I was fortunate enough to experience the 2011 National Stationery Show (NSS) while helping out Ja from Ilee Papergoods. This was her fourth Stationery Show and I had a great time learning from her and attending the premier trade show for the stationery and greeting card industry.
|Ja Teuber from Ilee Papergoods|
Ja began her business in 2001 doing calligraphy and custom letterpress invitations, but by 2009 had transitioned to creating ready-made letterpress cards. She works on a Chandler and Price press and includes up to 5(!) rich colors in each card. Since every color has to be printed separately, her cards are truly tiny works of art. Ja also puts out an amazing desk calendar each year which is letterpressed and screenprinted and a fantastic gift for yourself or favorite paper fanatic. Check out Ilee’s Etsy Shop for more info.
I met Ja earlier this year when Meredith MacLeod from Stubborn Twig Design introduced us during a studio visit. Meredith is an artist whose imagery is inspired by nature, textiles, color, and birds. Her original mixed media pieces are layered with paint, ink, and collage and created with handcarved stamps and non-toxic ink. Meredith and her cards can be found Saturdays at the Bayview Farmers Market on Whidbey Island or on Etsy. This was Meredith’s first Stationery Show and her friend Cathy of Little Packrats helped her out during the three and a half day show.
|Meredith and Cathy at the National Stationery Show|
The NSS ran Sunday, May 15 through Wednesday, May 18 and though buyers and other exhibitors mentioned that the show was much smaller than in years past, I felt like there were a plethora of awesome, small, letterpress and screenprinted lines exhibited this year. While a wee bit intimidating and often overwhelming, it was fantastic to see the booths of card companies I love, and find new companies over which to drool!
|A smattering of business cards|
One morning while boarding the shuttle to the Javits Center, the text “Chico, CA” on a name tag caught my eye. Later that day while wandering around the show I found Rebekah Tennis from Wild Ink Press. It was fun to meet and chat with Rebekkah and her mother-in-law Aubrey and before I left, Rebekah gave me this card:
|“life in Chico” by Wild Ink Press|
It pretty much sums up the fun stuff to do in Chico–use it as a guide!
All in all I’m so glad I was able to go to New York and get an in depth experience at the Stationery Show. Many thanks to Ja and Meredith who made my trip possible AND worthwhile!