OK, so y'all know that I'm like, in love with My Hands Made It, right? Like, she's DIYing everything for her wedding. And it's all really cool. I already blogged about it here. Check her out. You'll just drool with craft-envy. I know I do. I hate her just a little bit, but it's only jealousy based - so it's not like a real hate. Currently, I'm reserving that emotion for insurance adjusters.
Anyway, when I saw Veronica's completed invites, I was so jealous. I had total post-wedding invitation regret. Like, "What was I thinking!" kind of regret. I hate when that happens. It's the one down-side to being all into weddings now. I totally kick myself over my own lack of imagination. But then again, I loved my wedding to death. And when you're planning a wedding, you totally don't have time for all the envy. You just gotta do your own thing and make it yours, right? And that is what this chick is doing - making it her own - quite literally!
So now I stalk her blog and her Etsy shop and her website and want to be her when I grow up. I figured the next best thing to divorcing The Candyman and remarrying him, all so I can have "The Wedding I'd Have If Hindsight Was 20/20" chance to do invites one more time, these might possibly be it. Either these or the those letterpress numbers I found that cost $4000 for 100 invites. With envelopes. No RSVP card. No cute map. Or directions. Or even a tissue paper liner (so stupid). $4000. Yeah - those invites? Those I'll save for The Wedding I'd Have If Money Were No Object. The only constant I'd have in those weddings would be the people we invited and the tall guy in the tux. Those would stay the same. And my dress would be involved at some point. I really liked my dress. And my bolero. And my jewelry. See, told you I loved my wedding.
Miss V was kind enough to share her invitation tutorial with me so I could share with you! I added some of my own comments in 'cuz this is my blog and I get to add comments, dammit!
Okay so Keith, my fiance, and I both really wanted our wedding invitations to read more like letters than formal announcements. Something sweet and personal and old-fashioned, but obviously we weren't going to hand-write letters to a bajillion people. Then I started thinking about super old-fashioned letters - I'm talking Medieval - that were folded and sealed with wax. Those are cool. And if we did that, we would be cool too, right? Yes. Our guests went NUTS for them, and your guests will too - here's how you do it . . .
11 x 17" paper (I used Cranes - PEARL WHITE - 100% Cotton - 32/80 Text)
Japanese Washi Masking Tape, 15mm wide (1 roll will likely do 150+ invitations) Louise: You can find the tape here (CuteTape.com). There are a few other online sources, but this looked like the best deal to me.
1.25" round printable labels (Paper Source has them in great colors) Louise: You can find these just about anywhere that has labels, although Paper Source does have them in fab colors.
We replaced the wax seal with a printable sticker. Keith thought it would be hilarious if our guests used letter openers on their invites, which would of course, cut everything in half and make a complete mess. I thought it was less hilarious and more terrifying, so I printed instructions onto the labels. Crisis averted. Anyway, here we go . . . Louise: Total paranoia after my own heart.
Design your invitation (you're on your own here) using this handy guide I made just for you. Feel free to mess with the margins on the letter side, but stick to the margins on the address side. Send your files to a local print shop or, if you're lucky enough to have a printer that can hold 11 x 17" paper, print at home.
Click here for the pdf format file.
Most home printers do not have this printing capability. However, if you want to use your work printer, I say do it. Most larger machines can manage the 11x17 paper. Yes, I'm condoning using office ink. GASP! Get over it. At least test the damn formatting there. After hours. With permission. Happy now? If you don't have an office printer to mooch off of, go to Kinkos or another local print shop. I called Kinkos (now known as FedEx Office - it's like suddenly telling me that I have to call Kleenex by the name Windex. Or Spaghetti-O's. It just doesn't work like that with me) and got some info for you. It costs $.20 to print in single color ink on 11x17 paper. If you print over 100, you save $.02 per page. To print in 4-color costs $1.78 per page (ow!). Discount for over 100 here too.I would suggest checking some local print shops to compare prices.
If you are hand-addressing, I recommend you do this now before folding anything. Tip: If you cut out the inner square of my guide, you will have a window showing you the surface of your "envelope" after it's been folded, so you know how much space you have for addressing. If you don't have access to an 11 x 17" printer, you can either transfer the markings on your own or ask your print shop to print one of these for you as well.
Now we're going to fold everything using the Fern letter-folding technique.
Step 1: With your invitation letter side up, fold the top and bottom together, meeting in the middle.
Step 2: On the left side only, fold the corners down until they meet in the center, forming a triangle.
Louise: I love the pink arrow.
Step 3: Crease your triangle down, forming a flap.
Step 4: Fold the opposite end towards the center creating a flap about 2.25" deep.
Step 5: Insert your RSVP cards, etc in between the two flaps.
Step 6: Fold the corners of your bottom flap in until they meet the crease.
Louise: Um, hello! CUTE bow ring!
Step 7: Insert the large triangle flap into the bottom flap - you've created an envelope!
It seems kinda complicated and crazy, but you'll start to breeze right through them once you get the hang of it. Seal your letter with approximately 4.25" of masking tape. Slap a round seal on top of that and you're finished!
What makes this project even more awesome and satisfying is the cost - $170 for 100 invitations, tape and labels (doesn't include entire suite). Oh and even with three inserts, I was able to get away with one first class stamp.
Louise: Thrifty AND Nifty. Me likey.
Here's her whole invitation suite:
RSVP Card Front
RSVP Card Back
I know you guys are freaking out at this, thinking you could never make invites like this. Well, you can. It's not THAT hard. It does take time, but it isn't hard.
Here, I'll help:
The RSVP post card? Easy. Veronica manipulated an empty label format from The Graphics Fairy. The Fairy is an awesome resource for cool vintage-y stuff. You can also check out iDIY as they have a TON of freebies and tutorials, labels, formats, etc. And for goodness sake, don't forget The Martha. Click on this link, or go to her site and search "templates" and you'll find all sorts of DIY goodies.
Don't have all the groovy fonts you want to use? Well, there are a bajillion sites out there that you can download FREE fonts from. I personally like DaFont, 1001 Free Fonts and Urban Fonts. Not sure how to download fonts? This is a pretty good tutorial. For her invitation Veronica used Chopin Script and JFRingmaster. She used CasablancaAntique for the inserts, both from DaFont.
There are also LOTs of pre-cut, ready to print papers out there that can make this process really easy. You don't have to buy a paper cutter. You can buy lots of white background formats at Office Depot or Staples and print away to your hearts desire!
My point is that you can make something quite lovely and unique to you with just a little effort and time! Think you can do it? What else do you need when you read tutorials like this that would help? Good luck! Happy DIYing!