Wedding Invitation Advice

From a Pro

Aly Am Paperie

If tiered wedding invitations made of rose gold paper with beautifully printed lettering and designs is your wedding invitation vision, then Aly Am Paperie Invitations & Gifts has got a whole lot more where that came from!

After almost 12 years in business, Gretchen Olivares has stayed in tune with the ever-changing trends of wedding stationery, relishing every step of the way. “Helping wedding couples write the stationery for their once-in-a-life-time day is my passion,” said Gretchen. “That’s why our tag line is ‘Celebrating Life’s Special Moments.’ 

Aly Am Paperie Wedding Invitations
Aly Am Paperie

Growing up, Gretchen’s family frequently hosted gatherings with friends and relatives, and was respectfully known as the “party family” as their love for bringing people together for celebrations shined bright. Gretchen continued living her “party family” lifestyle when she opened her business doing what she adores—writing the very stationery that gets the wedding party started.

“I love helping people celebrate the special and heart-felt events of their lives,” she said. “I love being able to help someone write the stationery that begins that process.”

For Gretchen, personalizing a couples’ save the dates, wedding invitations, RSVPs and thank you cards is so much more than pleasing another customer. She makes it a point to sit down with all of her clients, so she can get to know them as a couple and learn about their upcoming wedding through an in-person meeting.

“We always ask our couples about their day, their venue, the colors they are using for their wedding and what the overall feel is that they want to portray for their wedding,” said Gretchen.

Aly Am Paperie
Aly Am Paperie Wedding Invitations

She assists couples when choosing how to word their invitations or how to lay them out, so that the information reads well and looks great.

“I let them choose what is the best for them, because in the end, this is their special day and everything about this needs to reflect them,” she said.

Aly Am Paperie Wedding Invitations
Aly Am Paperie Wedding Invitations

For couples that are on the fence about whether to send out print invites or e-vites, Gretchen listed the following benefits of choosing print.

  1. They offer more formality and are better able to capture the ambiance of the wedding.
  2. They add a personal aspect that makes guests feel special.
  3. They are three-dimensional, so guests can touch them and sometimes smell them! Printed invites can add elements for the senses to appreciate.
  4. Printed invites can be placed on the fridge or pinned on a board as a pleasant reminder of their loved one’s upcoming wedding.
  5. Printed invitations ensure that guests have all of the information needed to enjoy the wedding and don’t miss any of the details. Electronic versions, though pretty, tend to read like an e-mail or text message. They don’t hold the reader’s attention, and that could result in the reader missing important bits of information.


Wondering what’s trending in wedding invitations for 2018? Gretchen said the trends are leaning less toward what the ‘color of the year’ is and more toward integrating elements from couples’ venues. “We’ve incorporated specific artwork to go around the invitation that looks like Old Spanish tile to represent some of the churches around here,” she detailed of a past invitation design.

Aly Am Paperie Wedding Invitations

When it comes to a wedding, every couple wants to put their special touch on it. This includes their invitations. The personalization options that Gretchen offers include varieties of paper stock, textures, colors, layouts, scripts and more.

A non-traditional wedding invite design that she makes for clients with a larger budget are acrylics. The acrylic print options include laser engraving and screen printing. This unique medium really wows the crowd, stirring their sense of touch.

Aly Am Paperie Wedding Invitations
Aly Am Paperie

For the couple that needs to have their invites printed quickly, Gretchen has a fun, touchscreen Print On-Demand computer that can deliver beautiful and customized products. You can have everything printed in 1-2 business days or do a same-day, rush-order for a small additional fee.

Aly Am Paperie Wedding Invitations
Aly Am Paperie

Sometimes mailing out invitations doesn’t always go as planned. The reality of having your wedding invites deemed undeliverable by the postal service and returned to you, sometimes even after your wedding, is one that you can take steps toward preventing, and Gretchen can help!

“We have a system where whenever I input addresses, it will let me know if a city is misspelled or if a city and a zip code are not matching up, “ she explained.

Therefore, she can correct the address and know that, on her end, the invite is addressed appropriately and that will not be an issue in the delivery process. Her additional tips for appeasing a situation like this are to always include a return address and to put the invites in the mail at least eight weeks in advance, and even further in advance when mailing around the holidays.

Aly Am Paperie
Aly Am Paperie Wedding Invitations

There is no doubt that Gretchen’s life-long passion for celebrations carries over into her stunning designs for clients. She truly enjoys giving couples invitations that represent who they are, producing something special that they can keep forever!

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