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The invitation for your special day gives your guests the first very impression of your wedding, so it's important to make a statement! The paper cut technique is having a moment right now, as people really appreciate the time and effort involved. In this tutorial you'll learn how to make a beautiful hand-crafted invitation that your guests will never forget.
- Grey A4 card that will work in your printer
- C5 coloured envelope
- Dark green, pink, beige, mint and purple paper
- Spray mount glue
- Cutting mat
- Access to a printer
- Calligraphy pen
- Mint coloured C5 envelope
Please find the template to use below:
1. Print Out the Template
Begin by printing out the peonies template that is supplied onto your grey card.
Size the template accordingly, bearing in mind that the smaller you print it, the harder it will be to cut out the paper cut pieces.
Make sure that you've sent the template to print on the right hand side of the card as this will be the front of your invitation.
2. Prepare Your Card
Fold your grey card perfectly in half, ensuring that the template is on the front.
Place a cutting mat inside your folded card to protect the bottom of the invitation.
3. Cut Out the Peonies
Using your scalpel, start at the top of the template and begin making incisions.
Turning the paper so that the line that you're about to cut is vertical to your body often helps with precision.
I also find that holding the scalpel closer to the blade gives me more control over cutting.
Work your way down and across the template as you cut out the shapes. This will ensure that the card's most fragile part will no longer be in contact with your hands.
Once you've completed the paper cut stage, brush away any paper excess.
4. Make the Foliage Green
For the inside of the card, take your piece of green paper and place it over the bottom right-hand-side of the grey card.
You only want the leaves and the stem to appear green from the front. So mark lines at the bottom and right-hand-side of where the card finishes.
Trim these two edges using the guillotine to ensure that the lines are straight.
Close the front cover of the invitation and you'll see that the green is overlapping the bottom part of the flowers.
Mark with a pencil where the bottom parts of the flowers are on the green cardboard.
Open up your invitation and draw an off-set line, guided by your markings in step 5, with a pencil and ruler.
Trim this off using the guillotine.
Now when you close the cover, you'll see that the green section is peeking through the section of the leaves and stems.
Take your spray mount and spray the glue slightly all over the green paper. Carefully match up the lines to the invitation when sticking them together. If possible, try not to spray as much glue to the top part as you'll be placing the pink paper underneath this section in the next step.
Spray mount is quite a lenient adhesive in that if you initially go wrong, you can easily peel the paper and re-stick it.
This is how the green paper should look now it's stuck inside the invitation (see photo below).
5. Complete the Coloured Inside Section
Take your pink paper and place it on top of the green paper, as this is where it will be placed once it's cut to the right size.
Mark where the sides need trimming at the top and side.
Trim the edges that you've just measured out.
Spray the back of the pink paper with spray mount and stick it into place, making sure that it is placed underneath the green.
This is how the pink section should look once glued in place (see photo below).
Now, take your purple paper and cut it into the right shape so that it fits only behind the first flower.
Using your spray mount, stick the purple paper into place.
Turn the invitation over and trim off any excess paper using your scissors.
Repeat the steps for the purple paper but use your cream paper and cut it to fit behind the right-hand flower.
The cream paper should sit nicely above the green paper and to the right of the pink paper.
The final paper to add is the mint piece, which sits at the bottom right-hand-corner at a slant.
Trim the sides of the invitation with the guillotine to remove any excess paper. Just close the front of the card to see any over-hanging pieces.
The front of the invitation will look like this, once all the colours are in place (see photo below).
6. Write the Wedding Details
On the front top of your invitation, begin writing your introductory text in pencil.
If you’ve never used calligraphy before, your wedding invitations are a great excuse to learn this new skill. Having said that, it does take time and a lot of practice to get great results. For the ease of this tutorial, I'm using a calligraphy pen. You can find calligraphy pens at any good art supplies stores.
Using your black calligraphy pen, carefully go over the pencil outline. Try to push down harder on the left-hand-side of the lettering as this will give your characters more definition.
This is how my introductory text looks once completed.
Make sure the ink is definitely dry before rubbing out the pencil marks.
Using your pencil, sketch the bride and groom's names, bearing in mind that the ampersand should be central.
Carefully go over the pencil marks with your calligraphy pen, emphasising the left hand side of each letter.
Underneath the paper cut flowers, write the wedding details and date in pencil.
Go over the pencil text with your calligraphy pen.
You've now completed the calligraphy on the front of the card. Well done! This is how is should look (see photo below).
Now, write the text on the inside of the invitation. Make sure that you write on sections that can't be seen through the paper cuts on the front cover.
Remember to sketch everything in pencil first, and only when you're sure that the placement of the text is correct, go over the text with your calligraphy pen.
7. Line and Decorate the Envelope
Take your envelope and pink paper and draw around the top triangular part using your pencil.
Slide the pink paper into the envelope, ensuring that it covers all of the envelope's lining.
Glue into place using your spray mount.
Turn the envelope over and fold on the crease, making sure that the pink paper folds with it.
Using the same template and technique as before, paper cut another three flowers out of your remaining grey card.
Now, cut around the border of each flower, leaving about a 2mm space from the edge of each paper cut.
Place your paper cut flowers onto the envelope lining, arranging them into your desired design.
Spray each flower with your spray mount.
You may need to hold the flowers in place to make sure that they've stuck completely to the envelope lining.
Send Out Your Invitations!
In this tutorial, you learned how to make a bespoke wedding invitation with delicate paper cut details. I also showed you how to create coloured panels for inside the card, and how to hand-write your wedding details in a calligraphy style. Finally, you learned how to line and decorate the envelope with paper-cut flowers.
You can use this template to create invitations for any other special event, like a birthday party or a baby shower. A smaller event would also make it less labour-intensive as wedding - as long as you don't have as many guests!
Are you planning a wedding or special event? Do you think you might use this template to make your own paper cut invitations? We'd love to hear from you - please leave any questions or comments below.