We were inspired from a Martha Stewart article and decided to do our own!
Below is the A-Z of the wedding invitation process.
A- Ancillary Items
Did you think of all the items you needed? Invitation, reply set, and envelopes make up a traditional invitation suite. Do you need a reception card (ifyour reception is at a different location), accommodations/directions card, or schedule of events?
A favorite of ours, blind embossing is a process of pressing the paper with no color. This allows the design and paper to be the detail of the invitation
Using calligraphy style fonts you can create a similar look and feel to hand calligraphy at a lower cost with a faster turnaround.
D- Die Cut
A tool named a Die (think cookie cutter) is pressed through the cardstock to create a different shape or design than standard shape such as a square or rectangle.
French, square, side open… There are as many types of envelopes as there are cardstocks. This is the first part of your invitation your guests see and should be treated with as much care as picking your invitation. Add a liner, design motif, or special fonts, as there are many ways to dress up the outer envelope.
Choosing a font is like choosing a style. There are traditional, modern, eclectic, fun, and elegant fonts. Font choice can change the entire look and feel of your invitation, so make sure the font choice you go with conveys your style and compliments the design aesthetic of the invitation.
Upon receipt of your proofs, please have a few family and friends look them over carefully. Once you approve the proof, you are accepting
everything from the cardstock, inks, punctuation, dates, times, and grammar.
Your stationer should be familiar and recommend this process. Ideally your invitations should be hand cancelled, which means the post
office clerk stamps your invitations and they go directly to the trucks to go out. This avoids the dreaded sorter machine that puts big black lines across your envelopes. This can be a tricky process as some post offices don’t like to do it. You want to be VERY nice and go at an odd day and time. Monday at 4:45 is not recommended. Be aware if your invitations are traveling long distances they will most likely come across a sorter at some point.
The most important piece of your wedding stationery process. Put a great deal of thought into your cardstock, inks, and fonts as they help to set the tone for your special day.
Or “pocket fold” as it is otherwise referred to, is a folded piece of thick cardstock to house and organize the pieces of your invitation. The come
in a variety of shapes, sizes, and orientations.
Etiquette states that it is inappropriate to put “no children, or adults only” on your wedding invitation. If you are opting for an adults only
reception, the proper way to convey this information is by how you address the envelopes. If the children are not specifically listed or “and family” does not appear, then the children are not invited.
One of the most traditional printing processes and one of the most costly. A plate with a raised type are inked and then pressed into the desired paper. This creates a luxuriously textured and indented feel.
M- Metallic Foil
A new type of ink used in letterpress. This ink has a high shine and creates a dramatic feel.
N- Number of Invitations
This is one of the most important things to know before meeting with your stationer as it is an integral part of the pricing process. A lot of people confuse this with the number of guests. This is different than the number of guests attending, as a family of 3 gets 1 invitation.
We recommend ordering more than the quantity of invitations needed. For custom invitations, usually you can order is 1’s. If you order from an album usually you have to order in 25’s. To gauge we recommend at least 10 extra invitations than your invitation count. This will account for post office error, last minute guest additions, and a few to save for you and family.
One of the most important things we discuss with our brides. DO NOT purchase your postage until you know the sizes and weight of your invitation suite pieces. A live sample to bring to the post office will work as well. A few things to remember, square always costs more, don’t forget the stamp for your rsvp, and check with your post office to make sure they have the style postage you would like. Custom stamps are
available and can include a duogram, motif, or design element from your invitation suite.
Before meeting with your stationer you want to check the quality of their work. Research their reviews, and find out what companies they represent. Ask the vendors you trust for a referral. The wedding invitation process goes much smoother if you are comfortable with the company you work with.
Do I need one? YES! You want to make sure that if you sent an invitation out and it doesn’t make it to the guest that it comes back to you. It will give you an opportunity to resend a new invitation
For destination weddings we recommend that your invitations are sent out 3 months prior to your wedding date. This will allow guests ample time to coordinate travel. For in town weddings your invitations should be sent out 2 months in advance. Of course we always suggest save the date cards to let your guests know as soon as possible about your nuptials. Save the Dates go out anywhere between 6-12 months prior to the wedding.
T-Turn Around Time
You will want to ask your stationer about this. Companies differ on the time it takes for production. You want to clarify how long it will take for your first proof, for revised proofs, and production once the proof is approved. Don’t forget to ask about the shipping timeframe.
Make sure you understand and have in writing what you are paying for and the production timeline for delivery.
Can be heavy and opaque or thin and see through but both styles have an extremely smooth surface. Vellum is great as an invitation protector, pocket fold, and even cardstock.
W- Wax Seal
These are not as daunting as they used to be! New methods contain wax that is glue gun compatible and even sticker wax seals. You can have your duo gram, wedding date, or even a motif imprinted in the wax. Choose from a variety of colors and even sparkle wax too.
X- X Marks the Spot
Maps are a huge trend in wedding materials. For a destination wedding they show where the different events are located on the property. They are great to aid guests in travel if the ceremony and reception are in different locations. A map with markings of important milestones in your relationship makes the perfect save the date.
Y- Your Style
Your invitation is an integral part of informing your guests to the style of your event. Your invitation should reflect your style and the feel of the event. P.s. You can never go wrong with a great simple letterpress invitation!
The amount of money it takes to look for inspiration on line. It is extremely helpful to bring images of the invitations you like to your nvitation meeting.