Frequently asked questions...

 

WHY CHOOSE CHARM STUDIO?

Charm Studio specializes in custom invitations and other charming paper goods. The custom design approach allows you to add a personal touch to your special occasion. I offer several styles of illustrations; watercolor painting, pen and ink illustrations and hand lettering for maps, crests, icons and monograms. I have a curated selection of the highest quality paper available, offer a wide range of printing methods: foil, letterpress, flat, thermography and engraving.  I have hand-selected our printers and know they are the best in the country. I offer digital addressing for your envelopes designed to match your invitations. I strive to provide the highest level of customer service at all times and have exclusive client portal with tips, resources and my favorite souces and materials (postage stamps, pens, assembly materials and more) for my clients.

 

WHAT IS THE PROCESS?
 

Design consultation:

We like to meet you to discuss your needs and will work closely with you to create a custom design that reflects your personal style. During your consultation, we can answer your questions and you can start the fun by browsing our many custom designs and paper swatches. We encourage you to bring things to your consultation that have inspired you: color swatches, photographs, pin boards, anything that you love! It will help us tailor your design just for you. If you are located in Chicago, it is best to meet in our studio so we can look at swatches in person, however we work with clients throughout the country and can schedule a phone meeting if you do not live in the Chicago area. To set up an appointment please fill out the inquiry form.
 

PRICE ESTIMATE:

After the design meeting, we will put together an estimate on the design direction we discussed.

 

ESTIMATE APPROVAL, DEPOSIT & CONTENT:

Upon your approval the estimate, we ask for a 50% non-refundable deposit to start the project. We will also need the final content for your project to get officially started. We are more that happy to help you with wording suggestions and proper etiquette.


DESIGN PROOF & Project Timeline:

Once we receive your estimate approval, deposit and final content we will begin the design process and put together a timeline for you. Proofs are sent as PDFs in electronic form only. Two rounds of revisions are free of charge, however each additional proof thereafter is an additional fee depending on the time required.


PROOF APPROVAL:

Upon proof approval the second half of the payment and the final quantity is due and print production will begin. After production begins, edits can not be made to the order. Please check for all spelling, grammar and content errors, before approving the proof. Charm Studio can not be held responsible for errors on approved proofs.


DELIVERY / PICK UP:

Once your custom design is ready, it will be shipped to you or we can schedule a time to meet at the studio for pick up.

 

WHAT IS THE TIMELINE FOR ORDERING?

Please plan on a 2-5 month window for your invitations to be designed and produced before your mailing date. We recommend mailing your:
-  Party Invitations 1-2 months in advance
-  Save the Dates 6-8 months in advance
-  Wedding Invitations 8 weeks in advance

 

Do you offer Rush Orders?

Depending on our current workload we can determine if we can accommodate a rush order on a case by case basis.

 

What products do you offer?

We offer a wide range of custom products, you name it and we will design it! Save the date cards, wedding invitations, rehearsal dinner invitations, programs, digital calligraphy, custom maps, table numbers, place cards, menus, welcome bags and notes, napkins, event signage, flags, thank you notes, party invitations, holiday cards, custom stamps - anything your heart desires! We are coming up with new custom products all the time and are open to special requests.

 

PROOFS

Proofs are sent as PDFs in electronic form only. Two rounds of revisions are free of charge, however each additional proof thereafter is an additional fee depending on the time required. Charm Studio is not responsible for text errors after the proof has been approved. So, please proof, proof and proof again! Make sure you double and triple check the spelling, grammar and content before approving the proof. Color will not necessarily be represented accurately on your computer or phone screen. When we meet we can select Pantone colors swatches for color accuracy.
 

CUSTOM ARTWORK USAGE TERMS & CONDITIONS

We can not provide our artwork and/or fonts for outside use. We design custom art to be printed by Charm Studio exclusively. We put time and personal attention into all of the designs we create and can not have the integrity of our work compromised by being printed elsewhere or used in other formats. Ownership and copyright of the artwork remains with the artist, all rights reserved and purchase does not entitle the buyer to reproduce the artwork in any way.
 

HOW MUCH DO INVITATIONS COST?

Custom designs vary in cost, depending on many different factors. We provide an estimate after we discuss details about your wishes. We offer invitations for every budget and also offer DIY assembly options if you find yourself wanting to be a little more hands on.
 


WHAT ARE YOUR PRINTING & PAPER OPTIONS?

We offer flat, thermography, engraving, foil and letterpress printing on a variety of paper options.  We offer a curated selection of the highest quality paper available and have hand-selected our printers and know they are the best in the country.

 

What is your quantity increment?

All of our stationery is custom printed so you can order any quantity you need!

 

HOW MANY EXTRA INVITES SHOULD I ORDER?

You should order 10% extra as there are normally guests that you add at the last minute, even if you are the most organized bride. You will want a nice extra sample to be photographed on your wedding day too!

 

HOW MUCH POSTAGE DO I NEED?

Make sure you have the post office weigh your invitations. They will tell you how much postage you need. It is good practice to send a test invite to yourself to double check the post office's suggested postage. Have the post office hand cancel your invitations so there are a lower odds that the envelopes will arrived dirty and damaged. Envelopes generally get damaged in the machines, which you avoid when you hand cancel.

 


HOW DO I PROPERLY ADDRESS MY ENVELOPES?

Check out the Charm Studio addressing etiquette guide for examples and suggestions.
 

What is DIGITAL ADDRESSING?

Digital addressing is a new solution for a calligraphic look. It can be designed to match your invitations or to look like handwritten calligraphy. Take a look at our font list for the options. Once we receive the completed excel template (see links below for downloadable templates) we will create a proof for approval. If there are content edits to the proof, fees will apply; $15 for each additional proof. For suggested wording please see our address etiquette page.

We require that addresses are provided:
- in our excel template (see below)
- all content is final and complete
- all content is provided as you want it to appear on the envelopes
- we suggest that all information is written out rather than abbreviated, for example: 123 Guest Address Street, Number 123, City, State 12345

Click below to download the template:
- single envelopes
- double envelopes

Once we receive the completed excel template we will create a proof for approval. If there are content edits to the proof, fees will apply. $15 for each additional proof.

Example of digital addressing designed to match Andria & Andrew's wedding invitations.

Example of digital addressing designed to match Andria & Andrew's wedding invitations.

 

WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN "HONOR" & "HONOUR"?

Honour is the British spelling of honor. It is traditionally used for formal wedding invitations when the ceremony is held in a church or place of worship. Be aware that honour will come up in spell check as misspelled!


What time of day do you use "AFTERNOON" VS. "EVENING" on a wedding invitation?

Morning: 5am - 11:59am
Noon: 12pm - 1pm
Afternoon: 1pm - 5:59pm
Evening: 6pm - 8:30pm

 

DO I NEED DOUBLE ENVELOPES?

Double envelopes are traditionally used for formal wedding invitations, but today double envelopes are certainly NOT mandatory. They help keep the invitation nice and clean when it goes through the mail. The envelopes will get a little dirty and tattered in the mail.


HOW DO I PROPERLY STUFF THE ENVELOPES?

When the cards are placed into the envelope, the printed side of the invitation should face you. The invitation insert cards should be stacked with the smallest card on top, so no cards are missed when guests pull the invitation elements out of the envelope. The response card should be tucked under the response envelope flap and placed in the rest of the cards in size order. Make sure you remember to place a stamp on the response envelope {a common detail to forget!}. Make sure you weight the invitation for proper postage at the post office and don't forget to factor in the weight of the postage. The postage weight could effect the amount of postage needed!


SHOULD I ORDER FLAT OR FOLDED THANK YOU NOTES?

Traditionally flat notes are intended for men and folded notes are intended for women. Today they are use interchangeably. I suggest flat notes for people who don't want to write a ton!

 

Any questions left unanswered? Feel free to reach out and we will answer any question you may have!