[Edit: This post made it to the front page of Reddit, after I posted the images as a gallery on Imgur. Apparently, there’s a lot of love for sarcastic design out there. I ended up having to blur out the shots and take down my wedding website, as I received 20 bogus (but lovely) RSVPs in the space of about 10 minutes.]
Being a graphic designer has its perks from time to time. I proposed to my girlfriend in April 2015, and since then I’ve managed to save us a boat load in costs through contra-deals, and by designing everything we need myself. I recently completed our wedding invites, using our overlapping initials to create an emblem and creating a folded card to contain the actual invite. All in all, the whole thing cost me under £100. The main costs were to my sanity, and on printing the fridge magnets (yes, fridge magnets). My priorities are all wrong, as I haven’t even booked the registrar yet. Here’s a step by step guide to putting together your own invite…
Create the elements in Indesign and mark the fold positions on an A5 landscape document. Print the sections separately, putting the actual invite onto a separate A6 card to be cropped down later.
Delivered with envelopes, slightly bent in the post.
Start cropping. Ideally, find the bluntest guillotine you can so that you can only cut one card at a time.
Immediately realise that you could have saved yourself two hours by positioning the design in the bottom corner of the A6 card, so that you would only have to cut two corners instead of four!
Get some high quality A6 black paper to act as a frame to the white inner invite. But don’t buy separate sheets like a normal person. Buy them as a book so that you carefully have to tear each sheet individually from the glued spine, which will make you tear and waste about 30% of the paper. This also needs to be cropped in from A6 to leave a few mm around the white card, but be smaller than the folded outer. Again, make sure your guillotine is blunt so you can only cut two sheets at a time.
The finished items ready for gluing. Note the slightly crimped edge on the black paper from tearing the sheet from the book.
Assemble your items in a hipster layout on your carpet. Everything ready to put together! You’ll need scissors, glue, a scalpelly thing, some satin black ribbon and your own personally designed fridge magnet.
Glue the back of your white card with the cheapest paper glue you can find.
Position in the centre and press down firmly. Throw the first attempt away as you didn’t wash your hands, leaving a grubby hand print on the front.
Cut about 50cm of black ribbon. Use one hand to take a picture so the scissors are floating in the shot.
Make sure to cut at an angle. It looks nicer and it’ll be easier to insert through the slot we’re about to make.
Fold every single outer card the other way around because you messed up the printing process and had them accidentally folded back to front.
Place the ribbon in position.
Mark a dot a few mm above and below your ribbon with your scalpelly thing, then cut a line between the dots. Repeat on the opposite side. Don’t use a ruler so the cut is slightly wonky.
Feed the ribbon through from the front to the inside…
…then back out the other side. Make sure the ribbon is centred.
Get ready for some more gluing.
Glue a horizontal strip top and bottom and stick down with your grubby hands.
Ready for tying down! Place your magnet in place to check the positioning and take a wanky photo with your scalpel for the Pinterest board later.
Don’t forget to write who it’s to. Use block caps after your first attempt at nice joined up writing fails miserably.
Fold the card first, then pull the straps together and tie once. Pull hard so that you bend the black paper on the inside and ruin the invite completely.
Tie off like a shoelace and straighten your awkward bow.
Write your envelope now as the bow inside will make this a nightmare later. Like the calligraphy?
Insert the whole thing backwards. It’ll go in easier, plus you get to show off your nice logo when it’s opened later. Make sure the envelopes are old so that the glue doesn’t stick down properly.
Ready to send to wow and amaze your relatives! Repeat glueing steps until you can’t feel your face.
Thank the gods that the magnet stays in place after having to hold three sheets of paper and a ribbon against the fridge.