Choosing invitation paper

Choosing paper and don’t know where to start? Don’t worry, you’re not alone!

There are so many different types of paper out there – each with different textures, finishes, colours and thicknesses.

If you’re making your own invitations, you’ll also need to consider whether the paper you choose can go through a home printer.

Here we give a quick summary of just some of the options out there, when it comes to choosing paper for your wedding or special event stationery.

Texture is how a paper looks and feels

Papers come in a variety of textures. This means how the paper feels to touch.

Texture also makes paper look a certain way – for example it might look shiny or rough.

It also affects how the paper will go through a home printer.

Paper textures include matte, metallic, gloss, satin, linen, felt, cotton and recycled – just to mention a few!

Matte papers are a non-glossy, flat looking paper with a slight roughness to them, rather than being smooth or glossy. They have a soft, classic look to them that isn’t overstated.

Metallic papers are as you’d expect – shimmery, with a metallic shine to them. They would be suitable if you’d like your invitations or stationery to look glamorous or sophisticated.

Gloss papers have a glossy, shiny look to them, with a smooth feel and produce excellent colour definition. They are light and bright and would suit if you want a sharp, vibrant look for your invitations.

Satin papers have a smooth, luxurious, satin like look and feel to them. Shinier than a matte paper but not quite as shiny as gloss, satin papers are classy, sophisticated and luxurious.

Linen papers have a delicate embossed crosshatch texture that is reminiscent of fine linen. They are perfect for any project requiring a classic, elegant look.

Felt papers feature a beautiful hammered felt texture with a rich, velvety feel. Classy and luxurious, felt papers are ideal for invitations requiring an elegant, timeless look.

Recycled papers have a natural, raw look to them and a slight roughness. They are perfect if you’re after a rustic, vintage look.


The ‘gsm’ of a paper refers to how dense the paper is, or how much it weighs.

Lower gsm papers are generally thinner, lighter and let more light through.

Higher gsm papers tend to be thicker, heavier and show less light through (and therefore less printed text shows through on the other side).

We consider anything above 170 gsm to be a card, rather than a paper.


Generally home office printers will handle any paper between about 80 gsm (standard printer paper) and 170gsm. Above 170gsm, you risk paper jams and problems getting the paper to feed through the printer. Below 80gsm, and you run into issues like the paper tearing and ink showing through on the under-side of the paper.

You also need to be careful if you plan on choosing a metallic or overly shiny paper, as these are a coated stock they can slip or smudge in a home printer.

Whatever paper you choose, we suggest ordering a sample and doing a test run in your printer first. Most of our papers can be ordered as swatches or by the sheet. However just ask us if you can’t find the one you’re looking for as a single sheet or swatch.

A few colour suggestions for your wedding invitation paper


Coco Linen Blanc is a high quality Japanese style paper with a gorgeous linen look to it. It comes in 130gsm or 170gsm. Testing on home printers is recommended due to the delicate, textured nature of this paper.

Marshmallow Crisp White has a luxurious, quality feel and a matte finish to it. It’s suitable for both inkjet and laser printers.

Speckletone True White paper and card is a 100% recycled paper with a matte finish. It comes in 104gsm and 216gsm thicknesses.


Via Felt Cream is a lovely textured stock. It has a distinctive, modern, felt feel to it. It’s available in 118gsm and 216gsm thicknesses, it’s 30% PCW recycled, has excellent ink holdout and high opacity. It’s also archival and acid free. This paper is compatible with both laser and inkjet printers and is one of the most widely used papers for DIY wedding invitations due to its versatility.

Zsa Zsa Vanilla has a beautiful matte texture to it. It comes in 140gsm and 197gsm and should be tested in home printers.


Marshmallow Warm Ivory has an ultra-smooth finish. It comes in 105gsm and 261gsm and is compatible with both laser and inkjet printers.

Coco Linen Ivoire has a gorgeous linen texture and comes in 130gsm and 170gsm thicknesses. Testing is definitely recommended for this one due to the deep texture of the paper. This one’s most likely to print well in inkjet printers.

If you’d like any more advice on choosing a paper, please get in touch!

22 September, 2017 by Angela Maroske

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