Did you hear the one about the creative invitation that walked into a bar? Or maybe it was a cow and a chicken? All right, I’m terrible at remembering jokes, but there’s nothing funny about the work and creativity that went into this improv-comedy themed invitation that Suttle-Straus crafted for their annual employee recognition party. It has everything I look for in such a piece: drama, inventiveness, and a confident use of gatefolds [PRO Tip: Unravel the Mystery of Gatefolds].
Designed by the in-house team at printing and marketing company Suttle-Straus, this creative invitation is all about creating a mood – in this case the experience of hitting a nightclub in search of a good time. It begins, as many such trips do, with a splash of neon. In this case it’s not a sign above a club but an A9 envelope made from Neenah’s super-attention-grabbing Astrobrights Vulcan Green. Opening it is when the fun truly begins.
What Makes this a CREATIVE Invitation?
Offset printed on International Paper’s Accent Opaque 80 lb. Cover [Get Swatchbook!], the invitation still feels intriguingly chunky thanks to the surprises packed inside.
Closed it resembles a darkened theater with strategic die cuts giving the impression of a silhouetted audience waiting for the show to begin. In front of them hangs a vivid blue theater curtain. On each side of the piece is a green tab marked “Pull.” Following these directions parts the curtains, revealing the name of the event in Black and 2 fluorescent inks, while each curtain piece folds out to display further details and an RSVP card that can be torn off and mailed back.
“We always try to grab attention with an interactive element, as well as try different print techniques,” explains Suttle-Straus’ Maeghan Nicholson. “We featured fluorescent inks and a modified gatefold to mimic the experience of seeing an improv show. The fluorescent inks helped give it the neon light feel.”
The same inks were used to print additional pieces, including menu cards and drink tickets, on the same Accent Opaque sheets to minimize waste – these were inserted into the invitations, adding another element of surprise and occasion.
The main lesson learned from developing this creative invitation? “Not to overcomplicate a die line,” Maeghan confides. “Even an interactive piece can be created fairly simply.”