Today’s stationer interview is with illustrator and letterpress printer Chantal, of Papillon Press! Enjoy:
How did you get started doing wedding invitations?
It all happened rather suddenly. In 2009, I saw a classified ad for a letterpress and typecases and decided to buy it. My husband and I (with the help of many friends and family) moved the 1500 lbs. cast iron beast 7 hours north to our first location, in Sudbury, Ontario. Papillon Press, The Illustrated Press, was born. We began designing custom wedding invitations, and have since branched out to include a ready-to-order invitation collection and greeting cards. We have since relocated our studio to Westport, Ontario.
Read the full interview after the cut!
What is your favorite color combination?
Currently it’s cerulean blue and pale yellow. It’s a very classic colour combo.
What is the most unique invitation you have designed?
The latest custom invitation I designed was for my brother-in-law and his fiancé, who gave me carte blanche to do whatever I wanted. I went for a highly illustrated design (being a trained illustrator, that’s my go-to), with a toile pattern on the back of the heavyweight announcement card, illustrations of a gristmill and windmill, hand-drawn type, and a custom-printed envelope. All letterpress printed, of course.
Do you have a favorite typeface?
Yes! Caslon Pro. I prefer classic book sérifs like Caslon, Garamond, Book Antiqua, Century Schoolbook, etc, probably due to my love of early 20th century children’s books.
What is the most bizarre request you have received?
It’s more of a funny story. Friends of ours ordered our Heartland invitation suite, went the whole nine yards with it: letterpress, 2 colours on each piece, favour tags, etc. They spent quite a bit on the invitations and it all looked great. My husband and I were invited to the wedding. When we arrived, we were met with one of my husband’s high-school friends and her husband. The husband was holding the invitation in his hands like it was a ticket that he needed to hand over to gain admission. As we kept conversing with them, I could see him fiddling with the invitation until finally, he started rolling it up like you would with a crappy program someone hands you at a graduation. I had a gut reaction, launched myself and him, ripped the invitation out of his hands and yelled “What are you doing?!?!” while trying to iron it out with my hands. He was sheepish and I was indignant. All I could think about was the amount of work and money that had gone into those invitations!
Ampersand or the word “and?”
Tough call. I typically go for “and” but in a decorative script with flourishes.
Any advice for brides?
Make sure you get the timing right and give yourself enough time to plan for your invitations. Especially when ordering letterpress invitations; remember they are all handcrafted and the last thing you want is for your stationer to feel rushed and then rush your invitations through production.
Do you offer more than just stationery?
Yes! We have a collection of greeting cards sold in stores all over North America and Europe, which can also be purchased on our website or through our Etsy store. We also take on printing projects, so if you have your own artwork, send it to us and we can letterpress-print it.
Thanks Chantal! For more information about Papillon Press, please visit their WeddingLovely Vendor Guide profile or head straight to their website.
Do you have any questions or comments for Chantal? Add them to the comments below!