Which envelope works best for your wedding invitations?

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Ignore that lovely eraser dust, still fresh on these envelopes!

In what was either a caffeine-fueled moment of creativity, budgeting genius… or plain old insanity, I decided that I would be designing and printing our wedding invitations myself.

This was never the plan. You see, after I created the wedding map, I struggled with how we’d incorporate it into our printed invitations. The sites that offered wedding sets that I’d fallen in love with (ahem, Minted.com), didn’t offer the flexibility to customize matching enclosure cards. And once I’d decided that I’d need to have the map card printed separately, I figured I might as well print them all together to ensure a seamless look and feel.

Voila! Project of the year.

Now, pardon me while I eschew chronological order and leap far, far ahead to… envelopes.

Once I’d designed the invitation set (which I’ll come back to in a later post), I landed on black envelopes to complete the look. I wanted something that would be high quality, that would feel nice in your hand as you sorted through the mail, right? And I wanted to use milky white ink to address the mail.

After a bit of research, I found that Gelly Roll pens were the tool of choice when it came to easy-to-use, opaque white ink. I picked one up at the local craft shop to test and indeed, it worked nicely.

But now, onto those envelopes. As I started my search, I nixed the idea of linen or metallic options for the pure fact that I wasn’t sure how the ink would react on that type of paper. (The fine texture variances in linen-feel papers are lovely, but can promote ink bleed, I’ve found.) So I settled on “Classic Crest Epic Black Envelopes” from The Paper Mill Store. Made using 80 lb. (recycled!) paper, with a smooth finish, they’re the perfect complement to the invitation “suite.” At roughly $48 for a box of 250, they’re also a good deal, and leave lots of extras for misspelled addresses.

You can’t tell from the photo above, but these are square-flap envelopes (opposed to Euro style “V” flaps). I would have opted for the more formal Euro style, but I’d already purchased skinny wrap-around return address labels, and I feel like they look a lot cleaner on a square envelope flap; don’t you?

Side note: While I’ve always drooled over calligraphy and would have loved to outsource invitation addressing, it simply wasn’t in the budget. And my motivation level for learning calligraphy in the next two months is hovering at ZERO.

I penciled in some light lines to ensure straight – if nothing else – penmanship and allowed a bit of fancy in the names and zip codes. The rest is standard capital lettered freehand. Nothing too elegant, but it’s easier on the mail carrier this way, right? šŸ˜‰

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