Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Custom Stamps Now Available!

Here's the story that we hear a lot of. Our clients love letterpress, but they need their envelopes first. They want to get a head start addressing the envelopes, they have a calligrapher they are working with, they want to line the envelopes, etc., etc. They don't want to wait for the letterpress printing of their envelopes. OR they want to save a little bit of money and they want an alternative to letterpress for their envelopes.

It's taken awhile for us to get here, but here it is -- Joie Studio's custom stamps. The rubber stamps are made with beautiful wood and laser cut red rubber:

We will design a return address stamp that matches your invitation design and turn it into a custom stamp for you. Or, if you have a calligrapher, have the calligrapher write out your return address and we can digitize it and create a matching return stamp for you. You can get your own stamp pad at your local craft store or you can have us package a stamp kit for you with a Color Box ink pad.

I love this because you can continue using the stamps for your return address on future mailings. It's a lovely piece to keep for yourself. It's kind of exciting here because this is the first non-letterpress product we're really going to offer. It's one of the first of some pretty exciting things we're doing here at Joie Studio!

We're working on having some "ready-to-order" designs, but for now, contact us if you're interested in getting just the stamp.

Monday, June 28, 2010

4th of July Blog Giveaway: $60 to CSN!


The good people at CSN Stores approached me and asked if I wanted to do another blog giveaway. Sure, why not? I mean, I like my blog readers. I've bought stuff from CSN before. CSN Stores is like an online megamart, with a gajillion online stores selling a whole host of things. Need a new bathroom vanity? How about office supplies? Or perhaps some modern pet accessories? I went through a bunch of CSN sites, and there were so many things that I coveted. With so many sites catering to so many tastes, you kind of have to dig to find what you're looking for, but they've got some awesome stuff!

I really like the Alessi Paper Clip hedgehog that I found on AllModern.com. I think I'm going to have to pick one up:

And I've been eyeing this Melissa & Doug puzzle set for Joie Baby:

So without further ado, in celebration of the 4th of July, Joie Studio is going to give away one (1) single-use $60 gift certificate to use at any CSN store (shipping & handling not included). And we're going to make it an easy giveaway. Simply leave a comment on this post with the following information between now and July 3rd:
- Your name and email (if you prefer you can send your email address to giveaway{at}joiestudio.com)
- Your location
- Your favorite color combination(s) -- this is a design blog after all!

- Do you like us on Facebook? If so, leave another comment and let us know for an extra entry!
- Do you follow us on Twitter? Leave yet another comment with your twitter username for another extra entry!

Comments are moderated, so don't spazz out if you don't see your comment(s) right away. Please don't forget to leave your favorite color combinations in your comments! When I wake up on July 4th, I will use random.org to pick a winner.

NOTE: I'm not affiliated with CSN in any way, nor am I receiving any compensation for this.

Good luck!

Friday, June 25, 2010

Sneak Peek: Hawaiian Style!

I have to admit - I'm missing home just a little bit. No, not my home in Pasadena. Home. Hawaii. Honolulu. Where I grew up. The last time I was back to Hawaii was 3 Christmases ago. And airfare is expensive and I have a year old baby and my family keeps coming to visit so I have little reason to go back home anytime soon. * Sigh * I pulled out a design that I had plated awhile back (in 2008) and never got around to printing, and it made me feel just a little more connected to home. Here's a sneak peek at my Hawaiian inspired letterpress:
After the first run of aqua (top), I was thinking I should just stop because the print looked SO good with just one color. Then I put the second color on and I was completely in love with that look, too. So now I'm conflicted on if I will offer the single color or not. Both look awesome:
Here's the persimmon/aqua combination, complete with coordinating persimmon envelope:
And a closeup:

I'm loving how the white unprinted areas just pop so beautifully as an outline to the hibiscus. The persimmon/aqua combination is an A2 flat stationery set, and it's a special combination in celebration of summer. The other color combos you see above are for upcoming cards.

Have a great Aloha Friday!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Letterpress Monogram Coaster

Finally! Pictures of the monogram coasters, in gorgeous summery colors (aqua and persimmon). Here's a closeup:
I've packed it into packs of 12 in a resealable box.
These, I think, make a great gift (to yourself or someone else). There's something about a monogram that is really fabulous and chic.
I've listed these on Etsy, so go grab them while supplies last!

Monday, June 21, 2010

One of My Favorite Pasadena Places

Where is this? Pasadena friends would probably know, but it's Joie Studio's post office. What I really love about Los Angeles and surrounding areas are these neat historic buildings. Pasadena especially. Joie Studio used to be in Los Angeles, but I made it a point to keep our post office box here in Pasadena so I could come back often and see this:
I love the stained glass ceilings. It's really gorgeous. I was really sad when they had tarped everything for what seemed like YEARS and thought for sure that they were removing the glass from the ceiling. But luckily, the tarps came off and the stained glass is still there.

All the service windows are still the old school windows and signage:

Where Joie Studio's post office box is were windows where people used to pick up their mail. Only fitting that now they have boxes. I love that the US government kept all the details in this building, including the postmaster's office:
It's kind of weird, but if you have a moment while you're in Pasadena, stop into the Plaza post office right near Old Town and take a look. It doesn't look like much from the outside, but it's a gorgeous post office inside.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Erin's Bridal Shower...Affordable Letterpress

You know, Erin's letterpress bridal shower invitations are proof that you don't have to break the bank to have gorgeous letterpress invitations. Erin's mother hosted a large bridal shower for her and her sister commissioned us to letterpress 75 invitations and reply postcards for the shower. I looked online at a popular invitation website whose name implies that their printed materials are exceedingly small (but they're not), and the pricing was only nominally cheaper. The tradeoff to get letterpress at such a great price is that you are only doing one color as opposed to the digital prints multiple colors. But I personally believe (of course I would) that the paper Joie Studio offers is better and the letterpress invitation just feels more expensive than digital prints.

These beauties were printed with eco-savvy vegetable oil ink on Stardream Chiara Coral (I believe). To save money, Erin's sister and I decided on letterpress printing in one color and bringing in another dimension of color with the paper. We had wanted to print them on Paper Source's luxe blush, but luxe blush has sadly been discontinued (I pleaded with Waste Not to bring it back, but *blah blah blah* "no one ordered it" - which I don't believe at all), and I remembered that Stardream had a very similar color, albeit shiny. I think this would have been gorgeous enough for an actual wedding invitation. Check it out:

I'm not a huge fan of opting towards letterpress reply postcards, but only because you don't save very much in printing them (or at all sometimes) and the postal service is not gentle on letterpress. By using postcards, though, the shower hosts saved about $12 in postage, which honestly is a decent amount. AND postcards are more eco-friendly in that they don't use envelopes.

Congratulations, Erin, on your upcoming nuptials! Be on the lookout here (they will be posted after the wedding) for her fantastic letterpress wedding invitations.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Your Design...Your Letterpress

I remember quite vividly back in the day before Joie Studio when my friends and I were getting married that invitations were a big mess. It was hard. There were tears. I had ordered invitations within our budget, which wasn't very much, and it came on really crappy paper and there were oil splotches on some of them. And they were from a pretty major company, too. And all my friend wanted was an invitation with a burgundy backing and for whatever reason that wasn't possible. And then I ended up designing and printing my own rehearsal dinner invitations and it was exactly what I wanted and I thought, "Well, heck, I should have done this in the first place."

One of my goals for my wedding invitation clients is to make the experience as low stress as possible. To make it a fun and happy experience. And give people access to letterpress. Letterpress is beautiful, allowing printing on the most gorgeous art papers that won't normally take digital print methods. I know from looking through countless invitation books that sometimes you just can't find what you're looking for. And most brides and grooms today are savvy enough to design their own invitations or have a friend who can help them get it to print ready format.

I get asked a lot if I will print designs not my own. Yes. There are caveats, but yes. Then I ask if I can provide paper. Yes. Absolutely. You can't letterpress print without paper. Then I get asked if the invitations come with envelopes. Why, yes. Yes, they do. Unless you want special ones. But you get matching envelopes, yes. I can help you source envelopes (I also remember a trip to five different paper stores in the LA area looking for the right envelope) if you want a special color or type. And the pricing I give is pricing without the designing element, because you've already taken care of that. Based on your design, I can give you suggestions on how to save more.

This is how the idea of Your Letterpress was born. Letterpress printing in itself is both an art and a craft. We have these antique presses with peculiarities to them and we learn to compensate for our presses, temperature, humidity, paper type, ink type, etc., etc., etc. You can take care of the design, we will print with great care. And from experience, those interested in letterpress are interested in the process of it, the care that goes into the making of letterpress goods, the handmade artisan quality of the printing. So we've dedicated a camera and a videocamera to the studio so we can take pictures and video of the process for those interested.

If something like Your Letterpress was around when I got married, I would have done that because according to my pricing it was all of a dinner for 4 out at KFC more to have letterpress instead of what I received.

Check out Your Letterpress and contact us at YourLetterpress {at} JoieStudio.com with any questions.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

And the winner is...

Thank you all for participating in the giveaway!

Congratulations, Stephanie, on winning a set of our brand new letterpress monogram coasters!

Our monogram coasters will be in the revamped Joie Studio shop soon for $12 for the set of 12, but for all contestants of our giveaway, we'd like to offer the coasters to you at 25% off with free shipping. That's $9 for the set of 12. Email me at giveaway{at}joiestudio.com if you're interested and I'll set it up for you!

Friday, June 11, 2010

Hello Fabulous!

Oh these gorgeous yellow boxes. Filled with gorgeous Italian paper with deckled edges. When I first started printing, Fabriano Medioevalis was what was recommended for us to use in class. It's safe to say that I learned how to letterpress on Fabriano Medioevalis. Now I print mainly on Lettra, which is also a wonderful paper but it is a very very different paper.

One of my favorite clients, and probably one of the most fabulous people I know, asked me to letterpress her business cards and stationery on Fabriano Medioevalis, and I was reminded of how fabulous Fabriano Medioevalis is. It was a little bit of a pain with the deckled edges (it made the paper stick together, the deckling made the paper not quite uniform the whole way through...I could go on), but the results are absolutely fabulous!

Laura has a blog chronicling how to be fabulous everyday, and I'm loving the tips and reviews she's blogged thus far. I have to say some of her posts have really gotten me to think about little things I can do to have a more fabulous life. Check out Laura's blog at www.fabulous365.com!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Thank You William Dohman!

Remember when I blogged about William Dohman's awesome recycled wood signs? After a bit of back and forth emailing, William made me these gorgeous sign for Joie Studio, complete with custom color. I LOVE how it came out:
I HEART HEART HEART the color! William also made a sign for Joie Baby's room:

That's the 'hello' William has for sale, and I asked him to make Joie Baby's name to match. I absolutely love the result. I am so so pleased with the result that I will probably give him more of my hard earned cash in the future for more of his awesome work.

Thanks again, William! You can see what he has for sale in his Etsy store!

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Letterpress Monogram Giveaway #3

Okay, so I gave away letterpress monogram coasters on Twitter (congratulations to @storiedlocation), and today I gave away letterpress monogram stationery on Facebook. I thought I'd give my blog readers a little love as well. Just enter here on this blog post in the comments section between now and Friday for a chance to win one set (12 coasters) of our brand spanking new letterpress monogram coasters (digital graphic above). I haven't had a chance to take photos of them yet but they are gorgeous. Saturday morning when I wake up I will use Random.org to choose a winner. Just put the following information in the comment:

1. Your name and location
2. The monogram letter you would like
3. Some way to contact you. You can email me your contact info at giveaway[at]joiestudio.com if you prefer not to put it in the comment section. I won't know how to get a hold of you otherwise.

Please, only one entry per person. Comments are moderated on the blog so don't freak out if you don't see your comment right away.

That's it! Good luck!

Monday, June 7, 2010

Stationery Show 2010, Part 5: Catalogs, Paper, and More Paper!

I finally opened up the luggage that held all the goodies from the National Stationery Show. I loved seeing everything everyone was up to. I met lots of cool people (with cool business cards to match):
Super exciting to me was Waste Not Paper's new colors -- my favorite being Peacock and Sunshine (the top two). People were going gaga over Peacock at the show. I went on day 1 and they were already out of swatch samples. They also introduced Persimmon (the orange-red below the yellow), which is very close to the Persimmon I already use in my line:

Annika at DeMilo (from right here in South Pasadena!) introduced Jute Paper, which is a sustainable paper made by fair trade artisans in Bangladesh. I love the concept of it and the paper is beautiful. DeMilo does nothing but beautiful letterpress so I know it will work well for letterpress. Annika is making the paper available to all letterpress studios, so if you want it for your custom letterpress project, let me know!
I'm also toying with adding bamboo to Joie Studio's line, and Legion's bamboo paper is gorgeous. I don't know if bamboo is any more eco-friendly than cotton, since cotton paper is made from cotton linters (waste product). Bamboo does grow viciously fast, though, and is abundant. In any case, it looks gorgeous and I will probably get some to try out. Here's a pic of the sample they were giving out, letterpress printed:
Legion Paper also had these great letterpress sample boxes of their letterpress papers:
I love this collection of art papers available that is suitable for letterpress. I can throw it into my bag and bring it to client meetings.

I am already planning next year's Stationery Show trip! Thanks, everyone, for such a good day in one of my favorite cities!
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