Whether you’re having your wedding invitations custom designed or even if you’ve decided to go it alone, purchasing invites can be an oh-so-trying process. Between the timing, cost calculations and diction, it’s hard not to lose track of something and make a mistake. Need some help? Here are five things you definitely want to avoid:
1. Have Realistic Budget Expectations
Avoid wedding invitation “sticker shock” with planning and research. Before you get your heart set on the “perfect” invite, determine your estimated number of guests as well as your bottom-line budget. Also, don’t forget to consider the cost of postage and any additional stationary you may need (such as thank-you notes) when making calculations.
2. Don’t Procrastinate!
A very common mistake in the wedding invitation process is not allowing enough time to choose, purchase AND print the stationary. Invitations should be mailed six to eight weeks in advance, and printing often takes ten to twelve weeks. So when should you order them? We say no less than six months just to play it safe. Doing everything yourself? Take the amount of time you think you’ll need and triple it. (After all, you just never know if things will take much longer than expected.)
3. Order the Correct Quantity
“Correct quantity” not only means too few invitations, but also too many! When placing your order, be sure to account for late additions to the wedding, lost invites and keepsakes. It’s generally suggested that you order 10-15% more invites than you think you need. Quick tip: Avoid ordering too many invitations by organizing your guest list by couple and family rather than individually.
4. Avoid Typos (Duh!)
Proofread, proofread, proofread! Ask your grammatically-inclined family members and friends to read over your invitation proof a gazillion times, and even when they have given you the thumbs up, look over it one more time. How embarrassing would it be to send out an invitation with your mother-in-law’s name spelled incorrectly? (Can you say mortifying times ten?!?)
5. Use the Right Postage
This one seems like a no-brainer, but don’t assume your invitations require the standard postage amount. Compile one complete invitation including any enclosures, and take it down to your local post office to have it weighed before placing postage on the envelope. You should also ask the post office about any upcoming postage increases as you may need to buy the Forever Stamp, which is good no matter how many increases are made through the U.S. Postal Service.
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