How to use clip art frames to create invitations

I recently launched my new Sweetly Southern watercolor graphics sets, and today I am going to show you how to use one of the pre-made invitation frame designs to create an invitation, and add text to the pre-designed watercolor frame in Adobe Illustrator. 

If you are a photographer and want to use Photoshop or don’t have access to Illustrator, the steps shown in this tutorial are very similar in Photoshop. Though, Illustrator is the program I use for stationery design.

Follow this tutorial on how to use clip art frames to create invitations, and add wording to them in Illustrator. Plus, get a free watercolor graphics frame to try out the tutorial!

With this tutorial, I wanted to show you to how easy it is to create printable invitations with the clip art graphics in my sets. And just so you can try them out, you can download one of my frame designs at the end of this post for free! Just go to the bottom of the post and click the download button. You will receive a ZIP file with a PNG and JPEG of the free clip art frame design, and I included in the download a PDF with links to the fonts I used in the tutorial. Plus there is a link back to this post for reference and links right in the PDF to my graphics shop to purchase more frame designs.

I will be adding more of these smaller graphics sets to my shop over the next few months (so far they have been big hits in both my shop here and on Etsy), but here are the ones currently available as of this post:

Sweetly Southern Stationery Design Set

Mountainside Meadows Frames Set

And if you want to use wreaths or frames for stationery without bleed edges, you should check out these sets:

Sweetly Southern Garden Wreaths Set

Sweetly Southern Frames Set

If you want to get the entire Sweetly Southern graphics collection, that includes all the elements in one big bundle, you can purchase the mega set here in my Creative Market shop!

How to use a clip art frame design to create an invitation

a Step by Step tutorial

1.) Set up your Illustrator file


My artboard in Adobe Illustrator is 5.253 x 7.253 inches to include print bleeds, and I set my file as RGB colorspace since this design is mostly an image of artwork and more like a photograph. But, you can convert to CMYK if your printer requires it. Check with your printer on color build first, and I always recommend doing test prints with printers before ordering greater quantities.

2.) Embed your clip art graphics invitation frame

Once you have the artboard setup, you will want to place the artwork into your document. 

Go to File > Place

And choose the graphics template invitation frame you want to use in your files. 


Click the Embed button to place the design into the artboard. Make sure the frame reaches the bleeds, and everything is aligned. You can use the Align Tool and Select Align to Artboard to center the design.


If the Align Panel is not visible in Illustrator, go to Window > Align to bring up the panel.

3.) Select your Type Tool and Choose the font

With the Type Tool selected, begin typing. You can set your font in the Character field.

With your wording selected, center your text using the Horizontal Align Tool from the Align Panel (shown above). Using the Align Tool will align your invitation wording to the center of your artboard. 

See example image below.


4.) Save Your Design

Save your design in a design file as is so you can access it later.

5.) Prepare your file for print according to your printer's specifications and save a separate file for print

Printers require you to provide your complete files ready for print according to their requirements.

Some printers require fonts to be outlined, so you should ALWAYS save out a separate file for print. Once you outline your text, you cannot edit it, and that can be troublesome later if you need to make changes. (Been there and done that, oops). So save a separate print file for each project as a new file to keep your design file editable.

There are many different stationery printers to choose from, and they all have different file requirements before uploading files for printing. Be sure to follow their file guides for the best printing results. Some printers even have templates you can download.

Some of my favorite stationery printers:


Printswell Fulfillment


I have personally used some of these printers, and the ones I haven’t used, I received some beautiful sample prints from them. Some of them offer wholesale accounts too (which means better pricing, woohoo), so check for that option at their websites.

I hope you enjoyed this new tutorial on how to use a clipart frame design to create an invitation!

Download this free sample frame design to try out this tutorial!

Free inviation frame clip art graphics

Note: This download is for personal use only and for trying out the tutorial. If you would like to use the design for commercial use to sell products, please purchase this set to license the clip art graphics frames for commercial use with a standard license.

If you like the free sample frame, click here to shop all the clip art sets