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12 May 2015

8 Ways to Keep Wedding Invitations Within Budget

by kate@thepaperbotanist

With a myriad of wedding stationery options it can be pretty daunting making the right choice to help set the tone for your big day. As you consider the many options for invitations, place cards, RSVP cards and menu cards, the costs can quickly escalate and blow your budget. However if you are smart and resourceful there are several tips that can help to keep costs to a minimum while still creating beautiful invitations that will entice guests along to your wedding.

Custom is costly

Keep in mind that custom wedding invitations will always be much more expensive than an existing standardised design. But don’t despair- there are many companies that allow you to slightly customise an existing design to complement your wedding theme. Poppiseed Designs is one online-based wedding stationer that allows you to customise their designs with various fonts and colours.

Image courtesy of Poppiseed Designs

Work out your numbers

As a general rule, the more invitations you print, the cheaper they will be per print. Make sure you ask to view the pricing structure and look for smart ways to save money. For example it may be cheaper to print 105 invitations, rather than 100, simply because the number of invites sits within a different quantity to cost ratio. And at least you will have some spares just in case you have some late add-ins or forgot someone on your guest list!

Keep it simple

The printing method and finishes you choose will greatly affect the cost of your invitations. Digital printing is the cheapest option however the results are not as premium as an age-old technique like letterpress printing. Finishes like silver-foiling, debossing and embossing are all very expensive. Double-sided printing is more expensive than single-sided. Die cutting, creases and folds also increase the cost. If you do have your heart set on a beautiful set of handprinted letterpress invites, consider printing in a single colour. As each colour must run through the letterpress printer separately, the more colours you choose, the more expensive it will be. Sometimes an elegant, single colour invite can be more striking in its simplicity than a complicated design that utilises a large number of special finishes. The Distillery and Bespoke Letterpress are two boutique Australian design studios that have a range of elegant invitations available in a single colour print.

Image courtesy of Bespoke Letterpress

Compare quotes

When requesting a quote from a wedding invite designer, ask to have the printing costs separated. Just because you have hired them to design the invite, doesn’t mean that you need to use their printing service. Unless they offer in-house printing, most designers will generally outsource their printing to an external printer. It may be cheaper to pay for the design only and arrange to have the invitations printed yourself.

Paper stock

The weight and type of paper used can greatly affect the cost of your invitations. Consider asking for several quotes on various papers to compare the costs. Also ask for a test print before settling on your paper choice to ensure that you are happy with the finish. Alternatively, source the paper yourself from a paper supplier.

Size does matter

Depending on the quantity and delivery location, the postage can sometimes be almost as expensive as the invite itself. It’s important to consider the size, thickness and weight of your invitation to keep postage costs to a minimum. The Australia Postal service is based on international standard sizes for ease of sorting by machine. If your invitation does not lie within these standardised sizes then additional postage may be charged for processing the mail by hand. As a general rule, a small letter should be rectangular in shape, larger than 88mm x 138mm but no bigger than 130mm x 240mm, less than 5mm in thickness and less than 250grams in weight. For more information on letter and envelope specifications refer to the Letter and Products Services Guide on the Australia Post website.

Online RSVP

RSVP cards, maps and information cards are all nice touches to include with your invitation but if budget is limited, consider setting this up online. You can still set the tone by sending a beautiful paper invite the traditional way but instead of including an RSVP card with a return envelope and stamps, you can provide simple instructions on how to access your RSVP page online. There are many free options on the web for collecting RSVP information for weddings such as RSVPify and AnRSVP


If you are on a tight budget and consider yourself a bit of a creative, consider designing your invites yourself. This does take a lot more time but will help to keep costs to a minimum. 

Stay tuned for my next post where I will run through a few of my own DIY tips. In the meantime head over to The Paper Botanist for more ideas and inspiration on handcrafted stationery.


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Published 12 May 2015 23:49 by kate@thepaperbotanist