Want a brilliant idea for DIY wedding invitations? Find an artist you love and have him/her  paint a portrait of you and your sweetie. Not only will you have fabulous, one-of-a-kind invitations, you’ll have an original piece of art that  you can cherish for a lifetime.

Emma and Michael (yesterday’s real wedding feature) had their friend Catherine Thompson paint their portrait which they used for their wedding invitations.

“Since I’m a designer, I really felt like the invitations needed to be the best thing I’ve ever done.  I knew this was sort of impossible given the time factor and the importance of the event.  We always loved our friend Catherine Thompson’s work and felt her style would work perfectly for the invitations.  We posed for pictures, sent them to her along with references for all the stuff in the background, and she painted the portrait in a weekend.  We were completely floored when we opened the box,” explains Michael. “From there, we pulled out all the stops designing the other materials for the invitations.  We mimicked the worn paper texture by printing in 4 color offset.  All the red was printed in letterpress.  Our printer made it financially possible by giving us 50% off the entire job.”

But the creativity didn’t stop there. Michael and Emma typed (on a typewriter!) each invitation individually with text written specifically for each person.

” I thought this would take a long time, but we got through it over a weekend,” explains Michael.

The result?

“Our guests really freaked out when they actually read the invitations and realized it was specifically for them.  It was great,” he says.