A Blog by Dauphine Press

Madison Park Greetings 2010

Thanks to successful collaborations in 2008 and 2009, we’ve designed and printed 12 new counter cards in partnership with The Madison Park Group, which debuted at the National Stationery Show last month. In addition to popular everyday card themes, this year’s collection also includes seasonal designs for Valentine’s Day, Graduation, Easter and Mother’s Day in three new color palettes: pale lilac & deep chartreuse, spring & sable, and seafoam & claret. These pretty paper pleasures were designed by our in-house dynamic duo of Matthew Meikle and Heather Landry and printed on Mohawk Options Vellum 100% Post Consumer Waste cardstock. For more information about The Madison Park Group or to search for retailers in your area, click here.

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San Francisco Ballet Silver Celebration

This year, Dauphine Design had the honor of working with the San Francisco Ballet to design the event invitations and materials for their opening night gala celebrating creative director Helgi Tomasson‘s silver anniversary.

Early on in the design process, a stark palette of white, silver and gunmetal gray was established. Later at our presentation of several concepts to Helgi and his wife Marlene, he personally selected a minimalist design in which the words “Silver Celebration” were printed in a whisper of varnish on the white cover of the invitation. We incorporated silver foil on the metallic vellum flysheet inside the invitation, as well as on the belly band {which, when removed, revealed the letterpress “Silver Celebration” on the cover}. Metallic elements were also introduced in the envelope liners, the silver response envelopes and the die cut menus which sat inside each dinner plate at the event.




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The event was also a tribute to Helgi’s entire family. Cabernet from their private vineyard was poured, photos taken by his son Erik were used throughout the invitations, and his wife Marlene was honored with a Lew Christensen medal which recognizes extraordinary service to the San Francisco Ballet.

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The Silver Celebration was, by all accounts, an affair to remember. We are proud to have been a part of the festivities!

A Letterpress Calendar for the Overly Organized

Every autumn, just as wedding season begins to ebb, we perpetually work on a very interesting project that stretches our creativity well beyond
graphic design and printing. Our wonderful client, Graphic Communications, came to us many years ago to commission a unique letterpress calendar as a year-end gift to their clients. Each page of the calendar includes three months, but with every passing month, the user changes the page so that they are always looking at the current month plus the two ahead. So instead of designing a simple twelve months, we design each month three times with no repetition of artwork or themes.

We collaborate with Graphic Communications each year on a new theme which often includes a liberal sprinkling of literary pith. For the 2009
calendar however, we all stepped down from our lofty laurels to create a Hollywood theme, replete with 36 caricatures of famous actors ranging from Woody Allen to Julia Roberts. Each head shot was illustrated by the brilliant Antony Hare. Then character was painstakingly separated and rendered into two to three spot colors by Dauphine Press designers Katrina McHugh and Heather Landry.

On the 2010 calendar, we decided upon cities of the world as our global theme. As in years past, the idea became a collaboration with several of us searching for 36 perfect quotes and images to weave through the calendar. I was thinking along the lines of New York, London, Paris and other obvious metros, but our well-traveled client had more off-the-beaten-path locales in mind. “How about Bogata and Damascus? Tripoli and Kiev?” The challenge then was to research and find stock images that were evocative of these more obscure destinations. The theme quickly evolved into a vintage travelogue which we think fit the project beautifully. Heather Landry continued the design with a beautiful airmail themed cover page that included vintage postage stamps from various countries. She also designed two vintage travel postcards that were included with each calendar to allow recipients the opportunity to voyage vicariously to these exotic destinations.

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Deborah Tanaka: Love Maud

Last week I came across a very fun business card which we printed for Deborah Tanaka, a Bay Area designer with a long history in children’s fashion, graphic design and surface design. Deborah illustrated the card by hand and often embellishes the cards with watercolor and stitching before giving them out – a sweet touch that speaks volumes about her new passion for handmade goods. Love Maud is Deborah’s socially and environmentally responsible line of children’s’ clothing and accessories. She says “I made my choice to leave the corporate clothing industry to embrace the Slow Fashion movement like many designers in the US and Europe. Here in Northern California, there are many indie fashion design studios creating high fashion from recycled and organic materials. I am one of those designers.”

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This Friday, April 30th, Deborah is exhibiting at the new Roots Collaborative, a local, handmade artisanal marketplace in Mill Valley, California.

We are very lucky to know Deborah through her daughter, Dauphine Press Creative Director, Erin Shetterly Burns. We turned to Deborah last year as a design resource for our Bar and Bat Mitzvah invitation collection. We wanted the line to impart her inspired, youth-focused point of view that we found so fresh and appealing. We also needed the designs to be true to the Dauphine Press sensibility, as well as hold equal appeal to parents and their tweens. Deborah knocked it out of the park with several different concepts which have proven very successful. Below are two of her designs.

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We look forward to seeing more of Deborah’s work as she evolves her Love Maud line through her new designs and inventive use of materials and fabrications.

The Hamlin School – Spring Gala Invitation

For several years, we have worked with The Hamlin School, a private girls’ school in San Francisco, on invitation projects. This year we again collaborated with the school on a colorful and fun invitation for their Spring Gala which took place at San Francisco City Hall and featured Bollywood dancers. This year’s theme  was “Live. Work. Play.” and the invitation design focused on a hand drawn floral Mendhi design.

In setting the theme for the event, we designed the invitation for offset (flat) printing to achieve full-page knockouts that gave the large-format invitation a pop of color. We chose a bright pink envelope with the return address and floral motif letterpress printed in silver ink. The motif also spilled over to the front of the envelope when sealed. We also designed and printed a translucent fly sheet as an added layer to  and was slipped into the oversized tri-fold invitation.

We were delighted to learn that the event was a wonderful success for the school and we look forward to working with the ladies from The Hamlin School again next year.

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