There are so many styles and colors when choosing holiday cards and giftwrapping. Whether you choose classic and traditional or modern and trendy, just remember there is no wrong choice! I tend to gravitate towards modern colors but my husband is a tried and true traditional color guy so we tend to alternate each year, ha!

This is probably my favorite time of year, and designing holiday cards always puts me in the Christmas spirit! We put a lot of care and detail into each of our cards and I wanted to share a little behind the scenes on our process here at Wit and Whimsy Paperie.

My design process for creating greeting cards usually involves hand-illustration, hand-lettering, and/or typography based designs. The process starts by sketching ideas out then transferring those to tracing paper, with black ink pens, to create a more detailed and refined layout. A side note—¬It is best to draw images twice as big as the final size to insure crisp details. Once I am happy with a concept it is scanned in and the design and colors are tweaked in illustrator. After the design has been finalized we print out a film negative using our film output system. This film is then used in our plate-maker to produce a polymer plate. Each color in a design requires its own plate; our greeting cards usually have 1 to 2 colors/plates. Finally, these plates are used on our Vandercook SP-15 to print each color and card individually.

This year, I started with our personal card that was inspired by my two dachshunds. Nothing says “dachshund obsessed owner” like this card does, ha! Here are a few examples of my process in action:


1: The final sketch, ready to be scanned in. I drew each part of the design separately so it would be easier to tweak them once in illustrator.

2: The two film negatives, cut and ready to be used in our platemaker. You can see that this card will have two plates for the 2 colors printed.

3: A close-up of one of the polymer plates. The design is raised up and backwards so that when we print them it is pressed into the paper right side up.

4: A shot of the finished letterpress card!


Now you know a little bit more about letterpress and our process; feel free to give us a call or email if you have any questions or just want to know even more about letterpress!

We hope you have a wonderful holiday season and have fun with your greeting cards this year!

<3 Heather

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