I made my own invitations, from the design to the assembly. I’ll start off by saying it is a lot of work and takes a lot of time, BUT it is worth it in the end to know that you made them. I designed the invite and the inserts. We couldn’t afford letterpress printing (though I love, love, love), and I could have definitely used my trusty Epson to do the printing, but I decided to save myself a little grief by having them printed (I used http://www.catprint.bz). It wasn’t so much the printing that was an issue, it was morseo the trimming of each card to size, and with them, you can place custom size orders (no min qty, either).
I wanted pocketfolds, but I definitely did not want to pay the price for them, so I decided to make my own. I purchased all my cardstock from http://www.textstyledesigns.com; one set I had trimmed to the size I needed, the rest was a stock size. I bought my ribbon from http://www.papermart.com, and my envelopes from http://www.envelopemall.com. I layered my cardstock, which gave otherwise lightweight, flimsy cardstock a bit more firmness. I only did this for the main invitation, and the rest of my inserts I left alone (no mounting on another pc of cardstock), and layered them at varying heights in the pocket. While it’s pretty to layer, it makes for a heavier postage, and really, no one is going to care if your directions card is mounted on pretty cardstock or not.
In the end, it took about 7 hours, a bit of a backache and fear of arthritis to make 160 invitations, and this didn’t include the design time.
Some tips: PROOFREAD. It can’t be mentioned enough. You’ll be staring at the same words for so long it’s super easy to miss something. Have someone else read it. A few times.
Make a sample. Feel the paper, see how long it took, and you can figure out what works and what doesn’t. I’d also try to stay away from thick bows or knots because it will make the envelope bulky and difficult to mail.
Start with choosing the size of your envelope. You might decide a particular line is perfect and they don’t make the size you need and you’ll have to re-size everything. (Remember square envelopes are more postage)
Really flourishy, curly fonts are very pretty, but should be used in moderation in my opinion. Too much of it can make an invitation difficult to read.
Tape rollers by Xyron are fantastic and easy to use for adhesive. Lots of other great brands, I’m sure. If you are trimming your own stuff, invest in a good paper trimmer and scorer.
And finally. Have fun! It’s a really personal project and can be overwhelming, but definitely have fun with it! If you have any question, please ask! (This post was so much shorter in my head lol)