The Cost of Wedding Invitations
Buying wedding invitations and stationery doesn’t have to be as daunting as that illustration above shows. Good news! There are many ways to save money — you just need to know what to look for and a little background on what to ask for. This is the second post in a series I’m writing to give couples a bit more insight regarding the wedding invitation ordering process. Working with a designer you trust is number one, but these posts can help shed some light on the process. See my first post, Custom Designed Wedding Stationery Timeline Guide, for information about when you should begin the ordering process. More to be added to the series soon!
How do designers come up with their pricing for wedding invitations? Why do they sometimes seem a bit high or deceptively low?
Engaged couples may not deal with custom designed materials on a daily basis and may initially be taken aback with pricing. There’s a lot that goes into the process. Below are a few things to keep in mind when receiving quotes for custom designed suites:
Specialty paper orders, pocket folds, backer papers, belly bands, ribbons, glue, envelope liners, etc. Before anything is printed, there is the base cost of papers and embellishments to consider. These items can add up quickly.
There are many different ways to print a piece and they all vary in price. The most budget friendly option we offer is printing digitally flat. Other popular higher priced printing processes include letterpress, foil stamping, and thermography. These printing options increase costs significantly.
There are many different styles and qualities of paper available for your invitations. Most designers have a set stock for each budget level they use and are comfortable with from the extensive test runs they’ve done. Although the design is very important to the look of your invitation, we consider the papers used to be equally as important. When you open an invitation, the texture of the paper definitely makes a difference. Whether you’d like it to be super smooth with a shimmer finish or textured in the style of matte watercolor paper — the paper can make all the difference! Specific papers enhance different printing processes. It wouldn’t be worthwhile to skimp on paper if you were investing in letterpress printing for your invitations. You’ll want a high grade cotton paper specifically made with letterpress printing in mind.
The amount of assembly the designer takes care of is directly affected by what is ordered. For instance, if you order a pocket fold styled invitation with 2 info cards and a RSVP post card, it will be more convenient for the client to receive those cards separately — putting those cards into the pocket once the RSVP post card has postage adhered. Otherwise, they’d have to take out the card and replace it in each pocket fold while making sure all cards line up just right. Of course, there is always some assembly required on the designer side — gluing backer papers, adhering the main invitation to the pocket fold, applying envelope liners, etc. In some cases, you can save by letting the designer know, during the quoting process, that you are willing to take care of all assembly.
While supplies, printing, paper and assembly add a significant cost to the base price of the invitations, the custom design is what you are investing in. To ensure you are getting the design you want, hire a designer who’s work you love. A designer who can execute a beautifully put together suite and other printed materials bringing the theme and look of your wedding together. Design and illustration take time, but are well worth it when working with a designer who’s work you love.
The design time involved in pre-designed suites is significantly less than with custom designed pieces. Finding a pre-designed suite that speaks to you and compliments your wedding can be a wonderful thing! While pre-designs are a bit less costly, they still require a bit of tweaking to personalize. Something to keep in mind when receiving your quote.
As you can see, there is a lot to consider regarding the cost of quality invitations. If the quote you receive doesn’t fall within your budget, but you’d still like to work with the designer you’ve chosen, it doesn’t hurt to ask about what you can do to save. There are usually many options to consider for different budgets. Sometimes, forgoing an item like the option of letterpress printing can quickly bring you back down to what you have allotted to spend on your wedding stationery. Speak to your designer – that’s what they’re there for! Which is another way you can tell if they’re going to be right for you. Communication is key! Choose the designer that you feel will make the process go as smoothly and as comfortably as possible.
Hire Nicola Black Design, LLC for your wedding invitations and stationery today!
Illustration at top of post ©2013, Nicola Black Design, LLC • All rights reserved