Monday, December 28, 2009

Countdown: One week to go!

Greetings from rainy Brisbane! We're up here for holidays for a week, but of course, we've brought work with us (can't help ourselves). Still busily working on the new website (squee! So excited!), and new designs. Just down to the fiddly end of things now really. We're hoping to have everything working on the website by the end of the week, but there may be a couple of little things that need tweaking, as with any new thing.

Until then, have a fantastic New Year and I'll see you in 2010 for the relaunch of Poppy Letterpress!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Countdown: Two weeks to go!

I'm quite excited about our little countdown to big changes. What changes, you ask? Well I suppose I can reveal a little more...

In two weeks' time we will be RELAUNCHING Poppy Letterpress!

Our workload slowed down considerably since our darling little boy Kynan arrived 6 months ago now. Feeding routines, appointments, playtime and lack of sleep really does take up all of a parent's time. However, Ky should be starting daycare in January, which means we can come back to Poppy with a lot more energy!

Firstly, it's no secret that we've been working on a new website for quite some time now. What I can tell you is that it will be much bigger, cleaner, and have far more content. Our new pricing structure is what makes it the most exciting though. Lucky for me, Adrian is quite the whizz with websites and all things digital. I love watching him bring my design to life.

Secondly, in two weeks' time you'll be seeing some fab new designs from us. But you'll have to wait to hear more about that.

The countdown continues!

Christmas Cards

Today in the studio we're printing the family Christmas cards. Just a cute, simple design to send to all our family and friends. Maybe next year we'll run a set of cards to sell, but for this year, it's a family affair.

These are the plates for the first colour.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Sunflower inspirations

Nothing says Summer like a big sunflower. This huge flower brings me joy every time I look out my kitchen window since it opened yesterday. I'm also quite proud that I managed to not only grow something that flowers so spectacularly, but also beat the little beetles that were determined to eat the whole plant. This flower marks my victory :)

Of course I'll need to use it in a design now, won't I? Better get drawing!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Kloe & Julian

Recently we worked with Kloe and Julian on their fun 3-colour invitations and envelopes. Most designs that we work on are one or two colour, but I must say that extra third colour really gives a design a bit of 'oomph'.

We played with a few different concepts for Kloe and Julian, but this one really fit their vineyard garden wedding perfectly. The three colours matched three of the five bridesmaids' dresses and are so vibrant and happy. Yellow makes for such a fantastic accent colour and it really should be used more! The violet really stands out too, although the violet ink and I are NOT friends. I don't know what it is, but I always make such a mess with purple and violet. Good thing it's always such a beautifully vibrant colour in the end.

Monday, December 7, 2009


Today we're working on the calligraphy for Claire and Adam's wedding invitations. It's not something that we usually offer, but I'm always keen to give something new a go, and just love playing with ink and nibs.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Louise & Simon

Recently we worked on these cute and simple little DL invitations. Louise liked the hand-drawn look of the names, and we loved working freehand for a change!

These are a great example of how you can still have letterpress invitations for your wedding even if you're on a tight budget. Using just one ink colour doesn't have to be boring! In fact, the tactile nature of letterpress means it isn't always necessary to have a detailed design to make an impact.

Countdown: One month to go!

So yesterday marked exactly one month until a very exciting day for us in January. I can't tell you much more just yet, but stay tuned. The countdown has started!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Blog love

For those of you doing your letterpress research on the net, make sure you check out this post from Ampersand Duck. Now, I haven't been a letterpress printer my whole working career (as you may already know, I worked as a graphic designer in private and government studios), so I don't have any formal education in the history of printing, but I do my best to extend my knowledge whenever possible. I often wonder if other 'modern' letterpress printers stop to think about where their presses came from and what they were originally used for. I was glad to see such a well-written post about the Common Press on &Duck's blog, so make sure you read it. It's tonight's homework. And there may be random quizzes in the following days.

Speaking of &Ducky's blog, lookie here. I've already put my name down for one of these gorgeous posters which were printed by &Duck on her Vandercook SP-20 press (affectionately known as Kitty, who I met at &Duck's studio warming). Oh yes, and the show looks good, too :)  

Image copyright Ampersand Duck.

Fusion Photography

Everyone knows how important a good photographer is on your wedding day. It's one of the most important days of your life, so you want a photographer who will capture the day honestly and creatively, as well as having a good "aisle-side" manner. And when two graphic designers get married, such as Adrian and myself, only the best will do. I didn't really expect to find a photographer who lived up to our high expectations, so we were pleasantly surprised to find Ben Kopilow of Fusion Photography. Ben was fantastic on the day, and the photos were exceptional.

Sunday afternoon I took my little family over to Barton, where we attended the studio warming of the new home of Fusion Photography. Both Adrian and I were deeply envious of Ben's new studio -- me for the sleek white furniture, Adrian for the drool-worthy monitor and projection unit. If you happen to be getting married in the Canberra region, I highly recommend you check out Ben's exceptional work.

One of my favourites from our wedding day
Image copyright Fusion Photography

I do love a good studio warming, and yesterday I was reminded that I still haven't had ours yet, and we've been in the new studio for 10 months now. I'm hoping to do a little work on the office and studio before the end of the year, so a studio warming (1 year late!) is probably a good idea...

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Paper Boat Press

I found
Paper Boat Press the other day and just loved their cute ceramic wares. This little tag caught my interest, and I couldn't help but get one for my office.

The dried flowers are some that were in my hair on my wedding day.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Floral inspirations

I just love spring. For the first time in a long time, we're getting a lot of rain here in Canberra, which is a welcome relief during the drought. Everything is green and fresh, and smells spectacular. Our annual flower show, Floriade, has only just finished. 

I can't help but be inspired by the flowers in my own garden. These little beauties will be featuring in wedding invitations very soon! And what better way to spend the weekend than by illustrating them?

Monday, October 12, 2009

Poppy on Twitter

As a matter of principle, I generally avoid jumping on the bandwagon as it whizzes past, flaunting it's latest trend, so Twitter wasn't something that initially appealed to me, in either a personal or professional sense. However, after having a thorough look at it the other day, I've decided that it was time for Twitter to meet Poppy. So far, the only downside has been the character limit when choosing an account name, so we're known on Twitter as PoppyLetterpres. This irks me to no end, being the stickler for correct spelling that I am. Otherwise, I'm having fun catching up with friends of Poppy online, and meeting new ones. 

So are you on Twitter?

Colours I'm in love with

Is there a colour that makes you go all gooey inside?

I'm finding myself more and more obsessed with neutrals mixed with a splash of earthy greens and reds. I've always been a huge fan of sage green - in fact it was my main colour in my own wedding palette. The Poppy office is sage green too, as I find it's a perfectly calming colour for a work environment. 

Neutral browns and greys make me giddy, I just can't get enough of them! My loungeroom is now a rich latte with white highlights. I find neutrals are timeless - warm, inviting, scrumptious. 

So this is a hint of the colour palette for the new Poppy website. I'm so excited about launching it, but we're taking the time to make sure that it's just right, rather than hastily uploading it. When we've settled on the launch date, I'll be impatiently counting down the days, both here on the blog and on Twitter.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Missing in action

Kynan is now 14 weeks old. Being the new mum that I am, I assumed that the older he got, the more settled he'd sleep during the day, and therefore I'd have heaps more time to work on all things Poppy. How blissfully naive I was! Ky now likes to feed every 1.5 to 2 hours, with over an hour of playtime in between, which leaves me little time to get any work done. It's frustrating because I miss my beloved Poppy, and the studio seems so empty and unloved at the moment. But who can resist a face like this?

As a business person, it's hard to let go of a fulltime job that I love so much. I'm really looking forward to the day when Ky is in daycare and I can spend all day in the studio. Until then, I've made the difficult decision to focus the majority of my attention on motherhood. Well, kind of. I've actually got a few printing jobs on the go (can't help myself really). Having just a few means that I can give each job the attention it deserves, so that the high quality of design, printing and attention to detail that we pride ourselves on here at Poppy isn't sacrificed. Eessu will be back on board when the studio is back in full swing, too, and we're both very excited about the many ideas we've got for the future of Poppy.

So while my mind is thinking up ideas to entertain Kynan (instead of thinking up new designs), and my tshirt is covered in vomit (instead of being covered in ink), stay tuned for updates and our new website. I'll also write up a little about the last couple of jobs that have been on the press once I get photos.

Thanks so much to all of your for your continued support and feedback. We won't be gone for long, I promise! If you have any questions about stationery for your 2010 wedding, please feel free to drop me a line still [louise at poppyletterpress dot com dot au], but just know that I won't be able to provide a quote at this time.

Friday, July 31, 2009

Naomi Murrell greeting cards

Finally I can announce what we've been up to! For the past couple of months we've been working with the lovely Naomi Murrell to produce these gorgeous greeting cards. Naomi is one very talented lady residing in Adelaide. Her work includes wooden and perspex jewellery, screen prints, and canvas bags and cushions. We're excited that these new letterpress cards are part of her debut collection, A Little Love, which is featuring at the Life Instyle trade show this and next week.

I didn't get the chance to photograph all of the final printed cards together before they were shipped away, but the stack was quite big compared to what we're used to! 1,250 cards in all, it was quite a process to print them on Collie - especially at 38 weeks pregnant, and then again with a newborn baby!

You can find Naomi on her website and blog, and if you're interested in purchasing one of her designs, have a squizz at her on etsy.

As much as I absolutely love designing and printing wedding stationery, printing a wholesale job was a refreshing change in the studio, and we're looking forward to many more.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Sneak peek

Here's just a little sneak peek of what we've been working on in the studio for quite some time now. I'm very excited that the project will be completed very soon, but until then my lovelies, I can't show you just yet!

It's our largest print run to date, and we've found it quite refreshing to print large quantities of such beautiful designs. Stay tuned for the unveiling!

Monday, July 6, 2009

A great day at the Wedding Fair

It was fantastic to be able to talk to so many brides yesterday at the Hyatt Wedding Fair. I was surprised by exactly how many people visited the fair, much more than I remembered from when I was a bride-to-be. 

Our stand was manned by myself, Eessu, Adrian and our friend Claire who came to help out on the day. We found that a few people had heard of letterpress before, but most people hadn't, so it was a great opportunity let more people know about it. Overall, it was a very successful day. I loved being able to get so much feedback on our printing and designs, and see which invitations were the most popular. 

And Kynan was there to help too, but slept though most of it :)

Friday, July 3, 2009

Hyatt Wedding Fair, Canberra

You can catch Poppy at the Hyatt Wedding Fair in Canberra, this Sunday 5 July. 

We're thrilled to have been invited to this exclusive event. Personally, I'm looking forward to checking out all the beautiful dresses and goodies that the other suppliers have to offer (nothing beats wedding shopping, even when you're already married!).

If you're in Canberra, drop by and say hello!

Announcing the arrival of Kynan Glenn!

Kynan doing his pirate impression

Born at 8.38pm on 6 June 2009.
4.045kg, 50cm long.

Ok, so we're a little late in announcing this on the blog, my apologies. But that's quite fitting, as Ky was 13 days late himself. It was quite a long day, which ended in a c-section. As a result, my recovery is taking it's time, so we haven't been online much lately. Sorry if you've emailed us recently and we haven't replied. 

Monday, May 4, 2009

Closed for impending baby!

After vowing I wouldn't keep printing in the last few weeks of my pregnancy, here I am, still going at 37.5 weeks! But at least it's on a big job that I really love looking at. Can't show you what it is just yet, but stay tuned! Hopefully I'll have time to upload the finished photos before bub arrives.

I also have a lot of photos to post of weddings that we've been printing lately. Eessu's a printing champion and has been such a great help in the studio.

So the studio is officially closed now until 6 July. We'll be checking emails a few times a week and supplying quotes. Please understand that it may take a couple of days for us to get back to you though!

I'd like to say a HUGE thankyou to all the beautiful clients that we've had in the past couple of months. You've all be so wonderful to work with, and very understanding when it's come to me needing a couple of extra days to print than normal.

Also, stay tuned - we've got a lot of exciting new developments planned for when we reopen the studio and I can't wait to share them with you!!

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Sneak peak

Today's sneak peak is of Megan's art deco invitation proof. We'll be printing the final run very soon, so stay posted.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009


We've had a busy few days printing proofs for current orders. Here's a sneak peak into one of them - wedding invites for Sharlene and Alex, who you may remember we worked with last year to produce their Save the Date cards. We've custom mixed the colours to match the table runners. Can't wait to have these invites printed, they're going to be quite stunning. 

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Wipe your feet

Yesterday's lesson was an important one - if you're going to drop a little ink on the studio floor, make sure not to stand in it.

Especially if it's Pantone Violet. I'm normally very clean with my inks, but violet just gets everywhere. It took me over an hour to realise that I'd stood in a little violet blob, and then proceeded to walk it all around the studio, in the office, and in my kitchen. Being 31 weeks pregnant, I have trouble reaching my toes (*cough* more like my knees...) so Adrian was on the scene on all fours with a turps rag.

A tiny blob of violet can spread out to cover a quarter of a studio's cement floor when turps is applied. But let's just say that's arty, and that the studio's floor now looks a little more creative.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Baby Dolton

I've just had the absolute pleasure of working with Victoria and James to design and print a set of baby announcement cards and note cards for their second baby. Until now, I wasn't really considering printing announcement cards for our own little arrival (due in 10 weeks), but now I'm convinced I will.

This design incorporates the Palm Cockatoo illustration I produced a couple of weeks ago, scaled right down. I was excited to see it prints beautifully at this size. I'll definitely be illustrating a lot more for our work in the future.

These cards were designed to match the first set of cards that Victoria and James had printed in the US by Sesame Letterpress for the arrival of their first baby. Make sure you check out Sesame Letterpress's beautiful work on their website.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

A little professional development

It's an exciting week for us this week. Lots of gorgeous new designs and clients, as well as a 3-day course specialising in creative businesses. I love the opportunity to sit down with other creative business owners and bounce ideas off eachother. I always end up learning so much that I can take back to Poppy. So stay tuned - I've already got some great ideas on improving our processes and production, and can't wait to bring them on board.

The course runs Wed-Fri this week, all day, so please accept my apologies for being late to respond to emails and phonecalls during this time (but it'll be worth it!).

Friday, February 27, 2009

We love illustrations!

Here at Poppy we think that there's nothing more special than having your stationery custom designed and printed just for your big event. Well, perhaps the only thing that could top that is to have a custom illustration as part of your design.

I've been illustrating and painting my entire life, and I'm just so happy now to have a job that lets me do it every day! And I've been watching Eessu's talent for art develop for the past 14 or so years (her drawing skills are far better than mine!), and you can bet that I'll be encouraging her to use these skills at Poppy Letterpress.

We've been working on designs for some baby announcement cards for an expectant couple, and have had the pleasure of developing a couple of illustrations for them to consider using on the cards. We started with a galah, but he didn't quite fit right, so we then spent some time on a Palm Cockatoo. I just love him, he looks so cheeky.

The original illustration is quite large and detailed and too good to just use only once, so we've decided to produce a short edition of prints. I'll be framing the first one off the press to put in our new baby's room. More details to come.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Claire & Adam

I recently worked with two dear friends of mine on their engagement invitation postcards. Being the creative folk that they are, Claire and Adam designed and screenprinted a tree graphic on the front of the card, then had Poppy print the details on the back with the press.

I'd love to do more collaborations like this. I find that letterpress can look incredibly effective when combined with other types of printing. And it's quite easy to match the ink colours as well.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Rosemary & Kui

I loved working on this design. The peachy colour was so unique, and I really enjoyed drawing flowers for a while. It turned out to be such a clean, crisp design, and is one of my personal favourites.

The font for the names printed so well that it looks like actual handwriting. I'd encourage more brides to use fonts like this. It's classy, but still has that personal touch to it.

You may recognise the flowers from Eessu's first print. I had the plates handy after finishing these invites, and couldn't help but print from them again. Even in black they still look so feminine and soft.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Poppy on Canberra's Got Style

Today Poppy Letterpress is proud to be featured on Canberra's Got Style, a great site showcasing the many talented folk here in Canberra. I find it incredible that for such a small city, we have so many crafty people, which is easy to see when you visit one of our markets on the weekends.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Kate & Rob

We had the pleasure of working on this design with Kate and Rob recently. Like many couples these days, Kate and Rob wanted to steer clear of complicated and elaborate designs, and instead focus on the country garden theme of their wedding. Kate is lucky to have an aunt to handle the calligraphy of the guest's names. The names were written in a yellow, so the invitation needed to be simple and neutral.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Meet Eessu!

I'm so excited to welcome Eessu to the Poppy Letterpress team!

Eessu has been one of my dearest friends since we were kids, and she's got to be the most creative person I've ever met. Sporting a visual arts degree in printmaking, Eessu will be here helping me print while I'm pregnant (and hopefully for much longer!). This means that we won't have to shut up shop for the last months of my pregnancy, and we can still offer full service to all clients. It will also give me more time to work on exciting new designs.

We've been doing a little training in the studio, and Eessu completed her first print run today: black peony notecards.

Keep your eye on this girl, she's going to be printing up a storm!