Wedding invitations are more than simple invites to a ceremony; they're commemorative keepsakes that you'll cherish in photo albums for decades to come. You can pass up the pre-designed store-purchased announcements by designing wedding invitations that look great in keepsake photo albums. Even if you have no previous design experience, it's easy to create fantastic wedding invitations with these tips and tricks.
What you need
All you need to design your own wedding invitations is a computer with Internet access. Start by choosing a photo editing program - there are several free and open source versions available at no cost - and download a free wedding invitation layout template. Print layout templates help you ensure that your finished design will look just as sharp off the printing press as it does in your photo editing program, because they're pre-formatted in the proper size, resolution and color mode, and also include markings so you know where to position your design.
Where to get artwork
If you're not a graphic designer you might be at a loss about where to get artwork for your wedding invitations. Start with a photo (or photos) of the bride and groom, then add accents with clipart, photos and graphics found through a Creative Commons search and stock photo websites. Check licensing - most Creative Commons artwork is free for personal use, so you can use it on your wedding invitations as long as you don't intend to commercially sell the invitations.
Where to get wedding invitations printed
Wedding invitations are easy to print right from your computer. Upload your completed design to an online printing company such as PsPrint and choose from several options to further customize your invitations. Start by deciding which type of paper stock is best suited for your wedding invitation design. A super-thick 16-point gloss cover stock will make your colors brilliantly pop off the page, while a 13-point recycled matte will lend your colors depth, richness and elegance.
You can also have your printing company score and fold your wedding invitations for you, so you can save the time and hassle of hand-folding them later. You might also decide to add a foil stamp for a touch of class and prestige, or an extra-thick UV coating that gives wedding invitations a glossy sheen and helps them survive through decades. No matter what print finishing options you choose, it's always a good idea to get a hard copy proof so you can double check that your wedding invitations will be printed exactly as you envision them. This is, after all, a once-in-a-lifetime event and you won't get an opportunity to redo the invitations.
How to mail wedding invitations
You could hand address, stamp and mail your wedding invitations yourself; or you could save the time and hassle and have your printing company handle these tasks for you. All you have to do is upload your custom mailing list and rest easy in the knowledge that your perfect, custom-designed wedding invitations are en route.