Hey there! Welcome to part two of our Invitation 101 series, all about wedding invitations. Over the last 5 years, we’ve learned a few tricks to streamline the process, and we’re sharing them with you here.
Psst…The pattern above is part of our new watercolor invitation series. Stay tuned for the launch in the next few weeks.
TIMING IS EVERYTHING
Keep the invitation process stress-free by allowing yourself lots of time! Start thinking about your invitations as early as possible in your wedding planning process. This could be a year or more in advance. Last-minute invitations would not be fun, not to mention the rush charges you might incur could blow your budget.
Click to download our Invitation Timeline cheat sheet:
A YEAR IN ADVANCE (OR MORE)
As mentioned in our first post, start envisioning your dream invitations and identify a few possible stationers to work with. Order a few samples to get an idea of the products and papers you might like to use. Decide if you want to do a completely custom design or tailor an existing invitation design to your event. Creating a custom invitation will add anywhere from 3 to 8 weeks on to your invitation design process, so it’s important to consider this from the get-go and add this on to the general timeframes listed below.
6-9 MONTHS IN ADVANCE
If you’re mailing a Save the Date, especially for a destination wedding, this is the time to get those in the mail. Our last post (below) covered Save the Dates in more detail.
WHEN TO ORDER
A general rule is to send out invitations 6-8 weeks before the wedding. If it’s a destination wedding, 3 months ahead is the standard. With that in mind, we recommend ordering your invitations 3-4 months in advance for local weddings or 6-7 months in advance for destination weddings. This will allow time for design, proofing, production, assembly, and mailing your invitations, while providing ample notice for your guests.
PRINTING & PRODUCTION
For digital printing, you can expect a production time of two weeks. Letterpress or specialty printing typically takes three weeks. Production can usually be expedited, but there is usually a charge associated with this. We’ll cover print methods in more detail in the next installment of this series.
LEAVE EXTRA TIME
Don’t forget to leave time for your calligrapher (or you + your fave helpers!) to address the envelopes. Your stationer may be able to provide blank envelopes in advance so that this can get started while the invitations are printing. Assembly (Again – call in your besties on this one! Bribe them with pizza and wine post-project. ) and mailing tack on a few more days. International invitations can take anywhere from 6-10 days to arrive. We’ll cover mailing and postage in a later post.
Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information on any of the topics above.