My DIY Invitation Nightmare

I decided to DIY my wedding invitations to save money. Worst. Decision. Ever.

There’s a reason I’m not DIYing a lot on this whole wedding thing.  I’m not very good at it. But I thought I’d give the invitations a go because there are so many free templates online and I know how to use a printer.

Or so I thought.

I found this free printable kit.  I think it’s super pretty.  And it was really easy to input all of our information.  Then I went to print them.  The invites themselves came out easily enough.  And then I tried the RSVP cards.  I had this crazy idea in my head that I’d just use them as postcards, printing our address on the reverse and saving a little bit of money on postage.  I could not get the front to line up with the back for the life of me.  Then, when I finally found a quasi solution, I went to cut them.  The pattern says they’re 3.5×5, which is the smallest a postcard can be, but I guess what that means is that they will fit into a 3.5×5 envelope.  Which makes the whole postcard idea impossible as the card is just a little too small.

So I ran out of paper.  And my printer ran out of ink (only the color that I kept using for the damask on the side of the invitaiton.)  Plus I now needed tiny envelopes.  Which I tried to print addresses onto from the computer because my handwriting isn’t the best.  (Another epic fail…I think this printer just hates me; I’ve printed envelope addresses in work settings before.)

But I finally got it done.

Costs

First Michael’s trip for paper and envelopes:  $13.35

Second Michael’s trip for more paper and tiny envelopes:  $8.87

Printer Ink: $15

Total:  $37.22

Four nights of headaches and swearing at my printer after the kids were in bed:  Priceless.

What I Wish I Had Done Instead

I should have just ordered them online.  With unfortunate timing (I had just finished addressing the envelopes,) Invite Shop contacted me about working together.  We’re affiliates now because I wish I had used them.  They have really cute designs and are priced right.  If I had bought from them, my costs for the invitations and RSVP cards would have been around $44.19 including shipping.  Plus I would have bought envelopes (which I would still just do at Michael’s; the price per unit is better there, though it’s not enough of a difference that it should keep you from “splurging” on convenience if that’s what you’re after.)  So add $10-ish to that.  In retrospect, I’d pay $17 more to get those four nights of my life back.

So I found super cute invites.  And even though it’s too late, I messed around with the personalization tool.  And it’s amazing.  You can move everything around if you want to.  I wouldn’t on all of them, but you can get really detailed.  Like I can make this heart over Pittsburgh instead of Seattle-ish.

map wedding invite

 

And you can put engagement pictures in here:

chalkboard wedding invite

Or just keep everything the same and go classically elegant:

elegant wedding invitation

 

As a total aside, I’m pretty sure this would be the fiance’s pick.  If he cared about things like wedding invitations.  And if I hadn’t already mailed those suckers out:

mix tape wedding invitation

I found matching RSVP cards for all of them, too.  We’re having a very small wedding, so I thought I was up to the task.  Not that many invitations.  I was wrong.  If anytime you try to do something DIY you hit a snag or major pothole, save yourself a headache and just order them.  Prices weren’t that different, and it would be so worth it to not have to spend hours at something I hated and hated me back equally.

How did you do your wedding invites?

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17 thoughts on “My DIY Invitation Nightmare

  1. financiallyblonde

    I spent way too much money on my wedding invitations and in hindsight, now that I know that no one kept one except me, you really shouldn’t spend that much money on wedding invitations. These look fantastic and they are a great price!

    Reply
    1. femmefrugality Post author

      Yeah, I’d think most people wouldn’t care. It is nice to have that one keepsake, but I’m pretty happy with the quality of ours for those purposes.

      Reply
  2. Mel

    Headaches aside, that’s a pretty good price for wedding invites. One of my best friends from high school is getting married and he and his fiance are both really laid back people. His invitation was just some really simple black and white, homemade printer thing. And my other friends and I were super impressed. In a way, I felt sort of bad that we were like “good for them, going all frugal and simple,” but I think we really meant it too. I know I did.

    Reply
    1. femmefrugality Post author

      Yay for your frugal friends! I’d love to hear about his wedding. I wonder if they’ll go frugal on all aspects.

      Reply
  3. Rebecca @ Stapler Confessions

    That is a great price for wedding invites! I forget how much we paid for ours, but DIYed them. I had a vision and couldn’t get them for very cheap anywhere else. I did a tri-fold copper metallic card with the invitation printed on vellum paper and tied to the tri-fold card with a ribbon. I mounted fall leaves between the vellum and the card, so you could see them through the vellum. It took me forever, but I really loved those darn invitations when all was said and done! I even framed one with my bouquet and it’s hanging in our living room.

    Reply
    1. femmefrugality Post author

      Fancy! You know what, if it’s important to you it’s worth spending money on. We’re not spending a lot on our wedding, but splurging a little bit on our honeymoon. I’ve never had a real vision for invitations, but I do for flower colors for some reason. So we’ll be spending a tiny bit more on that. Definitely more compared to the invitations.

      Reply
  4. Michelle

    Wow that’s a really good price for invites, I’m going to have to look into that company! My friend paid over $700 for her invites, and she only sent out 50!

    Reply
    1. femmefrugality Post author

      In all fairness, I did send out a lot less than 50. But $700 is a crazy number to me for that many. I know people do it, but I just couldn’t. Invite Shop is a great alternative.

      Reply
  5. anna

    Sorry to hear about the DIY complications, but the design is really pretty!! Anything outside of food I manage to mess up (like remember how you could make those stain-glassed things in elementary school, and all you had to do was put the color of the beads in certain areas? Well mine would always melt over and never look right lol). My friend offered to make my invites before I had a chance to think about them, but if she didn’t then I would have opted for the online way, as well – some of the designs are super cute!

    Reply
    1. femmefrugality Post author

      Haha I am the opposite of a DIY goddess. I should have known that just because I could use Word didn’t mean I could cheat the wedding industry out of their money. That’s so awesome that your friend is making yours! I bet they turn out super cute!

      Reply
  6. Meredith

    “Four nights of headaches and swearing at my printer after the kids were in bed: Priceless.” This. And because if you, my savings hero, say it’s worth spending the money on something, it is. Thanks for figuring it out for me, but so sorry it was such a beast of an evening-stealer.

    Reply
    1. femmefrugality Post author

      Yeah. It shouldn’t have been a problem with the one I had. Everything was working fine except for the alignment. And then I tried so many times I ran out of the specific ink color I needed. (But only that specific color.) I’m glad it worked out positively on your end!

      Reply
  7. Pingback: How to Make Your Own Place Cards with Word and PicMonkey-Or Just Use My Free Template - Femme Frugality

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