Archive for the ‘Chicago’ Category

SPP x RCF = Home Sweet Chicago

Renegade Craft Fair Chicago

Steel Petal Press will be selling at our 8th year at Renegade Craft Fair, Chicago!
There will be handmade goods, food vendors, music, and of course hilarious cards from Steel Petal Press!
It’s sure to be a good time!!

Saturday & Sunday, September 9th-10th
11:00 AM – 7:00 PM
Division Street, Chicago

See map

Steel Petal Press will be at Booth 268 – Find us THERE!

Steel Petal Press at Renegade Craft Fair

Summer Weddings + Cards to give at Wedding

Wedding Card

Summer is a time for outdoors, for biking and swimming, celebrations and (one of our personal favorite) WEDDINGS.  We love summers and we love summer weddings in Chicago! We recently released some fun new wedding cards.  Perfect to give at your summer wedding or any time of year.  These wedding cards range from sweet, to funny, to realistic and true.

Committing to one person for the rest of your life is something admirable and romantic, it is a time of great celebration and at Steel Petal Press we want our wedding cards to help share the excitement and support the friends you love most who choose to take the plunge

Below are some of our favorite letterpress wedding cards for this season.  We share our newest releases and also some old favorites.


Wedding Card Wedding Card Funny Engagement Card BFF Funny Wedding Card BFF Unique Wedding Card Unique Wedding Card

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:

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:
-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.

Upcoming Craft Fairs and Events

Summer Renegade Craft Fair 2016

Steel Petal Press is heading out of the studio, and you can find all the cards and gift items that we design and print in house for sale at the following events around Chicago over the next few months.

Logan Square Farmers Market
Sunday, August 28th | 10am-3pm
Starting on the east side of Logan Square and along Logan Boulevard

Chicago Summer Renegade Craft Fair
Saturday, Sept 10 – Sunday, Sept 11 | 11am-7pm
Wicker Park, Division Street
Booth 118 – near the corner of Paulina on the North side of the Street

One of A Kind Show, Chicago
Thursday, Dec 1 – Sunday, Dec 4
The Merchandise Mart, Chicago
Thur, 12/1, 11a – 8p
Fri, 12/2, 11a – 8p
Sat, 12/3, 11a – 7p
Sun, 12/4, 10a – 5p

Booth 1022


Handmade Chicago Valentine’s Day Gift Guide

Handmade in Chicago Valentine's Day Gift Guide

Here at Steel Petal Press®, we love all things handmade. How better to share that love than to put together a list of our favorite local and handmade Valentine’s Day gift ideas? If you’re looking for the perfect gift for your sweetie, read on.


1. Handmade Men’s Gifts

Not sure what to get your guy? Check out the oh-so cool handmade art from LuciusArt. You can score woodblock prints and digital artwork made by graphic designer and artist Kevin Lucius.

2. Handmade Chocolate

Katherine Anne Confections gives you tasty selection of handcrafted truffles, chocolates, caramels, drinking chocolate that use local and organic ingredients. While you’re there picking up your sweetie’s, gift, be sure to try to ridiculously delish hot chocolate.

3. Handmade Cards

And what’s the perfect handmade finishing touch for the perfect handmade V-Day gift? A handmade letterpress valentine’s day card, of course! Plus, nothing says “I love you” like a heartfelt, handwritten note.

Plus, letterpress Valentine’s Day cards are perfect for loved ones near or far. You can let your besties on the other side of the country know you’re thinking of them. Or your Aunt Velma or your Grandpa Mo.

4. Handmade Jewelry

You can find the perfect ring, earrings or necklace for your honey at Moira K. Lime. Handmade by Chicago artist Katie Carder, this one-of-a-kind jewelry is inspired by the beautiful and organic shapes and patterns found in the natural world.

5. Handmade Spirits

The first distillery to open in Chicago since Prohibition, Koval Distillery makes organic whiskey, liqueurs and specialty spirits. This urban craft distiller also offers classes and tours if you want to go all out. You can find Koval offerings in their online store, at the distillery and other stores around the city.

Handmade Cupcakes

Satisfy your sweetie’s cupcake cravings at Swirlz Cupcakes. They make scrumptious flavors like classic red velvet or the amazing carmelita. Plus, they offer gluten-free and vegan options. YUM!

Handmade Hats

For a unique V-Day gift, check out Squasht Boutique’s reversible hats. They come in tons of chic prints and trendy colors, so you’re sure to find one that suits your main squeeze. Squasht designer Lesley Timpe also creates dresses, skirts, tops, tunics and headbands, which you can find at her brisk-and-mortar store in Ukrainian Village or online.

Local Gifts

We have a few favorite places for local art, crafts, home goods, bath and body products, and more: Wolfbait and B-Girls in Logan Square, Paperish Mess in West Town, and Sacred Art in Lincoln Park

Here are a few more of our favorite letterpress valentine’s day cards from Steel Petal Press®

letterpress valentine's day card - I fucking love you card

So Much Love Gold Foil Card

Check out the entire selection of Steel Petal Press’s letterpress valentine’s day cards to be ready for Valentine’s Day 2016.

Renegade Craft Fair 2015 !

Renegade Craft Fair Chicago 2015

Yay!! I will be a vendor at Renegade Craft Fair in Chicago in September.  It’s always the biggest and best of them all. Find us along with 300+ other awesome handmade vendors on Division Street, September 19-20th.

Find more info here:

You can find Steel Petal Press at Booth #123 !

Date Night: Let’s Ride


In installment #2 of this Date Night Series, we’re pairing some of our hand-printed cards with date suggestions. Use the cards to hand write an invitation to a spouse, a friend, a parent, and let the good times roll!

Chicagoland boasts a splendid many options for cycle enthusiasts—the new phase of The 606 deserving no small mention. This is a city that loves to spin our wheels… in the best way. Use our Let’s Ride card, grab a bud and try out one of these options for a wheelie fun time.

Whether you’re dusting your two wheels off from a period of infrequent use or just need a tune-up, you’re going to want to wind your way to Heritage Bicycles on N. Lincoln Avenue. These folks combined their two loves—coffee and cycling— into this one-stop shop. Get your bike fixed up, outfit your ride, and fuel up for your journey all in one.

With that, take a turn on the elevated Bloomingdale Trail,—the first of four connected park/paths in the Logan Park area, as part of the bit 606 initiative opened this June.

When you’re warmed up, join forces with others, like Higher Gear Chicago that organizes a monthly Women’s Farmer’s Market Ride. The site is also a great resource for upcoming group ride and city-wide cycling events.

Options abound, so get moving while the sun still shines!

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!


Chicago’s Very Own Wayzgoose!

Alert! This post is for paper nerds, through and through. If you get excited about type, presses, and prints (oh my!), then, by all means, read on.

Photo Jun 25-2

(above photo – type found at Columbia College Book and Paper Center)

Last week, we got the amazing opportunity to join with 100 printers and print-enthusiasts from all over for a print-astic APA hosted event. Historically, when local print houses were more commonplace, master printers would host events every year during the summer to mark the date that their employees would need to begin printing by candlelight. Eventually, the event morphed into an annual summertime celebration dinner for their studio employees. They were called wayzgooses. So, naturally, Chicagoose was the name of our local rendition.

Photo Jun 25

(above photo of an installation of work from a letterpress workshop with Tandem Felix)

Local print powerhouse, Jen Farrell, of Starshaped Press in Ravenswood, organized this year’s event over the course of three days. Jen crafted a stellar lineup of speakers, studio tours, and print and equipment sales. Didn’t think it was possible to get sweaty over seeing a table full of old typesetting trays? Well, think again.

Photo Jun 26-3 Photo Jun 26-4

(above images from A Favorite‘s studio tour)

Photo Jun 26

We loved seeing the spaces of other makers, and hearing from seasoned printers infused our own work with new energy. Letterpress events always inspire me to take more care in honoring the vast and rich tradition of letterpress. It isn’t all about stationery and wedding invitations. There’s such a rich history to the art— and it needs to be preserved and shared.

Photo Jun 28-2

(from left to right: Ksenya Thomas of Thomas Printers, Lorraine from Thrill of the Chase, Debbie from Penelope’s Press and Shayna at Steel Petal Press)

Additionally, It was worth the price of admission to get to spend time with fellow printers and both new and old friends, like Ksenyia of Thomas-Printers (and the founder of Ladies of Letterpress), Erin Beckloff of the forthcoming letterpress film: Pressing On, and Debbie of Penelope’s Press. We even got a chance to see Paul Aken (of the Platen Press museum in Zion, IL) and the previous owner of our very first press!

Photo Jun 28

We’re so thankful that the art of letterpress is also a doorway into a community of true artists, craftsmen, historians, and overall amazing people. What a great event, and way to celebrate the craft and its makers.