This is the most frequently asked question by wedding planners, clients, everyone including grandma. As simple as it sounds there are many things to think about when deciding on a direction for wedding invitations.
Decide how much you’d like to spend on wedding invitations. 90% of my potential clients have no idea what their budget is for wedding stationery and this is a problem. I can’t answer this for you. This also makes it difficult for me to guide you through the custom design process. Think about your priorities. What is most important to you? If you are a paper addict, you may set aside $2500 for your invitation suites. Or, maybe you must have Michelin star food and a killer band—so you realize the invitations are next to last on your list—you instead set aside $800. If you can come up with how much you want to spend on a new car, you can come up with a wedding invitation budget.
Tip: Many websites say that couples should reserve about 5% of their wedding budget for invitations.
I know you want estimates so here’s a little breakdown… • Custom designed wedding invitations = $1000+ • Boutique shops and stationery stores (i.e. Paper Source) = $700+ • Online template companies (i.e. Minted and Paper Divas) = $500+ • Etsy templates (i.e. DIY - Print at Home) = $250+
Is your engagement short or long? Custom wedding invitations take time, there is no way around it. On average, I collaborate with my couples for about three months on their invitation design. I require two weeks just to create the two design concepts I will present. I also use local printers with small shops and limited employees, so print production takes time. For example, letterpress wedding invitations can take over three weeks to print. Special inks, like metallic silver or gold need a few days to dry before they can be handled. Special papers and envelopes require an order to be placed with an outside vendor, this can also tie up the timeline. Originality is never quick.
Tip: Plan ahead if you want custom invitations, otherwise, shop the web.
You want personalized service. I relate my business to a wedding planner or an interior decorator. These experts provide you with solutions to your problems, give you an organized and detailed timeline, suggest and implement creative ideas, and recommend the best vendors for your project. They act as your guide throughout a complicated process. As a custom invitation designer, I will do the same for your wedding stationery. I learn your likes and dislikes, and ask about the big day details to tie your invitation design to your wedding look and feel. We review paper samples, envelope colors, typography/fonts, ribbons, etc. I explain all options possible and include itemized pricing for every paper good you need. Would you love to have your invitations and envelopes addressed, stuffed and stamped for you? I do that too—I do it all for you!
Tip: If DIY is not your thing, and/or your schedule leading up to the wedding day is crazy and you're consumed with bigger plans, do yourself a favor and hire a custom invitation designer.
How unique is your wedding theme? You and your fiancé met at an event for your favorite show in the world, Dr. Who. So you’ve decided to have a semi-formal wedding with hints of the show thrown in because it means so much to you both. Good luck finding a wedding invitation suite to purchase online that has Dr. Who elements woven into a classy design. Online shops service hundreds and thousands of customers, thus their design options represent the masses and the trends. The couples that hire me want their own wedding day represented on the invitation design, not someone else’s wedding. My clients are the art director so the end result is perfectly one-of-a-kind.
Tip: Go custom if your wedding concept and vision is specific, innovative, novel, or out-of-the-box. It's simple… if you can’t find examples on Pinterest for what you have in mind, contact me!