Wedding Tips: When should you book a calligrapher?

Wedding etiquette is constantly changing – and the rules are never set in stone – so how do you know when to book your calligrapher? Well, the most important thing to consider is when you should send out your invitations and save the dates, and when you will need your RSVPs back.


How far in advance should wedding invitations be sent?

Most wedding professionals would say that wedding invitations go out 6-8 weeks prior to your wedding day. However, certain situations such as a destination wedding, could require more time (upwards of 3 months!) or less time. Save the dates are not required but if you decide to use them, they are usually sent out 6-8 months before the wedding.

RSVP deadlines are generally around 2-3 weeks before the wedding. Many brides and grooms decide to adjust these dates as necessary, depending on caterers, calligraphers, venues, etc.

How long does calligraphy take?

At Ink & Matter, my calligraphy turnaround is 2-4 weeks, which is pretty standard in the calligraphy industry. For place cards and escort cards, you’re generally looking at 2 weeks. Bigger projects and custom projects will likely take more time, so consider that if you’re planning on a big project. Plan to have your calligrapher booked at least 2 weeks in advance or risk paying a rush fee, running into booked up calligraphers, and added stress.

If you’re hiring a calligrapher to address your wedding envelopes, you will have to do some backwards calculating to determine when you should book the calligrapher. For example, if you’re sending your invitations out 6 weeks before your wedding, you will need to have your calligrapher booked and ready to go at least 8 weeks before your wedding.

Wedding invitation suites, especially completed custom suites, take longer than ordering your invitations from a cookie-cutter website. Most designers will say invitations take between 10-12 weeks, so plan very early if you want a custom invitation suite!

However, most calligraphers book up fast, especially for summer weddings, so it’s important to get in contact as far in advance as possible, even if that means you’re just putting down a deposit. A good rule of thumb is to book your calligrapher at the same time as when you purchase your invitations.

Keep in mind that nothing is set in stone in the wedding industry – so don’t stress too much!