To go Letterpress or Digital?
For me, it's a no brainer... But I totally understand that you might have to stop and question it because naturally getting letterpress wedding invitations will be more expensive than getting digitally printed ones. So why bother? Well to help make your decision, I've come up with a few simple comparisons and I want you to answer which one you'd prefer reading/ listening to/ viewing/ receiving/ consuming/ doing:
- Book or Kindle?
- Vinyl or iPod?
- Polaroid picture or instagram?
- Postcard or email?
- Homemade roast or microwave meal?
- Theatre or TV?
Admittedly, the second option to all of these questions are undoubtably easier, more convenient and in today's world sometimes the only answer in certain circumstances. But if you had a choice, if you had the time, patience and budget, wouldn't you also go for that distinctive crackling sound of a vinyl record over the polished stereo version of Radio Gaga? Is it nostalgia that makes me want to choose to hold an actual polaroid picture of my grandad rocking a pair of speedo's in the 1940's rather than a 5 times filtered 'selfie' that's mostly viewed on a tiny screen? Ok so not only is the content way better in the vintage format, but the format itself is on another level too!
There is just something rather charming about getting a postcard through your letterbox- it's that extra thought that's gone into it- the choosing of the card itself, writing it, going through the bother to find the address, finding an old stamp in the bottom of your handbag, only to realise it's out of date, having to go to the post office in a foreign country and trying to communicate with someone who's now looking at you like your a total moron as you mouth out the word 's t a m p' in your best faux english accent as possible and then finally trying to find a damn postbox to try and send it, which doesn't actually get to your beloved until you've arrived back home 2 weeks later (by which time, they've probably of dumped you for being so rubbish at being in contact)! What a palarvia!! Ok, I take it back, I'm going to stick to emails! Ha, no but seriously, I believe that people genuinely appreciate and love the sentiment of this lovely object being hand delivered through their door.. It's the personal touches that really evoke meaning and feeling.
The letterpress stationery that I do here at Retro has exactly the same sentiments behind it- each individual invitation/ business card/ coaster or whatever it may be, is hand printed, hand crafted, made with love and hopefully the end product shows this. It is on a completely different level to digital prints- every single letterpress job will be slightly different, some may be a little (slightly) wonky and they will never be as 'perfect' as something that's been ran out of a machine, but it's these imperfections that I personally love. And I'm not going to lie, it would be a hell of a lot quicker, easier and cheaper to bang out something in Photoshop that 'has' that letterpress look', but this is all it will have... It won't have the feel, the texture and the quality to it as an actual letterpress product has. And this process is the more expensive route to take, not only because the end product is much much nicer (in my humble opinion), like a homemade pie, but because of the time taken, level and skill involved to produce such items.
So to conclude, lets go back to the questions... And I'd say, if you're veering towards the first options on most of them then you're on my team all the way- stick with me and get your letterpress stationery done with Retro! You're also more than welcome to pop by the studio and have do a little workshop if you fancy... But in the meantime, keep playing those vinyls that you pick up at a cheeky car boot and just keep me in mind!