Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Here a font, there a font. Everywhere a script font. Choosing a font for the Non-Designer.

Choosing a font can sometimes be a daunting task when it comes to wedding invitations. You want a font to really mesh well with your dream design and you still want it to be legible. And most non-designers are unaware of “Font Politics.”

There are literally thousands upon thousands of fonts to choose from, it’s no wonder couples can get lost into a deep abyss of choices. If you’ve ever seen the documentary “Helvetica” you’re aware of “Font Politics”. Some people (Designers, Hipsters and Librarians) feel very strongly about certain fonts. Using the wrong font can almost be insulting to some designers, while others can see the same font as “adorable” or “fancy”. Recently I was reading Emily Post, the foremost leader of wedding etiquette, and she suggested for more casual invitations to use the font “Comic Sans”. As a designer, I almost had a heart attack after reading this. How does Emily Post not know of the secret (or not-so-secret) war against the font “Comic Sans”?!! Then it hit me, only designers know or even care about font choices. Comic Sans has long been the font that is over used and often misused. Designers all recognize fonts have personalities. Some are more causal, others are more formal.

When choosing a font for your wedding invitations you may want to consider if you want to play “Font Politics” and stay away from “controversial” fonts, like Comic Sans and Helvetica. However, if you really like a “controversial” font and you’re not marrying a graphic designer, go for it. It’s important to really love your wedding invitations.

For those non-designers here is a cheat sheet to help you choose a font.

To really simplify things there are 4 different kinds of fonts:

1) Serif Fonts:
A serif is the little bar as the end of the stroke of each letter. For example: If you are using “Times Roman” you’ll see a little bar and the bottom and tops of the letter “T”. These are the serifs. These fonts are more traditional and formal.

2) San Serif Fonts
These fonts are without serifs. So if you were using the font “Arial” you’ll see there is no little bar at the end of the letter “l”. These fonts are more modern looking and easier to read.

3) Script Fonts
These fonts look like cursive. The most common script for wedding invitations is “Edwardian Script”. One things to look out for is to make sure your script font is still legible. Some fonts are more traditional looking, while others are much more modern. I would say, if the font looks like something your grandmother would have had on her wedding invitations it’s more of a traditional script font. If the script font looks like it would only appear after 1960 it’s more of a modern font.

4) Novelty/Decorative Fonts
Well, Wingdings is a novelty font, but I doubt you’re considering for your wedding invitations. Other great novelty fonts to look at are ones that look like old typewriters or handwriting.

If you are making your own wedding invitations and are looking for some new fonts take a look at
This website is full of great fonts. Some are free and other s you have to pay for.

(Some people make fonts for a living!)

Tips for combining fonts:

Just like how polka dots and stripes don’t go in fashion, certain fonts don’t go together. A good rule of thumb is not to combine a serif font with a modern script or a novelty font. San Serif fonts go well with more modern scripts and novelty fonts. Serif fonts go well with traditional script fonts. A way to tell if your script font is more modern or traditional, ask yourself, would this font be used 1950 or earlier? If the answer is “yes”, it’s likely a traditional font. Of course, rules were meant to be broken. Try different combinations and ask a few of your friends who have an “eye” for design for their opinions.

Remember, have fun with font just like you would with fashion!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Wedding Invitations Cost How Much!!!??

You’ve gotten engaged and you’re ready to plan your wedding. You know the dress, food and venue will be expensive, but there are many other little details that cost more than you think.

Wedding invitation pricing can vary greatly. If you are looking for traditional engraved or letter press invitations be ready to use a good chunk of your budget. Letter press invitations are very beautiful because they leave an embossment in the paper. These can run you up to $2.50-$3.00 each. The reason these invitations are so expensive it because of the intense labor that goes into printing these types of invitations. Everything is done by hand, from setting each letter to hand inking each print. There is nothing more luxurious than a traditionally printed invitation; however, like most beautiful things in life, they don’t come cheap.

Most couples today opt for invitations that are printed digitally because they are much more cost effecting. Invitations can run you anywhere from 60 cents each to $1.50 each. Most of the major wedding invitation websites offer digital printing. Most of these websites offer designs in a few colors and simply cut and paste your custom wording onto them.
These invitations are usually not printed on archival paper, so make sure to check the fine print.

A great site for very unique wedding invitations (besides my own website! is
There are many great designers on there that will work directly with you to create any type of custom invitation design. These may cost you a little more than a major wedding invitation website, but you’ll get something very special and custom.

Now, maybe you’ve found the invitations of your dreams, but it’s still costly. Here are a few tricks to lower the cost:

1) Don’t opt for the inner and outer envelopes. Just get a simple envelope to encase everything. I know they look beautiful, but your guests will likely throw them away.

2) Do an RSVP post card. This will save you from purchasing matching envelopes.

3) Get a website through or a similar website and have guests RSVP through there. Simply put a line at the bottom of your wedding invitation: Please RSVP on our website at:

4) Forego the tissue inside the invitation. The tissue is necessary if you are getting traditionally printed wedding invitations (Letter press or traditional engraved ones) the tissue keeps the ink from your invitation from bleeding to the rest of the paper inside your envelope. If you are getting digitally printed invitations these are not necessary. Some people still use them simply out of tradition.

5) Print your own wedding invitations. There are many free templates online to print your own wedding invitations. (I only suggest this to people who are computer and printer savvy.) Check Out
You can also contact designers on Etsy and some will be willing to sell you a custom invitation in JPEG format that you can print at home.

6) Instead of hiring a calligrapher print out your addresses in a nice font on clear address labels. Keeping in mind to to use too crazy of a font, the post office still needs to read the address.

Remember wedding invitations set the tone for your wedding. What’s most important is that you find the right design that works best for your event and fits within your budget.

One last tip: Many couples forget you don’t need to order as many invitations as there are people invited to your wedding. You only need 1 invitation per household address.