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Old 12-31-2010, 12:52 PM   #1
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Default Black Envelope with White Ink

I can't seem to find this information out from the Post Office's general phone number. But my daughter wants to mail her wedding invitations in black envelopes, with white addressing. Will the Post Office reject these for some reason? I plan to put the 61 cent wedding cake postage stamp on it, and it is a 5 x 7 envelope, which the person I spoke with said exceeds the allowable size for standard postage. . . I am not even sure if I have to order the postage stamps or if the local post office will have them. Thanks for any help!
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Old 12-31-2010, 01:49 PM   #2
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I would guess that the post office would reject them.
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Old 12-31-2010, 01:56 PM   #3
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I found this on Google-
Mailing Regulations for Colored Envelopes | eHow.com

If you scroll down towards the bottom, you will see a paragraph stating that the post office auto-scanners don't like them. You may have to pay even more for hand cancelation.
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Old 12-31-2010, 03:35 PM   #4
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They have to accept them, but they can and most likely will charge you for hand posting because of it...They can not bar-code or run them through the computerized scanners...
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Old 12-31-2010, 03:57 PM   #5
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Thank you for the info and links everyone! This puts a wrench into our plans. We just now worked on using the printer to print with black ink onto the black envelopes. It shows up just enough that we can trace over it with a white pen and they look awesome! And will look even cooler with that wedding cake postage stamp.....but now I don't know what to do. I guess I will wait till Monday and take one down to the post office and see if there is any way to make this work without overspending on postage. Thanks again.
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Old 12-31-2010, 04:23 PM   #6
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Let us know how it goes. I never thought of mailing in black envelopes. So now I'm curious and intrigued!
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Old 12-31-2010, 04:47 PM   #7
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I know it won't look as cool, but could you use a white label for your addresses. This way the machine can read them and you won't have to pay extra postage for hand cancelling.
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Old 12-31-2010, 04:54 PM   #8
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I was thinking the same thing, Cat. Maybe a white label with a small black border inset.
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Old 12-31-2010, 04:58 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by cat_woman View Post
I know it won't look as cool, but could you use a white label for your addresses. This way the machine can read them and you won't have to pay extra postage for hand cancelling.
We could do it that way, but we really like the look of the white lettering on the black....kind of like a chalkboard effect. I will post back when I find out on Monday what our local post office says. I actually think the entire invitation will be less than an ounce, so if I could get by with the .61 stamp, I would be OK with that. But I am thinking it is 20 cents for hand cancellation, so that wouldn't cover it, and additional stamps kind of ruin the "look". I know it is kind of silly to be ditzing with this, but we do like the idea of the white on black and would be happy if it worked out somehow!
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Old 12-31-2010, 05:05 PM   #10
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My DH mails many things, he told me that the post office may also place a white label at the bottom of your envelope for the barcoding. Since the ink the post office uses is black and your envelope is black the automated machines have a hard time reading the coding.

Godd luck they sound very nice.
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Old 01-01-2011, 06:41 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by cat_woman View Post
I know it won't look as cool, but could you use a white label for your addresses. This way the machine can read them and you won't have to pay extra postage for hand cancelling.
I was thinking the same thing. You could get some labels at an office supply store and print them at home with a cool font or a monogram or stamp a tiny design in the corner so they look more "wedding-y" and not like an office item.
Then mail two practice envelops to yourself, one with the white ink and one with a label,(don't use the real invitations, just put in scraps the same thickness) and see how they do going through the mail.
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Old 01-01-2011, 10:16 AM   #12
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As a former postal employee (retired) I'd say you are playing with fire. First of all oversized envelopes are 64 cents not 61. Second, if they cannot be printed with the bar card legible (black on black?) you are looking at half of the invites ending up in the Nixie section of the PO...same place as mail with no zip or address and depending on the size of the PO, months before they are processed (NY or Chicago) weeks if it's a smaller town. Since wedding invites are time sensitive, I wouldn't play around with them. Mail the outside envelope white or lighter colored, the indside envelope can be black.
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Old 01-01-2011, 12:11 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by InkeePhingers View Post
As a former postal employee (retired) I'd say you are playing with fire. First of all oversized envelopes are 64 cents not 61. Second, if they cannot be printed with the bar card legible (black on black?) you are looking at half of the invites ending up in the Nixie section of the PO...same place as mail with no zip or address and depending on the size of the PO, months before they are processed (NY or Chicago) weeks if it's a smaller town. Since wedding invites are time sensitive, I wouldn't play around with them. Mail the outside envelope white or lighter colored, the indside envelope can be black.
I think this is the way to go!
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Old 01-01-2011, 02:07 PM   #14
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I sent a chocolate brown envelope with black typed print for the address. It took 3 weeks till it was returned to me with no reason why. It was only going across my apartment complex parking lot. My sympathy card never got to the addressee.

I could certainly read the black print, but obviously the PO machinery couldn't.

I wouldn't chance it with Wedding Invitations.

Patti

P.S. But somehow the machinery was able to read the return address printed the same way after 3 weeks!
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Old 01-01-2011, 02:31 PM   #15
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[QUOTE=InkeePhingers;17751219]As a former postal employee (retired) I'd say you are playing with fire. First of all oversized envelopes are 64 cents not 61.

The envelopes are 5 x 7.....is that oversized?

So if the "envelope and contents" weighs 2 ounces, I would put .61 on there for the weight, and would I then have to put additional on there for the size?

I have mailed lots of wedding invitations that measured 6 x 8 using just the two-ounce stamp, and they went thru fine. Maybe they weighed an ounce and I was paying extra for the size of the envelope...now I am confused!

Well, the bottom line is that we want this "chalkboard" look so even though the labels suggestion is a good one, it would defeat the purpose of having a black envelope, so I am going to suggest to my daughter to return the black envelopes and use white. The main objective, of course, is for these to get thru the mail, to the recipients! The wedding is Feb. 12th, so there is really no time to allow for delayed mail! Thanks to everyone for their suggestions. You have been most helpful.
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Old 01-01-2011, 02:54 PM   #16
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[QUOTE=itzann;17752095]
Quote:
Originally Posted by InkeePhingers View Post
As a former postal employee (retired) I'd say you are playing with fire. First of all oversized envelopes are 64 cents not 61.

The envelopes are 5 x 7.....is that oversized?
I checked on the Post Office website - a 5x7 envelope is not oversized as long as it is less than 1/4" thick. The maximum size for a letter is 11-1/2" long x 6-1/8" high. I know I have some envelopes that are big enough for a single sheet folded in half - so about 8-3/4" long by 5-3/4" high, and they still only need standard postage.
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Old 01-01-2011, 03:09 PM   #17
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My friend had to put her dark dark brown(close to black) wedding invites inside a cream colored mailing envelope. PO would not even hand cancel the brown envelopes with cream addressing, though they offered to pay whatever needed. It was still very very nice, and much classier than using a mailing label...imho that would totally ruin the classiness of the black envelopes with white writing - which sounds amazing by the way....lol.
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Old 01-01-2011, 04:21 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by itzann View Post
Thank you for the info and links everyone! This puts a wrench into our plans. We just now worked on using the printer to print with black ink onto the black envelopes. It shows up just enough that we can trace over it with a white pen and they look awesome! And will look even cooler with that wedding cake postage stamp.....but now I don't know what to do. I guess I will wait till Monday and take one down to the post office and see if there is any way to make this work without overspending on postage. Thanks again.
what about a black envelope with a white label and black ink?

Just a thought.

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Old 01-03-2011, 10:04 AM   #19
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Reporting back after a trip to the Post Office:

I did order white envelopes this morning because there will be no worries about the invitations getting to the addressees in time. While I was at the Post Office getting stamps, I showed them a black envelope that had been addressed with white ink. The clerk I had did not know of any problems with it, and she checked with two other postal employees and they said it would not be any problem at all to mail them like that! However, the wheels are in motion to use the white envelopes now, so we will just have to forget about our original plan. The envelope I had prepared for weighing only weighed eight tenths of an ounce, so could have gone for .44. However, in the event that the actual envelopes weigh a tad more, I opted for the .61 wedding cake stamp to be on the safe side. We don't have a ton of invitations, and I figured it was worth the extra expense, esp. since the wedding is 5 weeks away. Also, I asked if our envelope was oversized (5.75 x 8"). She pushed it through their test slot and said it was perfectly fine.

I still love how the white on black, with the white cake postage stamp would have looked, but oh well!!! The white envelopes will look very nice, too. Thanks again for the helpful suggestions and information presented.
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Old 01-03-2011, 03:58 PM   #20
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maybe you could try a few of the original idea on close family or prople who would participate in the "experiment" with you?
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Old 01-03-2011, 04:40 PM   #21
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Have you looked at clear labels and printing in white ink? If you still want the black envelope, this might add some speed...
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Old 01-03-2011, 05:17 PM   #22
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Have you looked at clear labels and printing in white ink? If you still want the black envelope, this might add some speed...
I guess at this point I am still a bit leery of using white on black (even though our post office said it would be OK). With my luck something would go wrong and the invitations wouldn't go thru. I also don't think my printer can use white ink, but I haven't really looked into that enough to know for sure.

My daughter designed the invitations and they turned out very cool, so we will be happy with that, and just resign ourselves to putting them into white envelopes.
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