Invitations: How To Make a Great First Impression

Christina Drummond from Windmill Press Letterpress & Design Studio tells us how to set the scene with a stunning invitation.


    Luxury and letterpress printing go hand-in-hand. Invented in the mid-15th century, letterpress is indented printing from a hard raised image or text under pressure.

    These days, with the existence and assistance of computers, letterpress printing is mostly created with photopolymer plates. Designer Christina Drummond, of Windmill Press in Palmerston North, says that technology has meant your invitations can be designed using practically any font or illustration you like.

    "Winter Wonderland" in the print shop today ❄️#windmillpress #lovemyjob #winterwonderland #seniorsocial

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    Your wedding invitation (or perhaps a save-the-date) is often the 'first impression' of what your wedding day will entail, and a beautiful invitation gets guests excited for your upcoming milestone. Windmill Press know their stuff when it comes to design, wording, and effect. We asked Christina why letterpress is so special:

    What do we need to know before creating invitations?

    Obviously to send out wedding invitations you need to have confirmed the date, venue and time.

    From there one of the first things to think about is who is the invitation coming from - Is the invitation coming personally from the bride and groom, or the bride, groom and their families, or is the invite coming from the bride and groom's parents? (which can be the case if they have had significant financial input into the wedding).

    Deciding this then helps you lead into the wording for your invitation starting with who is inviting your guests, for what, where it will be held and when. From here, you can look at the type of design you are going for (formal, beach, etc).

    Another good thing to remember when getting a quote or ordering your invitations is that not every guest requires an invitation. There are always couples and families for example that only require one invitation between two or more people.

    What information do we need to fit on the invitation?

    It depends if you have so much information to tell your guests that you require an extra information card as well.

    For example, if you need to tell your guests directions, attire, specific RSVP details for transport or meals, whether children are allowed to attend or not etc etc, then all of this should not be crammed onto the main invitation. These extra details should either be on the back of the main invitation or on a separate card.

    A wedding invitation should tell your guests who, what, where and when. It shouldn't be too wordy or confusing for your guests and it should be clear and easy to read. To save on design, printing and return envelope costs, a lot of our clients do not have a separate traditional RSVP card for their guests to fill in and return. They simply put an RSVP by date with a contact email address and/or mobile number for their guests to reply to at the bottom of the invitation.

    If we are struggling with wording, can you help us out?

    We are more than happy to give you some examples of wording and work with you to help you decide on something that you are both happy with.

    The way you format the wording depends on the kind of wedding you are wanting to convey to your guests. A formal invitation may phrase the date and time in full whereas a more casual affair would phrase the details in a more relaxed manner.

    What other wedding stationery can you create?

    We can also offer Information Cards (with or without maps), RSVP Cards, Seating Plan, Order of Service, Envelopes, Place Name Cards and whatever other item/s you might personally request eg: signs for a sweets table or a photo booth etc.

    What is the ideal timing to send a ‘save the date’ and ‘invitation’. And what’s an ideal RSVP date, in your opinion?

    The Save the Date originated from destination weddings that were happening overseas and were sent out one year earlier to give the guests plenty of time to save and plan their travels.

    These days with peoples lives becoming busier and busier with family, friends and work, it gives them that much more time to plan ahead. They are not a must though and it is completely up to you whether you want to have one or not.

    Invitations are normally sent out approximately 12 weeks before the wedding. Saying this though, at the end of the day it is completely up to the bride and groom as to when they would like to send these items out to their guests.

    The RSVP is normally no closer than one month before the wedding. This gives the caterers (if required) numbers to plan the menu and your designer/printer enough time to organise your on-the-day items like Place Name Cards and a Seating Plan.

    Follow Windmill Press Letterpress & Design Studio on Facebook and Instagram.



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