Custom Watercolor & Gouache Invitations – The Process
Set the tone for your event with textural watercolor invitations you won't find anywhere else. All of my invitations, whether they're a simple one piece card or a full suite, are fully custom and each design is painted by me before the artwork is scanned and digitally printed on my signature natural white 118 lb cotton stock and matched to coordinating colored envelopes.
The invitation process can include, but is not limited to:
Invitations - RSVP's - Hand Drawn Maps - Save the Dates - Details Cards - Thank You Cards - Postcards - Hand Addressed Envelopes
Custom Return Address Stamps - Envelope Liners - Menus - Programs - Announcements - Etc.
Pricing and Invitation Budgeting:
Remember that pricing is highly variable and depends on what is included in your package. A no-frills suite of 80-100 cotton invitations, including a custom 5x7 one sided invite with coordinating envelope and matching one sided RSVP with coordinating envelope begins at around $500. On the other end of the invitation spectrum, a completely hand lettered and illustrated suite, front and back design, with included hand drawn map, an enclosure card and envelopes with liners, ribbon, wax seals, etc. will require a budget of a few thousand.
I work with my clients to remain within their budget, and I am happy to work with all couples and hosts to create beautiful, once-in-a-lifetime invitations regardless of what is spent.
Please allow 4-6 weeks for the creation of your invitations, and to better estimate your invitation timeline please consider these guidelines for shipping invitations to your guests:
Save the Dates should be mailed 4-6 months before the wedding.
Destination Wedding Save the Dates should be mailed 6-8 months before the wedding.
Wedding invitations should be mailed 6-8 weeks before the wedding.
Destination wedding invitations should be mailed 10-12 weeks before the wedding.
Formal party invitations (black tie affairs, anniversaries) should be mailed 6-8 weeks before the event.
Casual party invitations (birthdays, holidays) should be mailed 2-4 weeks before the event.
My standard procedure begins with an email questionnaire to help me get a feel for your personal tastes and style, exactly what we’ll be creating together, and any other relevant information. Once this is completed I will get back to you with detailed quote, contract, and first invoice (typically for half of the estimated cost, but this can be determined through our dialogue. Down payments are non-refundable.). Once your contract is signed and the invoice is paid I will collect the wording needed to begin your invitations.
From here I’ll sketch 2-3 concepts for you to choose from. You will choose one concept to move forward on and using your notes and feedback I will paint and hand letter the chosen piece in watercolor and/or gouache and begin designing your custom invitations.
Once the design is ready I’ll send you your first proof of the suite. From here we can tweak the design, but if an entirely new design is desired your order will be subject to an additional design fee.
Using your input I will finish your design and, if time permits, create a printed proof and mail it to you as a mock-up of the final invitation. This is to approve paper and colors, as often these things are represented differently in photographs and on monitors. If time does not allow a mailed proof we can go straight to print.
Optional additions to complete your perfect invitation include ribbon, belly bands (the paper strip that wraps your invitation), coordinating ribbon, custom wax seals, custom envelope liners, pocket folders, tissue, etc.
At this point all materials (papers and envelopes) are ordered, printed, and assembled by hand. If I am also hand addressing your envelopes I will do this before they are mailed to you along with your invitations. I do not mail individual invitations to your recipients. Hand addressing envelopes is a time consuming project, so allow 2 weeks for every 100.
After your invitations are mailed to you we can begin the rest of your calligraphy, if you desire. I can create place cards, table numbers, menus, signage, etc. to complete your wedding paper suite.
If you have any questions feel free to contact me.
Thank you so much!