Why Sample Wedding Invitations Should Be on Your Stationery Checklist

Plus, where to get your free sample kit.
Naoimh O'Hare - The Knot Associate Commerce Editor
Naoimh O'Hare
Naoimh O'Hare - The Knot Associate Commerce Editor
Naoimh O'Hare
Associate Commerce Editor
  • Naoimh writes articles for The Knot Worldwide, specializing in shoppable roundups from gift guides to wedding fashion
  • Before working on editorial content, Naoimh wrote storefront descriptions for some of The Knot Worldwide's many wedding vendors
  • Naoimh studied creative writing at the National University of Ireland, Galway
Updated Mar 25, 2022

Your invitations are a fun opportunity to hint at your wedding aesthetic before the big day and often, the first big impression you'll make with guests. With that in mind, it's important the stationery you choose feels on theme and authentically you. Sample wedding invitations are the key to ensuring you make the right decision, whether you have a specific design in mind or you're torn between 10 different styles. And we've got some good news for you: Most wedding invitation websites offer free samples, including The Knot Invitations. If you're on the fence about taking advantage of sample stationery, find out why it's a step you shouldn't skip.

Why Are Wedding Invitation Samples Important?

There are lots of benefits to having physical samples of different wedding invitations before you settle on a design. For starters, samples make it easier to decide on a winner if you've fallen in love with more than one design. Even if you already have your heart set on a particular invite style, having a physical sample will help you confirm that decision and ensure there are no unexpected surprises when your full stationery order arrives.

Of course, it's not just about deciding on an overall design. Wedding invitation paper samples also allow you to compare other elements that you might be undecided on. For example, you can order samples of both formal and casual invites to help you choose what kind of layout and wedding invitation wording you want to go with. You can also compare different styles of lettering (think: romantic calligraphy versus a modern serif font).

Another big pro to ordering sample stationery? You'll get a much clearer idea of the type of paper your invites will be printed on. The final look and feel of your stationery is impacted by the paper you choose in a big way. If you want to figure out if heavier cardstock is worth the extra cost, or you're torn between a matte finish or a glossy finish, ordering samples is a must.

When Should You Order Sample Wedding Invitations?

It's a good idea to start checking out stationers long before you actually need to send out your invitations. And to have your stationery ready to mail six to eight weeks before the wedding, you should place your final order four to five months ahead of the big day.

So what does that mean for sample wedding invites? If you plan to mail coordinating save-the-dates, settle on a final design about 9 to 11 months before your wedding date. Since save-the-dates are typically mailed 8 to 10 months out, you'll want to account for a few weeks' time for printing and shipping to you and your fiancé. If you've already chosen a different design for your save-the-dates or you've decided to go without them, you should snap up your invitation samples at least six months before the wedding.

It's up to you at which point you want to order free samples. Many couples find it easier to whittle it down to a few designs before comparing invitations in person. On the flipside, some to-be-weds like to sample a variety of styles from several different stationers to help point them in the right direction and get a better idea of what they like and dislike.

How to Order Free Samples From The Knot Invitations

Snatching up your free samples from The Knot Invitations couldn't be easier. Simply browse invitations, save-the-dates or both on the site and select "order a sample" on up to three different designs. Once you've added your three chosen styles to your cart, use the discount code 3FREE at checkout (no credit card necessary). Our free wedding invitation samples are typically shipped by USPS first class mail and delivered within 7–10 days, so you won't have to stare wistfully out your window for too long waiting for that special package to arrive. So what are you waiting for? The sooner you order your sample wedding invitations, the sooner they'll be in your hands.

What comes in a wedding invitation sample kit?

The Knot's wedding stationery sample packs include one example of each of your chosen invites or save-the-dates. For most designs you can sample your preferred paper and color palette, but foil invitation samples are printed on signature paper with a specified color scheme. You can still get an idea of the other available color combinations, as each wedding invite sample kit also includes a color chart. Additionally, you'll receive sample envelopes and a stationery timeline to help keep you on track. If you want to sample more wedding invitations or save-the-date cards, you can do that too for a small extra cost.

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