How to Save on Your Wedding Invitations
The cost of wedding invitations can actually be quite a big chunk of your budget. So while you clearly don’t want to sacrifice style and quality, you do hope to find ways to keep the invite costs reasonable—and allocate more for your bridal gown, reception menu, flowers, and honeymoon! Here are some practical tips for saving on your invitations:
Study the “physical” costs
Larger size, bigger quantities, heavier paper stock, numerous inserts, more colors—all of these factor into how much you’ll pay for your wedding invitations. So do ask your printer to show samples of more modest invite sizes, and their entire range of paper stock. You’d be surprised at how some of the less expensive paper choices now mimic the weight, texture, and colors of their more pricey counterparts.
Also inquire about sets that don’t have all those loose inserts (an RSVP card, bridal registry card, seating reservation card, a map to the ceremony and reception venues), but instead incorporate all the essential information into one single-fold card. Modern invitation designs now take cost and convenience into consideration, so it is quite acceptable to forego all those cumbersome mutli-fold, multiple insert suites of yesteryear.
Ask, too, about the printer’s standard colors for the invitation text—black, midnight blue, gray, perhaps copper. By sticking to one of these, you won’t be charged extra for customized ink colors.
Watch out for hidden costs
When you’re in the midst of wedding preparations, even your time is something you want to save on! So while you may be all excited about going 100% DIY, remember that frazzled nerves (when you want to look your best come the Big Day) is a cost! So, we suggest “pay a bit” to save in the long run:
Consider a service for addressing your envelopes - This doesn’t have to be expensive hand calligraphy. Instead, shop around for someone who does professional envelope addressing in a font you’ve chosen. This will be one less item on your “to do” list and will spare you the wastage due to stress-caused errors!
Order extra invitations and envelopes from the start - It costs less to include a few additional pieces in your initial order, than to have more invites printed after you realize you’re short a few—whether due to damage while addressing or some last-minute guests you remembered!
Do your own simple decorating - Resist the urge to go with fancy invites simply because they look impressive. They probably cost more, too! Go for a simpler, more stylized design. Then, add your own tasteful accents like flat crystals, tiny satin bows, or wax seals with your monogram.
Save on return postage - This may seem minor, but any savings are welcome, right? Instead of having separate self-addressed, stamped envelopes for your RSVP or respond cards, choose a postcard-style card which has a lower postage rate and eliminates the need for envelopes.
Consider other printing processes
Engraving is, of course, the preferred printing method for formal invitations, but it is definitely costly. An alternative process available nowadays is thermography. As its name indicates, thermography uses a heating process that causes the lettering on the resin-coated stock to become raised—simulating the rich textured look and feel of engraved invitations, at a more affordable price.
If you prefer a more personal approach that is also budget-friendly, there are numerous online sources of DIY printable invitations. Most of these allow you to customize the text and, to some extent, the design of your invites to suit your particular wedding motif.
Of course, if you are on a really tight budget, there is always self printing on ready-made invitations. You can purchase ready-to-use sets at stores like Michaels and other stationery outlets. Then, simply print on your wedding particulars using a laser or high-quality inkjet printer. You may not have an unlimited selection of designs, paper stock, and colors to choose from, but you do get convenience and big savings.
Inquire about package deals
Check with your printer (or look into the ready-made or DIY kits you’re considering) if they have an all-in-one deal, which covers not only invitations and envelopes, but save-the-date cards, thank you cards, RSVP cards, ceremony programs, even bridal shower and engagement party invites, and place cards for all your wedding socials as well! That way, you could have these share a coordinated look inspired by your chosen theme and color palette. Plus, you’d be surprised at how the costs can add up, if you were to have each of these items printed individually.