There are several options to consider for your invitation printing and here, we've detailed the three printing styles we use most often for our custom designed wedding invitations: digital offset/flat printing, letterpress printing, and foil printing. Each style’s process is unique, as you'll read below.
Why are letterpress and foil printing more costly?
These printing styles are a bit more costly due to the additional time, materials, and labor expended in creating each and every invitation. You will learn below how the printing of each individual invitation is a labor-intensive process which can become quite lengthy depending on the number of different colors used, as custom plates must be created for each element of the design on a per-color basis.
Flat Printing (Digital Offset Printing):
We'll start with flat printing, which is the most cost effective and fastest printing style, and the type of printing we use most often. The printing turnaround time takes about a week and a half, and is not limited by design or number of colors used. Flat printing is perfect for a modern look, photos, and/or multicolored designs, and we can print on textured or smooth stock.
Some examples of Flat-Printed Wedding Invitations:
Letterpress is a classic and formal style that has been used for decades. Previously, letterpress printing used wooden or metal type blocks with ink pressed into the paper manually. Today’s process involves a hard plastic plate created from the design, which is placed into the printer. Someone manually feeds invitations, one by one, and rolls the inked mold into each piece of paper. Letterpress printing costs include a flat-rate minimum, or set-up charge, because of the costs associated with the creation of your design plates and mixing of your inks. For every color used, the invitations have to be processed through the printer individually, again. The printing turnaround time takes about two to three weeks.
Some examples of Letterpress Wedding Invitations:
Foil printing is a beautiful way to add a very formal shine to your invitation and works well on its own or in correlation with flat printing or letterpress printing. The printing turnaround time for foil is about two to three weeks as well. Similar to letterpress, a custom plate is created from your design for printing. With a combination of heat, pressure, and metallic paper, someone physically manages the printing process, one by one. This style of printing is not limited to any number of colors, however, for each color of foil, the invitations have to be processed through the printer again. Foil printing is a bit more costly than flat printing or letterpress for these reasons.
Some examples of Foil Wedding Invitations:
We sincerely hope this information is helpful in your decision-making about what printing styles might work best for your wedding style, tastes, and budget. Let us know how we can best be of service!