This guide is intended to answer the most common questions about the ordering, production and customization process. Please read and refer to this information before submitting your order.
1. The Process / 2. Customization Options
3. Add-Ons & Embellishments / 4. Wording & Etiquette
1. THE PROCESS
1: Placing Your order
Once you've read The Curated Collection Guide, browse The Curated Collection to select your favorite design. If you're unsure about paper and printing quality you may order a sample packet first. Once you decide on a design you'll be asked to select a quantity, printing method, paper choice, and to provide some basic information such as your name, event details, font and color selections. You may also browse and order any add-ons you wish to include with your order, such as calligraphy addressing, extra envelopes, or wax seals. You will receive an email confirmation of your order upon checkout.
2: Follow Up
Within 1-3 business days, I will send you an email to gather the exact wording for your project, discuss your choices and options, confirm your production time frame, and to ask you any questions I may have following the review of your order.
Within 2-4 business days a PDF proof will be emailed to you. This digital proof will show all aspects of your design with relative sizes. Ink colors, papers, and envelopes will be displayed digitally to mimic the colors and quality of your chosen design. Please proof all text, calligraphy, and design elements carefully, as I am unable to make changes once the design is sent to print. Two rounds of revisions are included in the price, however revisions to the design template and calligraphy style are not included in the customization process. Any additional revisions will be billed separately as a flat fee of $100 per instance, unless given prior approval. The timeliness of proof approvals during this phase will impact your delivery date.
Once you have approved the PDF proof, your order will go to print. Please note that no further changes may be made following final approval. The timeframe for production is approximately 3-4 weeks, but depends on the scope of your project. Additional time will be required if your order includes add-ons such as calligraphy addressing or assembly.
Your order will be carefully packaged and shipped to the address you listed at checkout, unless requested otherwise. All outstanding invoices must be paid prior to shipment.
2. Customization OPTIONS
I'm happy to offer two of the highest quality printing methods for The Curated Collection, described below.
Letterpress printing produces a luxurious, tactile piece that is reminiscent of the good old days. Polymer plates are inked and loaded into antique printing presses that leave a crisp impression in the paper, giving greater visual definition to the type and artwork. Letterpress printing, which requires the a press operator to hand feed paper one sheet at a time, has been revived in artisanal form and is therefore perfect for special occasion printing. Letterpress inks are matte and mixed by hand.
Foil stamping is perfect for eye-catching metallic designs. The press uses heat and pressure to adhere a thin metallic foil onto the paper in lieu of ink. To achieve this, a copper plate is created with your custom artwork. On the press, it comes into contact with the foil and transfers a thin layer onto the paper with a slight impression.
All invitations, inserts, and save the dates from The Curated Collection are printed on Arturo Soft White paper with your choice of cut or deckled edges. Arturo papers are created in Italy by Cartiere Magnani, which was founded in 1404 and has served many of Europe's reigning families and governments, including a wedding announcement for Napoleon Bonaparte! These mouldmade papers have a soft, luxurious feel made possible by Magnani's proprietary "corona" felt finish.
Arturo's soft white is the perfect creamy backdrop for a range of letterpress inks and foils. The soft felt texture adds tactile interest without overwhelming the design.
You may also choose deckled edge cards which feature a soft feathery edge instead of a clean cut edge. This unexpected feature can take a organic or traditional design to the next level or soften a modern aesthetic.
INK & FOIL
Foil stamping is available in gold, copper, rose gold, or champagne. The depth and dimension of metallic foil colors is difficult to convey with a computer screen. Please inquire if you'd like to see a foil sample in person, or reference the Laurel Suite to see an example of copper foil.
Letterpress inks are available in the following colors:
Matching 'soft white' or 'stone' envelopes are manufactured by Arturo, which is the paper that is used for all printed pieces. These Arturo envelopes offer a unique flap shape as exhibited in the photo. Outer envelopes, ungummed inner envelopes, and reply envelopes are available in this style.
You may also choose light or medium gray envelopes. These gray envelopes feature a rounded euro flap and ultra smooth texture. Outer envelopes and reply envelopes are available in this style, but inner envelopes are not available.
Choose between a traditional Serif font or modern Sans-Serif font for any of the designs.
3. ADD-ONS & EMBELLISHMENTS
Digital address printing is an elegant and cost effective alternative to calligraphy envelope and may be ordered as an add-on service. Choose from these 4 designs:
All addresses must be formatted into the following spreadsheet template:
Guidelines for using the envelope printing template:
You may download the template above or start with a clean spreadsheet and duplicate the column set-up.
Be careful to not add tabs, extra spaces, or line breaks within cells. These will display as unnecessary glyphs when auto filled into the envelope printing file.
Enter your guest information exactly as you would like it to appear on your envelopes. All salutations, capitalization, and punctuation should be indicated.
For names or addresses that you would like to have on a second line, use a semi-colon ( ; ) to denote the line break.
You may omit or ignore the second column—“Inner Envelope Name(s)”— if not printing inner envelopes.
Add additional rows as needed.
- You will receive 1 digital proof of your envelopes before printing and 1 round of edits. The digital ink will be matched as closely as possible to your invitation ink or printed in black or gray.
*Return address printing on the back of your outer envelopes and front of your reply envelopes is included in The Curated Collection pricing.
Calligraphy is available for outer and inner envelopes only, since return and reply addresses are pre-printed. To request calligraphy addressing, please purchase the service from the add-ons page. Before you add the service to your cart you will be prompted to select a delivery date. If an appropriate month is not listed that means I am booked up for calligraphy services at that time. If calligraphy services are unavailable for your timeline, I highly recommend considering digitally printed addresses as a beautiful alternative (also purchased from the add-ons page). Or send me a note in the contact form and I will gladly send over a list of trusted calligraphers who may be able to assist with your project.
Guidelines for preparing your addresses for calligraphy:
- To make changes to your list, email only the changes, not the entire list again. Changes to the list will be billed at $10/instance.
- Calligraphy spelling errors or missed envelopes will be replaced at no cost within 1-3 business days. Last minute additions or spelling errors on your list may be replaced at cost with the addition of a $20 late set-up fee.
- Reasonable requests for re-dos will gladly be considered, but are not guaranteed.
- Calligraphy addresses must be in a plain text format, such as Microsoft Word. Spreadsheets will need to be converted.
- Addresses and wording should appear exactly as you want them to be written, with all salutations, capitalization, and punctuation indicated. Abbreviations should be spelled out.
- 20% extra envelopes must be purchased to cover mistakes.
- Most calligraphy orders will add 2 weeks to your delivery, but it's also wise to allow 1-2 weeks to check for errors and request replacement envelopes if needed.
Dr./Mrs. John Smith & Jane Smith
500 Maple Ln., Apt. 111
Charleston, SC 29422-1010
Dr. and Mrs. John Smith
500 Maple Lane
Charleston, South Carolina
Extra INNER OR OUTER Envelopes
You may purchase additional outer envelopes with your return address printed as well as blank inner envelopes. If you are planning to use an outside calligrapher, be sure to ask how many extras they require (usually between 15-25%). You may also want to order extras if you or a family member will be addressing envelopes.
Custom map illustrations add a fun, personal touch to your wedding suite. This add-on is for the digital artwork only. To have it printed, please add an extra insert to your cart from the main collection ordering page. Space permitting, most map illustrations can accommodate 3-5 landmarks, buildings, or points of interest along with the main roadways and landscape features surrounding your wedding venue(s).
Another fun way to personalize your suite is with a sketch of your ceremony venue, reception venue, or other point of interest. This add-on is for the digital artwork only, but may be incorporated onto an extra details insert or elsewhere in the design, space permitting.
Custom wax seals are a great way to add vintage flair or interest to your wedding paper goods. Your wax seal design can accommodate 1 or 2 initials, or a full monogram if included in the design you chose. Wax seals are also a great addition to your personal stationery set or thank you notes after the wedding.
Sealing wax is not included, so I recommend purchasing glue gun wax to make quick work of sealing. All you need is a standard sized glue gun, preferably one with a low temperature setting. My favorite vendors for glue gun wax are: Back to Zero, Waxseals.com, and Nostalgic Impressions.
A note about mailing wax seals:
Be sure to take a sample stuffed and wax-sealed envelope to your local post office for an exact quote on postage required. You may also want to ask about having your invitations hand-cancelled to avoid running the seals through the mail sorting machines that may damage to the delicate seal. Some post offices are more willing to hand-cancel than others, so you may have to ask around.
Silk Ribbon & Vintage Stamps
These embellishments are not currently offered as add-ons, but please check out the following online vendors to cover all of your stamp and ribbon needs:
4. WORDING + Etiquette
The following guidelines should be applied to traditional weddings, but your invitation should be a reflection of your celebration. Don't be afraid to bend the rules to fit the style and tradition of your wedding.
Anatomy of a wedding invitation
01. Host Line
This is the start of your invitation and immediately indicates who is hosting the wedding. Traditionally, the bride's parents are the primary hosts, but this tradition is changing. Many families contribute equally to the wedding and it is becoming more common for couples to host their own. It's best to select the wording that honors your families and fits your celebration the best, whether it lists names and families specifically or a more broad mention such as "Together with their families."
02. Request Line
This line of the invitation indicates whether your ceremony will be held in a place of worship or at a secular location. For religious ceremonies held in a place of worship, the wording usually begins with “The honour of your presence is requested…” For ceremonies that are not held in a place of worship, the traditional wording is “The pleasure of your company is requested…”
03. Bride & Groom
A few things to note:
- The bride always comes first.
- If the bride’s parents are hosting, her last name is omitted because theirs precedes her. If divorced parents are listed in the host line, then her last name is added for clarity.
- If the groom’s parents are also listed in the host section, both the bride’s and groom’s last names may be omitted. It is equally correct to leave them in and iup to your discretion.
- It is also optional to add a line right after the groom’s name to honor his parents. This is called a “Son of” line and reads like this: Son of Mr. and Mrs. John Doe.
- For casual ceremonies first names may be suitable.
04. Date & Time
A few things to note:
- Always write out the date in full and list the day of the week first: Saturday, the first of August
- Write it out the year in full. "and" is optional: Two thousand eighteen OR Two thousand and eighteen
- Capitalize the day of the week, month, and first letter of the year.
- If it is on the hour, you can simply say “at five o’clock in the evening.” If it is on the half hour, it is most correct to write “at half past five o’clock in the evening.”
- 4pm is considered afternoon, but 5pm and later is considered evening.
This line should list the name of the location with city and state noted underneath and spelled out in full. If your celebration is being held at a private home or at a location with an unlisted address it is appropriate to list a specific street address. If you are marrying at a church that could be confused with another church of a similar name in the same town, this is another instance in which it is appropriate to include a street address. Abbreviations should not be used in any addresses on wedding paper.
The reception wording is where you can guests know what to expect after the ceremony. If your ceremony and reception are at different locations, you have the traditional option of including a separate reception card, or choosing to forgo the extra piece and include the reception details right on the invitation. If your ceremony and reception are held in the same location, then you can take the opportunity to let guests know what time of reception you are having and when it begins. There are a range of different wording options available, based on the level of formality you want to convey, how much information you need to communicate to guests Here are some examples:
Traditional Wording, Separate Locations:
and afterwards at the reception / The Round House
Modern Wording, Separate Locations, No Time Gap:
Cocktails, dinner and dancing to follow / The Round House
Modern Wording, Separate Locations, Time Gap:
Cocktails, dinner and dancing to follow / at six o’clock in the evening / The Round House
- Celebratory Wording, Separate Locations:
Cocktails, dinner and merriment to follow / The Round House
Traditionally, attire is not mentioned on the invitation. For modern formal wedding invitations, it is has become acceptable to print “Black tie” or “White tie” on the lower right corner of the ceremony card if the reception is mentioned on the ceremony card and if the ceremony does not take place in a house of worship. In any other circumstance, nothing should be printed on the bottom right corner. If you still feel the need to inform guests of a formal dress attire, the language should be “Black tie” or “White tie” on a separate reception card.
TIPS AND TRICKS
A few extra things to keep in mind when selecting wording.
- Registry information: This should never be included on your invitation, or in your invitation suite at all. Instead, include registry details on a wedding website and note the website on your save the dates and perhaps on a details insert in your invitation suite.
- When to mail:
- Standard Mailing (save the dates sent): 6-8 weeks before the wedding
- Standard Mailing (no save the dates sent): 8 weeks before the wedding
- Destination Weddings: 8-12 weeks before the wedding
- Post office handling: To make sure your invitations arrive looking their best, it is recommended that you have your invitations hand-cancelled. Hand-cancelling is a process where a postal worker stamps your envelopes by hand to zero out the postage rather than running the envelopes through a machine. This is usually reserved for square, thick, or irregular envelopes and requires additional postage. Unfortunately, not all post offices are willing to hand-cancel. Small suburban post offices are usually your best bet and it's a good idea to call ahead of time and ask if the service is available and if so, their preferred time of day.
- Postage: Beware, if you send out your beautifully addressed and sealed envelopes with insufficient postage they will be returned to you and possibly ruined with a large stamp or sticker. The horror! Stamps may seem straightforward, keep in mind, extra thick or heavy invitation sets, or suites with a seal, bow or other addition creating a “bump” will require additional postage, often at the discretion of the postal worker handling your suite. The “rigidity” of an invitation can be subjective so be sure to check in with the post office you will be mailing from and have them weight and test an actual set you will be sending to make sure you are covered when it comes to the postage amount.
There are many samples of wedding paper wording to be found online, but the following basic examples should get you started on the right track:
SAVE THE DATE
Save the Date
Anne Connor & James Smith
are getting married
Saturday, October 6, 2018
Santa Ynez, California
Formal invitation to follow
for more information please visit our wedding website:
The pleasure of your company
is requested at the marriage of
David James Smith
on Saturday, October sixth
two thousand eighteen
at five o'clock in the evening
Santa Ynez, California
Reception to follow
Kindly Reply by the sixth of September
_ happily accepts _ regretfully declines
_ number attending
A block of rooms has been reserved for our guests at a discounted rate.
Please reference the Connor-Smith Wedding when making your reservations.
Kindly reserve your room by September 1st, 2018
Santa Ynez Inn
3627 Sagunto Street, Santa Ynez, CA 93460
For more wedding details visit our website:
Please join us for dinner and dancing immediately following the ceremony
The Ballard Inn Restaurant
2436 Baseline Avenue
Ballard, California 93463