So, you’ve seen the final product, and you’ve seen how to make it. I’m sure you’re sick of me talking about the invitations now, but last one—I promise! I wanted to talk about the price breakdown so that if you’re interested in DIY letterpressing your own invitations you have a sense of if it is worth it to you or not.
This is the total cost breakdown of everything used for the invitations:
Letterpress – $184.00
- Cuttlebug – $50.00, Amazon
- L letterpress kit – $45.00, Hobby Lobby w/ 40% off coupon and free shipping
- KF152 plate – $57.00 for 10.31″ x 7.17″, Boxcar Press
- L letterpress ink in royal blue and light pink – $16.00. I wanted to find cheaper ink, but it wasn’t worth the trouble. I thought the L letterpress ink worked beautifully.
- 6″ soft brayer – $14.00. Amazon
- Baby wipes – $4.00. CVS
Calligraphy – $33.00
I love calligraphy, but I couldn’t justify getting someone else to do it. Thus, I bit the bullet, bought the stuff, and taught myself how to do it with the Mastering Copperplate Calligraphy book. Even though my handwriting is awful, I found calligraphy to not be that challenging, and in fact, almost calming. If anyone is on the fence about possibly doing your own calligraphy, you should give it a shot. It’s a fairly cheap skill to learn and I think it makes a big impact.
- Calligraphy pens – $12.00. I bought a set of pens and nibs just so I could figure out which one I liked. If you want to learn copperplate, I would recommend just buying the oblique holder (the weird shaped one), and the Hunt 101 or 100 nib. That shouldn’t cost you more than $3.00 or $4.00 total.
- Mastering Copperplate Calligraphy book by Eleanor Winters – $11.00. The best book ever if you want to learn copperplate calligraphy. It was so helpful!
- Calligraphy ink – $10.00 for two colors, black which I used to practice with, and the blue that I used for real. I should have just bought the blue from the get go.
Random Tools – $75
- Paper cutting stuff aka Self Healing Green Cutting Mat 18 x 24 inches, O’Lipfa 5-Inch-by-24-Inch Lip Edge Ruler, and OLFA 45mm Ergonomic Rotary Cutter – $53.00. I’m still not completely sure if this was the right choice for the job. I wanted something that could cut large sheets of paper, but wasn’t a guillotine cutter (those scare the crap out of me), but the roller cutters often were limited to 12 inches. While it works beautifully to cut normal paper, it was very hard to cut 200lb paper with this method. Ah well, live and learn. I justified this cost because I can use these later after the wedding for fabric cutting.
- Heart punch – $6.00. I used the heart punch to punch holes onto the tags that I wrapped around the doilies. Yes, it was completely overkill and unnecessary, but I needed a smaller hole punch, and I like it.
- Corner punch – $16.00. I bought not one, but two, corner punches, because I bought the wrong size (1/4″) and hated it, and thus, bought a second one (1/2″). I ended up using both of them on the invitations (used the smaller one on the tags), and thus, I feel like I should include both of them on here.
Consumables – $116.50
- 200lb generic watercolor paper – $14.00 or $2.00 per 22″x30″ sheet, at Arts and Craftsman Supply. I cut my own paper, and thus, saved money there. Of course, I spent a lot of money on stuff to cut paper with, so it really depends on if you will use the other stuff later if it might be worth getting someone else to cut the paper for you
- Bakers twine – $10.00, T.J.Maxx. I found both of them in a corner one day and grabbed them both, long before I had any idea what I was going to do with them.
- Outer peach metallic envelopes– $20.00 for 50, paperandmore.com
- RSVP envelopes – $1.50. Vistaprint. I got 100 of them for $2.99 when I ordered my STDs from them.
- Doilies– $8.00 for 50, Mrs. Archer. I bought them off of her once upon a time. Seriously, best investment ever. Everyone raves about the doilies.
- Website card – $5.00 for 100. Vistaprint. I bought them with a $17.00 for $70.00 Groupon when I ordered my STDs.
- Envelope Liners – $0. I made a template on the computer and used my printer to print it.
- Samples – $10.00. I ordered samples from Holyoke and papersandmore before I bought things for good. I’m including the costs in here because they were part of the decision making process.
- Stamps – $48.00. Three garden of love forever stamps per invitation, bought at $0.44 each when we first got engaged.
All in all, we spent roughly $409.00 on an estimated 36 invitations. Yup, that’s an average of $11.35 per invitation. All in all, I am a little shocked at how fast everything added up. That being said, I do not regret any part of the invitations. I knew from the beginning that invitations were going to be my one splurge. And splurge we did!
If you think about it, most of the money we spent were on one time costs instead of consumables. Thus, if you were sending out more invitations, the costs would be amortized across more invitations, reducing the overall cost of the invitations. Furthermore, it’s letterpress. You really aren’t going to get too much cheaper than DIY’ing it.
Did you splurge on your invitations? Was it worth it?