Behind The Scenes – Craft Show Countdown!

letterpress studio

I spy stacks of cards to be folded, coffee, and frantic activity-must be craft show season!! We’re super excited to be setting up at the DIY Trunk Show this Saturday, November 22nd.  Come say hi and get a jump on your holiday shopping!

DIY Trunk Show Chicago 2014

The Difference in a Day

Clare Elsaesser

It’s Monday and I just wanted to check in and say I’m feeling sooo much better today.  I just needed a few days to sleep in and catch up on rest, spend some time on the couch, eat some good food and relax.  The next few weeks will be busy, but I’m feeling ready to take them on.  Thanks for letting me vent on this blog.  Life isn’t always puppies and rainbows.  Sometimes it’s important to be real.

(Image Credit: Clare Elasaesser)

When it rains it pours

record player

I’m going to be honest here and say this week has been rough.  I’ve been working 12+ hour days trying to prepare for holiday craft fairs, stay on top of etsy and wholesale orders and keep up with the custom orders that are still coming in.

What has just been the icing on the cake is that every piece of technology I own has pooped out on me in the last seven days! (I’m not even kidding)  FIRST my 2006 ipod totally dies, which is fine, it was old and probably coming to the end of it’s life anyways.  Sure it is a bummer, but I was ok with that.  But then less than a week later my computer screen started flickering and seconds later went completely blank.  That was the second time my computer died in less 3 months…  So I spent half my day at the apple store. They sent it out for repairs and when it returned last night the entire hard drive was replaced and nothing was saved,.  There are a few silver linings; the last repair was within the 90 day warranty, so they repaired it this time for free. AND, Since the last computer failure I have been vigilant about backing up my work, so I lost somethings, but nothing too terrible.

But it doesn’t end! Just this morning when trying to update my iphone, it failed too, the whole thing had to be wiped and rebooted from scratch.  So here I am, during a super busy time of year, having to spend half my day downloading apps, reinstalling fonts and reconfiguring all my broken / fixed technology.  The dishes are piling up in the sink and I’m exhausted.  Oh did I also mention I’m extra hormonal because it’s that time of the month? (sorry if that’s TMI)  I had a mini melt down and cried while doing the dishes earlier today. Sometimes you just gotta let it out, you know?

Anyways, I’m trying to stay positive and focus on the good things; I would much rather be too busy than too slow.  My mom got me an ipad for my birthday, so that’s been a fun new adventure in technology. And it’s almost the weekend.  Until then, the room pictured above with the record player and the led zepplin records will be my happy place.

Until next week, xo – shayna

Holiday Craft Fair Schedule!

This holiday season I’m only participating in two local Chicago craft fairs.  Here is my Holiday Craft Fair Schedule for Steel Petal Press!

DIY Trunk Show Chicago 2014

DIY Trunk Show
Saturday, November 22 – (that’s in less than two weeks!)
10am – 5pm
Broadway Armory Park
5917 North Broadway Street, Chicago
more details here:

find me at BOOTH #23 – which is right when you walk in.  This will be my 3rd year at the DIY trunk show. It’s a nice low key Saturday afternoon event. You still get all the quality of the Renegade Craft Fair, but without all the insane crowds.  I’m looking forward to it!

And then!

One of A Kind Show Chicago

One of a Kind Show
Thursday, December 4 – Sunday December 74 days of awesome
Thur, Dec 4, 11a-8p
Fri, Dec 5, 11a-8p
Sat, Dec 6, 10a-7p
Sun, Dec 7 , 10a-5p

find me at BOOTH #1020

The One of A Kind show charges admission, but you can get COMPLIMENTARY passes by clicking > HERE. <
more details on the show and 600+ One of a Kind Artists > HERE. <

I’m starting to get excited and a little nervous for the OOAK show! I’ve never done a show like this before.  It’s like Renegade Craft Fair in that it’s direct to customer sales, but it’s like the National Stationery Show in the way the booths are set up (with hard walls and furniture.) It’s close enough to both, but still will require a completely new set up, so I have been working on totally reimagining my space.  On top of that this is the longest direct to customer show I’ve done and I have no idea how much merchandise to bring to a FOUR DAY show!

I’ve been spending my time the last few weeks getting my inventory together, figuring out my booth set up, how to display everything and thinking about what furniture to bring. I’m getting closer, but there’s still lots of work to get done.

If you’re in the Chicago area, I would LOVE to see you this holiday season.  Please stop by and say HI!

DIY Letterpress Christmas and New Year Photo Cards

I had a lot of fun designing these DIY Letterpress Christmas and New Year Photo Cards. I provide the  card, and you provide the photo!

There is a space on the side to add your own wallet size family photo for a personalized touch.  These letterpress cards are a great way to send personalized cards without paying the high price for customization.

The cards are 5×7″ in size, and come in sets of 25 for $45 – They are available for purchase in my shop HERE and HERE.

Letterpress Christmas Photo Card Letterpress Happy New Year Holiday Photo Card

DIY Letterpress Christmas and New Year Photo Cards

Dumbarton House – Real Wedding

Real Wedding Dumbarton House

Working on invitations, I rarely get to attend the events of the couples I work for.  Because of this, it is always such a joy when I get to see the photos from my clients’ special days.

Mateya and Chris held a sophisticated event at The Dumbarton House in Washington DC and used the black and white STRIPES Wedding invitation from my letterpress wedding collection for their invitations.  The photos from the day are just gorgeous.

Photo credits – Elisha Maria Coleman at Love Life Images

Real Wedding Black and White Striped Invitations

Real Wedding Dumbarton House

Real Wedding Dumbarton House

Real Wedding Dumbarton House

Dumbarton House – Real Wedding

Behind The Scenes – Details

The custom letterpress wedding invitations and Save the dates we’re working on this week are all about the details. Printed envelopes and coordinating custom thanks you notes are a great way to add something special!

The gold foil really makes these custom letterpress Save The Dates pop!

custom letterpress save the date

custom letterpress wedding invitations and save the dates

Behind The Scenes – monogram letterpress stationery

Custom Letterpress Stationery

We added some new styles of monogram letterpress stationery to our online shop this week, pictured above is Regal, and below is Monogram.


You can customize these new styles with the initial of your choice, and now we have letters on the brain!

Vintage Letterpress Drawers

These vintage letterpress drawers and type are some of my favorite things in the studio.

Vintage Letterpress Type

Response Card Wording for Wedding Invitations

Reply Card Wording for wedding invitations

This post is to help guide you in choosing the best response card wording for your wedding invitations.
For wedding invitation wording please see this blog post HERE.

Response card wording is much more straight forward than wedding invitation wording.  Here’s the basics:

First you will always need to include a reply-by date, a place for guests to write their names and a place for them to mark if they plan on attending or not.

A few common starters are:

Please RSVP by
Kindly reply by
Please respond by
The pleasure of your response is requested by
The favour of a reply is requested by

Reply Card wording inspiration

Next you will need a line for guests to write in their names.  This can be done with an M________ or simply writing (names) below the line.

For the response line you can keep it basic or get as creative as you like.  A few options I’ve used in the past:

Accepts / Regrets
Accepts with pleasure / Declines with regret
Joyfully accepts / Regretfully declines
Will be there / Will be there in spirit
Can’t wait to celebrate! / Will toast from afar
Will attend / Will not attend

If you are hosting multiple events to which all guests are invited, this is also the place to include extra response lines:

Reply Card with events

If you need to know how many places to set for your sit down dinner,  you should also include a line to list the number attending:

Reply Card wording

You can use the space at the bottom for any other information you need from your guests.  If you need meal selections this a great place to ask for that. Some people note dietary restrictions, food allergies (ie gluten free or vegetarian) or song requests:

Repl yCard food selection


reply card wording for multiple events

I hope this helps get you started on the response card wording for your wedding invitations!  Also be sure to check out my wedding invitation wording blog post for inspiration on that.

Please feel free to contact me any time with any questions you may have regarding your invitations, wording, etiquette or anything else at all!

See my full wedding invitation collection here:


See more wedding trends and advice HERE.

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Behind The Scenes – Holiday Prep

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This week we started to stock up on letterpress Christmas cards in preparation for a busy Holiday season.

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In addition to our online shop,  you’ll be able to shop with us in person at some local markets this year so stay tuned for details and dates!

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