Jan’s Layered Vellum Wedding Invitation

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Jan's Layered Vellum Wedding Invitation

Earlier in the year, Jan Messali’s daughter Sarah was married aboard a yacht in the San Diego harbor. Jan and her daughter chose to make their own invitations by hand. This is my interview with Jan as we talk about the process of making wedding invitations using LCI Paper’s different card stocks, vellum, and other items.

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Here is a transcript of the interview

Tell me about your decision process as you contemplated making your own invitations for your daughter’s wedding. Have you and your daughter taken on creative projects like this before?

I’ve been making greeting cards for years and my daughter has been doing a bit of scrapbooking. And we really wanted an invitation that would be personal-something nobody else would have-and that’s why we decided to just make them ourselves.

So you’ve made invitations; she’s done scrapbooking, so you had quite a bit of experience.

I do mainly greeting cards, you know like get well cards and birthday cards and things like that. This is really the first crack at invitations.

Do you just do it for your friends and family or do you have sort of a side business?

I have been doing it for myself for many years, and then recently some friends had started asking for me to make them cards and so I have sold a few but it’s mostly just for personal use.

Ok, great. The invitation is fairly complex, involving cutting, hand stamping, printing on vellum, punching holes, and threading ribbon. Can you walk me through the entire process?

Sure. What we did is we took a regular 8 ½ by 11 piece of the smooth black card stock. We used that for the background. And what we did is we just cut it into half to make 2 of the 5 ½ by 8 ½ pieces. And then we used the Radiant White card stock and we cut that into 5 by 8 pieces which we stamped blue sea shells on top of. We used some stamps that I had purchased from a company on the internet and just used some various blue stamp pads and stamped them kind of in a random pattern over the white. And then for the top layer, we used the clear translucent vellum paper. We put that into the inkjet printer. And I just prepared a Word document that had the invitation printed twice on a page and then printed those out onto the vellum and then cut those into 2 so that it fit right on top of the stamped piece. Those were actually cut into 5 by 8 pieces.

Jan and SarahWhere you happy with the results of the printing on vellum?

Oh yeah, it was fine. What I found is that you don’t want to grab it right out of the printer immediately and touch the black ink. You just want to let it sit for a few seconds before you handle it. It takes a little longer to dry than it would on a regular piece of white paper.

And then we hole-punched the white and the clear vellum layers at the top in 2 small little holes with a regular hole punch, and we threaded 1 inch wide ribbon through and just made a bow on the top. And then we used double sticky tape from the craft stores and we adhered all the layers together using that.

Even to the vellum layer?

Yes. There is special vellum tacky tape that you can purchase, but I really find that you don’t really need that. I mean some people find that the tacky shows through the vellum, but if you use it very minimally just on the corners you really don’t see it.

Oh great. Ok.

And you can leave the vellum loose, but we chose to tack it down because of humidity in San Diego we were having and the vellum would sort of curl just slightly if we didn’t tack it down.

Gotcha. Now that it’s finished, and your daughter is married now, is that correct?

Yes, yes.

Ok. What was your final reaction and her final reaction to it?

Oh, we were so pleased. A lot of the guests have commented on it because it is so unique-nothing they’ve seen with anybody else’s wedding, so that was nice. And since then, my niece asked me to make her wedding invitations and I’m going to start working on those soon. And in fact, I’ll be using some of the envelopes from your company. You have these really nice 6 ½ inch square envelopes with the black lining inside and she’s doing purple and black so they’ll be perfect.

Now that it is all said and done, can you talk to me about the satisfaction you had working on something like that-something so personal-with your daughter?

We were so satisfied because we know that this is something that we’ll always remember; you know, an experience that we created those [invitations] together. It makes it very special. And even though when you make handmade invitations there’s minor differences between them, that just kind of adds to the personality of it.

That’s right.

I think people appreciate that.

San Diego harbor wedding

One final question unless there’s anything you’d like to add: Just thinking about my trips to San Diego when I’ve been in the Los Angeles area and done the drive down, a summer wedding on a yacht in your area sounds amazing. How was that?

It was fantastic. We really lucked out. The San Diego Symphony had fireworks that night. It was the final night of their shows and our boat turned out to be next to where the fireworks were being shot from. And so we were right out on the open air dance floor of the boat when the fireworks began so it was just fantastic.

Sounds incredible. How perfect.

The only other thing that I would add is that we also created the place cards for the tables, the table numbers, the programs, everything-so that it all matched.

Decorative Place Cards With Sea Shells

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