Jan 9

On-Demand vs. Semi-Custom vs. Custom Wedding Invitations: Finding Your Perfect Fit

The wedding invitation you choose will set the tone for your special day. It will give your guests their first taste of your wedding theme and design and maybe even their first glimpse into your love story. So, it’s crucial to consider the pros and cons of different wedding invitations and choose carefully.

You have three options when choosing which wedding invitations you need: online print-on-demand, semi-custom, and custom wedding invitations. Likely, aesthetics won’t be the only thing to drive your choice; your unique needs, timeline, and budget will also play a part. This blog post will break down the benefits of each option so you can find your perfect fit!

Online Print-On-Demand Wedding Invitations

Online print-on-demand wedding invitations offer a convenient and cost-effective solution for couples on a budget who still want beautiful wedding stationery. You can design and purchase on the same day if needed, allowing quick and easy access to invitations for couples on a tight timeline. 

Zazzle vs. custom wedding invitations from Turnage and Watts

Print-on-demand (POD) wedding invitations have a few notable pros and cons:


The most significant benefit of these invitations is that they’re budget-friendly, making them an excellent option for couples mindful of keeping their wedding expenses down. 

Fast Turnaround Time

Another significant advantage of ordering online print-on-demand wedding invitations is the rapid turnaround time. This feature is ideal for couples on a tight planning timeline! Moreover, you can order smaller quantities if you plan a micro- or destination wedding.

Limited Customization Options

However, online POD wedding invitations also have some drawbacks. Namely, they come with constraints on customization, including limited fonts, envelope colors, and printing options. Because of this, they aren’t the best choice for couples looking for a one-of-a-kind heirloom.

If the benefits of print-on-demand wedding invitations resonate with you, you can explore our POD options at the T&W Zazzle shop! Browse our diverse wedding invitation designs, from bold and colorful modern fonts to classic and elegant botanical designs. Choose your favorite design, then edit it with the Zazzle Design Editor. Then, you can have Zazzle print your order or instantly download a PDF to print at home or your local office supply store!


Semi-Custom Wedding Invitations

Semi-custom wedding invitations strike the perfect balance between pre-made and fully customized designs. They offer flexibility and more opportunities for personalization without the high costs associated with custom wedding invitations.

Semi-custom botanical wedding invitation suite by Turnage and Watts

Notable features of semi-custom wedding invitations include: 

Template-Based Customization

Couples who choose semi-custom wedding invitations work directly with a professional designer to create their dream wedding invitation. They select a pre-designed template, which they can customize with the colors, fonts, and embellishments they choose.

Personalization Options

There are many more opportunities to personalize a semi-custom invitation than a print-on-demand invitation. In addition to custom colors and fonts, couples can add a one-of-a-kind monogram or crest, embellishments like ribbon and vellum, and even select the printing method. All of these options for personalization add up to a truly unique wedding invitation that reflects your style.

Are you interested in semi-custom wedding invitations? Explore Turnage and Watts’ Semi-Custom Collection for inspiration and customization possibilities.

Custom Wedding Invitations

An invitation designer (like Turnage and Watts!) crafts a custom wedding invitation entirely from scratch, providing the couple with complete control over the design and details. In other words, they’re the peak of personalization! Couples work directly with their designers, often over 12+ months, to create a one-of-a-kind heirloom that tells the story of their love and commitment.

Turnage and Watts - Custom Wedding Invitation Design

Just like print-on-demand wedding invitations, custom wedding invitations have pros and cons: 

Complete Control Over Design and Details

Custom wedding invitations allow for unparalleled personalization. Starting from scratch ensures that every aspect of the finished design aligns with the couple’s vision—from the font to the finishing touches!

Learn more about the difference between custom invitations and cookie-cutter designs like Minted in this blog post.

Longer Production Times

However, designing from scratch necessitates a much longer planning timeline. Couples interested in exploring this option should inquire with prospective designers at least one year in advance to allow enough time for the process, which includes client intake, the design phase, printing, and mailing.

Higher Cost

In addition to extended production times, custom wedding invitations are also the priciest option. Accordingly, they’re best suited for couples with a flexible wedding budget who can accommodate higher (and occasionally unexpected) costs.

Head to our Custom Collection page to explore the endless possibilities for creating a wedding invitation suite as unique as your love story. 

Graphic explaining the benefits of on-demand, semi-custom, and custom wedding invitations

4 Factors to Consider When Choosing On-Demand, Semi-Custom, or Custom Wedding Invitations

Now that you know the benefits and drawbacks of each type of wedding invitation, it’s time to identify your perfect fit! Consider these four factors when deciding between print-on-demand, semi-custom, and custom wedding invitations. 

Occasion and Formality

First, consider the nature and formality of your wedding event. Is it a backyard bash? An elegant ballroom soirée? The answer may help guide your choice. For example, print-on-demand invitations may be better for a casual event than a black-tie affair.

Budget Constraints

Next, evaluate your budget to determine what will be a realistic amount to spend on wedding invitations. Ultimately, your choice should align with your financial plan before anything else.

Personal Preferences and Style

If you have the financial flexibility to choose any option, consider your aesthetic preferences next. Your wedding invitation should reflect who you are as a couple, but the level of personalization is up to you (and how much you want to spend). 

Stock photo of a woman looking at a wedding design catalog

Time Constraints and Deadlines

If time is of the essence, weigh your wedding invitation options accordingly. POD wedding invitations might be the ideal solution for a quick turnaround. However, if time and budget are not a concern, semi-custom or custom invitations are the way to go.

Even after you’ve weighed your options and chosen your type of wedding invitation, there are still many factors to consider. For example, many couples aren’t sure how many invitations they need or when to send them. The good news is you can find answers to these questions—and more that you may not even know to ask— in the T&W Complete Guide to Wedding Invitations! Head here to access the guide and get peace of mind for keeping the planning process on track.

Design Your Dream Wedding Invitation with T&W

Selecting the perfect wedding invitation involves understanding the pros and cons of print-on-demand, semi-custom, and custom invitations. Each option has benefits, but the best one for you will depend on your unique needs and budget.

Are you a budget-conscious couple planning on a tight timeline? POD invitations are for you! Do you have a flexible budget and a clear vision for your dream wedding invitation? You can’t go wrong with custom invitations. For many, semi-custom invitations are the perfect happy medium!

Whether your perfect fit is print-on-demand, semi-custom, or custom invitations, T&W is ready to serve you. Visit our Zazzle shop to explore our beautiful POD designs suited for weddings in any season, or inquire today to learn more about our semi-custom and custom options. Remember, your wedding invitation is your guests’ first glimpse into your special day—so choose wisely, and don’t forget to have fun designing this crucial detail!

Photography by:

Juliana Mary & Co.

Sourced Co.