Your invitations are the first glimpse most of your guests will get of your wedding, giving them not only the essential details (date, location, time, etc.) but also an idea of what to expect on your big day. Will it be a formal black-tie affair at a contemporary art museum? Or will it be a romantic but rustic farm-to-table dinner under the stars? Invitations help set the stage for the overall tone of your wedding, so finding a stationery designer that fits the vibe of your celebration is essential. To find your perfect match, here are our top five questions to ask a wedding invitation vendor:
How would you describe your design style?
Your invitation designer’s style needs to fit with your wedding theme, so it’s important to find out if they have a specific aesthetic. For example, some designers specialize in watercolors or calligraphy, while others have a more graphic approach.
What printing techniques do you offer?
There are several printing techniques common in the wedding world, and each of them will give your invitations a different look and feel, as well as impact the overall cost. Here are a few of the most common:
- Letterpress: A metal plate presses into the front of the paper, creating indented text and graphics.
- Engraving: A metal plate presses into the back of the paper, creating raised text and graphics.
- Foil Stamping: Foil film is pressed into the paper, creating metallic text and graphics.
- Thermography: A mixture of ink and powdered resin is applied to the paper using heat, creating raised text and graphics. Thermography is more cost effective than engraving and embossing.
- Digital: The most economical option, digital printing creates text and graphics that lay flat on the paper.
How are invitations priced?
Some stationery vendors price their items individually, while others offer discounts if you order your invitations as part of a suite that includes save-the-dates, menus, escort cards, and other printed pieces. Also be sure to ask about the payment structure — how much is the deposit, when is the balance due, and what payment methods are accepted — so you can incorporate this info into your overall wedding budget.
How long will the process take?
As a general rule of thumb, save-the-date cards should be sent six to nine months before your wedding, and invitations should be sent six to eight weeks before your wedding. Make sure your stationer is able to complete your invitations from start to finish well before this deadline so your timeline won’t be thrown off.
How will I receive my proofs?
It’s an absolute must to proof every piece of stationery — from the save-the-date to the thank you card — before the final is printed. Ask your designer if the proofs will be printed or digital (keep in mind color can look very different on different screens). Also ask how many edits you are allowed, whether there are additional proofing costs, and what happens in case there is an error in the final product.
Once you’ve found the right stationer, we can’t wait to see what invitations you choose! Please post a pic on Instagram and tag us! We love being inspired by your creativity!
HAPPY WEDDING PLANNING!