Today’s wedding stationer interview is with Vanessa of Manhattan-based Blacker and Kooby! Thanks for sharing with us today.
How did you get started doing wedding invitations?
As a child, I always loved Arts and Crafts. As an adult, I was a financial services marketer for Chase Manhattan Bank, who painted and sketched on the side. My family business, Blacker and Kooby, was going through some changes, and I decided to work with my father.
The minute I joined the business, I knew what I was born to do. Essentially I like making things look better. I love color, texture and type. I love engraving and letterpress. I love the romance of fine paper and setting the tone for an event with a beautiful invitation. It is quite psychological matching a bride and groom with their invitations, and I enjoy the process.
See more of the interview after the cut!
My job is very life cycle oriented. When I first joined the business, I related to the wedding couples because I had just gotten married. Next came the birth announcement customers, since I had my two children shortly thereafter. As time marched on, I related to the Bar and Bat Mitzvah parents, and now it is the wedding invitation parents. Because I relate to my customers, I truly feel I am helping them.
I have just done wedding invitations for a lovely bride, named Maxime, and it was a thrill for me because I have printed her birth announcements, her Bat Mitzvah invitations, her Sweet Sixteen invitations, and now the Wedding.
What is your favorite color combination?
I like going a little bit with the unexpected. People expect an ecru invitation with a gold edge. Why not use silver instead? I love a wedding invitation engraved in a midnight blue, or an eggplant… a “not black” color as a substitute.
What is the most unique invitation you have designed?
I just did a triple panel gold beveled invitation with two color engraving and created a crest for it, with a French theme. It was a challenge the engraver, customer and me. It was an evolving process, with a lot of input from the mother of the bride. I listened and made it happen, with many details in mind. I have created dioramas of Manhattan, and I once did a Cinderella wedding invitation.
Do you have a favorite typeface?
For a traditional script, I love the Crane’s Oxford Script. It is oversized, elegant and so visually stunning. If you are going contemporary, I’m a sucker for Helvetica or Avant Garde.
What is the most bizarre request you have received?
Well, I don’t love putting deceased parents on a wedding invitation… but in the end the customer decides what they want. Also, I once did a sympathy note for a man and his dog, together.
Ampersand or the word “and?”
Traditionally, we use “and”, and avoid most abbreviations. For contemporary taste, you can’t beat a stylin’ ampersand!
Any advice for brides?
Yes, I really do. When you really don’t know what to do, tradition is a very good guide. When you want to do something out of the box, explore what is traditional, and use that as a “jumping off point”.
Do you offer more than just stationery?
Our focus is mainly stationery. We specialize in event driven printing and accessories, such as guest books, thank you notes, programs, menus, escort sets and place cards. We do both hand calligraphy and computer addressing. We create custom postage, and stuff, seal and mail the invitations for a fee.
Thanks Vanessa! For more on Blacker and Kooby, check out their WeddingInviteLove profile, or head straight to their website.