Reference to Invitation Terms

Posted on

Providing a handy Reference to Invitation Terms and vocabulary in this Wedding Wednesday blog by

Reference to Invitation Terms

A Handy Reference to Invitation Terms:

Invitations are as unique and wonderful as the individual(s) for whom and by whom they have been created. However, there are certain standards by which most invitations comply, either out of tradition, or for practical reasons, such as to ensure envelopes are available to fit them.

Also, following is a handy reference guide to the terms applying to invitations mentioned in descriptions throughout

Size Name:

Astor: 3 3/8” X 5 3/8”
Belmont: 4” X 6 1/16”
Classic: 5 ¾” X 7 5/8”
Club Note: 4 7/16” X 5 ¾”
Dixmore: 4 7/16” X 5 5/8”
Duchess/Legend: 5” X 8 ½”
Embassy: 5” X 6 5/8”
Grande: 5 7/8” Square
Harmony: 5 ¾” X 9 ¼”
Imperial: 6 ¼” Square
Jumbo: 5 1/8” X 7 ¼”
Keepsake: 7 ¾” Square
Lee: 5 1/8” X 7”
Marquis: 5 ½” Square
Princess: 4 ½” X 6 1/8”
Regal: 5 ¼” X 7 7/8”
Royal: 5 ¾” X 7 7/8”
Slim Line: 3 ¾” X 8 ½”
Splendor: 6 5/8” X 10”
Symphony: 6 ¾” Square
Tea Length: 4” X 9 ¼”
Tiffany: 5 ½” X 7 ¾”
Upright: 4 ½” X 6 1/8”
Windsor: 6 1/8” X 8 ¾”
Yorkshire: 5” X 7 ¼”


French-Fold Invitation: A single piece of paper stock folded in half to double-thickness, then folded in half again. For example, traditional French-Fold invitations may be seen here.

Gate-Fold Invitation: Any invitation which has flaps that come together in the center front. The paper may be a tri-fold or possibly five-panel stock. For example, gate-fold invitations may be seen here.

Layered Invitation: Any invitation with multiple layers of paper. Stacked and glued for heavier presentation, or loose and tied with a ribbon at top. For example, Layered Invitations may be seen here.

Pocket Invitation: Any invitation which includes a self-pocket to hold the invitation and accessory cards together. Examples of pocket invitations may be seen here.

Single-Card Invitation: A single piece of paper with no folds. For example, Single-Card Invitations may be seen here.

Single-Fold Invitation: A single piece of paper stock with one fold, usually at the top or left side. Also, in many cases, the printing on a single-fold invitation is on the front of the invitation with the inside being completely blank. Examples of single-fold invitations may be seen here

Tri-Fold Invitation: Any single piece of paper with two folds creating 3 distinct panels. For example, Tri-Fold invitations may be seen here.

Wrapped Invitation: Any invitationwrapped with the same or different stock. For example, Wrapped Invitations may be seen here.

Z-Fold Invitation: A Tri-Fold invitation which folds in the shape of a Z.

Paper Types:

100% Cotton Paper: Paper made from 100% cotton fibers. 100% cotton fiber paper is desirable for invitations for events such as weddings due to its soft feel and archival quality. Examples of 100% cotton invitations may be viewed here.

Bright White / Brilliant White: White paper stock that is white-white, not off-white. For example, bright white paper may be seen here.

Brownkraft: Invitations made of paper that resembles a brown paper grocery bag. Creamy / Wedding White: Paper which is between Bright White and Ivory / Ecru, Creamy White Paper is a soft off-white. For example, wedding white invitations may be viewed here.

Ecru / Ivory: Paper stock that is a dark off-white to yellow-off white color. For example, ivory and ecru invitations may be seen here.

European / Shimmer Paper: Invitation paper coated with a metallic shimmer finish. For example, shimmer stock invitations may be viewed here

Additional Paper Types:

Gloss Cover Stock: Paper which has a shiny or semi-gloss finish applied to the printed side. For example, Gloss Cover-Stock invitations may be viewed here.

Parchment Paper: Paper created to resemble the look of antique parchment. Parchment paper generally used in French-fold applications. For example, Parchment Paper Invitations may be viewed here.

Recycled Paper: uses the term Recycled Paper for any invitation which contains a minimum 30% PCW fibers.

Translucent Vellum: Invitations which utilize an acetate stock to create a translucent “paper” for printing or overlays. For example, Translucent Vellum Invitations may be viewed here.

Vellum Invitations: Invitations created with any paper other than 100% cotton referred to as “vellum” in the invitation industry. See also Translucent Vellum.

Print Techniques & Design Descriptors:

Embossing: A technique used to create a raised effect in design on invitations. Papers may be “blind embossed” which means there is no treatment other than the raising of the paper from the back, or treated with a foil, ink or other color- or texture-adding material. For example, a blind-embossed design on a wedding invitation may be viewed here.

Engraving: A time-honored and early form of printing formal correspondence, engraving involves a metal (traditionally copper) plate engraved in reverse. For example, Engraved Wedding Invitations may be viewed here.

Foil-stamping: A technique utilizing very thin sheets of foil material (metallic or matte) applied from the front and bonded to the paper for design or printing purposes. For example, Foil-stamping results in a flat design. An example of a foil-stamped design on a Bar Mitzvah Invitation may be viewed here.

Additional Techniques:

Letterpress: A time-honored printing process involving stamping designs and/or letters into a thick paper from the front, creating an indentation simultaneously inked. Letterpress is experiencing a resurgence in the invitation market. Examples of Letterpress Invitations may be viewed here.

Pearlizing: Generally-speaking, a pearl foil applied to an embossed design, giving the finished product a finish resembling a pearl color. For example, Pearlized Wedding Invitations may be viewed here.

Refractive: A form of foil-stamping which results in a design altered in differing light conditions. Designs utilizing refractive foil may not be fully visible in low-light conditions, creating a subtle and surprising element when viewed in higher-light conditions. An example of a refractive border on a wedding invitation may be viewed here.

Screened-printing: A lighter version of the same ink color used as a backdrop for your invitation wording. An example of a screen may be viewed here.

Thermography: A modern print-process designed to mimic engraving by recreating the raised effect of the letters or design utilizing a powered substance which adheres to the ink before drying.