Invitations By Hand create the most exquisite fine art floral wedding invitations and stationery suites. Each design is bespoke meaning that you will have a totally unique set of wedding stationery designed to fit with your day beautifully.
Each design is painted on luxury watercolour paper and has that magical, almost ethereal quality that a watercolour image has. Even if you choose vibrant colours, your design will still have that light as air feel that only watercolour artwork can achieve. We especially love the romance of this medium when applied to something as special as wedding stationery.
Even though Deborah’s main focus is painting delightful floral designs, she has also paints peacocks, cats and even portraits, so if you have something like this in mind, do let her know.
Over to Deborah now to tell us more about her fabulously unique business.
Tell us a little about yourself and your business
My name is Deborah, and I am the owner of Invitations By Hand, a bespoke wedding stationery business. I create beautiful floral invitations to match a couple’s theme, the bride’s bouquet, or favourite flower. I love this job! It brings together my passion for painting,, creating, nature and all things weddings!
Each set of invitations is different, as I offer a one-to- one consultation to each client, and design something just for them, so that each couple has something unique to their wedding. I also keep the costs as low as possible, as I want clients to have something beautiful and personal, yet extremely affordable
What motivated you to start your business?
I started Invitations By Hand a few years ago when my wonderful, now husband, proposed. Lost in a whirl of online possibilities and inspiration, I was bit overwhelmed, but also a bit disappointed that I couldn’t find anything unique, it all seemed to have the same look, and being a bit of a rebel, I wanted something that no-one else had, that would be memorable, a beautiful keepsake, and a sneak-peek at our gorgeous wedding day.
I loved painting, but normally painted huge landscaped in acrylic; painting delicate watercolours is a very different skill, but one I have mastered over the years, and really found my own style with the wedding invitations. Talking to other brides-to-be, I realised that there was a real demand for this service, and so the business was born.
Tell us a little more about the day to day activities of your business
Day to day I am creating designs, often starting at the beginning, looking for reference photos to paint, or treating myself to a nice bouquet of flowers to spark inspiration.
I’ll then see how those paintings translate into stationery. I have a studio at home, overlooking the garden, surrounded by colour, paintings, my own work and others.
It’s a very happy existence! I might also be meeting with potential clients, or photographing my work for marketing, every day is different, and the learning curve is steep, but exhilarating!
If our readers were to order from you, what can they expect?
If your readers order from me, they can expect a personally tailored service. I am happy to travel to meet up for a consultation, or by Skype if it is logistically not possible.
It is vitally important that the client gets what they want, fulfilling their vision. As I can hand-paint anything to order, and refine the designs to fit the client’s wishes, they always end up with something that is their vision, translated through my painting.
How can couples judge if a company is the right fit for their wedding?
I would say that you have to feel very comfortable talking to your supplier. You need to be able to voice your opinion, and know that it will be listened to.
I keep in contact every step of the way, so that the clients know where we are up to in the design and creative process, and they can have input whenever they need to.
If you walk away from a meeting with your supplier feeling happy, that is probably the best barometer, if you walk away feeling unhappy or unheard, it may be time to re-think that decision.
What are your favourite moments from previous weddings you’ve been involved with?
My absolute favourite moments, are seeing couples open their presentation box of finished invitations, it suddenly feels very real then for them, and all the hard work is worth it, to see the look of joy on someone’s face.
The bigger picture – does your business offer goods/services outside of the wedding world? Tell us more
I am in the process of setting up a sister business offering bespoke stationery. It uses the same equipment as producing wedding invitations, and is my other passion in life, as my husband will testify; I cannot walk past a stationery shop without having a good explore!
I love letter writing, and the fact that I can now do it on my own stationery, with my own designs, makes me very happy indeed. I will be opening an online shop this year selling bespoke personalised stationery.
What have you got planned for the next 12 months?
I’m working on a social media campaign, to better get the message across that Invitations By Hand offers a bespoke service, at an incredibly competitive price.
There are plans for a YouTube channel, showing painting demos, flower of the month, requests, and we have wedding shows booked in April and October this year, which I love attending, as you get to meet such a diverse group of people.
I will also of course be coming up with new designs every month, and showcasing them on my website.
And finally, what or who inspires you and why?
My family, definitely. My parents were an incredibly strong driving force in my life, encouraging me to go for my dreams. They are sadly no longer with us, but their legacy lives on.
My son, husband and step-daughter, are my biggest cheerleaders, and put up with my working very long hours, and take up the slack domestically when I am in the middle of an inspiration storm.
Artistically I am inspired by the Impressionists, and often use Monet’s work as painting practise, as I try to copy some of his most colourful works. I’m looking forward to the day when someone wants a Monet-inspired wedding invitation!
All images courtesy of Invitations By Hand