From save-the-dates to thank you notes and everything in between, it’s safe to say stationery plays a pretty significant role in wedding planning. A great stationer will help you transform ordinary paper products into decorative elements that tie your whole wedding day together—so make sure you choose wisely!
1. Is there a minimum order?
As print runs can cost a lot of money, often stationers will need a minimum order. It might be twenty invitations, or sixty so make sure you find out!
2. What does the design process involve?
Some stationers will sit down with you for a meeting and design an invitation for you from scratch, others will just be a simple online ordering process with a form to fill out. What will they need from you? What will happen?
3. What kind of customizations can be made?
Are you able to customize the paper colors? The printing color? The decorative elements? Or are you locked into the invitation design as it is shown on their website?
4. What are the proofing policies?
Make sure your stationer will send you a digital proof of the invitation so you can check for errors and make any necessary revisions before it goes to print. An invitation should never be sent to the printer without your approval.
5. Are you able to see a sample?
A lot of stationers will print their most popular designs and send them to you for a small fee (a great way of seeing print quality, paper stock and colors). It’s always a good idea to see samples so your expectations are in check. If you don't care to spend money on a sample, ask if they offer free color swatches so you can compare colors - each paper color can vary by weight and texture.
6. Is there a word limit that I need to stick to?
Very important if you are not following the traditional wedding invitation wording!
7. Are envelopes included?
An odd question but yes, some designers don’t include these as a standard. Others offer a range at different prices, so make sure you check! You will also want to check about inner envelopes if that is important to you. Some companies (such as myself!) don't even offer them - my paper company uses pockets in place of inner envelopes.
8. Do you offer assembly and addressing services?
Many stationers either offer these services themselves or will happily put you in touch with a reputable contact. Even if you plan to take care of these tasks yourself, it’s always nice to know you have the option of hiring a pro.
9. When can the extras be ordered?
Do the extra pieces have to be ordered the same time as your invitations or can they be ordered closer to the wedding date? Is there an additional fee for ordering just 10 invitations at a later date?
10. What is the time from ordering to delivery?
Considering invitations should be sent our between 6-8 weeks before the wedding (and save the dates earlier). What is the designer’s turn around time? Do they need three months notice for your booking? Does it take three weeks for printing and design? If you are running behind do they offer rush services?
11. When is payment due? How?
Is payment due upon ordering? Once the proof is delivered? How are you able to pay?
12. If revisions need to be made, will there be an extra fee for them?
If for some reason you have to change the time of your ceremony or reception, you will want to know how much to budget for any revision emergencies!
13. What is their refund policy?
What happens if for some reason you need to cancel your order? Are you able to receive a full refund or is it only partial? How late can you cancel without losing the full cost?
Save or print this list and take it with you - tick off the questions and add notes as you get the answers you are looking for - communication is key! With so many details to consider, you’ll depend on a creative wedding invitation professional to clue you in on the jargon, and guide you in choosing invites that reflect your wedding style.