1930s: A Brief History of Wedding Invitations

In the United States, the 1930s were a time of widespread unemployment and poverty. Even amid the hardship of the Great Depression, people moved forward, found love and got married. We were able to dig up these vintage wedding invitations and see what styles were widely adopted during this trying time.

wedding invitation from 1930
Consentino-Posillico Wedding Announcement – June 29, 1930

This invitation from 1930 is perhaps the most elaborate and detailed one we’ve seen so far. The invitation features embossed borders and a monogram at the top, surrounded and enhanced by a beautiful embossed design. Out of all the wedding invitations we’ve found, this was the first we saw with a monogram featured on it. Instead of using a script font, they chose an old English calligraphy font. The names of the hosts of the wedding, along with the bride and groom, are significantly larger than the rest of the body text–a trend which is seen on many invitations from the time period. From the design and information on the invitation, you can surmise that they are affluent families. In the body text of the invitation, they have included specific details about the ceremony and reception following. This is the first time we’ve seen reception details in the body of the invitation. The bride’s residence is listed in the lower left hand corner, so recipients of the invitation could send their congratulations. As with other invitations we’ve seen, there is a fold in the middle of the invitation.

wedding invitation from 1932
Hendrickson-LeMire Wedding Announcement – June 30, 1932

This is a very simple marriage announcement from a wedding in Omaha, Nebraska. Featuring an embossed border and middle fold, this is a very standard wedding announcement for the time. It uses an old English calligraphy font and features a host line, the bride and groom’s names, and lastly the date and location of the marriage.

wedding invitation from 1934
Ellinwood-Ross Wedding Announcement – November 1, 1934

Here we have another simple marriage announcement–this one from Chicago, Illinois. It is almost identical to the wedding announcement from Omaha, Nebraska, the main difference being the font used. This script font is more playful and elegant than the old English calligraphy featured in the announcement above. Otherwise, the style of the invitation is incredibly similar–embossed border, middle fold, and the same basic sections of a wedding announcement are featured.

wedding invitation from 1934
Pinkerton-Baldwin Wedding Announcement – November 25, 1934

This is the first invitation we’ve seen with a neoclassical serif font featured throughout. As with other invitations we’ve seen, the names of all parties involved are a little larger than the rest of the body text, the invitation has been folded in the middle, and it features an embossed border. This invitation includes a request line and subsequent ceremony details–this particular wedding was held in Redlands, California, which could account for the differently styled font.

In conclusion, in 1930s America it was very popular for your wedding invitations to have an embossed border and to be folded in the middle. The names of all parties involved with the wedding were usually emphasized with a larger font than the rest of the body text. The content of the invitation traditionally included an announcement or request line, along with the location of the marriage. This information is still included on wedding invitations today.

Visit us next week to see the wedding invitations we found from the 1940s!

Consentino-Posillico Wedding Announcement
Hendrickson-LeMire Wedding Announcement
Ellinwood-Ross Wedding Announcement
Pinkerton-Baldwin Wedding Announcement

Simply Classic Wedding Invitations

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