Welcome to Day 10 of the #sendcardsspreadlove challenge for for National Card & Letter Writing Month!! Today’s guest post is from Jill DeLuce of DeLuce Design on letterpress printing & on Friday, we have a BONUS challenge & Naomi Hattaway shares how empathy muscles are strengthened through letter writing.
How To Participate In The Challenge
If you’re just joining us, you can get all the important details here. Make sure you sign up to receive all the info & special bonus content that won’t be shared on the blog and/or join us in the Facebook Group.
You won’t want to miss Week 1 for:
- BIG LIST of reasons to send cards [Day 1]
- Resources on what to write [Day 3]
- Guest post from Alexandra Franzen on the urgency of letting someone you know how much they mean to you [Day 5]
AND CHECK OUT Monday’s guest post from Amanda Sue Howell hand lettering envelopes!
Day 10 Of The 2018 #sendcardsspreadlove Challenge
Week 2 Challenge: Thank You
The challenge this week is to send a thank you card. You can get the details + tips here.
To be eligible to win a thank you card colllection share your card and/or note with the week 2 challenge & tag me on IG @prettybypost or in the FB Group along with the #sendcardsspreadlove hashtag by April 16 at midnight EST.
Today, one of my favorite designers, Jill DeLuce of DeLuce Designs joins us. Her fantastic letterpress cards have been included in the January 2017, September 2016 and January 2016 curated collections. AND we did a very special collaboration for the October 2016 collection.
If you’ve ever wondered what letterpress even means or what it is, then you’re in for a treat today. Since Jill designs some of the very best letterpress cards, who better to explain to us what letterpress is & why it’s such a huge trend in the stationery industry.
Letterpress Printing and Why It’s Special
What is letterpress printing & why is it so popular in the stationery industry today?
Letterpress printing stems from the original printing press designed by Johannes Gutenberg who manufactured the Gutenberg Bible. The design is pressed onto the paper to create a positive image. Often, even with the updated printing methods available, letterpress items are created one sheet at a time, which gives them a level of handmade craftsmanship that is not often found in printing.
As a traditional craft that requires some skill to perform, letterpress items can vary slightly from each other, but this is part of the charm of any handmade item. It is this very uniqueness that attracts those looking for something bespoke. Letterpress also has a simplicity to it that can be lost in modern printing methods, for instance the ‘restriction’ of only being able to use spot colors brings certain elegance to letterpress stationery.
One reason why letterpress printing is enjoying a revival today in the stationery world is because of its tactile, hand-crafted quality. The designs are pressed into the paper leaving an impression that adds an extra dimension to the greeting card, a refreshing change to the smoothness and slickness of digital printing methods. Modern letterpress printers tend to stay clear of using individual lead and wood letters that the old typesetters once did. Artwork is converted to polymer plates which are inked and pressed in the same way, but hold up better to repetitive use than the softer lead and wood type ever did.
The resurgence in letterpress printing as an option to traditional offset or digital printing, has been growing in the last 10 years. Brides, stationery stores and corporate clients find that the option of letterpress brings to them that unique point of difference that is refreshing in a high technology world. Although, photographs are not the strength of letterpress printing, they are possible, but it’s better to stick with the strengths of the chosen medium, like line art and vector based artwork.
There is currently a Renaissance in letterpress printing for greeting cards, stationery and posters. The question is why would anyone go into letterpress printing when there is so much new technology? Wouldn’t it be easier to purchase a good color laser printer to print the greeting cards and stationery? The answer remains that it is a specialized unique quality that letterpress printing provides to a customer who is looking for that point of difference in their presentation of ephemera.
Most of DeLuce Design’s customers expect a deep impression when they purchase our greeting cards. This often means that you will get a reverse indentation on the other side of the letterpress card, so that two-sided greeting cards may not be possible. However there are ways to have the best of both worlds. Using much thicker card stock reduces the amount that the reverse side is affected.
The depth of the impression created when printing can be controlled. In the old days expert printers aimed to leave almost no impression at all: it was considered a mark of the printer’s skill to have as smooth a result as possible. Now there seems little point to that and the impression is what makes the cards so attractive.
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Jill DeLuce is the graphic designer, illustrator, letterpress printer and pretty much everything else for DeLuce Design. Her cards can be found nation-wide at Paper Source and Papyrus as well as many high-end boutiques. She also licenses her artwork and recently created a collection coffee mugs. Jill lives in sunny Scottsdale, Arizona with her fur babies, Giselle and Willa. The city has the advantage of what seems like an eternal summer, so when she’s not doing all of the above, she can be found at the park with her Golden Retriever, hiking, practicing yoga and Pilates or seeking a new outdoor adventure. You can connect with her on Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest.