Top 5 Questions about Custom Wedding Invitations

We work with many couples at Iron Leaf Press during their wedding planning. There are so many options for wedding planning these days, that sometimes having too many choices can make one’s head spin. We like to try to make the process as painless as possible, while still creating something that reflects the couple and their big day. Below are the top questions most couples face when beginning the wedding stationery process.

Blush & Gold Wedding Invites | Iron Leaf Press

1. Where do I start?
Many questions come up when you begin working on your wedding paper goods; where do our names go and in what order? Do I need my parents’ names on the invite too? Do I need an inner envelope? What’s the difference between an A2 and A7 envelope? What about an RSVP card? Where should I put my wedding website?

The truth of it is, you can do most anything with invites these days. We’ve seen everything from super formal invitations, to more unconventional sizes, designs, and wording. We can help guide you to find the right mix of wording, design, and enclosures to match your personality and wedding celebration. We chat with each couple about their day and what they are hoping to see with their paper goods to create some unique to them.

Wedding Invitation | Iron Leaf Press

2. When do I need to start thinking about save the dates and invitations?
Save the dates are typically mailed six to eight months in advance of your wedding date. Wedding invites are sent six to eight weeks before your date. To ensure enough time for designing, editing, and producing your paper goods, the process should start at least a month out from your intended mailing date.

3. How much is this going to cost?
Many factors will go into the cost of your paper goods. Quantity, size, and the number of colors, along with number of pieces (invite/rsvp card/map/etc) are the top factors for pricing. Many will hear the word “custom” and fear that the price will be too far out of their budget. We try to work within any budget to get the biggest bang for your dollar. On average, most of our invitations range from $3.00-$8.00/invite.

Gold Letterpress Wedding Invitations | Iron Leaf Press

4. How do I handle addressing these invites?
There are a few different options for applying names and addresses to your invites. Return addresses can be directly printed on to the envelope. Guest names and addresses can be printed as well. Additionally, custom labels can be created and adhered to the envelopes. We also partner with local calligraphers to hand-address envelopes in various calligraphy styles.

5. How much will it cost to mail my invitations?
Once you’ve got your pretty paper goods ready to send out, the last thing you want is a surprise at the post office. Keep in mind that square envelopes and items over 13 oz. will incur additional postage. Envelopes that are thicker than 1/4″ may also incur additional charges. We keep these regulations in mind while designing each invite and work closely with our local post office to ensure your paper goods travel safely through the postal system.

Sweeter Than Honey | Iron Leaf Press

Bonus! What about other paper goods and favors?
Beyond save the dates and invitations, there are many ways to incorporate the look and feel of your invites into other items on the day of your wedding and even after. Programs, menus, and placecards are three of the most common pieces we work on for wedding couples. We also print custom coasters, boxes, and bags as wedding favors. And following the wedding, we love to work on thank you cards and personal stationery.

If you have additional questions about wedding stationery or to request a custom quote, feel free to contact us. We love chatting about weddings!

Midwest & Great Northern Printers Fair

Printers Hall

The 21st Annual Midwest & Great Northern Printers Fair is coming up in less than a month! This will be my 7th year attending the Printers Fair and it holds a special place in my printer heart. (Photo above was taken during the Printers Fair a couple of years back by one of the larger presses they have at Printers Hall)

Iron Hand Press

Printers Hall is a working museum/print shop on the Threshers Grounds in Mt. Pleasant, Iowa. They house dozens of presses and equipment, most of which are in working condition. When I was first interested in letterpress, I decided to check out the Printers Fair all those years ago. Eventually, my first press came out of my visit to Printers Hall and the second press came a couple of years later from the same place. Last summer I also attended the Ladies of Letterpress Conference, Type on the Cob, held at Printers Hall.

Printers Hall

While there, I’ve met many printers whom have become good friends and mentors. I’m really looking forward to this year’s Printers Fair and would encourage those interested in learning a bit more about letterpress, to take the trip to Mt. Pleasant in September.

For more info about the events of this year’s Printers Fair, I’ve posted some details here on the Ladies of Letterpress site. Also check out the Old Threshers site for more photos and info about Printers Hall.

What’s on Press: Southwest Dinner Menus

Southwest Letterpress Menu | Iron Leaf Press

Last year I met a paper-loving couple and worked with them to design and print a menu for their (delicious sounding) dinner party. When they decided to host another event this year, they wanted letterpress menus to go with their southwest theme.
Southwest Letterpress Menu | Iron Leaf Press

With their theme, I couldn’t resist using two shades of cactus green. I mixed a few old style serif typefaces with a sans-serif to reflect a bit of southwest style with a modern twist.
Southwest Letterpress Menu | Iron Leaf PressThanks to Sam & Diana for their support (and super fun letterpress projects!).


What’s on Press: Woodworker’s Labels

Woodworker's Labels | Iron Leaf Press

While most of our letterpress work is done with digital files that are turned into plates for printing, we get an occasional job that is done with handset type.
Antique Label

John contacted us about creating some labels for the cabinets and chairs he creates. He sent along an inspiration image of an antique calling card. This card would have been printed via letterpress and handset type back when it was first printed. We couldn’t resist the challenge to print his labels in the same way.Woodworker's Labels | Iron Leaf Press

We used two typefaces from our collection and a new border that was purchased from Skyline Type Foundry, specifically for this project (the little box holds all of the tiny, 12 point pieces of border). The type was set with a Bodoni-like face, combined with Copperplate Gothic and a short rule. Woodworker's Labels | Iron Leaf Press

The labels were printed with black ink on 100% cotton paper from Crane, with the label adhesive added after printing. Thanks to John for the fun challenge!