Save vs. Splurge: Wedding Invitations

Updated 07/22/14

Cathy Crawford

It's no secret that wedding invitations can be pricey, but it's completely possible to find beautiful options that won't break the bank. We challenged four stationers to create gorgeous invites on two very different budgets. Can you tell them apart?

Letterpess vs. DIY Stamp Invitations

Homemade invites aren't only for casual brides. With a custom stamp, you can create a formal looking invitation without the steep cost. After stamping in any color you choose, use an embossing gun and powder to set an extra-fancy finish. And since you can buy all of these items at any craft store, it's a total DIY option!

(Above, left) Splurge: Custom letterpress wedding invitation, $1,700 for 100 invitations, Antiquaria; (Above, right) Save: "Vineyard" invitation stamp, $155 for 100 invitations (including the cost of paper and envelopes), Antiquaria

Photos: Cathy Crawford

Foil vs. Gold Ink Invitations

Twinkling metallics make any invite more festive. The two-tone confetti at left was made by hand pressing foil to copper plates. Using gold ink stars instead, on the right, can slash your bill. Tip: Stick to one shade. Extra colors must be pressed separately, which will drive up your cost.

(Left): Splurge: Foil letterpress wedding invitation, $1,155 for 100 invitations, Ditto Paper for Bella Figura; Save: Letterpress wedding invitation with gold ink details, $655 for 100 invitations, Lindsay Talarico for Bella Figura

Photos: Cathy Crawford

Engraved vs. Flat Printed Invitations

Engraving your wedding invitations gives your stationery a tactile, upscale air. But for the fraction of the price, you can select flat printed options that, with the help of new high-fidelity presses, have such vivid detail they have the luxe look of hand painting.

(Left) Splurge: Engraved wedding invitation, $598 for 100 invitations, Paperless Post; Save: Flat printed wedding invitation; $150 for 100 invitations, Paperless Post

Photos: Cathy Crawford

Handmade Paper vs. Thick Stock Invitations

Get a black-tie vibe with handmade paper — uncut edges, like the option at left, add an antique feel — a bespoke seal, and custom calligraphy. Or go formal for less by mixing block text with a script font and printing on heavy stock paper.

(Left) Splurge: Engraved handmade cards with custom calligraphy and monogram, $2,676 for 100 invitations, The Printery; Save: Engraved six-ply cards with formal motif, $1,600 for 100 invitations, The Printery

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