren't finished. These are other designs that I came up with with these bonds. They look a little familiar, um, of different text here, but yes, you can kind of see this one I used. I just duplicated. I can show you over here. Um, I just duplicated the font. So you can either do the drag, click and drag, or you can select it and then do command, see copy, and then command f to paste in front. And then you have to, and then you can just kind of shift it. It may be easier if it's a different color, actually. So this is just the green color. Um, that's been the A pass. ITI has been taken down. Can see. So now the front colors black, and then the back color will be the green. Actually, let's do great pink just so you can see it. So line these up, and then you can just kind of shift it until you have the shadow that you like. Um, I really like it with the pink, actually. Um, so that's a little tool that I like to use sometimes for a little bit of depth. Um, I also brought the capacity down on these design elements down to 55%. So then I could put black text on top it and still be easily read. Um, this has a hole. Has the green at 10% capacity as the background color. This is just a very light shade. This one has that circle with the same shade of green at 10%. Um, what you saw I used up there? Yeah. So just play around. Don't be afraid to use white text on top of, um, backgrounds like this. Just really play around and see what you can come up with. Um, my favorite designs have come with come from Just, you know, messing with things like this doesn't look finished. To me, it's not quite done. But looking back at old designs you've made and just shifting things a little bit, um, changing font stylings. You know, it can really surprise you when you really just change one little thing in a design. I encourage you to just play around, come up with your own shortcuts. Um, that's really the way that you learn. That's the way I learned best. Um if you have tools or tips, feel free to leave those in the comments. Um, so the next lesson we're gonna go into working on the whole wedding sweetened, using the same design elements so that it's all one cohesive aesthetic, So I see in the next lesson. 7. Extras: RSVPs: Okay, so I wanted to take you through, um, some designs that I created for the RC Pisa's. Well, this is similar to creating the thank you cards and the safe dates in that I used a lot of the same design elements and choices that we've already made. Um, so here you can see I have the ribbon, the two tone ribbon. And I used the Sacramento font. Um, just to type out our SVP, and depending on the type of event that you have, this congee kind of tongue and cheek will be there can be very formal, um, with regrets. Pretty much anything you want. You can do a quick Google search to see the different types of wording that people use and choose your favorite. So here I have a line for the guests name, which they will, right? Usually there's an M at the start. For Mr Mrs. This is also kind of traditional, so you can feel free to leave that out. You can put name underneath there. Um, here I have little boxes for them to check whether or not they'll be there. Um and these were just made out of two squares um, in the different colors, So that's an option. If you have a meal options, you can also put you condone draw little images for each of these. Or you can just have them choose that you could do more little tick boxes. If your event does not have a menu that people have to choose from, you can dio a little line for a song request. Um, anything like that, or even just a little bit of advice for the couple. This one's very simple. It's still incorporates the green, Um, and it has Slim Joe, which is another variation of the font that we were using for Richard and Calvin's name. Yeah, so you can gonna play around with it. This one incorporates that circle, and you just want it so that it looks a part of the the whole wedding suite so that the design is cohesive. I'm in using the same design elements that you created already really helps with that 8. Extras: Save the Dates and Thank You Cards: I want to show you all the different ways that you can use these design elements who create really the whole suite. So I have saved the dates here. One thing I like to do, um, usually the save The date is created before the invitation. Um, but if you made these decisions and you chose thes fonts, then you could, you know, pull from them and create the invitation. Um, but you can I like to bring the design over, and then I have all the fonts s. Oh, this is just simple. Has the date has all information? Save the date. Richard and Calvin and getting married March 23rd 2019 form a limitation to come short and sweet. Um, has all the colors people know what to expect. Um, so for thank you cards these for my own wedding. This was like a fun, a fun thing to design. I really looked forward to it, and it ended up taking me over a month to actually do them because I was just enjoying the downtime so much. Um, so but really, once I sat down to do them, I had all of the elements that I needed. So for here you can see I used these ribbons and then I just used the big John font. Thank you so much. You can add a little We love celebrating with you. Um, it's such a It's, like, so simple. You really just need to say thank you So you can use any of the design elements that you created. And it goes so far. So here I've created, um, 5.5 by eight folded card eso. Once it's folded, it would be 5.5 by four. So really, you can just play around with this. Um, I encourage you to use thes design elements that you worked on to create table numbers. Um, let's just create a little aren't board right here. Um, so it would be nice. It would be fun to just create a little these out of here. You could do table one pretty large, and then bring this over here and just dio table, which you can either. The warp isn't really showing up too well on that. So one thing if you have an effect on some text, if you select that text and then come over here to the appearance panel. It'll show you all the different, um, effects and different things that are on that particular thing that you selected. So the warp here, if you bring it up, you can change it. Whereas if you selected it and went back to effect and warp, it would just add another warp on top of the old one S O. C. It added 10% on top of the 10% that we already had, what you don't want to do, because that can get confusing. So let's do 50%. That really stretches it out and works it a little too much. Um, and actually, I think we can do without the work, see what it looks like with and without. So let's just remove that if you selected in the appearance panel and then delete, um and then you can just make it. You can make it larger. You can also just use a lower case T Um, And if this isn't doesn't look like a number enough for you. The one I ended up adding a different font. Um, during the design phase called Lulu clean. Um, now, this is not a free for months. I believe I bought it on creative market, but I love it. It's just such a great san serif simple fun. Um, so you could do Table one like that? The Lolo Clean also comes with several, so there's a bold, different shadows outline. That's kind of cool, too. So I encourage you to just, um, use thes design elements and these decisions that you made to really make one cohesive aesthetic for the wedding that you were designing for. Um, and that way it just looks more professional cell. See, In the next lesson, we'll show you how I export the files. 9. Exporting files: Okay, So when I'm ready to either send these to the client or the person that needs to review them or ready to print them, I want to export thes as pdf. So, um, actually, when I send them, usually when I send them to people, I will export them as pains just as images. So they could just see them pretty easily, even without a pdf viewer. Um so for that I would just, um, Richard Calvin in lights. And you can see here that it's exporting it as a ping, and you can use the art board so you can create a range. If you just want one through four, you just want one. Um, actually, if you click the art board tool, it will tell you appear in the top left, and you could rename them up here. So this one is selected so I can rename that Richard Calvin to, but it's still art board number four. So when I go to export thes, if I do three through five, it'll export thes three. So let's just do that now. We'll do our see in lights and use art boards and will do a range of three through five export. So this little box pops up and you can either do a white background, black background, um, or transparent if you're going to be sending them to people to review. I recommend using the white background so that it looks, um, how it will when, um when it's printed so that I could just pull these up. And now I have these pings here. Um, and you can just zip those files and send it to ever needs to review. But when you're ready to print the's where they're gonna print them at home or send them to a printer, um, let's save as just to r C invites final and come down here to format, and you want to save it as an adobe. Pdf. So we'll do 335 again save. So there's all of these different formats. I usually do high quality print. Um, if you're gonna be printing them at home and cutting them yourself, you might want to have trim marks. Check with your printer again. If they want registration marks or color bars, I usually do. If I if I know the measurement, Aiken, just measure it on my paper trimmer. So don't usually use the term marks for that. Receive PdF. And then when you do multiple art boards, it will save them all in one PdF. So let's do this 100 percent and you can just flip through. So now if you just want, um one. I would recommend just exporting one, and then you can print from there. Um and that's really it. Um, I will print this out so I can show you what the final product looks like. But overall, that's really my process from start to finish and little tweaks here and there, just really being open to playing around and experimenting has been a huge, huge help in my design process on growth. So thanks so much for taking this class. I hope you'll, um leave a review, ask any questions you want in the community, and I will gladly help out where again. Thanks again.