As every bride in America knows, letterpress is an elegant print method that makes a soft indentation (embossing) on card stock. We use a 1971 Heidelberg Windmill to create this clean, stunning design.
Recently, Judith Bright decided she wanted to revamp her print products, and it was only fitting to create letterpress notecards and jewelry tags. She makes gorgeous jewelry, and beautiful print products to add to her overall aesthetic.
In the image above, you can see that she prefers simple design and light colors. Her jewelry tags and informational cards have a light blue logo and her name in a gold color.
Her new cards maintain the simplicity of her original cards, but she decided to use foil-stamping and debossing to add an extra touch of elegance to her print products. The end result is nothing short of beautiful.
You can tell someone cares about his or her business and customers when he or she puts so much effort into the brand aesthetic. These tags and cards required several time-consuming steps, which we want to highlight. Understanding the letterpress process is very beneficial for anyone considering using this technique.
Letterpress Step 1: Creating an online design template
The first step of letterpress is design and layout. Judith wanted cards with rounded corners, which requires a die of its own. To make a physical die, you must first create an online version of the die. Most graphic designers should be able to do this. However, make sure that your graphic designer understands how to design for print.
To deboss (or emboss) anything, you must create a separate die (shown below). Again, you need an online template.
Although this isn’t really necessary, you can create an online mockup to see how the two dies will look when combined.
Letterpress Step 2: Create the dies
Once you have created a design and layout, it is time to send the file to your local printer. If they cannot make the die in-house, they should be able to find someone who can.
The above photo is the die cut die of the earring tags. The below photo is the emboss die of the same earring tags.
Letterpress Step 3: Print cards
The only printing required on this set of tags and cards was for the one-inch necklace squares. “Judith Bright” is printed below the logo because it is too small to emboss.
Letterpress Step 4: Foil stamp
Once you have created your dies and sent your cards to press, it is time to foil stamp your print products! This is where one uses the emboss die, as shown above. Applied with metallic foil and heat, the die creates a beautiful end product (shown below).
Letterpress Step 5: Die cut
Almost done! Now it is time to use the letterpress. Again, we use a 1971 Heidelberg Windmill to die cut 4 earring tags at a time.
If you would like to see a letterpress in action, check out the video below.
Letterpress Step 6: Punch out
Finally, once everything is cut and stamped, it is time to punch out the final cards. Each individual card (and its jewelry holes) must be removed by hand.
After meticulous design, layout, letterpress and handwork, the cards and tags are complete. Stay tuned for Judith Bright gift cards… we are in the process of creating new ones!