Inks and Design
Yes! You can choose any of our 50+ Bella signature inks for no additional charge. For an additional cost, we do offer custom ink colors that can match anything: Pantone numbers, fabric samples, ribbons, paint chips.
I don’t know what inks will look good together. What help can you give me in choosing colors and color combinations?
Our client coordinators and designers are well versed in the selection of ink colors, and we’d love to help you find the color combinations that work best! Just chat, email, or call, and tell us all about you and your wedding, and we can make recommendations. We also post many of our favorite customizations weekly on our blog. We hope that showcasing the creativity of our past brides will inspire you!
I’m using a lighter ink for my text (like pale gray, champagne, etc.) – but the text is really hard to read on the proof. How do I know that my inks will print legibly?
We occasionally work with brides that want the contemporary look of very light colored text. Some will even blind deboss (printing without ink) the text (this adds a lot of modern drama to the invitation!). We typically don’t recommend text that could be hard to read for guests— but this edgy, nontraditional look may be just what you are going for. We recommend requesting ink chips with your sample order of whatever inks you’re considering, so you can review the inks in person, to make sure you are happy with the legibility of the lighter inks.
I printed out my proof and the color looks off–the colors look lighter or darker than I expected. What’s going on?
Your color PDF proof is only a digital simulation of your letterpress invitations – on-screen color varies from monitor to monitor depending on your screen settings. Your best option, and the option we strongly recommend, is to view your letterpress colors in person through our ink chips (you can request ink chips of any of our colors when you order samples). The ink chips are a great way to see the colors you’ve selected, and you can mix and match them to come up with any color combination that your heart desires.
We can! Blind debossing (printing artwork without ink, or with trans white ink) is one of the cool things about letterpress printing. A blind deboss is subtle and sophisticated and just plain special.
Any of our designs can be printed in one or two colors (or three or four!) depending on your style, preference, and budget. To add additional colors to any of your pieces, please use the quoting tool found on the details page of each of our designs.
Absolutely – use whatever wording you’d like! Additional text can be added to any piece at no extra cost. We’re happy to add meal choices to your response card or reception information on your invitation, for example. It’s rare that we’ll have difficulty fitting your text on a particular piece, but this does happen on occasion with programs, menus, and direction/hotel cards. If we’re having difficulty fitting your text, we’ll certainly work through options with you—editing the text down, adding an additional piece, or printing that piece double-sided, with text on both the front and the back. We’re always happy to assist with wording as well! (Check out our etiquette section of this site for wording suggestions.)
Can you print interior pages for my program cover? What are my printing and binding options for programs?
Booklet style programs are a great way to accommodate a lot of text, like detailed ceremony itineraries and bridal party bios. We can digitally print your program’s interior pages to match your printed program covers, and assemble your programs, too. Our cotton ribbons come directly from Italy, and we have a selection of classic colors that complement our inks. If you don’t see something you love, feel free to send us your own ribbon.
If a folded booklet style program isn’t for you, we can also print a tea-length panel program. These typically don’t allow for as much text as a booklet style program does, but we can print on the backside of any of our flat pieces for an additional 50%. If we are printing on both sides of our 1 ply paper, please know that in order to maintain the legibility of the text we will lessen the impression on both sides to accommodate the added impression. You wouldn’t want the impression from one side detracting from the impression on the other!
Reply cards with envelopes are a more traditional option, but reply postcards are a great eco-friendly (and budget-friendly) option to consider. Reply postcards don’t require an envelope, and they are less costly to mail. Aesthetically, there are several ways to set up a reply postcard. We can design your card so that one side looks like a traditional reply card, and the other side looks like the traditional reply card envelope. Or, we can set your postcard up like a “real” postcard, with a phrase or artwork on one side, and the reply information and return address on the back.
We offer two types of papers – our luxuriously thick, addictive to touch Bella Cotton paper and our newest addition – the ultra modern Bella Smooth Cotton. Bella Cotton paper is made from 100% reclaimed cotton with a subtle texture to showcase the best letterpress or foil stamped impression. Our 1-ply Bella Cotton paper (350 gsm) is thick and lovely; the 2-ply (700 gsm) is twice as thick, like a lovely unbendable board. Our 1-ply Bella Smooth Cotton paper (310 gsm) is slightly less textured but equally beautiful when letterpress or foil stamped – and it is the only one of our papers compatible with digital printing. Bella Smooth Cotton is also available in 2-ply (620 gsm) – it is slightly more flexible than the Bella Cotton 2-ply but no less luxurious. Please note that 2-ply paper may increase your postage costs due to the weight and thickness – but we think it’s totally worth it! Be sure to request samples of our 1-ply and 2-ply Bella Cotton and Bella Smooth Cotton papers when you place your sample order!
I want an envelope liner inspired by my invitation design. Can you create a custom envelope liner like this for me?
Of course! We love taking our invitation designs and creating the perfect accompanying envelope liner – and with 300+ designs that makes for a lot of design-inspired liners! There is no additional cost for this customization as long as you are using existing design elements.
We do! In addition to our Bella Letterpress Cotton envelopes (converted from a luxurious text weight version of our exclusive Bella Cotton paper) we also have really lovely colored envelopes in versatile colors like metallic silver, metallic opal and jute. Our self-closing pocketfolds are available in a number of eco-friendly papers and are a great way to add color while keeping your invitation essentials neat and tidy for your guests.
Unfortunately we’re not able to letterpress or foil stamp each guest’s name on place cards, since each card would require a unique printing plate and a separate run through the press. Many of our clients choose to have a calligrapher write their guests names by hand, and we can’t say enough about the beautiful handiwork of our Bella Figura calligraphers! It’s also possible for you or a friend with nice handwriting to hand write the names, or you can print them using an inkjet printer (some models work better than others – we are happy to send paper samples for you to try a test run).
We want your invitations to reflect you and your celebration, so all of our designs are totally customizable. You can change a vertical design to horizontal, a square design to a vertical, move or resize illustrations, or base your invitation on that design’s save the date or thank you card. You can change the fonts, the size of the fonts, or the ink colors. You can make a 1 color design to 2 color, or a 2 color design to 1 color. If you’re looking for inspiration and want to chat about your options, give us a call or email us – we’d love to talk! For more inspiration: check out our blog, where we feature our favorite customizations and show how clients have made our designs their own.
Yes! That’s part of the design customization that we love to do for you, and there is no charge for this type of design work. All of our designs allow you to choose a different font from our Bella Font Library, increase or decrease the size of the fonts, and even change the size and positioning of illustrations, too. Our font library contains over 50 of our favorite letterpress typefaces, and we’re certain that you’ll find one or two that you’ll love. If you’re looking for something truly unique, we offer hand calligraphy accents for lines of text that deserve additional attention (like the names of the bride and groom!). There is an additional cost for these calligraphy accents (but we think its well worth it). We have several different calligraphy styles to choose from, too – from traditional to modern to whimsical.
Because of all the time and work that goes into letterpress printing (printing plates! ink mixing! setting up a press!), we can’t print samples in specific colors or sizes. To keep samples affordable, we can only offer them as shown on our website. Of course when you place your order, we can print in any color your heart desires. You might want to check out our blog to see how previous customers have reimagined our designs.
Ordering from Bella Figura
The ordering process from order to delivery typically takes 3-5 weeks but is dependent on how quickly you are able to decide on a design and get us all the information we need to get started. Once you have placed your order and submitted your final text your first PDF proof will be emailed to you within 3 business days (or 6 business days if your order features hand calligraphy or custom design). Once you have approved your final design we will ship 10 business days from the date of your final approval. We do offer a rush service for an additional 50% – we’ll ship your order 5 business days after design approval. We recommend ordering your invitations as soon as all of your information (time, date, location, etc.) is finalized. Invitations are generally sent out six to eight weeks before the wedding, so you’ll want to start the ordering process at least 12-14 weeks before your wedding, if not sooner. We’ll always do our best to work with your turnaround needs, so if you are behind schedule just let us know what we can do to help!
Keep in mind guest lists have a way of mysteriously expanding. So the decision of how many extras to order really depends, in part, on you and how certain you are of your guest list! If you’re pretty certain that your guest list is set, we recommend ordering an extra 15 invitations. Remember that ordering additional quantities now is much less expensive than having us reprint 10 more invitation sets closer to the wedding date. And remember to order based on the number of families or couples that you’re inviting – not the number of actual people invited to your wedding!
Also, keep in mind calligraphers often need additional envelopes. Even if you’re hand-addressing your invitations yourself, you may want extra envelopes for your own peace of mind. With your order, we include an extra 10% of any addressable envelopes (any envelope that you’ll be printing or addressing). You can order extra envelopes on top of this if you need them.
There are 3 ways in which to place your order:
Order online via our website. You can create a quote based on your desired quantities, ink colors, etc. You can then proceed to order. Through the process you will be asked for your credit card information and text. You will be billed the 50% non-refundable deposit within one business day of submitting your order.
Fill out the PDF order form and email or fax that into us. Once we receive your completed order form we will put together a contract and send you a request for your text. Once we receive the approved contract (by fax or email), your text (attached as a word document or in the body of an email), and a 50% non-refundable deposit we’ll prepare your PDF proof.
We totally sympathize with your need to receive your invitations as soon as possible! Our rush service allows us to ship five business days from final proof approval for a 50% upcharge. Or we can also ship your addressable envelopes five business days from final approval for an additional $100 plus shipping (just pay for shipping if your envelopes are blank and/or unlined). Please call to confirm availability of rush turnaround before placing your rush order, but know that we will do our darndest to accommodate your turnaround needs.
While we don’t offer letterpress proofs of your order, we will email you a color PDF to review, which contains all the pieces in your set. You’ll also receive two free rounds of changes to the proofs to make sure your design is absolutely to your liking before we go to press. All of our clients have found our electronic proofs to be totally adequate in showing what their design would look like on press. We do strongly suggest, however, that you purchase samples of the design that you love so you can see our paper, see the design in print, and also see what our inks look like in person. If you have specific concerns about the design and printing process, give us a call or email us – we would love to talk.
We charge 9% sales tax only on orders shipped to a New York state address. Shipments to addresses outside of New York state are not charged sales tax.
We do! See all of our promotions or subscribe to our newsletter to be notified of any special discounts and promotions that we introduce throughout the year.
I received an invitation sample, but how do I know what the other pieces look like? I’d like to see the menu, coasters, save the date, etc.
Because we have 300+ designs, we only print the invitation and in some cases the reply card or save the date for our samples. But each of our invitation designs has a full wedding suite of pieces — save the dates, wedding thank you notes, menus, programs, place cards, coasters and more. To see a design’s full wedding suite, go to that design’s web page and look for “view additional pieces”.