NEW: Letterpress Birthday Cards

In addition to my Astrology Birthday Card series, I also released several new Letterpress Birthday Cards and a few in gorgeous Gold Foil. (looove the gold foil!) All are available for sale in my online shop. Or you can click each image to purchase directly.

Gold Foil Letterpress Birthday Cards Birthday Spankings Funny Letterpress Birthday Cards Birthday Squeezes Letterpress Birthday Cards

Behind the Scenes: Meet Our Newest Studio Member!

We were so delighted to recently bring Kat on board to help with all things Steel Petal Press, and invite you to get to know her a bit, too!
Name: Kat Wisniewski
Job title: Studio Manager/ Administrative Assistant
Describe your area of study and previous work, and how you think each relate to or lead your position at Steel Petal Press? 
I’ve worked in retail and management since 1994, both in big box stores and boutique environments. Through my work experience, I’ve learned to possess a keen eye for detail and also how to efficiently multi-task. In many previous positions, I’ve done various tedious, repetitive and simple tasks, where efficiency and speed are highly valued. I also own a home-based jewelry business, where I work online a lot and ship out orders regularly. These assets aid in my position at Steel Petal Press because I am responsible for quality controlling the product, shipping the product and general office duties.
What inspires you artistically?
Everything inspires me artistically. If I had to pick out a few things that I seek out for inspiration I’d say that I’m inspired by glass sculpture, fashion, colors, surrealism and minimalistic style.
What kinds of things do you do at the studio? What do you enjoy most?
I’m the only official in-studio employee, besides Shayna, which is a welcome change. I order the supplies, quality control everything, and ship out orders. I enjoy the boutique environment and working with minimal supervision. I also enjoy coming in early, so I can get the bulk of my work done with my music helping to push me through the morning.
What do you enjoy doing outside of the studio?
I keep extremely busy outside of the studio because I enjoy having multiple sources of income. What keeps me the busiest is the product photography work I do (out of my kitchen) for other jewelry artists. I also manage three online stores where I sell my jewelry and jewelry making supplies. Additionally, I have my pieces in a few retail locations, so I have to keep up with providing stock as things sell. Lastly, I write jewelry making projects for magazines and also teach jewelry making at various Chicagoland locations. Oh yeah, and I tend to my husband and pets everyday. They are what truly makes me happy, and they provide soothing comfort from my stressful multi-tasking.
What is your favorite Steel Petal Press card/product and why?
That’s easy! It’s the Holy Shit cards of course! What a simple design that many people respond to with laughter. These are great and this line of cards can be used for so many different occasions. By the way, I have an idea for a new Holy Shit card… TBDiscussed later. 
What would your perfect day in Chicago look like? 
My perfect day in my city (where I’ve lived my whole life), would include waking up to my kitty cats kissing my face, going out to a fun new place to eat with my husband, taking my doggie daughter out to a big park (like Horner Park), then going to a movie, museum or thrifting!


Wedding Envelopes: Guest Addressing Etiquette

Calligraphy Guest Addresses

(image source)

All beautiful wedding invitations should come in a beautifully addressed envelope. Some couples choose to hire a calligrapher to write out guest names and addresses, while digitally printed “faux calligraphy” although not traditional, has become a more budget friendly accepted alternative.

Below you can find advise on how to properly format your guests names and addresses on your invitation envelope.

Do not use abbreviations

123 S. Main St, Apt #777
St. Louis, MO, 34567

Instead, spell out state names, directions, cities and addresses completely.

123 South Main Street, Apartment Number 777
Saint Louis, Missouri, 34567

Do not use initials

Example: Carl M. Martin

Instead spell out middle names completely.
Example: Carl Michael Martin

Use titles when addressing formal wedding invitations.
Example: Mr. and Mrs. John Doe

For informal invitations, you can use first names, but use the woman’s name first.
Example: Jane and John Doe

Traditionally, couples use inner and outer envelopes to address wedding invites.

Now let’s get to the common formats of addressing guests.
Here are some great examples for addressing singles, married couples, children, and professionals:

Single unmarried couples living together should be listed on separate lines
Ms. Joan Williams
Mr. Ben Jones
5678 Lovers Lane
Chicago, Illinois 60606

Single guest bringing a plus-one
Ms. Brianna Smith and Guest
388 North Anytime Street
New York City, New York, 09876

If you don’t want guests to bring a “plus-one” to your wedding, don’t write “and guest” on the envelope.

For a married couple with the same last name, both spouses’ titles are on the same line and the husband’s title goes first.
Mr. and Mrs. Bob Robinson
762 South Drake Trail
Los Angeles, California, 90201

For a married couple whose wife kept her maiden name, the names should be on the same line and the wife’s name goes first.
Mrs. Beth Johnson and Mr. Bob Robinson
762 South Drake Trail
Los Angeles, California, 90201

For a married couple with children, the children’s names should be listed on a separate line.  You may want to use “Mr. and Mrs. Walter Scott and family” if there are a lot of children to squeeze in.
Mr. and Mrs. Smith
Steve, Adam, and Ashley
38 West Wall Street
Chicago, Illinois, 60694

If children are not invited, simply do not include the children’s names on the envelopes.

For same sex couples, you can put either guest first
Mr. Bill Harris and Mr. Jose Sanchez
384 West Lincoln Highway
Chicago, Illinois, 60601

When you address invitations to professionals, you should ALWAYS spell out professional titles such as Doctor, Reverend, Colonel, Lieutenant, etc. For judges and mayors, use the title “Honorable.” You don’t need to use “Attorney” and “Esquire” on wedding invitations. For instance, if the husband is a professional but the wife isn’t, use the husband’s name first because professional titles outrank social titles.

When the husband is the professional
Doctor and Mrs. Charles Reed
478 Martin Luther King Drive
Houston, Texas, 72892

When the wife is the professional
Doctor Mary Reed and Mr. Charles Reed
478 Martin Luther King Drive
Houston, Texas, 72892

When both spouses are doctors
The Doctors Reed (or Doctors Mary and Charles Reed)
478 Martin Luther King Drive
Houston, Texas, 72892

If the wife decides to use her maiden name, address her first.
Doctor Mary Brown and Doctor Charles Reed
478 Martin Luther King Drive
Houston, Texas, 72892

Addressing judges when one spouse is a judge but the other isn’t
The Honorable Ava Taylor and Mr. Ray Taylor
9834 West Cherry Road
Milwaukee, Wisconsin 57628

When both spouses are professionals, but in different professions
The Honorable Janet Jone and Lieutenant James Jones
636 Russell Street
Atlanta, Georgia, 37618

Inspiration: Adler Planetarium

adler planetarium

A few weekends ago, I headed to LA to attend the super inspiring Tradeshow Bootcamp Business camp. It was a day long intensive conference full of workshops and speakers, geared towards businesses that have been around 3-5 years looking get to the next level.

Something that many of the speakers talked about at the conference was how to be original and the importance of finding outside inspiration. With that in mind I’ve been coming up with ideas, field trips and other activities to feed my inspiration. Last Monday I took several hours in the morning to visit the Adler Planetarium in my home town of Chicago. (Chicago is home to many wonderful and extensive museums)

I found myself drawn to the architecture of the building. So many curves and circles. Very well thought out:

adler planetarium adler planetarium adler planetarium

I also loved the section on “Astronomy in Culture

Some of the medieval tools and artifacts like the golden astrolabes, sundials and armillary spheres from thousands of years ago were absolutely gorgeous.


(image source)

How amazing is this African illustration of the phases of the moon below:

adler planetarium

And here are a few more ancient sky, moon and astronomy illustrations.

adler planetarium adler planetarium

Custom Wedding Programs

Folded Wedding Program

Your wedding program will be one of the first things your guests will see at your wedding. Wedding programs are basic guidelines of what takes place during the ceremony. Plus, they are a way to thank your guests for coming to your wedding. What should you include in a wedding program?

1. Include the wedding date, name of the couple, and location and time of the ceremony.
2. Ceremony order of events
3. Names of officiates
4. List of events that will happen during the ceremony
5. Names of the wedding party
6. Songs, prayers, readings, exchange of vows, ring ceremony, or any other relevant information in regards to your wedding ceremony.

At Steel Petal Press you customize your wedding programs to your liking.

Flat is the more economical option as opposed to folded. You can get them Tea-Length (4”x9”) or A7 (5”x7”). Depending on how much information you have, they can be printed single or double sided.  Digital printing is more cost effective while letterpress and foil is a boutique handmade process and will cost more than digital.

If you have a lot of information to include in your program, you may want to use a folded program. Folded programs can digitally printed and double sided. You also have the option to print a program cover, pair with an inside page. Your cover sheet can be digital, letterpress. or foil.

Have fun designing your wedding programs!

NEW: Letterpress Encouragement Cards

My newest letterpress Encouragement Cards are probably my favorite of my new releases.  I’ve had some friends going through some hard times recently, and sometimes an email or text just doesn’t cut it.  The letterpress Encouragement Cards below were inspired by my friends; some have had health problems, some are embarking on new and exciting adventures, some are doing some really freakin’ cool things with their lives.

Click each image to purchase in my shop:

May the Force Be With You Encouragement Card Good Vibes Encouragement Card You've Got This Encouragement Card Freaking Proud of You Encouragement Card

NEW: Congratulations Cards and The Simple Math Series

The “SIMPLE MATH” series is another new line I debuted at the National Stationery Show in May 2015. These Letterpress Congratulations Cards are a unique way to send congratulations for new babies, weddings and anniversaries. Click each image to link straight to each listing for purchase. Or view them all in my online shop.

Letterpress Congratulations Card Congratulations Baby Card Letterpress Anniversary Card Letterpress Wedding Congratulations Card Letterpress Congratulations Card

After many requests I’ve also added two new Baby Congratulations Cards. The “Awesome Babies” card below has just been flying off the shelves. I guess there’s a lot of awesome babies being born these days.

Congratulations Awesome Babies Card Welcome Little One Baby Congratulations Card

Letterpress Congratulations Cards

On Deck in the Studio

Not only is summer an agreed-upon great season to get hitched, it’s also the perfect time to break out the stationery and keep in touch with scattered friends and family. Others must agree, because production at Steel Petal Press sure hasn’t slowed, and we’ve been busily printing, packing, and shipping our paper goods to retailers and customers nationwide.

Below is Maranda on her last day at Steel Petal Press and on the right is our newest team member Kat! I will officially introduce her in an upcoming post.

Photo Jul 02

Wholesale orders march on. Here, we’re boxing up and shipping out to some of our sellers like Rainbow Grocery in San Francisco, Magnificent Milestones in Chicago, The Gypsy Wagon in Dallas, and Paper Goat Post in Florida.

During a recent job were glad to reacquaint with a past wedding client, Hylah Hedgepeth to print some stationery and business cards for her new photography venture. Yeah for small business!

Photo Jun 12

Pictured below is another run of elegant business cards for a bridal boutique called Le Salon.

Photo Jun 12

And here is yet another custom stationery job, set by hand in lead type. We mostly use digital design and polymer plates to print, as there is more flexibility with layout and fonts on the computer. But, every now and then, it’s nice to slow down and hand set some metal type.

Photo Jun 12-2

In other news: We’re excited to announce that things are steadily progressing with our new studio and retail space. Lease is signed, a deposit has been made, and we’re on our way. We’re currently working with an architect to build out the space and lay it out just right. Next up, construction permits. This is a slow process, but we’re thrilled to be making headway.

4 Tips for Mailing Wedding Invitations

Tips for Mailing Wedding Stationery

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Here are a few tips you might not have known to help when mailing wedding invitations.

  1. Square invitations need more postage due to their shape. To cut costs, use a rectangular envelope. Another way to save on postage is to use an RSVP card instead of the traditional mail-in response card.
  2. Don’t lick the adhesive on your envelopes! You can risk having your envelopes open in the mail or getting a paper cut. Plus the adhesive doesn’t taste good. Instead, use a strong adhesive such as glue. Jazz it up with some washi tape!
  3. Take your cards to the post office. They are less likely to get damaged in transit, and you can make sure the postage and addresses are done correctly.
  4. Ask the post office to hand cancel your stamps. A special ink stamp is used to mark your invitations and they will be hand sorted. Your envelopes are less likely to be damaged using this method as opposed to machine sorting, which marks thick lines in the top right corner.

NEW: Letterpress and Gold Foil Thank You Cards

I always love a good classic Thank You card. To me, thank you cards are the foundation of any good stationery collection.  I try to write at least one Thank You note a month, and am making it a goal to up that amount to at least one a week. Thank You notes, not only show good manners, but can boost your sense of gratitude adding a more positive outlook on life.

Here is a great article about a man who wrote a Thank You note every day for 365 days and how that simple little daily act changed his life for the better.

Below are my newest Thank You Card releases.  I am also super excited to now have foil added to my ready-made greeting card line.  View my full collection on my website here.

Foil Thank You Card Letterpress Thank You Card Foil Thank You Card Letterpress Thank You Card