Andria Ledon of Lilikoi Press asked me to do the lettering for her wedding invitations and materials, and I think they turned out beautifully, don't you? I really love the look of the blind embossing, as well.
A lot of people now skip the entire inner envelope concept when sending out invitations, which I think is fine- it saves trees, saves money, is less formal, etc. However, the nice thing about an inner envelope is that you usually write out the first name or even "pet name" of the person you are addressing. It adds such a personal touch. I think a really great way to combine the two would be to do something similar to the photo above- just add a good dose of familiarity and playfulness to the outer envelope by using just the first names! I think it would be perfect for an informal, whimsical event. Don't you? I hope someone takes me up on this idea soon for their invitations!
The wonderful Shanna Murray and I launched an online shop this winter called Hello Handmade. This Valentine's day we are offering something very unique for those people out there who are "penmanship challenged!" You can order one of our letterpressed cards (that Shanna lovingly illustrated and designed) and then compose a message to your sweetheart that I will inscribe and address and send directly to your honey! We launched this very special project yesterday, and they will be available for order for only two weeks. But the real reason I am blogging about this is because my favorite part of the whole process so far has been reading the messages that people would like written on their postcard, and I keep HOPING beyond all hope that one of them will be a proposal! How sweet would that be?! So if you know of any potential fiances in the market for a sweet idea...... :)
A couple of you asked about what I do when I can't see a template through an envelope because it is a dark color or completely opaque, such as the wedding envelopes I just mailed off yesterday that were gray and lined. The process is much more time consuming and painstaking than simply inserting a lined template. It is nice to have a venue to explain a process like this!
I must first draw a light pencil line on each envelope, then address it, then wait for the ink to dry, then erase the line with a good quality eraser so that no trace is left. I use a drafting brush to sweep away the eraser crumbs. The result is a perfectly straight address, but the steps necessary to get to that point on an opaque envelope are a bit tedious. Here are all the envelopes-- addressed, lines erased, and ready to be mailed!
I've had a couple people ask about the materials and process that I go through in the course of doing a wedding, so I just wanted to divulge a few details here! I mix most of my inks from a type of paint called gouache, that way I can create extremely custom shades, and gouache works really well with most types of stock or paper, without bleeding. I typically mix the potions in shot glasses that I pick up in antique stores. I use a split-tipped, pointed metal nib, that I dip into the ink every couple words or so- a really old fashioned way of writing that is so completely charming.
I store my tubes of ink in this cheery old cigar box, so that when I am feeling unmotivated to get started on a big project, it brightens up my initial preparation routine. The next part of the process involves popping in a favorite movie or documentary or putting on some great music, and just going down the address list, doing envelope after envelope, lining them up to dry for about fifteen minutes before I stack them. In between each envelope, I usually stir the gouache, wipe off the nib, and then take out the lined template from the envelope, and place it into the next envelope to be addressed. It is definitely a painstaking and tedious process, but one that is so rewarding. After the job is completely done, I alphebetize the envelopes, tie them up with ribbon, and pack them up and usually take them to the post office, as the majority of my clients are in other cities or countries. I feel so blessed to have a job I love doing so much. I truly feel it is a beautiful process, and always feel sentimental about being a part of the wedding preparation that first notifies guests of an upcoming union. And to be able to do it in my pajamas and with a cup of tea on days where I just don't feel like getting dressed! So ideal, yes?