- Printable templates
- MS Word or Mac Pages
- Color printer
- Cotton Poplin Photo Fabric
- Rotary cutter with pinking blade, or pinking shears
- 5.5" Square Envelope
Step 1: Cut Photo Fabric to Size
The photo fabric comes in a roll 8.5” wide by 100” long. The first step is to trim this down to the size of a regular sheet of paper so that it will feed through your printer. A standard sheet of paper in North America is 8.5 x 11”, so measure out 11” lengths and cut. I first scored the photo paper at the 11” mark and cut along my score line with scissors, but you can mark off 11” with a pencil and cut if you prefer.
You will need one sheet of photo paper per invitation, so cut as many sheets as you need invitations.
Step 2: Download & Customize the Template
Download and install the free vintage fonts on your computer. The fonts that I chose to use are Olympic Branding and Tw Cen MT and these can be downloaded for free following the links. You can choose any fonts that you like however.
After installing the fonts on your computer, open MS Word.
Download the free hanky invitation template and open the file in Word. Add your names and wedding details. The text is completely customizable, so add lines, delete lines, and play around with the formatting until you are 100% happy with the way it looks.
Save the file on your computer so you can come back to it time and time again.
Step 3: Print
This is where the magic happens. It’s time to print the hanky. I found the photo paper had a tendency to curl toward the wax side so I loosely rolled each sheet in the opposite direction to flatten it out. I also found that placing some sheets of regular paper behind the photo paper when I loaded it into my printer helped the printer pick up the fabric paper. I loaded each sheet of fabric paper individually, so this did add time to the printing process. Each printer is going to act a little differently with the photo fabric paper, as with any non-standard paper, so you may need to find your printer’s quirks and work with them.
Print the hanky template on a sheet of photo fabric.
TIP: Print a copy of the invitation on regular paper first to check for spelling errors, formatting issues, date accuracy etc. Have a second and even third set of eyes read over the invitation before committing them all to print. This way you won’t waste any photo fabric and you won’t be left kicking yourself for overlooking a silly mistake!
Step 4: Remove Wax Backing
Peel back the wax backing on the photo paper. Now the photo paper is starting to look and feel like fabric.
Step 5: Trim Invitation
I decided to finish the edge of the hanky using pinking shears. I had a rotary cutter and pinking blade on hand, and I trimmed around the invitation using these. I lined my ruler up just inside the pink edge of the invitation so as not to get any white in the crimped border.
If you are handy with a sewing machine and want to take the extra time you could also create a rolled hem around the border. Or a serger machine would also put a clean edge on.
For me the pinking shears were quick, easy and cheap, and gave an edge that I was happy with.
How awesome does this look! Once you touch and feel it you will be as rapt with this DIY as I am.
Step 6: Fold & Finish
There are an endless number of ways you can finish this DIY and display the hanky for mailing. I folded the hanky in half and in half again, and stuffed into a 5.5” square envelope that I had finished with our coordinating envelope liner. I also included the coordinating RSVP card and a 4-bar envelope for guests to send back their responses.
I am still doing a happy dance over how this DIY turned out, and will be creating more designs just so I can use the photo fabric again. Stay tuned for these in the coming months. If you are planning a wedding with a vintage vibe and want an invitation that is unique and memorable, the vintage handkerchief is for you. I hope you love it as much as I do.