Wedding Invitation Budget

When I was planning my own wedding, I budgeted $1,000 for handkerchief invitations and reply cards and envelopes from The Polka Dotted Bee.

I moved from Cortez to Boulder, Colorado, while I was planning. So I had to print new, re-addressed reply cards from The Envelope Please in Boulder.

I included a map insert, which I drew and printed myself on a new inkjet printer.

The printer and all of the above was included in the $1,000 budget. But I ended up having to buy thank you’s separately, after the wedding–not something I recommend.

All in all, the budget for my invitations was small considering the three-day affair totaled about $33,000. My mom, aunt and mother-in-law were exceptionally generous with us and paid for everything except about 1 percent of it.

If you’re gasping at the cost, let me tell you: CNN Money said the average wedding in 2012 was $29,334, with Manhattan weddings at $76,687 and Alaskans spending about $15,000. USA Today quoted a slightly lower number from Brides magazine: $26,989.

The Invitation Blog says people spend about $659 on invitations. Statistics Brain says they cost about $350, including postage. But it’s hard to pin down a number, especially if you’re looking for exceptional design and a variety of media, like maps, menus, escort cards/place cards/seating chart, programs, favors and thank you’s.

Ideally, your budget for an entire suite with all the trappings that I just mentioned should total about 10 percent of the total cost of your wedding.

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