I shared a couple weeks ago about the bridal shower that I planned for my best friend. Part of the way I saved money is by sending email invitations (evites) instead of regular invitations via snail mail. This worked because we had a younger crowd who all had emails. There are a lot of programs out there that have cute premade email invitations that you just customize with your information. OR if you're like me and have certain color schemes and themes in mind, you can easily create custom evites using PicMonkey. You can send evites for wedding showers, baby showers, bachelorette parties, birthday parties- you name it!
In the tutorial below I'll walk you through some basics of PicMonkey and then show you how to insert the invitation directly into your email so that guests see the invite right when they open their email.
1. For this project go ahead and go to www.picmonkey.com and click on the button that says "Design" and pick the square option.
It will bring up a blank white square and will automatically open to the "Canvas Color" tab. Here you can choose to leave your invitation white or make the background a different color. I'm creating a bridal shower invitation example so I chose to make my background mint colored.
2. Next, you can explore different overlays that are available by clicking on the butterfly tab on the far left. Overlays are a wide variety of pre-made designs like hearts, embellishments, and flowers that you can insert into your invitation. If you don't see one you like, at the top of the tab there is an "Add Your Own" option so that you can upload your own design or picture. This is especially great if you have a picture of the guest of honor that you want to include in your invitation.
I used a corner embellishment above and used the color palette on the right to turn the design a light grey instead of black. Since I wanted the same design for all four corners, I went ahead and duplicated this overlay. As you see in the picture below, all you need to do is right click on the design, scroll down and click "duplicate overlay". You can do this for however many of the design you need whether it's one more or five more. By duplicating your overlay (instead of inserting a new one each time), you don't have to spend time changing the color, size etc. and it makes your design a lot more cohesive.
After adding my corner designs, I wanted to add a banner at the top. This is a choice that you'll find under that butterfly tab. I wanted my banner to be the same grey color as my corner embellishments. The hard way to match the greys is to use the color palette and try to roll my cursor over the exact same color and try to match it with my eyes. The easy way to match the greys is to click on the design whose color you want to match and you'll notice in the upper right hand corner of your palette that there is a string of numbers and letters (see picture below- they're hard to see because they're written in grey but if you look closely you'll see them).
These letters and numbers make up a hex color code which is the number assigned to a certain color on the Internet. All you need to do is write this code down on a sticky note, click on your banner (or other design element you are trying to match) and enter your code in the hex code area. Once you enter the code, click enter and ta da! You have an exact color match in about three seconds with hardly any work.
Knowing about hex color codes is a great tip if you're doing any sort of online design because by writing them down you can ensure that you're keeping your colors consistent. I have a page of hex color codes that I use for my blog design, and in my design projects I make sure to write down the codes so I can keep my colors consistent.
Okay, next step- adding text. You're going to click the "Tt" symbol on the left, hit "Add Text", choose the font you want, and then go ahead and type your text. The picture clearly shows the order that you want to follow in order to add text. This is how you'll add the bulk of your invitation- who and what it's for, the location, time, RSVP details etc.
The last tip I want to show you for PicMonkey is how to resize both your text and your design elements. If you click on a text or an overlay, you'll notice that the box that outlines your element has small circles on each corner. If you hover over these circles a double arrow that looks something like <=> will show up. You can click on that and drag it which way you please to resize your text or other elements.
Okay! You go ahead and finish your invitation- make it your own, make it match the theme of the party! Once you're finished, head to the top of the page, click "Save" and save the project to your computer.
-SENDING THE EVITES-
When you send your evites, you want them to be in the body of your email and NOT sent as an attachment, If you attach it instead of inserting it directly into the email, people may not realize there's something to open and could likely miss the entire invite! Inserting a picture in the text of the email can vary widely from email service to email service but I will show you how to do it on Gmail, Outlook/Live, and Yahoo. If you have a different email service and can't figure it out, comment or shoot me an email and I can help you find out how to do it!
Once you open a new message in Gmail you'll notice that there's a little button to the right of the "Send" button that looks like a little picture. Click this and then you'll be prompted to choose a picture (choose your invitation) and then it will insert it directly into the email.
Open a new email and at the very top you'll see a button labeled "Insert". Clicking on this will bring a dropdown menu and you'll click "Picture inline". Click this and then you'll be prompted to choose a picture (choose your invitation) and then it will insert it directly into the email.
There are two ways to insert a picture in yahoo. The first way is to send yourself a copy of your invitation and open it. Then go back to your invitation email and click the "+" sign in the bottom right corner. This will pull up a variety of picture options that you can choose to insert into your email. If you do not email yourself the invitation first, it WILL NOT pull into this grouping of pictures.
The second way is to open the invitation on your computer copy (Right click + "copy"), go back and click the cursor into the main body of your email and paste the invitation (Right click + "paste").
Regardless of which email you're using, you shouldn't have to resize the invitation at all- I've found out that emails work well with the standard square invitation you make through PicMonkey. Don't forget to double check all the email addresses before you send it, and be sure to check your Spam folder frequently to make sure that no RSVPs get routed there. Lastly, be proud of your finished project and get creative!
**I was not paid by PicMonkey to promote their editing program. I just genuinely love it for the variety it offers, the freedom it allows me to use my own texts or overlays, and of course because it's FREE**
Have you ever designed an evite? Do you like evites or do you prefer snail mail invitations? Do you have any questions on the tutorial?