How-to Stock your Stationery Bar
July 9, 2013
There's nothing quite like receiving an unexpected hand written note from a dear friend in lieu of the junk mail and bills that tend to clog our mailboxes regularly. With that in mind, we thought it'd be fun to shift focus and spend today chatting all-things-stationery. First up, we teach you how to navigate your way through the wonderful world of paper. We're sharing some of our personal tips and tricks on how to stock a stationery bar of your very own.
:: It's our belief that everyone should have two types of stationery in their arsenal: personalized & simple every day greetings.

:: As far as the personalized set goes, think thick, luxurious, heavy-duty ones with lined envelopes and your address printed on the flap. Bonus points for a custom monogram or a pre-printed signature as well. This type of stationery can be further broken down into three main categories (there are, of course, more but we'd be here for days if we didn't narrow it down): engraving, letterpress and laser or offset printing.
Engraving: a process that has been around forever and will never grow tired or old. A custom shape or design is carved into a heavy metal plate, typically filled with ink and pressed into thick cardstock using a substantial amount of pressure. This results in a raised, coloured design that simply screams luxury.
Letterpress: a reliefed form of stationery which is often handset using a printing press. Letterpress cards are typically found in one colour, and are a huge hit amongst the crowd (I'm such a sucker for a good letterpressed card).
Laser or offset printing: done in the more modern fashion using wet ink and large machines. Since it's less labour intensive, this is definitely the more cost effective method. If done right, that luxe look and feel we're after can definitely be achieved.

:: Next, make sure you have a selection of really great flat notes on hand. This set is far more casual than your personalized version, so feel free to opt for playful and whimsical varieties, with pops of color and great prints.

:: It's always a good idea to have a few cards for each major holiday tucked away just in case something comes up last minute or slips your mind (hey, nobody's perfect!) We're talking Birthday, Baby Shower, Anniversary, General Congratulations, Holidays and the like. Thank you cards are likely the ones you'll use most often. Keep a bunch of these, in different shapes, sizes and styles on hand.

:: In addition to these staples, keep a hearty stock of gender neutral, elegant blank cards that could be used in a pinch.
:: Though it's of course always advised to hire a professional calligrapher for legitimate affairs (weddings, showers, etc..), for every day use don't be afraid to play around with a calligraphy set. Remember, practice makes perfect and you likely won't grasp the technique on your first go.

:: If calligraphy isn't your thing, consider picking up some alphabet stamps (like these!) for a fun and playful touch

:: If you're feeling fancy, have your own monogram designed and turned into a stamp. Simon's Stamps is ridiculously inexpensive, and beyond helpful for things of this nature.

:: And because I clearly really like stamps, having your address turned into a stamp is always a must if you ask me (Yours Truly does a beautiful job with these). Not only does it look great, it will also save you a ton of time when sending out cards en mass (hello, Holidays!)

:: You could also have address labels (stickers!) printed in lieu of a stamp. (Iomoi has a number of really cute ones!)

:: Lastly, keep an eye out for really cute postage stamps. Your local post office will often come out with sweet versions for limited time frames, so when they do, be sure to stock up!


Design, Styling & Photography: Style Me Pretty Living | Cards for Round-Up: Sugar Paper, Fig2Design, BerinMade, Rifle Paper Co. & QuillandFox