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Many brides and grooms like to incorporate an aspect of their cultural background into their wedding invitations to make them more unique. For many couples that come from mixed cultures it is a way to introduce an aspect of their background to some of the guests that may not know them personally. This can be done by including a religious symbol, or a symbolic cultural graphic which marks their heritage. For many couples this is also a way of pleasing their parents who may desire more tradition wedding invitations by incorporating traditional elements into a contemporary wedding invitation design. Here are some suggested invitation designs that can bridge the gap between very traditional invitation design and a more modern invitation design.

Chinese Wedding Invitations

A traditional Chinese wedding invitation is usually made out of a bright red or gold cardstock with gold foil print of a dragon and phoenix symbol for marriage. In China, the dragon and the phoenix are traditional animals symbolic of auspiciousness. In ancient Chinese tradition, any reported sighting of a dragon and a phoenix was said to bring about a glorious period of peace and prosperity for the people and the country. This can often be a stumbling block in the search for wedding invitations as many Chinese couples find these types of symbols and this style of invitation too traditional and are looking for unique wedding invitations to reflect their fresh and modern ideas and style. However, their parents may still play a large role emotionally or financially in the wedding, so a great solution is to enlist the help of a custom wedding invitation company that can find a balance in between the traditional Chinese wedding invitation and a more contemporary wedding invitation design.

In the Chinese culture, there is a character that means double happiness that represents two people, that is traditionally printed on Chinese wedding invitations. By incorporating this symbol, together with a modern Asian graphic into the couple’s monogram the bride and groom and their parents can be pleased with the end result. The double happiness or dragon and phoenix symbol may also be printed on particular parts of the invitation without being too obtrusive. For example, you can place these images on the top of the reply card or as a watermark behind the invitation text. Instead of using a bright red paper try using a burgundy or pink cardstock combined with some more modern colors such as sage or brown to create a more modern invitation look that will have a classic Chinese invitation feel.

Celtic Wedding Invitations

For an Irish or Scottish wedding, the bride and groom may want to incorporate the Claddagh, the Celtic knot, or the Celtic cross symbol into modern invitation design. The continual looping of the designs suggests themes of eternity and interconnectedness. Kilts represent a particular family name or tribe so they include more than just the couple’s culture into the invitation design, they bring a personal family heritage. For a very personal touch the tartan or special plaid design used on the kilt can be incorporated into the invitation design. However, finding a particular tartan ribbon or cloth to use on the invitations can be a difficult task so it has become more popular to simply include the Celtic symbols on the invitations.

The Claddagh
The Claddagh symbol is found on a ring with two hands holding a heart with a crown on top. These elements correspond to the qualities of love (the heart), friendship (the hands), and loyalty (the crown). The expression associated with these symbols in the giving of the ring is, "With my hands I give you my heart, and crown it with my love." For a romantic touch on your modern styled invitation print this phrase as a watermark on the front of your folded invitation behind your names and print an image of the Claddagh at the top of your wedding invitation text once you open the invitation.

The Celtic cross
The Celtic cross has a lot of implications as it is as much a symbol of ethnic heritage as it is of faith and it is often used as an emblem of ones Irish, Scottish or Welsh identity. Try printing an image of the Celtic cross at the top of your wedding invitation wording tie a knot below and print the wedding invitation text below. This is a nice way to highlight the Celtic cross but still add a modern touch to your invitations.

Celtic knot
Celtic symbol represents eternity...the eternity of life, the eternity of nature, and the eternity of love. It is a popular image to use on wedding invitations because of the beauty of the symbol itself. Try printing the Celtic knot with the bride and groom’s names inside the knot on the cover of the invitations for an added touch of elegance.

Indian Wedding Invitations

Many young Indian couples prefer more contemporary wedding invitations that look more westernized in style than the traditional Indian Wedding Cards that are offered back home. Some of the more traditional colours used are yellow, red, gold, and orange on traditional Indian wedding invitations. Many Indian couples choose to honor their parents by including some aspect of the Indian culture into a more modern wedding invitation design.

Ganesha and The Om Symbol
The large Ganesha head, is the head of an elephant and symbolizes wisdom, understanding, and a discriminating intellect that one must possess to attain perfection in life. The wide mouth represents the natural human desire to enjoy life in the world. The large ears signify that a perfect person is the one who possesses a great capacity to listen to others and assimilate ideas. The Om symbol is a sacred syllable representing Brahman, the impersonal Absolute - omnipotent, omnipresent, and the source of all manifest existence. These two symbols are often included together on most traditional Indian wedding cards. Try printing the Ganesha and om symbol on the front of the invitation and give your wedding invitations a more unique and modern touch by adding a rhinestone on either side of the om or on the head of the Ganesha. As an added element, use a henna design as a watermark to frame your invitation wording.

Jewish Wedding Invitations

A traditional Jewish wedding invitation card should incorporate the Star of David and two characters in Hebrew printed at the top right corner of the wedding invitation representing and inviting God’s blessing on the couple’s marriage. The Star of David is named after King David of ancient Israel and its usage began in the Middle Ages, alongside the more ancient symbol of the menorah. It symbolizes Judaism or Jews. Another popular phrase that is included on Jewish wedding invitations is one printed in Hebrew that translates to, “I am my beloved’s and my beloved is mine.”
All of these elements can be included in a Jewish wedding invitations through a more contemporary approach. Try including the Star of David by printing it at the top of the wedding invitation with the name of the Bride and Groom underneath and with the two Hebrew characters to the right. Wrap a ribbon around the invitations with a beautiful rhinestone buckle attached just underneath and have the invitation text printed beneath the ribbon and buckle. Have the other popular Hebrew phrase running in a wave like shape as a watermark underneath the text near the bottom of the invitation for a more customized look.