Wedding 101: Your Guide to the Different Types of Wedding Invitations

The world of wedding invitations can be a bit complicated. Not only are there options that go beyond paper — from vinyl records to puzzles — but there are also sub-sections within paper invitations, too. Two of these include style and technique. You might not think that the printing method used for your invitations will make a difference, but it definitely does. Here, we’ve broken down the different types of wedding invitations so you can choose which works best for you (and your S.O.)!

SEE MORE: Find Out Your Proper Wedding Invitation Wording Here

Printing Techniques


different types of wedding invitations
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Oftentimes, especially when done at home with a high quality laser printer, digital printing is the least expensive (and fastest) option for wedding invitations. If you want to use a thicker paper stock, it’s best you use a printing company, whether online or in-person. The result is a flat image, and vibrant colors often show up well.

SEE MORE: 6 of the Biggest Ways to Save On Your Wedding Budget


via TyingtheKnotInvites on Etsy

Still an inexpensive option but typically a higher quality than digital printing, this method transfers an inked impression from a plate to a rubber-stamp like surface, and then onto the paper, producing a flat image. There’s plenty of room for flexibility when it comes to colors.


different types of wedding invitations
via TheAmericanWedding on Etsy

Metal plates etched with letters are stamped onto paper to create a raised and textured surface. No ink or foil is used, making this method best when printing return addresses on envelopes, borders on an invitation, or initials for a monogram.


via Suite Paperie

A resinous powder is sprinkled onto paper while the ink is still wet, and the two melt and fuse when exposed to heat, creating a raised surface. This method is popular because it mimics the look of old-school engraving but at a cheaper price.


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Paper is indented (or “pressed,” hence the name) using a metal plate. This common yet often expensive method results in text or designs that are only slightly raised.

Paper Types


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Oftentimes recycled paper is indistinguishable from regular paper, but it’s composed entirely of repurposed materials.

Heavy Card Stock

via Invitations by Ajalon

Popular among both professional printers and people DIY’ing invitations, heavy card stock is thicker than regular paper and typically doesn’t experience any running or bleeding of ink.


via BrownFoxCreative on Etsy

Linen paper looks and feels like a textured fabric, though photos  and text are still printed clearly.

Cotton Fiber

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Made completely out of cotton, this paper has the ability to be customized with a letterpress.


via PaperandMoreShop on Etsy

Most often used for layering purposes, vellum is a sheer crepe-paper.


via LockandKeep on Etsy

Like vellum, glassine — a light, waxy paper that’s water and grease resistant — is typically reserved as an overlay, accent, or even an envelope.

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