(Closed) What’s the best program to use to design your own invitations?

posted 12 years ago in Paper
Post # 3
81 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: November 2007

I tried several programs, and it’s silly – but believe it or not, PowerPoint was my favorite. It’s extremely user-friendly. I laid out my entire invitation in Photoshop, Word, and in another one that I can’t remember the name of, and I still prefer the PowerPoint. Good luck if you go the stamp route. I find stamps to be much too inconsistant for my perfectionist tastes. I’m sure I’d waste twice as much paper trying to get it perfect. Kudos, if you can make it work!

Post # 4
96 posts
Worker bee

I used Illustrator and InDesign for all of my wedding stationery.  If you have access to Illustrator I would definitely take advantage of it!  You should create the entire invitation in Illustrator as opposed to a combination of Illustrator and Word.  Illlustrator actually has much more type capabilities than Word does.  That said, I know the progam can be daunting if you are learning it for the first time on your own.  Some pointers:

1) Set the document dimensions to the size that you want the invitation to be.  This way, if you create crop marks automatically in the Print dialog they will be in the right place so you can trim to your desired size easily, or if you send to a professional press, they will get the dimensions right.

2) You can place images into your Illustrator file using the "Place" function.  You can place anything from native Photoshop files (.psd) to .eps, .jpeg, .png, etc.  Just make sure any bitmapped images are at least 300 dpi in resolution so they print clearly, with no pixels.

3) You can also use the pen tool in Illustrator to draw your own vector graphics.  This is what I did for mine!

There’s a ton more but I hope this at least can help you to get started.  Have fun!!!

Post # 5
81 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: May 2004

Best program to design your own invitation is adobe illustrator, adobe indesign or adobe photoshop – that’s my last resort for using photoshop.

Illustrator is the best since I tend to  draw my own illustration these days. 

Post # 6
24 posts
  • Wedding: August 2007 - An historic estate

i recommend illustrator, indesign or a combo, but only if you have the know how.  if you don’t, the best way for me to learn was a class (a long, long time ago).  indesign has a few built-in tutorials, but it’s hard to really learn the program just watching those and working on their projects rather than your own.

if you need a more user friendly program, i have friends who love powerpoint and microsoft publisher.

lastly, don’t use photoshop for projects like invitations where you need crisp text and graphic elements.  photoshop is raster-based, whereas illustrator is vector-based.  you want the vectors for text & crispness.

Post # 7
267 posts
Helper bee

Just a note– if you like a rubber stamp graphic but don’t want to stamp it a million times, you can always take a digital photo of the stamp image, and import the graphic into your design program. That’s what I did in Photoshop.

And yes, Photoshop can be a pain if you’re trying to make outlines of boxes, etc., but I had no problems with the crispness of my text or graphics, even though it wasn’t vector based.

Post # 8
291 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2007

I used AI as well, for invites and all our other wedding printed products. I used it in combination w/ Photoshop for more complicated photo manipulation, such as for our custom printed CDs.

A tip I posted in on an earlier WB blog post:  When you’re using photo files, they tend to be ginormous (anywhere from 1-5MB, sometimes more). If you use a lot of them, you can end up with a super bamboocha sized final file — like 100MB! It’s almost impossible to print something that big out or submit it to a printing house (unless you’re a pro and have FTP, etc.). I tore my hair out about this until my designer friend showed me the light. 

Make a copy of your photo files and resize them (keep them 300 dpi) to closer to the size they’ll print at. (i.e., most photos are 4"x6", but you’re probably not going to use them that big — you can resize to 1"x2" or whatever) Just make sure you don’t save them SMALLER than what you intend, ’cause while you can shrink them on your layout, you can’t make them bigger — not nicely, anyway. Use those resized, smaller, photo files to create your final document.  

For some crazy reason, if you copy/paste or use the "place" function using the original, large files, and then reduce the size of your photo in layout, the program still "thinks" that it’s a 5MB file, even though the picture now looks like half the size.

Hope this helps others! 

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