Louie Awards Finalist!

Birthday Fortune Cookie Card

I’m super duper excited to announce that my Fortune Cookie Hangover Card is a finalist for the Greeting Card Association Louie Awards this year!  The Louie Awards is the Oscars of Greeting cards (but a little less Hollywood Glamourous)  Since 1988, the greeting card industry has come together each year to celebrate the best our industry has to offer. Hundreds of companies from around the world enter thousands of their best cards for the chance to win the coveted LOUIE Award.  The Louie Awards are announced at a Sunday night gala in conjunction with the National Stationery Show.

LOUIE Awards entries are judged according to these five criteria below on a scale from 1 to 10:
1. Originality
Does this card take a unique approach to design, concept, or execution?
2. Impact
Does this card have emotional impact?
3. Design Excellence
Is the overall look of this card visually appealing? Did the designer make good choices in typography and artwork arrangement?
4. Sendability
Is this card likely to be purchased and sent for the occasion or purpose specified by the category? Are its format and design functional?
5. Value
Is this card priced appropriately based on the overall quality of the product?

The cards are judged on a scale from 1-10 Point range is as follows:

  • 1-3 | Below Standard
  • 4-6 | Meet Standard
  • 7-8 | Exceeds Standard
  • 9-10 | Extraordinary

I had a card in the finals at the Louie a few years ago.  (view my blog post about that year at NSS here)

And you can watch a video here with more info on the Louie’s:

I will be attending NSS again this year as a buyer instead of an exhibitor, and I plan on attending the Gala again, I had a lot of fun last time I was there.  Cross your fingers for me!

Resist! New Protest Cards from Steel Petal Press

Since the Election, the Inauguration, and the Women’s March on Washington we’ve had many requests for cards to use to communicate with our elected officials. We’ve turned your requests into a reality with a special INAUGURATION release of 6 cards we feel address many issues close to our hearts.

What does it mean to be American? The Statue of Liberty – symbol of american open doors. Affordable healthcare. A quote from American civil rights leader and hero, Martin Luther King Jr. The services provided by Planned Parenthood. And the Environment.

You can view the full collection HERE.

These cards are about democracy, freedom of speech and what it means to be American.  I want to focus on what brings us together as Americans and not what divides us.  It is my hope these cards will not only be used to communicate with elected officials but could also be used to start meaningful dialogue with Americans with opposing viewpoints.  What do we have in common?  Not what drives us apart.   I am proud to be American, proud of the Statue of Liberty and what it stands for, and proud of having man like Martin Luther King Jr. as a part of our collective history.
A percentage of the proceeds of all our profits go to giving back to charities we believe in:
NRDC, Chicago Women’s Health Center, ACLU, ADL, Planned Parenthood and more…

I Am American Protest Card

So far, I’ve had a great response from my customer base.  These cards have been resonating with lots of people who feel a little helpless in today’s political climate.
I did get one Trump supporter trolling on my Facebook page who responded “is there a card that says sore loser, liberal snowflake?”  To which I responded these cards are not about being a sore loser, but about freedom of speech and what it means to be American. It turns out he was almost mugged in Chicago for having a trump sticker and was called a Nazi.  Of course being attached sucks, but it was particularly hurtful to him because most of his wife’s family was killed in the holocaust by actual Nazis. And here’s where we found some common ground.  My family is jewish and even though they fled Europe before the holocaust, I found a place of empathy and understanding with him even though I don’t agree with his politics.  And to me, that is one small step forward in the right direction.

Affordable Health Care Protest Card

Protest Cards Protect Our Home


Planned Parenthood Protest Cards

Here is another great quote from Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. –

Darkness Cannot Drive Out Darkness

Hiring Retail and Shipping Assistant

Steel Petal Press is hiring

Steel Petal Press is hiring and we’re looking for you!
Read more about our company here: http://www.steelpetalpress.com/

We are a small boutique stationery company specializing in letterpress greeting cards and wedding invitations, our flagship location is located in Logan Square (just off the California Blue line stop.) We are looking for a permanent part-time *floater* position (approximately 5-15 hours/week) with potential for growth. This floater position has very flexible hours and could fit well for a person with an open schedule. Weekend availability is a MUST. We prefer that the potential employee live reasonably close to the area of the retail store. A floater will occasionally fill in for shifts in retail, shipping, and post production during busier/seasonal times and/or when other employees have to take off of work (short vacations, medical leave, family leave, etc).

The ideal candidate is a person with great retail & customer service experience, keen attention to detail and who will fit in well with our small team. A passion for stationery is a bonus.

Retail Sales Tasks include:
-Customer interaction and service
-Retail store maintenance
-Opening and closing procedures
-Helping with window displays and merchandising
-Helping with misc. tasks as needed

Shipping Clerk / Post Production Tasks include:
-Processing, shipping and packing online and wholesale orders
-Counting inventory, and keeping inventory organized
-Folding, sleeving and packaging product

The ideal candidate(s) would possess the following skills & attributes:
-Eagerness to learn, very reliable and hardworking
-Has retail and sales experience, especially in a boutique setting
-Enjoys working with customers
-Has a fun personality and positive attitude
-Gets excited about crafty, artistic goods
-Ability to work well independently and as part of a team
-Fairly open availability for the flexible schedule we desire
-Must be available work weekends

It’s a bonus but not required if you have:
-Social Media, marketing, writing experience
-Familiarity with wedding invitations and stationery

We are interested in hiring the right person and training them to fit our business. Resumes without the ideal experience will still be considered.

To apply, please follow these steps. If steps are not followed as listed, your application will not be accepted:
-Research our company and showcase that you understand a bit about our company.
-Email your COVER LETTER explaining why you feel you would be a great fit for this position and our company (Tips on writing a great cover letter: http://theeverygirl.com/7-tips-to-write-the-perfect-cover-letter).
-Email your RESUME or work history.
-Use this email: kat at steelpetalpress dot com.

If it seems that initially you may be a fit for our company, we will first conduct short phone interviews. Some candidates may then be called in for in person interviews.

Letterpress Demos at Steel Petal Press

Steel Petal Press Letterpress Studio and Shop Chicago

Steel Petal Press - Chicago Letterpress Demo Steel Petal Press - Chicago Letterpress Demo Steel Petal Press - Chicago Letterpress Demo

The second saturday of every month Steel Petal Press will be hostly a Letterpress Demonstration and Q&A as a part of the City of Chicago’s Year of Public Art. You can find more information on the multi-location, year long event HERE.

The event will be Free and Open to the public 2-3pm on the following dates:

Chicago has a long and rich printing history; from printers row on the nations register of historic landmarks, to Vandercook inventing the flatbed press in Chicago over 100 years ago. But how often the public get to see these historic machines in person and watch them in action? Steel Petal Press will host monthly 1 hour long letterpress printing demos on the Second Saturday of every month. At the demos we will go through the printing process from start to finish and be available to answer questions regarding the printing process and the history of printing.

2016 in Review + Looking Forward


At the beginning of each new year, I like to do a summary of the year before.  It’s nice to look back at the bigger picture and take stock of what was accomplished. I spend so much of my time, heads down working on smaller projects it’s nice to take some time to get better perspective and set goals for the future.

(you can read all my past yearly recaps HERE)

Studio Move / Retail Show
By far, the biggest event of 2016 was our studio move and opening a retail shop. This was a huge and expensive endeavor that took months and months of planing and tens of thousands of dollars.  I started the process of looking for a new space in April of 2015.  We finally moved studios in March of 2016.  Our new studio is more than 2x the size of our previous shop at Lacuna, where we were busting out at the seems. It’s a storefront on the street level and open to the public.  The ten minute walk to work has made my commute so much more enjoyable. And the retail shop has really changed the game for Steel Petal Press. Scroll down to the bottom of our about page to view photos of the new space.

7-12-16 Steel Petal Press Studio Tour Chicago, IL ©2016 Jennifer Kathryn Photography

I hired two new employees this year: Matt is our shipping lead and Lindsay helps with retail and post production of our greeting cards.

7-12-16 Steel Petal Press Studio Tour Chicago, IL ©2016 Jennifer Kathryn Photography

7-12-16 Steel Petal Press Studio Tour Chicago, IL ©2016 Jennifer Kathryn Photography

New Products!
I released lots of new products this year including Gift Wrap, Fortune Cookie Pull out cards, bookmarks and more.

Birthday Fortune Cookie Card Funny Letterpress Birthday Card Fuck Mug Letterpress Bookmark Awesome People Read

I picked up lots of new retailers. And am excited to have Steel Petal Press carried in 38 states plus Paper Source who has 120+ locations around the country. View our full list of retailers here.

I hosted 3 amazing interns this year: Jane, Laura and Sarah.

Steel Petal Press internship

Opening the retail shop I got a lot of great press. I was featured in Chicago Magazine as the best stationery shop! Plus Chicago Style weddings, Logan Squarist, DNA Info and so many more.  You can view a mostly up-to-date list of recent press here.

Best of Chicago Magazine 2016

Renegade Craft Fair + One of Kind Show
I returned to sell at the summer Renegade Craft Fair in Chicago and also at the December One of a Kind Show. The shows are intense and busy, but a fun change of pace.

Steel Petal Press at One of a Kind Show

NSS and NYNow
This year I attended the National Stationery Show and NYNow on the other side of the field as a buyer for the retail shop. It’s fun and get overwhelming figuring out what to buy for the shop. It’s a task I’ve enjoyed learning and am still improving on regularly.

Giving Back
Something I’ve been wanting to do for a while is implement some sort of charitable donation program.  At the end of this 2016 I was able to give a sizable donation to NRDC to help protect the environment.  In 2017 I plan on giving quarterly donations to different organizations I believe in.

This year also came with some pretty big lows.  The election was pretty devastating to me and Trumps impending inauguration still makes me sick to my stomach.  Around the same time one of my employees got really sick and was out of work for almost two months. It not only put strain on me emotionally, but also stretched me and my staff thin covering her shifts, working the One of A Kind Show and dealing with our first holiday season as a retail gift shop.  I spent the end of the year doing what I could to survive and was forced to let a lot of things go.  It was a challenge for my type-A personality.  I am thankful for my husband and my team who all stepped up with support and helped me and Steel Petal Press get through the last two months.

I’m starting the new year with a new perspective: take better care of myself, let go of toxic feelings, let go of perfectionism and carve out more personal time for myself. I’m trying not to let the current political state get to me (which includes limiting my news) and I hope to give back where I can.

I usually end these posts with bigger professional goals for the upcoming year.  But this year, I don’t have many huge aspirations. I feel like I have my hands full with business as it is and my only hope is to keep building on what I’ve started:
– keep the retail shop running and improving
– keep releasing great product
– keep adding retailers to our list of vendors
– do more press out reach
– hire an additional person – right now if anyone gets sick or needs vacation time we all feel stretched thin
– maybe at the end of next year, I’ll consider heading back to exhibit at a tradeshow

Other than that I feel pretty good at where I’m at, and it definitely keeps me plenty busy.

Steel Petal Press Holiday Sales!

Steel Petal Press Small Business Saturday Sale

Please help support small, local businesses this holiday season!!

Why is it so important to shop local? Independent, locally owned shops keep three times as many dollars in the local economy than nationally owned chains and give more back to local needs… on average, non-profits receive 250% more support from smaller business owners than they do from large businesses.

Locally-made products help build local economies, provide better paying jobs for local residents and add character and culture to communities. Locally-made products are typically more uniquely designed and more carefully crafted than those made in mass.

We will be hosting a STORE-WIDE SALE.
25% off all regularly priced items!!

Our Black Friday & Small Business Saturday sales will be offered
only at our retail location in Logan Square
2321 N Milwaukee Ave, Chicago IL 60647

Black Friday | Friday, November 25
11am – 7pm

Small Business Saturday | Saturday, November 26
10am – 6pm

Fine Print
the sale does not extend to already discounted items.
purchases made during the sale will not go towards frequent buyer punch cards

Shop Small Black Friday Chicago Sale

Shop Local – Steel Petal Press and Gift Chicago!

Shop Local Gift Chicago

At Steel Petal Press we’re proud to be a locally owned business and we love supporting other small businesses within Chicago.

We are thrilled to be participating in GIFT CHICAGO. Gift Chicago is a collaborative event to connect likeminded shops across the city of Chicago that, in turn, support local makers and artists.

During the weekend of December 3-4, 2016, these participating shops will be offering special promotions and giveaways as a “thank you” for supporting small business and local artisans. Give the gift of locally-made & locally-bought this holiday season!

During this weekend we will also be offering a 15% discount to shoppers who mention“Gift Chicago”

Fine Print
the sale does not extend to already discounted items.
purchases made during the sale will not go towards frequent buyer punch cards

Steel Petal Press at the One of a Kind Show Chicago

one of a kind show chicago

At Steel Petal Press we are thrilled to be back at the One of a Kind show in Chicago the weekend after Thanksgiving.

Thursday, December 1st – Sunday December 4th

Thur, Dec 4, 11a-8p
Fri, Dec 5, 11a-8p
Sat, Dec 6, 10a-7p
Sun, Dec 7 , 10a-5p


I had so much fun last year. I hope to see you there!!

XO, shayna

Holidays on the Square with Steel Petal Press

Holidays on the Square - Logan Square

I will be are first year having a retail shop during the holidays and we’re gearing up for some fun events in December. We’re thrilled to be participating in Holidays on the Square, a local Logan Square event along side other kick ass Logan Square establishments.

In its fifth year, Holidays on the Square is a multi-location kick-off to the winter holidays, featuring special events, promotions and activities offered by Logan Square small businesses and NFP organizations. The event is organized by Logan Square Chamber of Arts/Hairpin Arts Center, local business owners and volunteers to encourage residents to shop locally and strengthen community ties.

Holidays on the Square (HOTS) was created to give small businesses and NFP’s of Logan Square the opportunity showcase their wares and services.

Shop Windows at Steel Petal Press

We’ve been having a lot of fun coming up with creative seasonal shop windows at Steel Petal Press.  Here’s an image of our spring and fall windows for our first few months open 🙂

Fall Window Steel Petal Press

Stationery and Gift Shop Logan Square Chicago

At the end of November we’ll be switching it up for a more winter holiday feel.  Below is a little inspiration I’ve been drawing from.  Or you can also check out my Shop Window Inspiration Pinterest Board.  (What did we do before pinterest?) 🙂

holiday window holiday window holiday window