You know, the computer screen just doesn't do any of this work justice, but that's certainly not going to stop me from gushing. And this year there's a number of innovative twists on this old-timey medium which always makes for compelling work. So, here you are, best of the best (at least from my seat) printed pieces of 2010.
This poster is most memorable for it's darling childish hand and classic message. A father & son collaboration, by Studio on Fire and Koen (age 6), the doodles were assembled digitally and letterpressed 14x20" with yellow and gold ink. $30 for sale here.
No doubt Studio on Fire is on more than a few yearly top lists, they are a perennial favorite, and not without good reason. They get a second mention here because their 2011 calendar is simply astonishing. 6 select illustrators grace the 12 months of the calendar, which comes with it's own (also letterpress) display easel. Four colors, including metallics, which definitely makes for an incredible production value. Super, super legit.
This piece gets mention solely for its surprising use of...sprinkles. Yep, those sweet little spheres we all know and love. Instead of ink, a combination of varnish and bookbinding glue was silkscreened onto the paper and the the sprinkles were poured on while the mixture dried. Genius! By Excuses Design Collective.
Wedding invites designed and printed by Kelli Anderson. The invite incorporates a handmade handkerchief, screenprinted with a map to the wedding itself, housed in a letterpressed sleeve. What a breathtaking way to memorialize the event! Instant heirloom. Beautifully photographed, Kelli also put together a thorough write-up on the process behind it here on her blog.
Another ingenious entry in the crafty wedding file: Jennifer & Kevin's save-the-date. After getting engaged in Paris, the couple used the classic French film The Red Balloon as their design inspiration. Balloons were custom printed and then tied to lush letterpressed cards for a result that's perfectly charming.
I chose specifically because it uses Intaglio, an aged printing technique which is far less common than letterpress and far, far more finicky to execute. This piece is obviously a stunning testament to true handmade craft. Designed & printed by Canadian design shop, Working Format.
Cheeky copy, elaborate illustrations, and turquoise & orange inks make me want to frame these coasters instead of actually using them. Designed by Parliament of Owls and printed by the Cranky Pressman.