After making wedding invitations and stationery for over 25 years, I'm often contacted by brides who wanted to make their own wedding invitations by come unstuck for a variety of reasons. So in order to avoid making the same mistakes, here's 7 things you simple MUST know.
1. Printing methods
I’m guessing if you are printing at home you are using an ink-jet printer. Be aware that not all card is suitable for ink jets and your printing could smudge or bleed.
At Inspired by Script we use a laser printer which gives a clean and crisp quality to our invitations, this ensures also that our foil also looks clean and crisp.
Layout and design is important. Get this wrong and the whole thing can look cheap and nasty. Take care also when choosing fonts for your cards. Make sure it’s readable. Some fonts may look fancy, but when printed at a small size and with aging eyes, making out what it actually says can be a problem. Focus on a fancy design and plain font rather than the other way round. Another word of advice is…. Make sure your design isn’t ink heavy. If you are making your invitations to save money, it could very well cost you more in the long run.
3. Paper/card stock
Card is described by weight. The thicker the card the higher the number. At Inspired by Script we use 260gms for folded cards and 330gsm for flat invitations. We like our invitations to hold their shape and not curl or flop. It’s most likely that this weight is too thick for home printers. Choose a weight that is suitable for your printer and buy a few sheets to try first….before you rush out and by reams of the stuff.
Buy your envelopes first. It’s far easier to make cards to fit envelopes than the other way round. I’ve seen some beautiful cards having to be remade because the maker couldn’t find an envelope to fit.
If you want to add embellishments to your cards remember that the flatter the embellishment the better. Seeing great examples of buckles and large flowers on Pinterest is all very well, but try stuffing it and closing the envelope and you’ll be…..well stuffed. You can of course post your cards in a box but be aware of the extra postage costs.
Take postage into account. The more sheets, the heavier the envelope, the more postage you’ll have to pay. I had a client that was over the moon I could make her the scroll invitations she dreamed of…. Until I pointed out that a box would cost an extra £1 and the posted was £3. If you want to include more than the invitation….for example RSVP card, Accommodation, Menu choice etc. consider pocket fold invitations or wallets.
7. Time Scale
If you are a naturally arty/crafty kind of person then you will already be aware of how much time your invitations will take to design and make. Don’t underestimate the time needed. Making half a dozen Christmas cards is one thing but convert that into 50 – 70 invitations when you are working full time and making invitations in your ‘spare time’ could drive you up the wall. I’ve had to do ‘rush jobs’ for couples that simply ran out of time or steam.
Rather than aim to make your cards over a whole weekend, if you are not used to mass production, I suggest you break the making down into small chunks. This is particularly useful if you have a short attention span. Alternatively you could ask your crafty Bridesmaids or female family members round and supply them with a few drinks and nibbles and make a night of it.
Have you or are you planning on making your own invitations or stationery?
What problems did you come across?
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Happy crafting! Sue x
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