Posts Tagged ‘envelopes’

If you love the look of hand-addressed envelopes but can’t squeeze the cost of professional calligraphy into your wedding budget, then this technique could be the answer for you.

You will need:

  • envelopes
  • paint pen

DIY calligraphy before

1. If you had your stationery professionally designed, ask your designer to recommend a suitable font to coordinate with the invitations.

2. Print the address in a slightly darker colour than the envelopes.

3. Trace over the letters with a paint pen. Lay each envelope out seperately to dry; stacking them could cause smudging or transfer onto other envelopes. You may need to do a second coat, especially if you are doing text that’s lighter than the background.

To be honest, they didn’t turn out quite as well as hoped. If I had a chance to do them again, I would do a couple of things differently. Here are my tips:

Don’t make the type too small
It makes accuracy difficult and letters may even ‘fill in’.

Increase the letterspacing 
Since the pen is so much thicker than the printed letters, they ended up very squashed or even overlapping. (Obviously I’m using professional design software for this but you can still do this function in Word).

Use the most opaque pen you can find
It will give you the most solid colour and alleviate the need to do extra coats. I used a brand called Decocolour (purchased at Lincraft) and it was OK but it would have been much more effective had it been more opaque. If an any readers have found a more opaque paint pen, please share with us!


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You saw that our wedding invitations featured hand-lettered calligraphy on the envelopes. We had some guests who we were inviting only to the ceremony, so in addition to designing another version of the invitation, their addressing also called for something a little less formal.

Akimbo - Mortlock 8

I designed a couple of labels in keeping with the ornamental Victorian style. You can download the yellow label pictured above, as well as a smaller green one.

Instructions: Print onto adhesive paper; trim. Use to address envelopes, label gifts or organise household supplies.

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 Australian vintage stamps

Our wedding invitations are in the mail! It suddenly seems so much more real!

I can’t wait to share photos of the full invitation suite, but for now here is a snap of the vintage stamps I used.

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1. The Lefthanded Calligrapher 2&3. Betsy Dunlap 4. Grace Edmands Calligraphy 5&6. Primele

If you’d asked me a year ago what I thought about calligraphy, I would have told you that it exemplified everything I think is wrong with the majority of invitations out there. It seems to be used as a default font regardless of the style of invitation, theme of the wedding and taste of the couple, simply because it’s the done thing. Because it is sadly so often poorly conceived and executed, it was easy for me to think that it is always bad.

Until, that is, I came across some wonderful work by some inventive contemporary calligraphers. While it still won’t suit every invitation, these examples prove that when done well, hand-lettered calligraphy will elevate your envelopes from the everyday to the extra special.

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A collection of pretty meets practical ideas to inspire a happier home

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