Blind, Edged, & Converted

We've been printing fancy letterpress business cards for Norfolk creatives Grow for a while now (check it out). Recently they asked us to print simple blind-pressed, edge painted notes along with custom printed and converted envelopes.

To get the pattern on the inside of the envelope (called a "tint") we first offset printed flat sheets with a light cool gray, then folded and glued the envelopes. Finally, we added the letterpress return address and logo.

Foiled & Monogrammed

We love type-only designs. This one's got a simple monogram in Italic Garamond along with text in Neutra Light and Sloop Script.

We used a custom paper -- two sheets of Dark Gray 350g Colorplan duplexed to create a nice, thick 700g stock. The card was printed with silver foil, finished with silver edge paint, and paired with a pearl white cotton envelope.

Letterpress Business Card Roundup

Time for another business card roundup! After you're done here, you might want to check out previous roundups from 2013, 2014, and just this past January.

Canadian designer and photographer Amanda Benincasa ( designed these cards, complete with a letterpress QR code. We printed them with custom green and gray inks on thick 600g Fluorescent White Lettra.

For long-time Parklife collaborator, Chad Martin of The G Brand (see more of his design work here and here), we printed these duplexed business cards with black ink on 300g Lettra for the front and gold ink on 2-ply Rising Museum Board for the back.

Like pretty much everyone (Parklife included), Gritchelle recently relocated to Portland. We printed these cards for our new neighbor on 300g Fluorescent White Lettra.

Some super-deluxe cards for Chapel Hill brand gurus, Immortology: Three inks on 300g Lettra for the front and white foil + a blind deboss on 350g Ebony Colorplan for the back.

Finally, a business card reboot for Dyfari Interiors featuring Espresso and Periwinkle inks with Periwinkle edge paint on 600g Pearl White Lettra. This is the third iteration in a series of cards we've printed for Diane, starting with this version in 2010.

Anniversary Foil

For us, 2015 has been the year of foil. Check out these awesome foil stamped employee recognition cards we printed for Canada's Ian Martin Group.

All six sets were printed with gold foil on 600g Ecru Lettra paper, then finished with gold edge paint.

Growing Businesses, One Card at a Time

You know how sometimes you have to move thousands of pounds of antique machinery from one edge of the country to another, and then get it all set up properly so you can keep your business running? Wait, you don't? Ah ... count yourself lucky. Parklife Press moved from lovely North Carolina to beautiful Portland, Oregon this summer, and setting up the new studio was a f… a fun opportunity for greatness! And truly, it turned out great. But it was a challenge. And you know who you need in your corner when facing challenging situations? (Especially ones which involve basic elemental needs like heat, power, and protection from the elements?) Talented professionals. You know it ... here begins a good old-fashioned business card round-up!

We did these cards as thank yous for the electrician and contractor who renovated the new studio. They were great to work with. They kept us dry, and (seasonally) warm or cool.

Each card has tiny graphic representations on blind deboss (ink-free) impressions — hammers for the contractor and electric bolts for the electrician. It was fun to get to work with these fellow craftsmen and small-business owners.

Speaking of growing a business: cards we did for Grow. These involved three custom letterpress inks on the front, offset flood and one letterpress ink on the back. They were hand-duplexed (two different paper stocks glued together) and edge-painted in a corresponding brick-colored ink. That sounds like a lot of press runs, right? Three runs just to make one side of this card! Oh, and, we did cards for 28 employees. Nothing says "we're glad you work here" than the boss handing an employee a box of beautiful, hand-crafted letterpress business cards.


Some detail shots are below. Check out Grow's subtle plant motif in black-on-black.

Listen, we're a bit late on giving thanks on this blog, but we figure gratitude shouldn't be limited to one month of the year. So to our new neighbors, fellow business owners, new clients and old: we are thankful for you. Thank you for your business, and for helping us (directly or indirectly) fix the roof over our heads and the electrical outlets for our presses. Wishing you and yours a happy, healthy and prosperous New Year.

Photos by Sarah McCarty Arneson

Leaves in Motion

This cheerful set was based on Parklife's Antiquity. It's one of our most popular designs. As we describe on the site, "The overlapping light and dark motifs give this invitation a sense of motion that's unlike anything else in our collection." This version has been modified a bit: the couple chose pearl white paper and a vertical orientation. By the way: we love it when people ask for modifications; our designs are a jumping-off point, but we want our clients to have exactly what they want.

This set had a fun combination of a traditional-looking calligraphic script paired with a modern, expressionistic contour drawing of leaves and garlands.

The thin parts of the script's stroke mirror the line art of the flora design. The two inks, midnight and peacock, compliment each other beautifully, and pop off the pearl white stock. The pieces are edge-painted in midnight.

Along with the invitation and RSVP card and printed return envelope, the set included these two additional pieces. An information card detailed directions and accommodations, and a separate card invited guests to a welcome dinner and a farewell brunch.

The dancing vines weren't the only graphic elements of this set. The RSVP card used playful icons — a cow, a fish, some carrots — for guests to select either the beef, seafood, or vegetarian dinner options. And, the "additional events" card featured custom illustrations done by Parklife Press. For the welcome dinner: a homey, old-school charcoal barbecue; and for the farewell brunch: a bloody mary, complete with celery stalk.

Photos by Sarah Arneson

Perforation Perfection

This was a really fun set. Designed by graphic designer (and groom) Derek Howles — who, incidentally, also designs these super-cool cartography poster prints — it was interesting and unconventional. And art-y! Which is fitting, since they got married at the North Carolina Museum of Art. The set was comprised of a save the date card and a combination invitation/tear-off RSVP.

First, the save the date card. The who, where and when details have the blind-deboss look, but they were actually printed with a tinted white ink. This method gives a slightly deeper look to the impression, and sets the text off a bit more than just making an impression alone. The playful pink wording puts the stats in conversational context, and the text concludes with a URL for more information.

The invitation followed the same format: large, white-tinted block text for the event's pertinent details, and tiny pops of pink filling in the rest of the words. The unconventional style is carried through to the RSVP's wording, with the options "Can't wait to be there!" or "Won't be able to make it."

The extra heavy paper stock is a great showcase for the dramatic edge painting, which ties together the set's color palette. The thick stock also helps the perforation stability — the RSVP card easily separates from the invitation for return mailing.

Photos by Sarah Arneson