Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Evolution of our DIY pocketfold

Warning: Details overload! Don't bother reading the last 6 paragraphs unless you really care about the history of how our DIY pocketfold came to be.

You may have recalled from a previous post that there were several elements I really wanted in our wedding invitations: 1) vellum overlay on cardstock, 2) boarding pass, 3) magnet recipe, 4) personal touch!
The reason I'm dedicating a whole post to our DIY pocketfold is because it has become the backbone of our invitation suite. Here it is:

I will dedicate another post on DIY steps on making the pocketfold above. But for those who might be interested, below are the nitty gritty details of how this pocketfold came to be!

Choosing a size:
I used Mrs. Cupcake's 3rd and 4th tips on DIY invitations as the basis ("when designing, START WITH YOUR ENVELOPES!!!!!" and "Work backwards with dimensions."). Since I really wanted boarding passes (which should be about 8" tall to look good), my invitations were going to be pretty big. A search on envelope sizes at led to A9 (5.75"x8.75")as the outer envelope. From there it was easy to work backwards. The pocketfold would have to be 5.5"x8.5", which luckily is a standard 8.5"x11" folded in half.

Choosing material:
Pocketfolds don't come in that size, nor do pocketfolds have special pockets for boarding passes. I designed my own template starting with a 11"x17" sheet. I originally wanted to make the main pocketfold using the lavender metallic cardstock from, but the paper didn't do so well on the multiple folds (too voluminous and slight tearing on the outer folds). Disappointed at first, I soon realized also carries their #29 vellum in the 11"x17" size (score!!). So I decided to use that instead. But because it's too flimsy on its own, I had the idea of still incorporating the lavender metallic cardstock but on the inside instead. I figured any tears resulting from the single fold down the middle would be hidden by the outer vellum.

Vellum overlay:
With the translucency that comes with vellum and the lavender cardstock underneath, I knew I was one step closer to my vision of "copying" the overlay flower on pink cardstock invitation. On our preliminary wedding website, my fiance had put the words "It started with a promise" on the bottom of the page with an eiffel tower picture. I guess he was referring to the "promise" engagement ring he gave me when proposing in the Eiffel park of Paris. The webpage totally inspired me to write that poem about our engagement. Put 2 and 2 together, and I knew I wanted some sort of overlay -- either poem on Eiffel, Eiffel on poem, or Eiffel and poem on blank cardstock. Unfortunately, the cardstock I wanted was too thick to print on, so I started researching different ways to achieve my goal. I even visited a demonstrator from to get some ideas. The wonderful lady introduced me to the world of heat embossing! I ordered a huge eiffel tower from (to fill the 5.5"x8.5" as much as possible) and decided to print the poem on the vellum overlay. Originally, I was just trying to test out which shade of purple looked nicest by printing a different shade on each line of the poem. My mom really liked the look of the rainbow colors, so with some tweaking, I used that inspiration as the basis for the final product -- a vertical gradient from light purple to blue for the poem text.

Eiffel tower:
I bought a ton of embossing powders for the eiffel tower. White was too white and some silvers were too dark. I finally decided on a mix of sparkly whites and silvers, which is actually what the eiffel tower really did look like during the white light show that took place right before the proposal. Usually at nights it basks in a soft yellow light, but apparently around 1am every night (or at least when we were there), it has a beautiful sparkly white light show that lasts a few minutes. One of the questions I had during this process was, should we glue the vellum and cardstock together? The obvious answer was NO! We want guests to know the poem overlay and the eiffel tower are separate. We WANT them to lift the vellum and enjoy the beauty of the eiffel on its own, maybe even touch that raised embossing!

Boarding pass slot:
I knew from the get go that I wanted a slit/slot somewhere in the invitation suite. My original idea was to have it on the inside of the invitation, with the boarding pass in the very back. But after showing some friends the draft, they said the boarding pass should bask in its own solo glory. Otherwise people won't even notice the hard work I put into making the slot! And so I moved it to the back of the pocketfold, so that it's the first thing guests see when opening it. As for making the slot itself, I need to thank a wonderful lady at Cranberry Hills for suggesting that I punch 2 holes and use an X-acto knife to cut parallel lines. I bought a long reach 1/8" hold punch which was perfect for my use.

ViviYian heart logo:
Early on while brainstorming wedding logos, I doodled a bunch of designs on an 8.5"x11" blank paper. My fiance and I settled on the scribble heart with a V and Y (our initials) drawn at the top and bottom. Since the initials weren't in-your-face obvious (my brother thought it was just part of the heart design), and since we had blank space on the back of the invitation, I decided to write "vivi" and "yian" on either side to reinforce the initials and remind guests of our website name. And then a flash of brilliance came across me -- this horizontal logo could fit into the invitation edge that peeks out of the envelope, so that it's the first thing guests see when they open it! (unless they use an envelope cutter boohoo).

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