Ordering a truly custom-designed invitation gives you the chance to select from several special print techniques – or mix and match several for a sophisticated look.

Foil-Stamping – A popular choice amongst my clients for the authenticity it adds to passports (Actually looks better than real ones ;) Foil is pressed onto paper with a heated die, leaving the imprint. Gold & silver are popular, but many, many colors are available!

dark blue and tan invitation


Letterpress – Letterpress­ is the original mechanical printing process founded by Gutenberg in 1440. Inked printing plates are pressed against soft paper to create an indentation. It’s a material- and labor-intensive process as a separate plate is created for each color used for each design being printed (a typical two-color invitation set could require six or more plates). One of the oldest printing methods, it’s made a HUGE comeback and is sought after for its luxurious look and feel.


Engraving – Somewhat the opposite process as lettrepress, paper is pushed against a plate with a recessed design. Ink is forced from inside the recessed area onto paper. Pressure from the press pushes the ink into the recessed area, resulting in a subtly raised printed design. It’s so MONEY! {bad pun!} But really, U.S. money is engraved.


Thermography – Almost like faux engraving (and less costly), the ink is slightly raised and glossy. A printed image is dusted with a powder before the ink dries. Heat is applied and fuses the ink and powder together to create the raised texture (similar to rubber stamp embossing). Most traditional mass-produced catalog invitations use Thermography.


Traditional Offset Printing – Ink sits flat on the paper. Plates are created for each color and ink applied to the plates is transferred to a rubber cylinder, then onto paper. Varnishes can be applied on top of the print to make it appear matte, glossy, or metallic.


Digital Printing –  The newest printing process, prints directly from a computer file and requires less set-up time than all other types of printing. High-quality laser, ink-jet and digital offset presses all achieve beautiful results with flat ink. Great cost-effective printing for smaller quantities.

Standard pricing for all Custom Paper Works’ invitations includes Flat Ink Digital Printing. Most designs can incorporate other print formats as well, just let me know what you are interested in!


See more of our invitation tips HERE.