There’s no part of weddings I won’t gush over but I’d be lying if I didn’t admit to my stationery sweet spot. So I was beyond excited to get a little behind the scenes peek at A Day In May, a graphic design studio in San Fran where owners Lesley and Eve work on everything from logos and wine labels to custom invitations of every kind. See their story, creative process and inspiration – and samples of their wonderful work snapped by Carol Vaziri – below!
HOW DID A DAY IN MAY COME TO BE?
We met during a time when, in an effort to have more control over the type of design we were producing, we had both quit jobs at large design studios. Our friends were starting to get married and were coming to us to design their invitations. There were very few options for interesting invitations beyond the classic “Crane’s engraved” style and no one really knew what letterpress was all about. The more we designed, the more we realized that there was a real need for what we were doing and A DAY IN MAY blossomed into a design studio.
WHAT ARE THE DIFFERENCES BETWEEN THE VARIOUS INVITATION OPTIONS YOU OFFER?
When we started, we focused on doing all letterpress printing and we based all designs on six different “styles” we had created. Now, based on the demands of our clients, we do only custom invitation design work and we offer a variety of printing styles; everything from letterpress to foil stamping to digital printing.
WHAT SHOULD BRIDES KEEP IN MIND WHEN DECIDING WHAT TYPE OF INVITATION TO GO WITH?
They should first decide what they want their invitation to “feel” like. For example, should it feel; classic, or modern, or luxurious, or rustic chic? This will help them define the design direction. Then, they’ll need to decide what is most important to them – is it the weight of the paper stock, is it conveying a design theme throughout all the pieces, is it a size or shape (square vs rectangle, large vs petite), is printing in letterpress or a large variety of colors which works better in a digital printing format? When they provide us with these answer, it’s easy for us to shepherd the process.
WHAT DOES A CUSTOM INVITATION PROCESS LOOK LIKE FOR THE NEW BRIDE-TO-BE?
Every client is unique. They may know exactly what they want for their invitation or have absolutely no idea where to even begin. Either way, our goal at the first meeting is to clearly define their design direction. We’ll go through samples and discuss colors, styles and themes they have in mind. Once we’ve put together a concept, we create an estimate and when that’s approved, we can begin design. The design process usually takes about three weeks. We show all designs in a PDF format, beginning with many different options in the first round and gradually finessing down to a single layout.
WHAT IF THE BRIDE-TO-BE HAS NO IDEA WHAT THEY WANT?
We are a completely custom studio, so our specialty is working with people who need a lot of guidance. We sit down with each client (or set up multiple phone conversations) and go through samples and concepts, narrowing down likes and dislikes until we’ve defined one or two directions for their custom invitation.
WHAT INSPIRES YOU PERSONALLY AND PROFESSIONALLY?
Love what you do, do it thoughtfully, and do it well.
WHAT BRINGS YOU THE MOST JOY WITH YOUR WORK?
Working together with a friend to produce quality work that we’re proud of!