Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Sis's wedding: the invitations

Previous wedding posts: wedding overview, and the cake recipe.

One of my favorite imaginary occupations is being a stationery designer. With an old fashioned letterpress. Sadly that takes room, and money, and skills, none of which I possess.

On a tight budget, letterpress simply wasn't an option, so Sis decided to go super simple instead. I designed the invitations to maximize efficient use of paper and shopped around online for envelopes.

I designed the invitations in Illustrator and printed them on nicely textured white paper, four to a page. An ink jet printer works just fine, especially if you set the print quality to "best." A thick black paper with lightly embossed columns provided the backing, and I added a couple tiny rhinestones to the fly aways because I am a sucker for sparkles.

The RSVP cards were very similar, but I backed them on thick black cardstock, so that they would hold up to the mailing process. D designed a super simple map for the details card.


Tips if you are thinking about making your own invitations:

1. Try to maximize everything - I started with common paper sizes and then figured out what size to make the final invitations.

2. Research postal rules. We originally thought square invitations sounded fun, but oddly sized envelopes mean extra postage, which adds up quickly. We made the postcard RSVPs, which saves money on postage, but they have minimum and maximum sizes.

3. Invest in a paper cutter and some spare blades - trust me, you cannot do this with scissors.

4. Spray adhesive is a million times less messy than actual glue. We would lay several invitations out face down on a large piece of cardboard, spray them all (outside!) and then quickly lay them down on the backing.

5. Buy a test sheet of paper and print the invite on it before you commit to a bulk quantity. I made the mistake of not doing this and ended up with two unusable reams of paper, because the texture was just too smooth and I couldn't live with it.


  1. what fantastic tips you gave- i made my own invitations and agree with everything you said!
    (but would not have been able to think of everything all over again, like you did)

  2. These babies look awesome. You continue to awe and inspire me, Rachel! I love that dandelion motif, too.

  3. i'm still impressed with these...they're clear, concise and beautiful. i think their simplicity is what really sets them apart.

  4. I love beautiful invitations !! I am a Calligrapher and I have done many weddings over the last few years. Great tips you gave, Rachel!! Best of luck to your to your Sis.

  5. gorgeous...if things do not work out with the Mr. I am consulting your blog for ideas...xo hehe...

  6. those invitations are absolutely gorgeous! the dandelion adds a great touch. and how nice of you to include tips, i wish i could attempt to pull off something like this!

  7. I love these invites- GREAT JOB!! I like to add a little sparkle to things at times. Hmmm... it is a good thing I don't live near you I would be stalking you to be my friend!!! I too have an interest in stationary, and old fashioned letterpress. AND ribbon I can’t get enough of it!! Thanks for always sharing and agree with your advice. Have a golden one!!

  8. Beautiful! I love the dandelions, and the little sparkle you added to them.

  9. maybe we could run a B&B with a big barn out back where we do printing? um. and a garden?

  10. I know - wouldn't it be fun to design stationary?!

  11. I made the invitations for my brother's wedding, and in the process grew to really appreciate invitations composed of nothing but a printed sheet glued to cardstock (like yours).

    They're so chic and simple, yet feel very elegant in the hand.

    Oh, and they're super cheap and easy to assemble :)


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