Now that you've got a rock on your finger--and the date is set--you need to get the word out! And since online websites offer customization that you can print yourself, you need to consider a few things before panic, misery and regret take hold.
While you're scouring sites like Etsy and Fiverr for a good and inexpensive designer, you need to first go to your local print shop and ask for the manager on duty. This may not all happen on the first visit or even in one day, but you need to tell them that you are ordering invites via pdf that they are to then print and finish (cut, fold, perf, score, etc.).
To Do List
1. Look and feel the papers they can print on. Do not assume they will print on your paper.
2. Ask for free samples of their finishing capabilities. Cutting and trimming are two different processes with two different outcomes. Let them educate you on what would be best.
3. Most likely your invitations will need to be cut. With enough time, you can request a new blade for best quality.
4. Always tell them what your vision of the finished product will look like (ready for mailing) because they may have a better method for achieving it that will save you money. They do this everyday--trust them.
1. Never assume the print shop can read your mind. Though many designers work at print shops, they are only going to do what you ask for. Sometimes, if you're lucky, they will offer advice, but not always.
2. Always give your print shop time to produce the job expertly. Machines break down. People get sick. Life happens. Don't ask for the impossible at the last minute and expect great results.
3. Have an open mind and trust that they know what they are doing.