The Real Differences between a $1 and $10 Wedding Invitation

How to get the most for your money by breaking down the differences between a $1 and $10 wedding invitation.
By: Melissa Nyssen
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* Wedding Invitations
* Wedding Budget
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* Weddings
* Parties
* Events

* Downers Grove - Illinois - US

Oct. 10, 2008 - PRLog -- The two major factors that determine the cost of your wedding invitations are the printing process used and quality of the papers. Your wedding invitation should standout from the typical flat party invitation, but shouldn't cost a fortune:

Wedding Invitation Printing Processes

DIY Kits: under $1 to $2 each
Do-it-yourself wedding invitation kits are the most economical and flexible choice. You can also get your invitations faster as blank supplies are sent out right away (no waiting for proofs or printing) and you have complete control over the printing process, which eliminates any surprises. Another bonus is that you can customize invitations for your guests, such as accommodating for different languages, providing separate announcements, or including information out of town guests.

Papers should be of the highest quality, avoid cheap flimsy papers, perforated edges, and tiny or irregular sized pieces that are difficult to setup and print. offers printable overlays are sold in standard 8.5x11 sheets, which is cut and layered onto a premium heavyweight background card, and fastened with a unique, dimensional keepsake embellishment. They test many products to make sure they look good after going through the mail and most of all, are super easy to create, crafting skills are not necessary!

Digital/Offset/Thermography: $3 to $5 each
Common flat party invitations created by ordering from typical mass produced designs. The company will typeset your text and should send a proof.

Offset printing is a printing technique where the inked image is transferred or "offset" from a plate to a rubber blanket, then to the paper using a one or two color press.

Digital printing is a popular process to transfer color toner or liquid ink to the paper which does not absorb into the paper, as does conventional ink, but forms a thin layer on the surface.

Thermography produces raised printing by adding a special powder to the ink printed on the paper, then the printed piece is heated and the ink mixture dries to form a slightly shiny raised effect on the paper. This method not nearly as crisp as engraving.

Letterpress/Engraving: $10 each and up
Textured, high quality papers that are hand fed one at a time and "stamped" using various  time-consuming techniques that require a high degree of craftsmanship. Typically, only one color is used, as each sheet must be fed one at a time, per color.

Letterpress is a process where ink is applied to a raised plate of your text and artwork, then pressed directly onto paper. Letterpress creates a deep impression into the paper, producing an appealing texture.

Engraving is the opposite of letterpress, as it creates a raised texture instead of indented. Engraving starts with etching the text and artwork onto a copper plate. During the printing process, the plate is coated with ink that fills the space created by the etching, and then the plate with ink is compressed onto the paper, leaving the ink raised on top of the paper and an impression on the back of the paper from the force of the process.

Wedding Invitation Paper Quality

Generally, the lower priced options will be made from a less substantial, thinner paper and use a generic factory-made, mass produced design. Samples should be ordered well in advance to check paper thickness and color, avoid cheap, flimsy papers.

Invitation Cards
Invitation cards are usually made from cover stock which is measured by weight; the higher the number, the thicker the paper:

65# cover or 176 gsm cover stock is easily printed on inkjets and lasers printers, but we only recommend this to be used as an overlay on top of a heavyweight card, it is too thin and flimsy on it's own.

80# cover or 218 gsm is a heavyweight paper used for invitation cards, you may be able to print on it using inkjets and lasers printers, but it is not guaranteed.

100# cover or 270 gsm is an extra heavyweight card and cannot be used with home inkjets or laser printers, it is too thick.

Handmade paper
Handmade paper is luxurious and unique, but cannot be feed through an inkjet, laser or offset printer. The paper thickness varies and the inclusions can jam up equipment. The only printing process that can be used directly onto the paper is letterpress, engraving or silk-screening, feeding each sheet, one at a time.

150-200 gsm: typical weight found in specialty paper shops
250-300 gsm: special order extra heavyweight papers are available from

Envelopes are made from text stock, measured weight; the higher the number, the thicker the paper. Make sure your invitation does not show through your envelope.
70# text: typical envelope paper
80# text: slightly heavier and more opaque paper

Other Options
To keep costs down, you can skip the extra outer envelope and separate reception card, they are not necessary unless you have a large amount of information to send ...try to keep it simple. To save on postage, use reply postcards instead of reply cards, or even better, request that your guests r.s.v.p. by phone, e-mail, or on your wedding web site.

Lined envelopes will make a big impact for a little extra, provides pre-cut and easy to apply unique liners for only $4-6 per pack of 25. Embossed foil and wax seals also add another element and make the invitation more distinctive.

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Exclusive layered wedding invitations feature 50+ earth friendly premium cards and over 200 keepsake embellishments. Select from kits or mix and match to create your own. DIY for under $1 each or we will custom print.
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Tags:Wedding Invitations, Wedding Budget, Cheap Wedding Invitations
Industry:Weddings, Parties, Events
Location:Downers Grove - Illinois - United States
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Page Updated Last on: Aug 18, 2009 News
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