Last fall I print-produced a designer’s really cool holiday card. The problem was that it didn’t fit a standard size envelope and weighed more than the planned 1 oz. mailing weight. By the time I got the project, the complex card design was too far along to be revised.

To solve the problem, I switched papers to get the weight down and had the printer use an adjustable envelope die to create an envelope that fit the card.

But I want lime green envelopes!

Unless you’re buying a full case of envelopes, you can rarely get envelopes in all of the cool colors you’re drooling over in the paper swatch books. If you need a small quantity of colored envelopes, try an online supplier such as Action Envelope: http://www.actionenvelope.com/ Otherwise, you can get any envelope you want, as long as it’s white.

Envelope dies: cookie cutters for paper

If you will be printing 2,000 envelopes or more, it’s cost effective to print on flat stock and “convert” it into envelopes via die-cut and glue. McCallum Print Group has a great website where you can download standard-size envelope die-lines to include in your design files: http://www.mccallumprintgroup.com/printing_resources/dies.asp

Disaster avoidance tip

The lesson here is that envelope size, stock availability, and mailing weight must be part of the design considerations from the beginning of even the simplest card + envelope project.

Work back from the envelope size to determine the card size. Ask your printer or paper merchant to recommend available papers and provide a card + envelope paper dummy for you to weigh and approve.

Advertisements