WASHINGTON, D.C. (WUSA9) -- Can you tell the difference between WhiteHouse invitations crafted by a quarter-million dollar calligraphy staffand the fake one we made using our station computer and printer forpocket change?
The computer printed invitation we made for our story would likely bespotted by Secret Service agents in a second, but when we asked you onFacebook and in person, most of you couldn't tell the difference.
juxtaposing that expense against the most high profile White House sequestration cut.
"With the White House closing its doors to public tour groups inorder to save money for the sequester, it's worth remembering some ofthe other costs the White House incurs annually," Harper wrote."Despite sequestration, there's been no announcement of the White Housescaling back on calligraphers."
In an undated C-Span video,a staff calligrapher says they hand craft master invitations, placards,citations, and award which are printed and then often hand personalizedwith the recipient's name.
When we put a photo of an original White House invitation next to one wemade ourselves on Facebook, many of you thought the fake was the realthing - or at least that it looked just as good or better.
"Honestly, they both look nice, so I would go with the printer version," wrote Facebook fan Aaron Sumner .
"Style is similar and so is appearance," wrote Karen Erickson on our Facebook page. "Go with the printer!"
Many of those who could tell the difference, preferred the cheaper alternative.
"It may seem insignificant in the big pile of money we need, but everylittle bit helps," wrote Jocelyn Kennedy. "There needs to be more ofthis kind of things done away with."
"I would not be insulted if I got a thermography invitation," wroteFacebook fan Lauren F Rutley. "That said, what would happen to all thenewly unemployed calligraphers?"
Other defended the craft as an important tool in diplomacy.
"Many foreign leaders would find the typically-American preference forinformality disrespectful, which could threaten negotiations before theybegin," wrote Tim Flavin. "State dinner invitations should not looklike they were laser-printed on stationery from Target."
The calligraphy staff and hand written invitations are not unique to the Obama White House.
The best invitation sample we could find was from the George W. BushAdministration and the oldest was issued by John Quincy Adams in 1801.
Both images were provided by the White House Historical Association.
The White House did not respond to our request for comment.