Wedding Design FAQ
For me, it’s all about the details, and wedding stationery is absolutely my favorite thing to design! From shimmery papers to letterpress printing, Swarovski rhinestones to pointed pen calligraphy, the highest quality materials and methods go into every piece I make.
I love the process of translating a love story into a gorgeous handmade keepsake. Just like your love, your invitation will be unique and beautiful.
+ How long before my wedding should I contact you?
To give every couple the attention they deserve, I take on a limited number of projects each month. Please contact me to discuss scheduling time on my production calendar, even if you haven’t nailed down the details. Typically, a minimum of 2 months before you want to mail your invitations is required.
Invitations are typically mailed about 2 months before your wedding date. If you have a lot of out-of-town guests or are getting married at a popular tourist destination, it’s a good idea to mail even earlier to give your guests time to prepare - think 3-5 months out.
For those day-of details like programs, place cards, and menus, please let me know at least one month before your wedding date. The details of those items aren’t usually nailed down until the last minute, but we can get started on the design earlier!
+ What steps are involved in the bespoke design process?
- Complementary Design Consultation -- We’ll meet (in person, on the phone, or via Skype) to discuss your vision for your wedding. I’ll show you samples of my work, ask you a lot of questions, and answer any questions that you might have. Within a couple of days, I’ll come up with a proposal for you. This will include a description, some rough sketches, a quote, and a timeline.
- Deposit & Contract — Like what you see? Time for a deposit and a signed contract!
- Production — When your art is complete, I’ll send you the proofs for approval, and we can make changes if necessary. When everything looks perfect, I'll start production.
- Delivery — The big day! The remaining balance on your project is due at this point.
Remember, all the work I do for weddings is 100% custom! That means I don’t sell your invitation to another couple next month, and I don’t make you pick from a big catalog of pre-designed invitations. This process takes a little bit longer than just ordering something from the big online invitation sellers, but you’re going to get something that perfectly represents you as a couple.
+ I’m not sure exactly what I want...
Fantastic! Seriously, don’t worry if you don’t know precisely what you want — I'm the designer; the design is my job! You’re hiring me to take a bunch of rough ideas and adjectives — color, mood, theme, style, impression — and turn them into reality.
If you do have design inspirations, I'd love to see them. But please don’t feel like you need to have a fully formulated idea before we talk.
+ I know you make invitations, but can you also make my programs? What about table cards? What about...
Yes, yes, and yes! I offer all kinds of wedding goodies besides invitations, including, but not limited to:
- Save-the-date cards & magnets
- Place cards & table cards
- Hand lettered signs
- Envelope calligraphy
- Digitally printed addressing
- Favor bags & tags
- Menus for dinner & drinks
- Guest books & guest posters
- Thank you cards
- Shower, bachelor(ette) party, and rehearsal dinner invites
- Custom map cards
Even if you're purchasing your invitations elsewhere, I'd be glad to help you. Of course, if I am designing your invitations, I can make everything you need coordinate in a gorgeous, cohesive suite.
+ Tell me more about calligraphy!
Writing your guests' addresses by hand is the gold standard in wedding invitations, but not everyone has the best handwriting... luckily, I do! I offer beautiful calligraphy for your envelopes, in a variety of styles, from traditional to modern, with many options for ink color.
I can also take care of having addresses printed directly on your envelopes. This is an especially popular option for return addresses and for response card envelopes.
Pricing ranges from $2.50 - $5+ per envelope; contact me for a quote.
+ OMG, there’s so much to do. Do I really want to hire another vendor?
You are so right. Weddings are awesome, but also incredibly stressful! But I promise, I am here to help.
One of the things I hear most often from my clients is that they appreciate how easy I made things. Think about it — you spill all the fun details about what you want your wedding to be like, and then several weeks later, just like magic, you get a box of shiny, beautiful invitations ready to stick in the mail! No envelope stuffing, no practicing your handwriting, and no messy fights with a gluestick!
Stationery aren’t always the highest thing on everyone’s wedding priority list. But consider this — the invitations are the very first thing that your guests will see. A beautiful, unique invitation arriving the mail gets your guests excited about your wedding. You're throwing the most awesome party of the year, and they’re special enough to be invited! The invitation sets the tone for your entire wedding and lets guests know what to expect. As a bonus, it’s also a fantastic keepsake.
+ I saw this really cool thing on pinterest… can you do that?
Probably! From letterpress printing to digital painting, from watercolors to foil stamping, from laser cutting to wax sealing, if you’ve seen it done, let’s talk about it. Just because you don’t see something in my portfolio right now doesn’t mean I can’t do it for your wedding.
I love taking on interesting or challenging projects! I have dual degrees in printmaking & engineering, so I can make cool things happen.
+ How much does everything cost?
It's really hard to give general prices for custom work, because there are so many variables! Honestly, the best thing to do is get in contact with me for a customized quote.
As a guideline, for fully custom invitations, my work typically runs in the range of $9 - 15 per piece, but can exceed that for elaborate projects (where one piece means one entire invitation with envelopes, embellishments, & any inclusions such as RSVP or map cards). For projects with more basic requirements, I do offer options starting at $5 per piece. Many people do have a budget that they'd like to stick to, and I'd be happy to discuss what I can do at your price point.
+ Are you LGBT-friendly?
YES. However you and your partner identify, I would be excited to help you celebrate your love.
+ I’m located out-of-town. Can we still work together?
Yes! I'm now located in Huntsville, Alabama, but I have clients located all over the country (and even the world!). I often travel in the southeastern US (Florida, Georgia, Tennessee), or we can discuss and make decisions via e-mail or over the phone.
+ Can I get a sample?
Yes! The best way to appreciate the quality of my work is to hold it in your hands — just contact me and I’ll send out some samples of previous work right away.
Or even better, set up a complementary design consultation with me at my studio — you can see my work in person.
+ What's the difference between letterpress printmaking and digital printing?
Letterpress is a traditional relief printmaking method where ink is applied to a raised image, which is then physically imprinted into paper. This process gives a tactile, high-end result. It's a labor intensive and specialized process, and each color used requires a separate trip through the press. Here at Proton Paperie & Press, I print on a hand-crank etching press and mix and apply the inks by hand. I use polymer plates instead of the traditional metal type, so there aren’t many limitations on design.
Digital printing is more familiar to most people — printing an image directly from the computer onto paper. You don’t get the wonderful texture and impression of letterpress, but digital printing is a great option if you want a design with lots of colors. I partner with several high-quality printers to produce my digital pieces.
Rest assured that during our consultation, we’ll discuss which method (or combination of methods) will be best suited for your project.