What are the different printing techniques?
Save the dates and wedding invitations are one of the first things your guests will see - and their design is what will set the tone for your wedding. Here are the 7 main printing techniques used by Designs by Sarah.
Digital Printing is the most common, cost-effective and easiest printing technique currently available. Digital printing uses digital files (i.e. PDFs) that are sent directly to the printer. Electrostatic rollers called “drums” apply toner onto the paper. A wide range of colors and tones can be produced, with the exception of metallic colors like gold, silver, and rose gold.
Offset Printing uses etched metal plates (one plate for each color being printed is created) that apply ink onto a sheet of paper. The metal plates are secured to rollers that transfer the ink onto the paper. Color matching is more precise compared to digital printing because flat and metallic ink colors are custom formulated.
Letterpress is one of the oldest forms of printing and has become one of the most popular printing techniques used for wedding invitations. The ink is pressed into the surface of the paper so you can see and feel the indentation of the text or image. Each piece is individually pressed, which helps to create a timeless look and feel for your wedding day.
Foil Stamping is a similar printing process to letterpress, but where metallic colors or foils are applied to the surface using heat. The heat causes the foil to adhere onto the paper, creating a decorative finish. The most commonly used colors used in this technique are gold and silver.
Embossing is the opposite of letterpress - instead of the text or image being indented into the paper, the design is raised. This look is achieved by stamping the paper onto an etching that makes the impression on the paper.
Die-Cutting is the process where paper is cut using a metal die or blade. Traditional die-cutting works like a stamp or cookie cutter, creating cutaways into the desired shape.
Laser Cutting is known as the modern version of die-cutting, which utilizes a laser to cut the materials. Whether you’re looking for a simple or elaborate invitations, you’ll be sure to impress any guest with the intricate details of this printing method. Traditionally, paper or heavy card stock is used for this technique.
Not sure on which technique is best for your wedding theme? Get a free consultation with Sarah today!
Here’s what to expect working with Sarah in her 7 Step Process for wedding invitations:
Meet and greet to review wedding plans, ideas, etc. This is the time to discuss your vision and design ideas. Sarah will talk about budget, expectations, goals and timeline.
2. Proposal & Deposit
After meeting Sarah, she will send over a proposal that includes itemized estimates for the design and printing production costs. Once the proposal is signed, a 50% design deposit is due before any design work begins.
3. Timeline & Paper Goods Info
Sarah will send over a design and production timeline.
4. Design Concepts & Collaboration
The fun part! This is where creativity and collaboration begins! During this phase, Sarah will present two design options with samples and physical mockups for your design review meeting (either in person or over the phone). For each design, detailed print estimates are provided and you’ll share any input on the design of your choice.
After the design is selected, there are an additional three rounds of revisions to ensure everything is perfect (if necessary).
6. Final Approval & Payment
Once the final design is approved, the remainder of design and printing fees are collected before the files are sent to the printer.
7. Production & Delivery
All print production and quality of the product is coordinated and handled by Sarah. If applicable, shipping costs and delivery fees are selected and paid in advance.
Sarah is accepting clients for the 2020 wedding season -- space is very limited! Contact her today!
4 Must-Have Custom Wedding Signs
Custom signage is a huge wedding trend right now and one we should pay attention to. A lot of event venues out there are massive and empty—leaving a lot of space for you and your wedding planner to fill up. I say take this opportunity to transform the room into a welcoming experience for your guests by including fun and innovative custom signs. Most wedding invitation designers also offer custom day-of wedding signage. We will work with your one-of-a-kind wedding theme and venue to create eye-catching and informative signs.
CUSTOM WELCOME SIGNS
This is a chance to say hello to your guests when you physically cannot. At most weddings the happy couple doesn’t even start the meet and greet with their guests until an hour into the wedding—maybe more! Find your voice here, and make an impact welcoming your favorite people when they walk in the door.
CUSTOM SEATING CHART OR CUSTOM PLACE CARDS
Construct unconventional decor that will most definitely go viral. Some wedding signage gets overlooked or ignored, seating charts and place cards do not. Every single guest will experience what you’ve created here because they need to find their seat! Skip the boring seating chart sign on the easel and do something that fits your wedding style and theme.
CUSTOM BAR MENUS
Unless you are having a dry wedding (shriek at the thought!) you need a bar menu. Are you doing a signature cocktail? Is it beer and wine only? Whether you like it or not, the food and drinks served are the most important part of the day for your guests. They will be visiting the bar multiple times throughout your event so make this signage bold and readable.
CUSTOM DINNER MENUS
By far, this is the best customized item to order from your stationery designer. Most wedding invitations do not go into detail about the food selections so exhibiting a full menu at your reception is a very considerate touch. Having a buffet style backyard bbq wedding? Get just a few menus printed, then display them around the buffet and reception tables. Having a formal 3-course dinner? Request the detailed meal descriptions from your caterer and position individual menus on each place setting.
For more information on signs for your event, visit my blog
WEDDING SIGNAGE TIPS
What Kind of Wedding Invitation Can I Afford?
First things first… what is your wedding invitation budget? I’ll give you a hint: couples should reserve 3-5% of their total wedding budget for invitations. Go 3% if wedding invitations are not a priority; go 5% if you want to wow your guests.
It should come as no surprise that wedding invitations are expensive. Let’s put it into perspective. How much did you spend at the store for your mom’s birthday card this year? I bet it was at least $2.00 for ONE card and envelope—not including postage by the way. Postage alone for 150 wedding invitations comes to $105.00 and that is NOT including postage for the rsvp return envelope. Whoa! Hello? Wake up call! Ok, take a deep breath. I’m breakin’ it all down for you below—by dollar amount—to help set your expectations.
WEDDING INVITATION BUDGET IS $250-$500
Unless you are having a very small intimate wedding of 25 people, this budget is a challenge. You realistically have one choice, and that is to DIY. Here are a few suggestions on what you can do to make this budget work:
WEDDING INVITATION BUDGET $500-$750
With this budget you can trade the all-consuming DIY for the all-consuming online stationery shops. Search through thousands of designs to find the one that closely fits your awesome wedding theme and have them take care of the printing for you.
WEDDING INVITATION BUDGET IS $750-$1000
Now you can upgrade to a higher price point within those online stationery shops and select from more formal invitation layouts.
WEDDING INVITATION BUDGET IS $1000-$2000
Go local and search out a custom invitation designer! A lot of couples don’t even know we exist, so I’m telling you now… we do exist and we rock! Ask your photographer or event planner for a referral—both of these vendors work closely with wedding stationery designers.
WEDDING INVITATION BUDGET IS $2000-$3000
This is a sweet spot for more formal invitations. Absolutely you can hire a custom invitation designer and create…
WEDDING INVITATION BUDGET IS $3000+
For those who want every bell and whistle for a very large and formal wedding.
Invitation Addressing Do's & Don'ts
Putting together your event guest list is tricky stuff. Unfortunately this project isn’t complete when the amount of people is finalized. Then you have to take those guest names and address your envelopes. I recommend putting your guest list in a spreadsheet right away. You can add, delete and edit as you go along. Create multiple spreadsheets if necessary and move people around as needed without missing anyone. This will also help you gather addresses and keep organized when it comes to day-of items like a seating chart and escort cards. In the end—informal event or not—you should always address your invitations formally. Proper addressing etiquette is a lot easier than you think. I hope my tips below help you out!
DO write out full names
DON'T use initials or nicknames
DO write out “Boulevard”, “Street”, etc.
DON'T write out house numbers and zip codes
DO put men's names first unless his spouse out ranks him with a title
DON'T use middle initials
DO use Mr, Mrs, Ms, etc.
DON'T abbreviate other titles such as “Doctor” or “Reverend”
DO use Miss for women under 18 years old
DON'T use Ms for all unmarried women 18 or older
DO mail a separate invitation for children over 18 in the same household
DON'T use the husband’s name if addressing to a widow
DO research specific titles for ministers/clergy, elected officials, etc.
DON'T use incorrect titles - when unsure - Google it!
DO include a return address
DON'T use adhesive mailing labels
DO ask people how they’d like to be addressed if you are unsure
DON'T assume or guess
Tip: If you have questions about invitation addressing etiquette contact a local stationery designer and inquire! I know I am always available to help anyone out, client or no client.
For Do’s and Don’ts on Wedding Invitations see my 5.15.19 blog.