Vanessa Kooby


Having worked in the stationery industry since 1987, I know what is trendy, what is timeless, and what is proper in the paper world. Let me share some of my knowledge with you.

Feel free to email me questions or suggestions for topics.

What are Modern Wedding Invitations?


When brides and grooms come for consultations, and see a sea of ecru cards with black ink, and simple panels, sometimes they say, “Do you have anything more modern?”

The answer is YES!

Modern wedding invitations can be square and have foil stamping!


They can have watercolor designs and colored ink or even colored stock.


Sometimes they contain non-traditional wording…allowing the bride to have her professional title added…or referring to the parents of the bride and groom by first names.

All these options can make a simple wedding invitation more “today”.

Some examples of little finishing touches that ramp up the personality of a wedding invitation would be to add a motif that reflects the venue. or a personalized crest paying homage to the couple.

Adding decorative accessories to a wedding ensemble, such as belly bands, tied cords or pockets, gives a simple multi card invitation a more cohesive look….and yes, it is MODERN!



We find that most couples prefer that their printed invitations reflect their personalities and lifestyles. Rather than ask what is proper etiquette and socially acceptable, they seek to individuate and do what makes the most sense to them.


As a wedding invitation consultant, sometimes it comes down to a vote…with my opinion included. I watch in semi-silent amusement and go with the flow.

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Trends in Business Cards


The business card has always been the quintessential marketing tool for professionals. Without a proper business card, you are not taken seriously in your field. CEO’s, medical professionals, dog walkers and baby sitters all have business cards now.


New trends in business cards over the last decade are:

  • Use of email addresses, websites and social media icons and barcodes.

  • Heavy cards stock, sometimes with colored edging.

  • Letterpressed heavy cards with more than one color ink.

  • Oversized, undersized or square cards.


Our recommendations:

  • Keep it fairly simple, “less is more.”
  • Make sure the numbers are nice and legible.

(Sometimes lovely fonts have ugly numbers.)

  • When using light color inks, don’t go too thin with your type.

The aging population is all wearing glasses…lol.

  • Pick a font that is fairly easy to find, so that small changes in text can be made without going to a designer.
  • Keep samples of other people’s business cards that you like, and look at them before you design your own.



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Using Titles on Wedding Invitations and Wedding Envelopes


One of the most complex and, yes, ANNOYING topics of discussion with brides these days involves titles. Social mores and formality has changed so much over the last two decades, that a simple “Mr. and Mrs.” doesn’t cut it anymore! Women have titles and they want to be identifiable as an independent entity, unbound, and yet oftentimes part of a couple.


Frequently I am told, while writing up a classic wedding invitation order:

“I want my mother’s name on my wedding invitation.” The first few times I broke tradition and either dropped all titles, or did some weird version of half of the names with titles…and others without, I was a bit uneasy. As time went by, I became more and more comfortable with the new etiquette. I do feel it is my obligation to educate my wedding customers on what was deemed proper in the past, but now with an open mind, acknowledging that the invitation needs to reflect the personality of the specific couple.



When addressing wedding envelopes, the same conundrum surfaces. While a “traditional” bride might still send out an ecru invitation engraved with black ink, she questions the usage of “Mr. and Mrs.” on the front of each envelope. Guest names and their titles run the gamut.



Consistency is no longer a true concern. It is more important to capture the essence of the wedding guest, and how they would like to be referred to. A classic example of this would be an envelope addressed to a widow. Traditionally, a widow would be referred to and “Mrs. Walter Lipton” on a handwritten envelope. Currently most women would like to have their own first name used, either with “Mrs.” or “Ms”.


The use of “Ms.” Is now universally accepted and preferred for single and married women receiving an invitation for themselves alone. The feeling is that is it less offensive to suggest that a woman’s marital status determines her worth.


Single sex couples much prefer having their names stacked on one envelope. It is insulting them to receive separate invitations if they live at the same address.


Gone is the use of the title “Master” for young boys. The association of the word “Master” is too unpleasant and outdated. “Miss” for some young girls, still sounds socially acceptable, but it is optional.



When addressing wedding invitation envelopes, I think the best rule of thumb is to consider the feelings of your guests, while remaining comfortable with the tenor of the situation. Common sense and courtesy have replaced “the rules” and paved the way for the new age wedding. I am over it!


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