Some interesting things happened in the past week in the world of invitations of art. Two of particular note were: an article in the New York Times regarding the much maligned R.S.V.P., and the Pantone Spring/Summer 2011 forecast.
Latter first, the Pantone Spring/Summer 2011 forecast was called "Symmetry" and was supposedly going to demonstrate symmetries through color. The palettes were strong but the superset of color selections was very broad. I think that Pantone intended to communicate the philosophical symmetries of creating a highly balanced colorway but that fell a bit short.
Instead, we got a collection of palettes that suggested romantic and cinematic themes that centered around slightly soft primaries and lots of tinted analogs. The presentation didn't create the concept of symmetries so well, but some of the slides did. Take a look below at two of the slides from their presentation regarding the "Vibrant Friends" and "Shocking Buddies" palettes.
I think part of the breadth in Pantone's forecast is due to the economic uncertainty and a certain uncertainty on their part regarding whether the trends will stay conservative (muted, darker palettes) or exuberant (primaries). As a result, we get a selection that combines both. I'd personally suggest that you look for a lot of variation in 2011 and guess that it will be difficult for many companies to accurately find the right colors for their products. I imagine that 2011 will continue the trend of niche companies and products rising to the top, particularly those that are handmade or made by small businesses.
The second, but former, development was an interesting article in the New York Times regarding the R.S.V.P. by Op-Ed contributor Rand Richards Cooper. He wrote about the difficulty of using and ensuring the use of the R.S.V.P. when planning parties or other events. After his editorial, a great number of times readers responded to his writing with a variety of views, many espousing their support for tradition, manners, and social graces. I highly recommend reading both the original editorial, and have included two links to various letters to the editor regarding the editorial.
The original Op-Ed by Rand Richards Cooper can be found here.
Letters to the editor regarding the article can be found here and here.