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Wedding Stationery Glossary

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The A to Z of Wedding Stationery
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Wedding Stationery Glossary

A wowvow ® wiki of wedding stationery!
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    Engagement Invitations

    You’re newly engaged and you’d like to celebrate! These invitations are for your engagement celebration and for those you intend to invite to your wedding.

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    ‘Be My Bridesmaid’ Cards

    A lovely memento for your Bridesmaids to keep. ‘Be my Bridesmaid’ cards are usually greeting card style cards to formally ask the question – they’re usually received with whoops of delight!

    They can also be found for Ushers, Page Boys and Girls and the Best Man too.

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    ‘Save The Dates’ or ‘Save the Day’ cards

    ‘Save The Dates’ or ‘Save the Day’ cards are sent before the wedding invitation. Their purpose is to let your guests know the date of the wedding in advance so that they can ‘keep the date free’.

    All the formal information to do with the wedding (time, venue etc) are given in the wedding invitation. They’re particularly useful for long engagements, weddings abroad or for families who live some distance and may have to plan travel for the wedding.

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    Hen Party/Stag Party Invitations

    Traditionally organised by the ‘Chief Bridesmaid’ or ‘Best Man’ these invitations cover all the details for those all-important Hen and Stag do’s!

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    Wedding Invitations

    Your wedding invitation includes all the information your guests require to attend the wedding such as the date, time and venue.

    It’s important to distinguish whether guests are invited to just the wedding ceremony and the evening reception.

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    Evening Invitations

    An invitation for those guests invited to the evening reception only giving them all the details they need to attend such as date, time and venue.

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    Enclosures

    Enclosures are additional information cards or sheets included with the invitation. They’re usually included so that the wedding invitation can remain simple and not be too cluttered with information.

    Enclosures vary from wedding to wedding and can include (either together or separately) things like maps, menu choices, accommodation and additional information you wish to keep separately to the main wedding invitation.

    Enclosures are usually smaller than the invitation itself and bundled together with the invitation as a small ‘parcel’ or enclosed in an Enfolio ® pocketfold wedding invitation.

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    RSVP

    A separate enclosure often, known as response cards or reply cards, are little cards are invaluable in your wedding planning.

    ‘RSVP’ stands for ‘Respondez S’Il Vous Plait’ which is French for ‘Please Respond’. They encourage your guests to reply (and give you an excuse to chase up if you include a reply date).

    They often include menu choices and notes on special dietary requirements too.

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    Belly Band

    A neat little ‘wrap’ that holds your wedding invitation and enclosures all in place. The can vary from ribbon or twine to printed or laser cut paper. They’re sometimes personalised too.

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    Presentation Box

    A paper box for your wedding invitation that protects it and is often used instead of an envelope.

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    Order of The Day

    The Order of The Day is usually a timeline or ‘schedule’ of the events of the day for the guests. It can be presented in various was such as on notice boards, cards and chalkboards. By listing the approximate timings it helps make sure your guests don’t miss anything on the day.

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    Order of Service and Order of Ceremony

    Both do the ‘same job’ but a service is usually religious where as a ceremony is not. These booklets or programs are for your guests to follow the proceedings without hiccups and having to find hymns or songs in hymn books or via a screen.

    They detail the order of the proceedings and what is happening at any-one time (especially useful to those who don’t have the best view’ of what’s happening). They list readings and authors, hymns and songs and those reading/singing.

    Always remember that if you’re printing the lyric to songs/hymns etc under copyright, unless your venue has its own license, then you should obtain the necessary permissions and pay any associated fees.

    The booklets often include details of the Bridal party and sometimes dedications to those not able to share in the celebrations.

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    Table Plan

    Your table plan or seating plan (sometimes called a planner) guides everyone to the correct tables at your wedding breakfast.

    They take many decorative forms from ‘Escort Cards’ (individual little cards for each guest which contain the number of their table) and individual lists (presented in creative ways) to framed table plans.

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Escort Cards

Escort cards are a clever way of informing your guests where they’re sitting at the wedding breakfast and in their simplest form are just small envelopes and cards. With the name of the guest on the outside of the envelope and the table number revealed inside they’re very simple and allow for last minute changes if this is likely to be an issue.
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Menu

Simple cards (either individual) or group that list the menu for the guests. Did you know that the ‘Wedding Breakfast’ is known as such because it’s the first meal the couple take together after their wedding?
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Table Name Cards or Numbers

Vary hugely in design but are essentially labels for your tables to guide your guest to the right table. Traditionally tables are only numbered but now often follow the theme of the wedding or something that is special to the couple such as football teams, places visited, sweets, famous bands or music.
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Place Setting or Place Card

A simple little informative card (usually free standing but it can also be a tag) that denotes your guests seat at the table.

We have a wide range of table place cards that can be printed with the names of your guests as well as place name holders.

Shop now at wowvow ® for wedding table place name cards:Place Cards, Holders and Settings »

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Wedding Favours

Often made from paper as little boxes, pouches or bags these contain little gifts or keepsakes for the wedding guests as a memento of the day. They often double up as place settings or place cards and match the wedding stationery. They also serve as part of the wedding table decoration.

We have a wide range of wedding favours, gift card holders, lottery ticket holders and gifts.

Shop now at wowvow ® for wedding favours:Wedding Favours, Favours Boxes and Gifts »

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Guest Book

Often takes many forms but traditionally a hard bound book for the wedding guests to write special messages to the couple on the day. Usually passed around the guests under supervision of the Chief Bridesmaid, Usher or the Best Man.
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Wedding Post Box

Often a tall decorative box matching the rest of the wedding stationery for your guests to ‘post’ their wedding cards and wishes. It’s often displayed near to the wedding cake or guest book for ease and really helps with the organisation on the day.
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Thank You Cards

No matter how brief it’s important to say thank you to your guests for sharing your day and especially if they’ve given a wedding gift. Try to make them as personal as possible as it means a lot.
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Paper and Printing Terminology

Be the boss ! Embossing or Debossing ? wowvow ® knowhow
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    Debossing

    Debossing is where the printing plate is placed under pressure to leave an indent of the design in the stock. It is the opposite of embossing. Blind debossing is the effect without using ink or foil.

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    Deckle Edge

    An attractive scalloped finish on the edge of the stock often used on wedding stationery.

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    Die

    A die is an etched metal plate that is used to press into stock to create an embossed, debossed or foiled image or type.

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    Die-cutting

    Die cuts are shapes cut from stock using a cutting form (a cutter created from metal rules) that’s attached to the press. Shapes can also be die cut into the stock to create interest in the design for example, deckle edges, windows and tags.

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    Digital Print

    Digital printing does not require printing plates and is cost effective on smaller quantities so it’s ideal for personalisation and wedding stationery.

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    Embossing

    Embossing is a printing process that uses a male and female die to create a raised design effect on the board stock. Blind embossing is the same process but without an ink or foil.  Embossing is the opposite of ‘debossing’.

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    Engraving

    A process where the printing plate is engraved to create the printed image. Under intense pressure with ink applied the ‘negative engraving’ leaves a raised, printed surface on the stock.

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    GSM

    GSM is a weight measurement for paper and board products. It stands for grams per square metre. Usually papers fall below 150gsm (approx.) with board stocks above this.

    Be careful not to confuse this with ‘thickness’ as a stock with high grammage does not necessarily feel thicker and vice versa.

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    Hot Foiling/Stamping

    Foiling is often used to create a metallic finish on a stock (usually metallic silvers and golds) and uses as metal die which is combined with heat, pressure and foil to create the effect.

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    Laser Cutting

    A process using a laser cutter that effectively burns away the stock to leave the design. Laser cutting can create extremely fine detailed images with hardly any noticeable burn marks on the stock.

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    Letterpress

    Letterpress is a traditional printing technique in which a metal plate is etched or engraved so that the design itself is raised. With pressure and ink the design is imposed onto the stock, traditionally you should not be able to feel the print on the paper but since it’s very tactile it’s more common for the pressure applied to be high enough for the design to be debossed at the same time.

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    Litho Printing

    Litho printing (or lithography) is a printing technique that involves a plate pressing litho ink colours onto the stock to create the design. Since a printing plate has to be produced it’s often only economical for larger print runs.

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    Offset Printing

    In this printing process the image is transferred to another substrate (usually a rubber blanket) before being transferred to the stock to create the print.

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    Proof

    The sample design and text exactly as it will appear before printing. Printers ask you to check this carefully before the print run proceeds as after the final proof no changes can be made.

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    Screen Printing

    This type of printing involves a prepared ‘screen’ or ‘mesh’ that has lots of tiny holes that the ink is forced through with a roller onto the stock.

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    Thermography

    Thermographic printing is a more cost effective process to engraving producing a similar ‘raised effect’. Using ink, thermography powders and heat the powder fuses onto the ink to create the effect.

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Paper Types

Textured, Kraft, Vellum, Glitter, etc ... we've got it covered!
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Styles of wedding stationery

Gatefolds, Pocketfolds, Tentfolds, etc. Welcome to the fold!
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    Enfolios ®

    Enfolio ® is the trademark for the pocketfold and wallet designs belonging to wowvow ®.

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    Envelope Liners

    Plain or decorative paper cut to size to fit the front and flap of the envelope. Usually matching or coordinating with the wedding invitation they not only add a touch of luxury but their addition protects the invitation inside.

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    Flat Board or Postcard Style

    Also known as panel cards they’re simply cut pieces of stock (either single layer or layered together). Available in various sizes they usually fit standard envelope sizes.

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    Gatefold Wedding Invitation (Shutter Fold)

    Available in various sizes and sometimes called ‘wardrobe invitations’ where the centre panel opens out to reveal the information inside. They’re usually tied together with ribbon or a belly band.

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    Landscape / Portrait

    The orientation of the stock, landscape is where the longest edge is horizontal.

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    Pocketfolds

    Various styles of invitation designs that fold out to reveal ‘pockets’ inside. They’re especially useful for keeping enclosures neat and tidy.

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    Single Fold / Greeting Card Style

    Available in various sizes (usually to match standard envelope sizes) with a single crease so that the card can stand up (similar to a birthday card).

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    Tent Fold

    Available in various sizes and the same as a greeting card style with the intention of the crease running parallel to the horizontal.

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    Tri Fold

    Also known as 'Accordian' or 'Z' fold. With two creases the design opens out to reveal three panels.

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    Wallets

    Wallets are a style of invitation that have just one ‘pocket’ that the invitation is stored inside.

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Other terminology

Other wedding stationery terminology!
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Calligraphy

The art of beautiful handwriting, usually with pen and ink.
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Monograms

A design usually created from the initials of the couple.
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Font

The style of text used for your stationery. Some fonts are open source, some require licenses.