The first glimpse of what you have planned for your guests is communicated through the invitation. Recipients of your invitation will automatically be drawn to the contents of such by the color, texture and even the lettering. Now that you have a captive audience, give them something to be excited about.

Just how do you select the proper invitations for your celebration? Simple. It should reflect the style and sophistication of the event. If you want to try something new, consider the following:

1. Out of shape.

The hostess with the most-est is always looks for ways to be original. Long gone are the days of the standard rectangular invite. Invitations are available round, square, folded, tri-fold, oblong, oversized; any shape you can imagine. Gaining in popularity these days are the tea length cards which are rectangular in shape and the regal squares (8"x8").

2. Paper-less.

If the thought of a paper invitation, no matter the shape still doesn't tickle your fancy, go for an invite created out of another material. You can have your invitation etched into an acrylic block (similar to the look of a paper weight), embroidered onto a piece of fabric that can be mailed as a scroll, carved into a piece of wood or select a prop from your theme and use that for your invite. Still don't see it? For Ryan's upcoming birthday party have miniature basketballs personalized with the details of the sports themed-event and send those out in lieu of the traditional paper invites. Warning, the more creative you are the more excited guests will be, resulting in perfect attendance for your event.

3. Make a Fashion Statement.

Belts, bows, bands, buttons and buckles aren't just for clothing anymore. Add any of these embellishments to invitations and change the look completely. Simple styles are transformed when paired with these accessories.

Pouchettes, not to be confused with the poncho is a wrap that covers the invitation usually forming two or four semi-circles making for a dramatic presentation to guests. Or have the details of your event imprinted directly on to the pouchette for simplicity with a luxe look.

For a formal affair put invitations into a jackets or purses. You can find them in silk dupioni, peau d'soie, satin or organza. Not to be outdone by the invites, guests will be flocking to their favorite boutiques in preparation for your fete.

4. Bursts of color.

Color options are no longer limited to white or ecru. Color palettes for stationery are mimicking those on the runway. What's exciting on the color wheel now? Vibrant reds, rich cocoa blends and sparkling metallics.

Dare to be different for your next event and take invitations to the next level.