These cards, designed by Jacob Ward have a heavy blind (inkless) letterpress impression on one side and black ink on the other. A blind hit needs a substantial amount of impression since it is relying only on the change in paper surface without any ink color to define the graphic. The large type size really pops on this card. If you have a good monitor and click through the pics below, you can see that even on a 220lb cotton stock there can be small amount of impression show through on the reverse side.
Tag Archive for 'business card'
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The simplest looking things can be deceptively complex. This is a tricky little business card and a typographic poster for Squarespace New York. Designed by their Creative Director Tyler Thompson. The design shows restraint, making the logo treatment the hero. And the format is a square card of course.
So why is the business card tricky? It is custom duplexed stock, letterpress printed, laser die cut and edge colored. We custom duplexed Neenah Classic Crest Solar White 110lb Cover up to a 220lb thickness. Then we letterpress printed them several up on a press sheet. A larger press sheet means we can economize the laser cutting by doing more at a time. The laser cutting can leave some scorch marks, so the sheet is masked with a paper tape that peels off after the cutting is complete. Then the sheet is trimmed up into cards and edge colored in black. That 220lb thickness shows off the edge and has a nice smooth surface. The poster is on Crane Lettra 110lb Flo white, pressed in a single PMS blue.
Here is another fantastic project designed by Fabien Barral over at Graphic Exchange. He brought in wonderful organic drips and brush strokes that interpret with a unique sculptural quality under letterpress impression.
We put down a lot of letterpress printing on this sheet. It’s a good way to make a project affordable – - spread the cost over several items all on the same press sheet. The paper stock is Neenah Classic Crest Solar White 165lb Cover. The sheet contains four business cards and three large note cards. We printed a slightly contaminated opaque white ink for the tonal white effect, also a dense black ink. For our white ink, we usually put just a hair of silver in the opaque white to give it a little tone. It also has the benefit of creating a stronger sheen difference between the inked impression and the uncoated paper stock than you would get with a blind (inkless) print.
After printing this project went to live in French customs for a little while. And that should answer another question we get a lot – Yes! we do ship international all the time. Just let us know if you have any specific customs needs for your country.
A strikingly simple business card designed by Blok Design out of Mexico City. Sweet type. We letterpress printed on some heavy 4 ply cotton museum board. Edged colored in a delicious yellow. A modern and materially elegant card indeed.
We’ve been asked several time now, “So how come Studio On Fire was not at the National Stationery Show?”
Simply because the lion share of our work as a studio continues to be custom letterpress printing for other designers around the country. We love printing custom work for other designers. We’re good at it and proud of the results. That is what we are focused on and the NSS is not the right venue to promote our services. While we do continue to have a product line, we are promoting it independently, selling to a small number of boutique retailers and museum shops. If you are a retailer and wish to set up a wholesale account, email us and we’ll be happy to send along our catalog.
Here is a sampling of our product from our Designer Series Deskline. We wanted the elements in our product line to feel sort of like a test print or sheet of make ready. Those always have such a wonderful randomness that is enormously difficult to capture intentionally in a layout. This design is Polkaville Party, designed in conjunction with two fine designers here in Minneapolis – Kelly & Kindra, both are currently teaching design over at MCAD.
There is monarch sized stationery with two letterhead designs included, a pinhole perforated dry gum label sheet, folding self mailers, stitched mini journals and a punch out tag and calling card set. All is printed with three color letterpress on cotton and recycled papers. The overprinting creates some sweet purple and greens throughout the prints. Product is for sale on our web site. We are currently offering free shipping within the United States.
This post shows a card we letterpress printed for Grass Fed Cattle Company designed by a good friend and design mentor over the years – Michael Skjei. We love the commitment to local farmers and free range meats. If you are local, give these guys a try.
We seem to be getting an aweful lot of requests to print business designs with floods of solid color. It can work on letterpress – with a couple big caveats.
Will the color be consistent?
We will have a wider range of ink density variation in the print run than an offset press. We do not have computers sitting on press monitoring this, it is all by eye. We matching to a print at the beginning of the run and keep it as a target, adjusting as we go to keep everything as close as we can. But there will be variation.
The heavier the ink density, the more difficult it becomes to hold the detail of fine typographic detail. So if you are flooding, more robust type works better.
Will my color print solid?
This depends on the type of stock and the color. Lighter colors and smoother paper stocks generally print with less “saltiness” in a solid area of coverage. Since letterpress prints with pressure, we are much more subject to the texture and formation of the sheet of paper to achieve an even solid.
Will there be impression on the text?
Generally, no there will not be impression. Letterpress works best with text and artwork that is pressing into the sheet. If you are looking for impression while flooding a color, this is not a great use of letterpress. Notice how the logo and gray ink have impression, the green flood of color does not.
Is the cost the same?
A flood of color takes much more time to set up on letterpress than a card that has text only. Generally, this involves making ready the ink fountain and double the amount of makeready sheets to get color up to speed. Since we charge based on press time, printing a flood of color will cost more than printing a text only design.
However, most small offset printers can’t make a 160lb or heavier sheet of paper run through their press. So that leaves letterpress as a viable method to print to handle these heavier stock thickness. You have to get on a much larger offset press to touch that kind of stock thickness, which means also means bigger quantities and costs.
So yes, we can print solid colors IF you are comfortable with the variations that are inherent to the letterpress process.
I’m back after a helluva week with some crazy virus. I miss writing this thing!
This is a sweet little business card designed by Andrew Young at Exclamation 101. The information wraps the card from front to back. We letterpress printed them on a thick two ply black museum board. Weight wise, it is about 200lbC which gives virtually no show through. We really like the finish on this sheet too. The impression takes with a nice crisp bite and the black is very dense compared to commercial papers. The metallic silver ink offers great opacity on the black stock.
The esteemed fellows at Wilderness in Portland sent us an unusually simple business card for letterpress printing. Rather than load up the card with four telephone numbers, an email, a fax, a twitter, etc – they all simply share the same card. A nice solution for keeping cost down too. Wilderness is the new design trailhead of Aaron James Draplin, John Phemister and David Nakamoto. We can’t wait to see what they do next.
Of course, simple design doesn’t always mean simple production. We printed these on 220lb Pearl White Lettra, 100% cotton. Flooding a dark color like this on letterpress is difficult to lay down and keep consistent over the course of the print run – especially on a stock that has some texture to the surface. When we print a solid like this, we generally go to our Paul Bunyan of Heidelberg Windmill presses – the 13 x 18. Even so, there is still a salty, weathered look to how a stock like this will take a solid coverage on letterpress. But we like it that way, it ain’t offset.
As the name would imply, a stylist has to have style. This morsel was designed by Westwerk Design and was just featured in the Minnesota AIGA award show. And check out Lara’s site for some really succulent looking food photography.
The letterpress printing is tasty too. The card was printed four colors on the front and a single color on the back. However, we washed up the press four times and did all four single colors on the back as well That gives a nice variety to the presentation of the card on table display on photo shoot sets and studio events.
A heavy ink flood is not the greatest application of letterpress – there is no impression to the information side of this card. We even held on to the tiny 5 point type reversing from a solid. And yes, that many color changes certainly adds up cost. But hey – this job hand eight wash ups!
There is a practical reason to do this kind of solid on a letterpress if you are happy with the more mottled (salty looking) and varied way a letterpress lays this much ink. The reason is stock thickness. Offset printing, which is the best process for printing solids, is usually limited by the thickness of paper for smaller press sheets. To run a thick stock (these are 165lb Neenah) on an offset press gets expensive because you usually need to hire a larger size offset press to handle the stock thickness and have a big press sheet. That just doesn’t make sense for a short run business card project. And most smaller offset presses which could less cost just can not take the stock thickness rattling through the press – if they can get paper to feed through at all. Putting the card stock on a letterpress makes paper feeding possible for a short run job. Offset printing – eat me.