Printing Methods For Wedding Invitations || The Bride's Guide to Wedding Stationery

 
Flat printed wedding invitations or letterpress wedding invitations? Find the right printing method for your style and budget using this insightful list and video series by Blushed Design: Fine art wedding invitations.  #weddinginvitations #weddinginspiration #fineartweddings #fineartweddinginspriation #printingmethods #bridesguide

Recently we chatted about different paper types and I listed the printing methods that I recommended for each one.  I did not go into any detail regarding each printing technique, hopefully I can help shed some light on that now through this brief video, or through the short list I have listed below it:

A simple guide to printing methods for wedding invitations.  Which method is the most cost effective? Which printing method can I pair with watercolor? Which printing method is best for handmade paper?  All answered in this handy little blog post by Katrina | Blushed Design, wedding invitations and fine art portraits

Flat Printing

Flat printing is the "standard" form of printing for Blushed, which I hesitate to say because I'm afraid that this makes it sound super boring and cheap, but it's not dull at all!  It's the most cost effective, yes, but it is also the best way to showcase a wide variety of artwork.  Everything from pencil or ink line drawings to watercolor florals or washes are done using the flat printing method—in fact, it is the only way to print watercolor (shown above).

The only paper type that does not work well with flat printing methods is handmade cotton rag paper... unfortunately.  If you really want to cry or you secretly hate your stationer, ask them to flat print on cotton rag.
Or, take my advice and just say "no" to this headache and pursue one of the other options!

 

Printing Methods for wedding stationery - Letter press wedding invitations

Letterpress

Letterpress is the current queen of the stationery trends.  If you have browsing invitations on Pinterest, you have probably pinned a few letterpress designs.

Letterpress is a method of relief printing that uses a printing press.  The designer uses a plate to create an impression on the paper in the desired color, using ink, foil or a blind press.  Simply put: The designs or letters of an invitation is literally "pressed" into the paper.  This creates a pillow-y effect around the design itself.  As you might imagine, this method creates a beautiful, tactile experience that the viewer can both see and feel.  My personal favorite is a single color press used for the text and a blind letterpress (meaning no ink, so it's just the delicate impression that you see) for the design itself—so delicate and ethereal!

Each color is applied with a different plate—each of which has a starting price tag between $300-500—which causes the price to rise quickly with each color that you use.  If you're dying to use letterpress, but what to showcase a lot of artwork, you can also pair letterpress with flat printing for a beautiful effect.

 

Wedding Invitation Printing Methods - Silver foil wedding invitation calligraphy design by Blushed Design: Fine Art Wedding Invitations and Portraits. #weddinginvitations #fineartweddings #fineartweddinginspiration #weddinginspiration #silverfoilinvitations

Metallic Foil Printing

Foil printing! A huge trend in the past few years and I don't see it going anywhere for a while.  I actually really like foil printing and wish more of my brides would take advantage of this beautiful effect.  But, it is quite a bit more than flat printing, so if you don't love the look, don't do it!

There are two types of foil printing:  Foil stamping and Toner transfer foil

Foil stamping is similar to letterpress, which means that you also have to pay for a plate—a large, hard surface with a raised design on it that is pressed against the paper.  As we discussed above, the plate itself and the labor intensive nature of using the press will greatly increase your costs from the start.

Toner transfer foil is a method that you may have seen this method on Pinterest or in the craft section of a department store.  Simply put, a laser printer is used to create a single color design in black.  Then, the special foil is placed on top of the design and placed through a machine (similar to a laminator) that heats up the ink and foil, causing the who to adhere to each other.  The rest of the foil is simply swept away.
This method is not as expensive, but it is labor intensive as each piece is done by hand and very few print shops offer this specific method.

 

I hope this little post has been helpful for you!  Feel free to leave any questions that you have below and I will do my best to answer them for you!

 

 
Custom, fine art wedding invitations are just an inquiry away!  Work hand in hand with wedding stationer, Katrina Crouch, to create your beautiful, one of a kind, fine art wedding invitations. #blusheddesign #weddinginvitations #fineartweddinginvitations #fineartwedding #customweddinginvitations
 

Love what you see?
If you are interested in starting your custom wedding stationery design process, I would love to hear more about your story and the dreams you have for your big day! I can hardly wait to meet you and get started on your one of a kind heirloom!

Images in this post are by Katrina Crouch and Shanell Photography

 

How to Use A Wax Seal | Tips & Tricks for Flawless Application

 
How to use a wax seal.  Tips and Tricks for creating beautiful wax seal impressions every time.  Easy to follow directions from professional stationer, Katrina Crouch | Blushed Design: Wedding Invitations and Fine Art Portraits #waxseals #waxseal #howto #diyweddingstaitonery #diyweddinginvitations #howtouseawaxseal

Wax seals are so elegant and sophisticated! ...but so hard!
Unless you have the right tools for the job, and a few insider tricks.  Luckily, I work with wax seals regularly and I'm going to show you how to use a wax seal, together with my favorite tricks.

You can watch this video or read the steps that I detailed below it:

 

How To Use A Wax Seal:

How to use wax seals: Use ice to chill your seal before applying it to the hot wax! Find out more tips and tricks for wax seals in this blog post by professional stationer, Katrina Crouch.  Blushed Design, Wedding Invitations and Fine Art Portraits

Step 1: Chill Your Seal

A cold seal works faster than a room temperature or hot seal will.  While this is not as important when you are only making one seal, if you are assembling all of your wedding invitations, you want to make this process as quick and easy as possible!
I prefer to fill a sandwich baggy with ice and water and place that in a bowl.  Place the stamp face down onto the ice so that the metal is able to cool.

Pro tip: Reserve a place to put your glue gun or melting spoon while not in use!  I like to have a plate or something that the wax can drip on without making a mess.

Step 2: Melt the Wax

Option 1: Use a traditional melting spoon over a tealight or small flame
Option 2: Use a standard glue gun (shown above)
For large orders, I prefer the glue gun.  It's fast, it's easy, and you can keep the wax in it if you need to take a break or save it for another job.  But the spoon is great for smaller jobs (and it makes me feel fancy! haha).  No matter which method you use, the goal is still the same: melt the wax.

Pro tip: One mistake that I see often is wax that is too hot.  It bubbles and the impression is not as crisp.  Set your gun to "low" if it has a temperature setting.

How to use wax seal: 5 simple steps (and a few helpful tips) to a flawless seal every single time! Blushed Design: Wedding Invitations and FIne Art Portraits.  How to use wax seals and how to make wax seals

Step 3: Pour the Wax

The correct amount varies from seal to seal and depends on the look that you want.  The messier you pour, the messier the edges are! Though I have found that the seals tend to unify the wax a little more, so don't worry if it feels "too messy" for you.

For a 1 inch, circular seal, I have found that 1 to 1.5 pumps on a standard glue gun is just about right.  If you're using the wax beads in a spoon, 1 bead should equal 1 seal, though I like to start with 2 to get the wax flowing nicely!

Step 4: Blot & Press

Now it's time for the real fun to begin! Your wax is melted and has been poured onto the desired surface!  Take your now-chilly stamp off of the ice, blot on a clean paper towel or wash cloth to remove any water that may have collected, and place the seal at the center of your wax!
Pro Tip: Get a straight stamp every time by marking the top of your seal with a small pencil line along the side of your stamp!

How to use wax seals.  Stamp wax seals like a pro with these tips from professional fine art stationer, Katrina Crouch! Rose gold wax featuring the "Blushed Bride" seal exclusively at Artisaire.com || Blushed Design, Wedding Invitations and Fine Art Portraits.  How to use a wax seal

Step 5: Reveal

After you wax has cooled, give it a gentle pull.  If the wax seems to move, then leave the stamp for a few more moments.  If the wax feels stiff as you start to wiggle the stamp, then it should be safe to pull the stamp off.
Now sit back and admire your beautiful work! Isn't it satisfying?
And don't worry.  That feeling never goes away!

If you're still nervous about starting out, watch the short video below to see all of the steps in action!

 
 

Love what you see?
If you are interested in starting your custom wedding stationery design process, I would love to hear more about your story and the dreams you have for your big day!  Simply fill out this questionnaire and I will contact you soon with a custom price proposal.  I can hardly wait to meet you and get started on your one of a kind heirloom

How to use a wax seal.  Tips and tricks for flawless wax seal application every single time! 6 easy to follow steps (and a few fun tricks) from professional stationer, Katrina Crouch. || Blushed Design, Wedding Invitations and Fine Art Portraits.  How to use wax seals | how to make wax seals with glue gun sealing wax
 

*This post contains affiliate links, but all opinions are my own
Photos on this post by Katrina Crouch and Shanell Photography

2018 Midwest Wedding Vendors

There are so many things that I would do differently if I were getting married again (to my Superman, of course).  Not only knowing more about the industry than a fresh-out-of-college graphic design student would, but knowing specific vendors who I would want to work with.

So I have decided to have list (updated annually) of my preferred vendors—who would I want to work with for my big day—people who create quality work in a style that I find relevant to today's wedding trends (just say "no" to the pom-pom style wedding bouquets), and people who I know that I can trust.

 
Find the Top Midwest Wedding Vendors for 2018.  A complete list by wedding professional, Katrina Crouch, the artist behind Blushed Design: Wedding Invitations and Fine Art Portraits
 

WEDDING PLANNER:

Rhiannon Bosse | Full service; Day of Coordinating; Florals
I love her sense of style and the way she runs the show.  I recently listened to a podcast style Instagram-live and I loved what I heard/learned.  She is organized and thinks ahead, which is exactly what you want in a wedding planner.
Ines & Marie | Full service; Day of Coordinating; Styling
Romantic and elegant.  They run a full show and can offer help with florals, paper goods, styling and renting furniture

PHOTOGRAPHER:

Samantha James Photography
A recent discovery for me, but I was instantly hooked!  One thing I can definitely say that I regret from our wedding day was not taking the time to look for a quality photographer.  You have that with Samantha, and she's a sweetheart to boot!
Kristen Cloyd Photography
I love this girl!  Based in Chicago, I love her light and airy style as well as her personable and genuine heart.  A newer photographer to the field, she is quickly making a name for herself

Honorable Mention:
If she had not moved down south, than I would probably call Alison Chang for our photographer.  I've worked with her in the past and absolutely loved the finished results and how she was able to help everyone relax and feel comfortable.

FLORIST:

A Day Design | Florals; Event Planning
If I chose one of the planners above, I would likely use their floral services, but I do often find myself crusting over Shelby's work.  I haven't worked with her myself, but she has a great reputation.
Curtsy and Bow | Florals; Planning
I have had the pleasure of working with Robin on a styled shoot this past year.  She is a doll, very personable and down to earth, and her bouquets were stunning.  Definitely my favorite part of the entire shoot.

VENUE:

The Detroit Institute of Arts | Walter B. Ford Great Hall
The hubby and I are both artists and I can't believe that I didn't think of this venue when we were married a few years ago!  I love the idea of celebrating in this beautiful environment with the white marble and the elegant pillars... I would definitely consider having our ceremony and pictures taken here!
Greenfield Village; The Henry Ford
I am a history lover, and one of my favorite places in the world is Greenfield Village.  For an outdoor ceremony, I would probably choose Pennsylvania Courtyard or the Coltswold Cottage.  The Lovett Hall Ballroom would be a beautiful reception location—and I love the idea of pictures in the Prechter Promenade.

WEDDING INVITATIONS:

Blushed Design| Custom Wedding Invitations and Fine Art Portraits
Of course, I would design my own wedding invitations!  I did originally, but there is a lot that I would change if we were getting married again.  Can you say "handmade paper"? haha
If you are interested in starting your custom wedding stationery design process, I would love to hear more about your story and the dreams you have for your big day! 

SOMETHING UNEXPECTED:

Unlike Juliet | Wedding Magazines
Betsy is a gem and we have been instagram buddies for a few years now.  Her wedding magazines are brilliant and I am hoping to snag one of her business versions in the near future!

The Bride's Guide to Wedding Stationery : Paper Types

 
A simple guide to wedding invitation papers for the fine art bride.  Learn about handmade paper, what can be printed on it and how it effects your bottom line in this handy little blog post by Blushed Design: Wedding Invitations and Fine Art Portraits

At Blushed, we primarily work with 3 to 4 different paper options.  I strongly believe that, just as the atmosphere can dictate the overall mood of a romantic evening, your paper choice will dictate the mood of your stationery and the wedding itself.  The type of paper that you choose will also dictate what printing methods that you can use and the cost of your suite as a whole.  The wonderful thing about having a custom design is that you can mix and match your papers to create the perfect suite just for you.

Wedding Invitations Paper Types.  Smooth paper, perfect for foil printing, watercolor wedding invitations, letterpress wedding invitations and beyond.  Blue Watercolor version by Blushed Design, Wedding Invitations & Fine Art Portraits

120lb - Smooth Finish

This lovely paper (shown above as the "details" card) has crisp edges and a smooth surface—perfect to show off small details in artwork and/or watercolor.  It allows the beauty of the artwork itself to shine rather than a more prominent tactile experience.
This first option is the most budget friendly offered at Blushed.

The recommended forms of printing for this paper finish includes:

  • Flat printing
  • Foil, though I generally recommend the other options for this

 

240lb - Smooth Finish

This option (shown above as the foil invitation) is similar to the first option discussed above, except that it is twice as thick.  The added weight of this second option gives the invitation suite a more luxurious feel and opens up more printing options than the lighter version.  The same benefits apply here too: a smooth surface and crisp edges allow for the artwork in the suite to shine—details are crisp and shown off beautifully.

The recommended forms of printing for this paper finish includes:

  • Flat printing
  • Foil
  • Letter Press

 

Italian wedding paper with a soft deckled edge gives just the right amount of romance to your wedding without sacrificing design!  Learn more about the other wedding paper options and which printing methods work best for each at blusheddesign.com  |  Blushed Design, Wedding Invitations and Fine Art Portraits

Italian - Textured & Deckled

If you are a detail lover, this is for you!  This beautiful Italian paper gives your invitations that unique, handmade look and (literal) feel that you have probably been drooling over on Pinterest.  The gentle texture on the surface of the paper is similar to watercolor paper, and instead of a crisp edge, this paper is has an uneven edge that naturally occurs when the paper is created (known as a "deckle").  The texture gives this beautiful paper a delicate feel before the artwork is even added to it!  Spoiler alert—this is a personal favorite of mine at the moment!
The recommended forms of printing for this paper includes:

  • Flat printing
  • Foil

 

Handmade paper for wedding invitations.  What kind of paper to use for your wedding, the pros and cons of each and the printing methods that are recommended in this handy little guide.  Blushed Design, Wedding Invitations & Fine Art Portraits

Handmade Cotton Rag - Textured & Deckled

The final paper option has the lovely surface texture and the most delicate deckled edges!  Literally made by hand, this beautiful paper option is a great way to showcase stunning calligraphy and simple illustrations—allow the paper itself to shine!  If you have never seen or explored the idea of handmade paper before, some of my favorites are Fabulous Fancy Pants and Pressed Paper.
As you might have already guessed, this paper option is the most expensive of those listed.

The recommended forms of printing for this paper includes:

  • Foil
  • Letter Press

I hope seeing pictures of all of these paper options was helpful as you start to dream up your future wedding invitations!

 

 
Custom wedding invitations are only an inquiry away!  Schedule your design meeting with Blushed Design: Fine Art Wedding Invitations to begin the process.  You'll be sending your stunning invitations out to your guests in no time! #customweddinginvitations #fineartwedding #weddinginvitations #weddinginspiration
 

If you are interested in starting your custom wedding stationery design process, I would love to hear more about your story and the dreams you have for your big day!  Simply fill out this questionnaire and I will contact you soon with a custom price proposal.  I can hardly wait to meet you and get started on your one of a kind heirloom