Wedding Invitations - Thermography Versus Digital Printing
Wedding invitations are printed by a variety of manufacturing processes. With a wide range of invitations to choose from you will be able to find just the right one to fit your theme, formality and budget. It is wise though to know exactly what it is you are purchasing before making your final selection.
At one time all invitations were engraved using a hand wrapped engraving plate etched by experienced craftsmen. Often copper plates were used to which ink was added with the paper actually pressed to the plate. This created a raised printing that you could feel. You will see an impression of the entire imprint area on the back side of the paper. By far the most traditional and formal printing method, it is also quite expensive and not used nearly as often today.
Letterpress is popular but is not the same process used in the past that involved lead slugs to make impressions. Today magnesium dies are used to give the impression of letterpress on which you can see the individual letters pressed into the paper from the back side.
The process of lithography or offset printing is the most widely used printing style today. Ink is applied to paper in a printing process that does not provide a raised or pressed appearance. Magazines and marketing materials are printed in this way. Less expensive than engraving, it looks fine but is not as elegant.
Digitally printed invitations are the least expensive to produce. The appearance is similar to that of lithography and much like the laser printing that you do yourself on your home printer. A reliably fast process, digitally printed invitations are fully customizable.
Thermography is a popular step in the printing process that looks very much like engraving but is far less costly. Thermal powders are spread on wet ink and heated so that the powder melts into a solid mass that fuses and sits on top of the paper surface. A fast process, you can feel the raised lettering on the front but not on the back of the paper. Less cost than engraving but almost as nice, thermography wedding invitations are a great choice for invitations you will be proud to send.
Before selecting your wedding invitation supplier, be sure and ask by what method your invitations will be produced. All will include your customized information but you will want that information to look as nice as it can within your established budget. When in doubt, ask that samples be provided for your review. Your wedding invitations set the tone for your special day and you deserve the best.