As the readers who have been hanging around The House That Never Slumbers for a while now know My Daughter Was Married in High School. We had about ten weeks to really plan the wedding, and because we do our best to live debt-free, we had a budget of $2000-$2500 which included feeding almost 300 guests. One way we saved a whole lot of money was by making our own wedding invitations. My daughter found several different wedding invitations on Pinterest that included a knot, and she really liked those. It also worked nicely with a scripture we wanted to include on the invitations. We were able to make our Tying the Knot Wedding Invitations for around $20.
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Including the knot did make the invitations require a special hand-sort postage stamp that was more expensive, so we might have skipped the knot if we hadn’t been hand delivering the majority of the invitations. I ended up mailing very few invitations because we were so pressed for time with getting everything else together that I didn’t feel like I had time to track down addresses, so mostly invitations got handed out at church and school and mailed to just the closest immediate family. One negative of hand delivering the invitations was that it was more difficult to remember who had been invited and who hadn’t. There were people we should have invited who were inadvertently overlooked because we didn’t happen to see them in person during that time, and that is something that still makes me feel really horrible. If you are one of those people and are reading this, I sincerely apologize. There were also some people I thought RiflemanDad or my eldest had invited, but they thought I had invited them, so some of those people ended up not getting their invitations. The ten-week wedding situation got a little chaotic around here, but still, I’m very sorry that anyone was accidentally missed. Learn from our mistakes. Keep a good list, and check off names. We had a list, but we lost it, and found it, and lost it, and then gave up on it because we are often a disorganized mess around here.
As far as making the invitations, after F showed me several invitations she liked on Pinterest, we took the parts we liked best from all of those, and I created a file in Word that let us get two invitations to every printed page. We printed that file on a sheet of white paper and headed to town to make copies. We stopped at the office store first to see if they already had the right color of cardstock which would have made the whole process much easier. Unfortunately, the pastel green they had was too green, and their pastel blue was too blue. We needed something in between. We found the right color at Michael’s. The Blue Ombre pack of Recollections Cardstock had two different colors of green that were close enough to the Tiffany Blue that we needed (one was just a darker shade of the other). Out of the pack of 50 sheets, that only gave us 20 sheets we could use, but the paper is only $2 per pack at Michael’s, and we used the 40% coupon you can bring up on a phone. We actually ended up having to print a second round of invitations after running out of the first ones. I think it took us four packages total to get what we needed, but the younger girls use a lot of colored paper in their craft projects, so having extra paper wasn’t a big deal to us. We each used a coupon whenever we got the paper, so it ended up being under $5 for all the packages.
We took our paper back to the nearest office store and had them print the double-sided invitations. I think if was around 20 cents each to get the double-sided black and white copies, so about $16 for the 80 copies we made. That gave us 160 invitations. This was a great price considering $1 each is a low price for most of the wedding invitations I’ve seen online. I also paid them to cut the invitations for us. This was well worth the cost because it’s only $2 per cut to do the entire stack. I only needed one cut, since they just need to be cut in half. This was much easier than having to cut them by hand, and their machine could cut them perfectly when I’m sure our lines would have been far from straight. We were really happy with the final copy. I couldn’t get the coloring to show up accurately in either of these pictures, but I promise this is the same sheet of paper even though one looks green and the other blue.
To place the knots inside, we used a special 1/8 inch hole punch made for crafting and twine. Where I come from that twine is called baling twine. Apparently, when you make fancy crafts with it, it’s called jute. I’ve included the link to jute at Hobby Lobby because they have some additional colors that might interest some people with a different color scheme for their wedding, but regular tan jute is cheaper to buy at Walmart. I think we paid about $2 for it. I bet if you had a smaller hole punch and used a thinner twine, you might be able to create an invitation that could make it through the mail without requiring hand-sorting. You would need to take a sample to the post office to have them check to be sure. You would definitely lose some of the effect with thinner twine though.
We used brown envelopes because they matched the rustic burlap and twine theme. The cheapest price we could find on those was at Hobby Lobby because they sell the bulk box of 100 for between $10 and $12 (you can usually bring up a 40% off coupon on your phone too). We used a scrapbooking marker to address the envelopes. We had one that was more chalky (the one used on the envelope pictured here), and I think it came from Michael’s. We also had a glittery one that may have come from Walmart. Both were not very expensive, maybe around $1. The chalky one was more difficult to read, but the color stood out more.
I should definitely warn everyone that I practically made my fingers bleed tying all the knots in one sitting. You know how that twine cuts up your fingers when you’re dragging around straw bales? Well, it makes lots of little cuts on your fingers when you’re tying knots in wedding invitations too. I would have had the girls help me and wouldn’t have finished them all alone if I had realized what it was doing to my hands. We were kind of in a rush to get them out though because F had downloaded this wedding planning app on her phone a couple of days after we realized we would only have ten weeks to plan the wedding. It was supposed to give a timeline of when everything should be completed. When she entered her wedding date into the app, we were already a few weeks past the date that this app thought invitations should be sent. That sent F into a panic, so I stayed up all that night tying them. Of course, it wasn’t until the next day that I realized it had been shredding the skin from my fingers. But what’s a little blood and sweat as long as you save a few dollars, right? Remember this gal put the G-A-L in frugal, so it was well worth the effort and pain.
These were definitely not the fanciest wedding invitations on the planet, but they were cute and inexpensive. And really, the vast majority of wedding invitations just go in the trash anyway, so anything that gets the point across is perfectly functional. With the cost of the envelopes added, we were still around $30 for the entire project (that total does not include the cost of postage). Your options are limitless if you design your own wedding invitations. We used regular cardstock because we were going with more of a rustic theme anyway, but Amazon has some really cool metallic shimmer paper that I think would be amazing and add a wow factor without adding a huge amount of extra cost if you have a theme that works better with shimmers. One great part of designing your own invitation is that you can look around on Pinterest and take the features you like best from several different ones instead of being stuck with someone else’s mold. Anyone with a minimum of word processing skills can put something together using Word. I’m making our template available to subscribers, but you could even change that to let your own personalities show. Have you made any clever invitations for your own wedding? What were they like? Leave us a note in the comments below.
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