V-day

As "love day" is fast approaching, here is a little glimpse into my Etsy shop that features a number of love-inspired cards and prints, perfect for your special someone. Whether you plan to celebrate V-day in person or via snail mail, chances are you might find something you like. Have a look and don't hesitate to contact me with any questions!

xoxo

Little square card

I still remember very vividly printing this little card for the first time. I just purchased my press, I received a “new” set of antique metal type, and I was so excited to put it all to work! I cut the paper to proper size. I set the text in metal type, by hand, letter by letter. I struggled a little to make it all fit and to lock the design in the chase of the press. But after some trial and error, I was able to make it work and turn the flywheel of my beautiful Pearl to produce this tangible result.

There is nothing like that clicking sound of the press in motion and the beauty of the print (that you can feel) at the end of it all. This is what made me fall in love with letterpress and what will forever keep me printing.

Lately, there has been some interest in this little square card in my Etsy shop and that makes my heart so happy. To think that this is one of the very first designs I printed on my press, and that a couple of years later clients recognize the beauty of it too, is so very special. Thank you for that.

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2017 in review

We just said goodbye to 2017 and welcomed a brand new year! I wanted to take a minute to reflect on this past year and the wonderful custom print projects and collaborations I was blessed with. I had the pleasure of working with some very talented individuals and created the below collage of my favourite projects from last year. Here is a little bit about each one:

- top left and middle: custom note cards and holiday cards for calligrapher Amy Jade Lore

- top right: candle dust covers for Sunday Blooms

- middle left and right: wedding invitations for calligrapher Little North Company

- center: portrait from my studio session with Melanie Mathieu Photography

- bottom left: custom print of song lyrics for an Etsy client

- bottom middle: print created in collaboration with Amy Jade Lore 

- bottom right: print designed and printed by yours truly for Melanie Mathieu Photography 

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A special feature - Melanie Mathieu Photography

This past weekend I had the immense pleasure of having Melanie Mathieu, a very talented documentary style photographer from Ottawa/Gatineau, visit my letterpress studio and capture my creative process through her camera lens.

Besides being busy with maternity, newborn, family photo sessions, and weddings, Melanie also visits spaces of small business owners, documents their creative processes and asks them a series of questions about their businesses. I'm honoured to say that I'm featured on Melanie's blog as part of her "Do what you love" project! Please head over to Melanie's website to see more images from our session and to check out all of her amazing work.

Melanie's photography style is simple, honest, authentic, and so very unique. I'm so grateful for her attention to detail and talent and I will cherish these photos forever. 

In the best company!

I have been immersed in this book for weeks now! I'm talking about "In the Company of Women" by Grace Bonney. I'm nearing the end of it and just the thought of finishing this book makes me sad. When that happens I may have to start from the beginning again!

This book is a wonderful gathering of conversations with creative women and entrepreneurs from all walks of life. From writers to graphic designers to painters, ceramic artists, musicians, textile designers, interior designers, you name it! 

The book is filled with advice and inspiration for aspiring small business owners. I can see a lot of myself in some of the women featured in the book. Reading through their answers to Grace's questions, I see similarities in the way of thinking about life and creative career. I also spot the same fears or concerns. But what I love the most about these women's stories, are the words of inspiration that they share - their favourite quotes, sayings, words of wisdom that were passed down from family members. Here is my favourite by my already all time favourite Ralph Waldo Emerson:

And as I'm reading through this book, I'm thinking back to how I got started doing what I love - letterpress printing! I'm thinking back to how my husband and I transported my 700 lb antique printing press on the back of our pickup truck from Toronto to Ottawa on a beautiful sunny day three years ago now. It's good to remember those moments and reflect back on them so that we don't forget why we started.

Just recently I printed the print pictured below featuring another beautiful quote by Emerson. "In the Company of Women" showcases women who did what they were afraid to do (most of the time) and the amazing paths those decisions led them onto. 

Bye bye 2016, hello 2017

As we are saying goodbye to 2016, here are my Instagram's "2016 best nine", photos that received the most likes on my Instagram page. This is a pretty perfect gathering of images, if you ask me: my beloved printing press, blind impression which I'm so fond of in letterpress printing, my print of Leonard Cohen's lyrics (Leonard, I'm your fan forever), and my very first print on the Pearl, right there in the middle! I'm so grateful to have my beautiful Golding Pearl in my printshop and to be able to create letterpress magic and share it with the world. So yes, I would (still) rather be printing!

Thanks so much for following along. Happy New Year!

Karolina xoxo 

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Attraversiamo

I loved "Eat Pray Love" (the book) by Elizabeth Gilbert just like any other girl. I also loved "Eat Pray Love" (the movie adaptation of this book). I thought the movie was an honest depiction of the story which is not always the case with movies based on great books.

Few months ago I happened to watch this movie again and I loved it as much as when I watched it for the very first time.

Re-watching the movie inspired this little print that I created shortly after. The way this beautiful Italian saying "attraversiamo", which in English means "let's cross over",  is intertwined into the story of this movie really moved me. I thought to myself, what a great idea for a print!

This print would make a lovely wedding gift (from one partner to another) or a perfect heartfelt message one could send to that special someone in their life.

Stillness

"Go outside. Don’t tell anyone and don’t bring your phone. Start walking and keep walking until you no longer know the road like the palm of your hand, because we walk the same roads day in and day out, to the bus and back home and we cease to see. We walk in our sleep and teach our muscles to work without thinking and I dare you to walk where you have not yet walked and I dare you to notice. Don’t try to get anything out of it, because you won’t. Don’t try to make use of it, because you can’t. And that’s the point. Just walk, see, sit down if you like. And be. Just be, whatever you are with whatever you have, and realise that that is enough to be happy. There’s a whole world out there, right outside your window. You’d be a fool to miss it."

- Charlotte Eriksson (author, songwriter, producer and wanderer from Sweden)

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♡♥♡

I posted this collage on Valentine's Day to my Instagram account, and even though it is after the fact, I wanted to share it here as well. 

Here is a compilation of love inspired paper goods (cards, prints, bookmarks) that I designed and printed over the last few months. Some were printed with wood type, some with metal type, but all were printed by me by feeding one sheet of paper at a time into the press.

The beauty is in the details and love is at the core of this slow printing process.

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You can find all the items pictured in this collage in my Etsy shop

 

A lovely mention in Little Blue Canoe's blog post

Kelly of Little Blue Canoe wrote a super fun blog post entitled "A Valentine's Card for 25 Different Types of Lovers" in anticipation of this year's Valentine's Day. It is so great, that even though it is now a week past Valentine's, I still wanted to share it.

 Image source : Little Blue Canoe {https://www.littlebluecanoe.com/blogs/news}

Image source : Little Blue Canoe {https://www.littlebluecanoe.com/blogs/news}

I haven't yet had a chance to mention it, but you can now find some of my letterpress cards in Kelly's online shop! One of them is my "love is all you need" card (metal type printed in red ink on 100% cotton paper paired with a rustic kraft envelope). 

 Image source : Little Blue Canoe {https://www.littlebluecanoe.com/blogs/news}

Image source : Little Blue Canoe {https://www.littlebluecanoe.com/blogs/news}

And this card, along with a very fitting caption, got mentioned as # 16 in Kelly's blog post :) Go have a read! And while you are at it, be sure to check out Kelly's fantastic online shop and support Canadian makers.