sneak peek | Socialology

Socialology Business Card // multi-level emboss, letterpress, offset, foil-stamp // designed by Akula Kreative / printed by In to Ink [pinit]


Here's a super special sneak peek at another project we just wrapped up today! So much is in the works that we haven't had a chance to blog about it all yet...but you won't be disappointed!

Socialology is an event planning and design company based in Washington, D.C. and they are the proud new owners of a gorgeously crafted stationery suite! This business card is our combines offset, letterpress, foil stamping, a multi-level emboss, AND edge painting. We love it and couldn't be more proud.

Thanks to our wonderful client Jasmine, talented calligrapher and artist Andy Luce of Visual Armory, and awesome printer In to Ink, and for making it happen!

a stop at In to Ink

Press Checking at the Letterpress Shop Like I mentioned earlier, press checking is something of a treat for me. I never leave without learning something new, and I have the wonderful team at In to Ink to thank for that. Today, for example, I stopped by to take a look at our letterpress Christmas cards that were supposed to be printed "blind" (aka, without ink) on white cotton paper. In my head, I thought it would look really elegant, but when I saw the sample I quickly realized a lot of the detail was lost without ink. Most other printers would have just run the job without thinking twice, leaving me with several hundred cards that were cute but mediocre. Instead, Larry (the letterpress expert at In to Ink) laid a swatch book on the table and asked, "So, what color do you want to try?" About twenty test prints and three roller-cleanings later, I ended up with a metallic silver with a hint of purple and a tint base swept with copper dust. Umm, never in a million years would I have come up with those sitting in front of a computer!

Lucky for me, I've found a gem of a printer that not only looks out for my best interests (i.e., our clients' best interests), but lets me participate in the process every step of the way.

Here's a sneak peek at our new letterpress card:

Letterpress dog Christmas card


Define Bottle | letterhead suite design

luxury brand stationery suite, letterpress, foil-stamp, cotton paper [pinit]


So we're not 100% sure how Define Bottle found us through Google, but we're sure glad they did. The creators of a reusable glass "fruit infused water bottle" contacted us in August to bring their brand to life, and when they showed us a prototype image, we hopped on board. With the help and expertise of AN Design Lab, they have developed a product that is not only beautiful, but also supports healthy habits.

Define Bottle Here's what Carla, Co-Owner of Define Bottle, had to tell us:

Tell us a bit more about your line of work. What products do you offer?

We are the creators of a reusable glass "fruit infused water bottle." The nature of our bottle allows the consumer to put fresh fruit, herbs, etc. in the bottom portion of the bottle. The fruit is held at the bottom half of the bottle, and the bottle is then filled with water. It allows you to have fresh fruit infused water without any chemicals or added sugars. Plus, it looks really cool to see the floating fruit in the bottom half of the bottle.

We couldn't agree more. In fact, we already ordered a set and can't wait for them to arrive in December!

If a potential client were to see your branding, how would you want it to make them feel?

I would want them to think it was modern, sophisticated, classy, and a bit fun.

If you were to describe your brand in 5 words, what would they be?

Driven, smart, athletic, healthy, and likes nice things.[hr]

With that in mind, we came up with a custom logo, color palette, and pattern:

[threecol_one]Define Bottle | Custom Logo Design[/threecol_one] [threecol_one]Define Bottle | Custom Color Palette[/threecol_one] [threecol_one_last]Define Bottle | Custom Pattern Design [/threecol_one_last]


Fast forward to a few weeks later, and we have Define Bottle's new letterhead suite! We kept it modern, clean, and fresh, and increased the luxury factor by way of cotton paper, double-sided letterhead, wrap-around address labels, and a truly unique business card.

luxury stationery suite, letterpress pattern business card, foil stamp



Letterhead // Offset printed on Classic Crest 24# Writing (2 Pantones on front, 1 Pantone on back) Wrap-Around Address Label // Offset printed on Mactac Metro 60# Crack'n'Peel (1 Pantone) #10 OE Envelope in Cement

The business card has been offset printed in 1 Pantone on the front, then foil-stamped in yellow. On the back, the Define Bottle pattern has been letterpress printed in 1 Pantone. Two sheets of Savoy 118# Cover have been glue mounted to make one thick, classy card! If only you could see (and feel) it in person...

For stationery, we got a little creative. Using one of the patterned second sheets, we made an A2 envelope liner; for a card, we used an A2 flat card in cement (to match the #10 envelope), then wrapped one of the address labels around the top left edge. Instant stationery at little extra cost!

luxury brand business card, duplex, glue mount, letterpress, foil-stamp, cotton paper, dusted



Here's a detail shot of the shimmery back of the business card. The printer had a little fun with this and dusted a select few with silver- and blue-toned powder. So beautiful! We love how this pattern turned out. It brings the suite together so nicely.

For more info about Define Bottle, check them out on Facebook, Twitter, or their website. You can help them reach their fundraising goal by clicking HERE and pre-ordering a bottle of your own!

For our other post on Define Bottle's social media branding, click HERE.

an equestrian-inspired letterpress business card

equestrian horse shoe letterpress kraft business card

Business Card // Letterpress in Pantone 4625 U // Brown Chipboard Paper (22pt.) // Custom Die Cut

equestrian horse shoe letterpress kraft business card



Hot off the press this week ::

Here is a letterpress business card we designed for Annie Alessio, who has just branched out on her own as a Real Estate Transaction Coordinator here in Del Mar. Inspiration for this equestrian-themed card comes from Annie's love of animals and down-to-earth personality. The card not only commemorates her late horse "Chip," but also nods to Del Mar's favorite past-time: horse racing.

We love these inverse rounded gives the card that extra bit of personality but stays true to Annie's simple, straightforward tastes.

Best of luck with your new business, Annie!

the branding of akula kreative

Creative Branding | Stationery Suite [pinit]


Since we talk so much about other companies' branding, we thought we'd share some of our own today. Here's what we use for our simple, clean, creative everyday correspondence:

  • Standard Business & A2 Kraft Envelopes // We like the dark, heavy kraft paper.
  • Custom-made Return Address Stamp // We stamp using white ink.
  • A2 Stationery Postcard // Our seaweed graphic has been clear foil stamped on black paper.
  • 2-Color Letterpress Business Card // It's pretty standard, but the design is clean.
  • Custom Engraved Wood Flash Drive // This is how we send files to clients now.
  • Washi Tape // These match our colors and pattern and do a great job sealing envelopes.

We like to call this look Coastal Organic. (Oooh, fancy!) The stationery suite has a lot of texture (which we love), and the materials (cotton paper, recycled paper, wood, and soy-based inks) are eco-friendly.

Overall, our goals were to create something UNIQUE that 1) wouldn't break the bank, and 2) felt personal, professional, yet laid-back...just like us. Or so we hope.

Creative Branding | hand stamped kraft envelope in white ink

// detail of return address stamp //

Creative Branding | clear foil stamped design on black paper

// detail of clear foil //

My Private Jeweler, Inc. | combining printing techniques

To view larger versions of the images below, just click on them! My Private Jeweler Letterpress Letterhead Suite

Introducing My Private Jeweler, Inc.—a new, exclusive private jewelry consulting company in San Diego! Grace, the GIA accredited small business owner, needed business cards and stationery that could live up to her client's high expectations and refined tastes. She wanted a clean, sophisticated look combined with luxurious textures and quality paper.

My Private Jeweler | Letterhead Suite

In lieu of standard letterhead, we created a stationery postcard for everyday correspondence. For her A2 notes we used 100% cotton paper off-set printed with a single Pantone. The design is clean and simple, with limited text on the front and a diamond weave pattern lightly screened on the back. A return address is elegantly printed on a Curious Metallics envelope in Lustre, calling to mind the sparkle of precious metals.

My Private Jeweler | Letterpress Foil Stamp Emboss Business Card

The business card, however, is the star of the show. Here we have a glue-mounted piece using Strathmore Writing Wove 130# cover in Ultimate White. This card is literally two cards in one, making it one-tenth of a millimeter thick. On the front, the slim, detailed text has been letterpressed, giving it texture that exudes quality. The sapphire ring has been off-set printed—it was simply too complicated to print any other way—then clear foil stamped to give it a subtle sheen, then embossed with a multi-level sculptural die. On the back, the diamond weave pattern has been clear foil stamped to complete the elegant-yet-understated look.

So there you have, letterpress, foil-stamping, and embossing in one piece!

a love-a-bull valentine's day | special edition letterpress card

pit bull valentine's day card [pinit]

It's a Valentine for pit bull and dog lovers everywhere! Check it out in our Etsy shop by clicking HERE.


Greeting : None (Blank Inside) Size : 4 Bar (3.5″ x 4.875″ folded) Fold : Top Ink : Soy-Based, Pantone BlackU Stock : 100% Cotton, Brilliant White (tree-free, archival, acid-free, recyclable & biodegradable) Printing : Letterpressed in limited quantities in the U.S.A.

Quantity : 1 Card with 1 Envelope in RED

Meet Nani, our pit bull mix. Once a quivering bundle of fear at the Humane Society, Nani has become an integral part of our family. She enjoys napping in the sun, chewing on tape and superglue without permission, and dismembering and de-fluffing new toys. The background of this card features a dog-bone pattern in the lightest of light grays.

pit bull valentine's day card


* This special edition card comes with a coin envelope filled with hand-punched heart-shaped confetti and one blank, unattached pink banner. Think of it as a very simple DIY kit. You write your own message and attach it to the card wherever you like, then you fill the red envelope with confetti. Ta-da!

For FREE SHIPPING in February, use coupon code BEMYVALENTINE at checkout!

A portion of the proceeds from all dog cards will go to animal charities in San Diego.