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  • Writer's pictureSTP Weddings

Wedding Invitations- Selecting Invitations

Today we are going to get into the meat of the invitation process- the actual selection of your invitations. We spoke to two very talented invitation experts to get their advice on navigating the invitation process.: Jessica Giovine, owner of The Jess Press and Lisa Purcell, owner of Art, Paper, Scissors. We are very excited to share the great tips that they provided. Stick with us, it’s longer than most of our articles but we hope that you will find it helpful whether you are working with an invitation designer or going through a website. [Above invitation and Photo by Art, Paper, Scissors]

Check out some samples

When you begin the design process with Art, Paper, Scissors, Lisa will share lots of samples of work that she has done for other clients. “It isn’t meant to be a pick out of a book process, just to serve as inspiration for things like wording, font and style.”

If you are choosing from a website, you are usually able to select different styles and have them send you a sample of that invitation. Sometimes it helps to just be able to hold them in your hand and compare them in person.

Know your budget

Have a rough idea in mind as to what you are willing to spend on your invitations. This will help you to figure out if you are going to go with any add on’s during the process or more of the basic invitations. When designing with The Jess Press, a pricing guide is one of the initial items that is shared so that couples can get a feel for the various options and pricing associated with them. “Often selections are based on budget. The most affordable is going to be a flat, matte or shimmer paper and then you will go up in price if you wanted deckled or ripped edges.”

Nail your verbiage first

Before you even begin to worry about your design, it’s important to know what you are writing on the invitations. If you are working with one of the designers we mentioned, they will share sample wording with you. You’ll find sample wording throughout invitation websites as well. Here’s an article from Minted that you can check out for some guidance. . One of the biggest pieces of advice from Lisa at Art, Paper, Scissors when figuring out your wording is to “check with your parents about whether or not they want their names on the invitation rather than just assume they do/don’t.” This eliminates any unwanted surprises! [Above photo by Susan Elizabeth Weddings; invitations by Art, Paper, Scissors]

The Necessities

The main items that most couples include are:

  • · Invitation Card

  • · Details Card

  • · RSVP Card

There are of course variables that can be added here like direction cards. Jessica mentioned that recently she has seen people adding cards with verbiage about Covid or even making the details card double sided to include it. Lisa said some people like to include schedule of event cards. Welcome bags are also a great spot for these.

Recently some couples are opting to do online RSVP’s. We think either method is fine, just depends on how traditional you’d like to be. When it comes to RSVP’s, one thing Lisa suggested is to find out if RSVP postage is placed on the return envelope for you in advance because if not, you will need to go into each envelope to pull them out, which sounds like quite a process.

The Packaging

Once it is time to assemble the invitations, it's important to think about how you’d like to package them up. Jessica said she “really discourages leaving them loose in the envelope. It’s nice when everything is neatly tied together and recipients don’t need to reach back into the envelope.” She said that this can be done in a very affordable way such as grabbing ribbon from Michaels.

If you’d like to go a step up from belly bands or ribbon, you can look into putting everything into a pocket. Lisa likes to show her couples different styles and share the various functionalities of each to figure out what can work within a couples price range.

Don’t forget about the labor that goes into assembly though. Lisa suggested always asking up front if assembly is included. “Some people think they are getting a great deal but then they have to glue the invitations together themselves.”

Outer and Inner Envelopes

Depending on how traditional of a look you are going for, you may choose to include an outer envelope. Lisa said she usually just “sees one envelope unless the couple is being super traditional or using an envelope liner.” She said if an envelope liner is being used, a second envelope is nice to have so that the one with the liner doesn’t get ripped as guests open it.

Speaking of liners, while Jessica said she always recommends them because they look so pretty they are also one of the first things that she suggests removing if the couple is trying to save money. “Since they are part of the envelope, they often get thrown right into the garbage.”

Add On’s

Sometimes I get overwhelmed here with all the additional items that can be added to invitations but really, these are totally optional and often budget dependent.

Some items that I spoke to Lisa and Jessica about were:

  • · Wax seals

  • · Ribbon

  • · Envelope liners

  • · Vintage Stamps

  • · Calligraphy

  • · Envelope addressing

  • · Various printing techniques

If you find yourself swooning over detail photos like I do way too often but may not have the budget to do too many add on’s for your invitations, you can always add some of extra touches to the invitation for your photographer. For example, if you didn’t do calligraphy on your envelopes, you can always have one done for the details shot and include some pretty vintage stamps to go with it.


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