June 20, 2020
From letterpress to calligraphed details, beautiful stationery can wow your guests AND your photographer! We asked our friend, Dominique, of Dominique Alba Paper and Design to share the things that wedding stationery clients often don’t know when starting to think about their invitations and day-of paper items. She is a wedding stationer located in Raleigh, NC. Her tips are so helpful and will give you tons to think about when it comes to making plans for your own wedding stationery!
- Plan ahead!
If you are hiring a stationery designer instead of ordering a premade design from a big online shop, don’t forget to consider production times and your own wedding timeline. Typically, it can take anywhere from 6 to 12 weeks to design, print, and assemble invitations, and you should mail them out 8 to 12 weeks before your wedding. It’s a good idea to reach out to your favorite stationer at least 6 months or more before your wedding, since most designers take on a limited number of clients per year and are often fully booked months ahead of time.
- Consider all the different options and your own budget
Custom, semi-custom, and premade designs are very different and their price is a reflection of that. Custom designs are created from scratch specifically for your wedding, so they have longer production times and cost considerably more than the other options. Most stationers also have a collection of semi-custom designs that can be personalized and are more affordable, while also having a shorter turnaround. But since you would still be working one-on-one with a designer, it is important to keep in mind that those would probably still cost more than something you can buy online from a large store.
- Ask about printing methods and paper types
If this is your first time ordering stationery, you’ve probably never thought about things such as letterpress, digital printing, and paper edges. Different printing methods and paper types will give you a different look, and their cost can vary greatly. Don’t be afraid to ask questions or request a paper sampler – stationers never get tired of talking about paper and will be happy to help!
- Always order more than you need
We always recommend ordering 10 – 15% more than you need in case some invitations get lost in the mail or you need to invite an extra guest last minute. Ordering additional sets after your initial order has been printed will likely delay production and incur additional costs.
- Don’t forget about the postage and day of stationery
When planning your stationery budget, don’t forget to consider the price of postage and other wedding day paper goods (such as menus and place cards). Postage can cost between $0.70 to $4 per suite or more, and “day of items” can cost almost as much as your invitations depending on the guest count and materials used.
- Remember, it’s not just paper
Your stationery, photographs, and dress will likely be the only physical keepsakes from your best day ever. The look and design of your invitations are the first impression your guests will receive of your wedding, and they will set the tone for your event while exciting your guests to be a part of it.
- It’s all about cohesiveness
We love working with our couples from their save-the-dates and invitations to their “day of” paper goods to make sure everything is cohesive and evokes the same mood. If you are working with a stationery designer, they will likely be able to repeat some of the artwork and make design choices that tell the same story from start to finish.