Oct 20

Kimberly & Melissa's Letterpress Invitation Suite

Kimberly and Melissa were a fabulous couple who booked our services after falling in love with Francesca's letterpress work. As they would be having their wedding ceremony in New York City and their reception at Power Plant Productions the following day, we helped them stay within budget by suggesting their reception invitation and reply card be done using letterpress and their ceremony invitation and reply card be printed digitally. 

The letterpress invitation suite used a striking, bold type-face while the ink color used was grey. Their color palette included blue and pink, and these were utilized as accent colors in their ceremony invitation set. But there was one other place the pop of pink was used: Kim and Melissa asked that the letterpress invitation be edge painted with pink! (Pictures can't do the edge painting justice, you'll just have to drop by and see us to see it in person!)

Kim and Melissa would request that the same type-face and color palette be carried through the rest of their wedding stationery and design work. Their digitally printed ceremony program was two-sided and featured the wedding party on one side and the ceremony program itself on the other.

Finally, this style, color palette, and type-face was carried through onto their photo booth footer as well as their thank you card sets.

We had a fantastic time working with Kimberly and Melissa on their wedding invitation suite! We wish them both the best on their new life together :)



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Sep 01

Danielle & Zach's Aldie Mansion and Library Inspired Invitation

We first met Danielle after she reached out to us at the behest of wedding and event planner, Wendy Hartigan of Wendy's Affairs of Heart. Danielle was in the midst of planning her wedding with fiance Zach at Aldie Mansion in Bucks County, PA. 

She knew that she wanted a letterpress invitation: she loved the texture of the paper and the feel of letterpress. For her invitation design, Danielle asked Francesca to use the facade of Aldie Mansion as her inspiration. Francesca then went to work designing the elegant wedding invitation with the facade of the amazing mansion eventually letterpress printed (by Paravano Printing Company, of course!) across the top.


 The edges were painted using the pink tone that Danielle had selected for the mansion giving an extra pop of color. 

The letterpress printing was ideal for the printing of this facade, as it gave more depth and texture to details as small as the windows and doors on the mansion.

She also had a plan on how her invitation was to be housed. Danielle and Zach would spend the next year buying used books at different stores, each title picked out specifically for one of the 90 individuals or couples they would be inviting. Zach was then tasked with hollowing out a section of the books in which the invitation would rest, while Danielle took to designing and attaching a pocket to hold the reply and insert cards that Francesca would design. This was all finished off with a pink ribbon with a wax seal at the top! 

The day-of stationery carried the Aldie Mansion facade to her ceremony program. But, it was her seating card that would continue the book theme Danielle had requested with a seating card designed using an old-style library card for inspiration.


It was absolutely terrific working with Danielle and Zach this past year, and we wish them the very best on their new life together!

If you would like to set up a free consultation with Francesca, email us at francesca@littlewomandesign.com, or call 267-481-4093.



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Jul 08

Letterpress for All

We've said it before, and we'll say it again: Little Woman Design is in love with letterpress! And, from our experience this past year, more and more couples are falling in love with letterpress as well with almost a third of our couples choosing this impactful printing method for their wedding invitation suites.

Letterpress printing is a work of art. Each piece is hand-printed, one at a time (see video of Philip Paravano of The Paravano Company at the end of the article), using a metal or polymer plate created from a Little Woman Design. There are two common ways letterpress printing is used on a wedding invitation suite. The first may be to press an ink color into the paper (usually a double-thick cotton paper). The ink used is hand-mixed according to the Pantone color atlas to achieve a color as close to what our couples want as possible. Looking for a certain shade of blue to match your bridesmaid's dresses? The Pantone inks are the closest way to achieve the result. 

The second way letterpress can be used is to blindly (using no color) press into the paper to cause an effect where you can see a design pop off the paper as in the Philadelphia skyline in the invitation we designed (pictured above). Whichever way is used, there is no doubting that letterpress printing is one of the most tactile printing methods — your guests will be running their fingers over your custom designs amazed at the way these effects were achieved.

Normally, one or two colors are used on an invitation as each color will require a different plate to be made. The more plates and inks that are used will increase the cost of printing which is one of the main reasons that couples will stick with this limited number of colors. To add a third pop of color, more and more of our couples are opting to have the edges of the invitation painted.

While some couples request that the edge painting be done using one of the main colors from their invitation, others are seeing edge painting as an affordable opportunity to add a third color from their wedding color palette to their wedding invitation suite.

Whether one, two or no ink colors are used, there's certainly no doubt that letterpress printing is a striking way to get your guests excited for your wedding day! For a free consultation with Principal Designer Francesca Staffieri, please contact us by emailing francesca@littlewomandesign.com or calling her at 267-481-4093.

Special thanks to The Paravano Company for providing the images and printing of the work for this article. Check out the video below.



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Mar 04

Frequently Asked Questions at Wedding Expos

Little Woman Design was thrilled to participate in three wedding expos in the past two weeks! Over the weekend of February 23, 2013, we exhibited at the Main Line Bridal Event at the Radnor Hotel as well as The Bridal Event at The Philadelphia Racquet Club. On March 3, 2013, we had the pleasure of being a part of the Sixth Annual Gay and Lesbian Wedding Expo in Bucks County! At all three of these shows, we met with many wonderful couples who were not only interested in checking out our samples, but also had many questions about their wedding stationery and timelines. We've picked the most popular questions that we heard over these past two weekends for this week's blog!

  • When should we send out our save the date? The time that you send out your save the date is dependent upon what you're hoping to achieve, and when your wedding date falls. We typically recommend sending out your save the date 9 – 12 months in advance if you are getting married on a holiday, holiday weekend, or during the summer months. Many people make their vacation and holiday plans up to a year in advance, so it would be wise to send out your save the date sooner rather than later. Summer holiday season runs from Memorial Day weekend until Labor Day weekend. You should also send out your save the dates 9 – 12 months in advance if you are inviting many out of town guests. If you are sending out a save the date to set the stage and get guests excited about your wedding, you can send them out between 6 - 12 months in advance. 
  • When should we send out our wedding invitation? We normally recommend mailing out your wedding invitation 8 – 10 weeks before your wedding. Your RSVP date should be set 3 - 4 weeks before your wedding day as you will need to let your venue know as soon as possible your final head count. While you may not want to think about it, there will be some guests who you have invited who have forgotten to reply by the date sent. You will need to allow yourselves enough time to track these individuals down before letting your venue know.
  • How much does (fill in the blank) cost? While we have some basic pricing available on our website, there is so much variability in printing methods, paper stock, envelopes, and other materials, that it can be difficult to rattle off a price on the spot. Your quantity also will affect how much the total cost may be. The best recommendation we can make is to schedule a consultation with whomever you decide to meet with for your wedding stationery, be upfront about your budget (if you have one), and ask your graphic designer to make suggestions on how to keep you within the budget you've set for yourself. Several couples we've met recently wanted letterpress invitation suites. By being upfront about their budget, we were able to make suggestions on how to cut the cost of the suite while still having their wedding invitation suite letterpress printed.
  • On that note, why is letterpress printing more expensive than digital printing? Letterpress printing is not only laborious but requires the use of many more materials which contribute to the cost: 1. Metal or polymer plates need to be made once your design is finished. 2. Unlike digital printing, letterpress printing uses hand-mixed inks which correspond to the Pantone color swatches giving you a very close color match to your wedding color palette. 3. Normally, thicker paper is used to achieve the best impact of this printing. And, 4. Each invitation is printed one at a time. The combination of these factors increase the cost of the wedding invitation.
  • What wording should I use on my wedding invitation? During our consultations, we will ask the questions that will help guide the writing of your wedding invitation. Who is paying for the wedding? Is the ceremony and reception at the same venue? Is there a dress code? Are you doing a sit-down dinner or a buffet? These are only some of the questions that we ask during our consultations to aid us in determining what the best way to design and write your invitation will be. For instance, if the couple is paying for the wedding themselves, they are the hosts of their own wedding and the copy may be written as "The honor of your presence is requested at the marriage of …" If the couple would like to recognize their parents they may write "Together with their parents …" We are always happy to make etiquette suggestions and will ensure that your wedding invitation communicates all of the important information that is needed.
  • Where do I put my registry information? We strongly advise our couples NOT to put their registry information on their formal wedding invitation. It may be a matter of preference, but it detracts from what you are trying to achieve by inviting your guests! The main reason you are inviting them to your wedding is to help you celebrate, not because of the toaster they are potentially going to buy you. If you want to pass on your registry information to your guests, we recommend the following: 1. Have your bridal party spread the word. Or, 2. Set up a wedding website which includes further information about your wedding including registry information. We can design you either a separate insert card or a business card style wedding website card to communicate this information, if desired.

While these were the most popular questions we were asked, there are still many more that can be answered! If you have a question that you would like us to answer, please feel free to leave it in the comments section below! Or, set up a free consultation with Francesca by calling 267-481-4093, emailing us at francesca@littlewomandesign.com, or fill out our contact form here.

Thanks to BG Productions for the photograph of us at The Bridal Event at The Racquet Club!



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Sep 10

Introducing… Little Woman Design!

Little Woman Design Video from Little Woman Design on Vimeo.

Videography by BG Productions

As we approach our one year anniversary of opening Little Woman Design, we are constantly looking at ways to not only expand our products and services, but also promote ourselves as well! We have many things in the works for the next six months that we will be able to share soon enough, but what we are most excited to share with you today is a video properly introducing ourselves as well as showcasing some of our portfolio!​

When we opened our website, our About page was lacking photographs of ourselves! Sure there were biographies of Francesca and me, but we wanted people to be able to put a face to the names! Enter our good friends at BG Productions!​

Cathie and Al are the husband and wife team who own and run BG Productions – a fantastic photography/videography team! We met Cat and Al when we were shopping photographers and videographers for our own wedding. Sitting there in the Starbucks across from these amazingly talented professionals, we clicked immediately with their personalities and style and hired them on the spot for our wedding! And, from many of the photos that you have seen on our very site, you can see the art and craft that Cathie brings to her photographs, bringing our work to life on the screen.

​When it came time to have professional headshots done, we turned to Cathie and Al! In speaking with them about having headshots, we also began to talk about having a video produced. One that would properly introduce us to the guests who visit our website. One that would tell the story of Little Woman Design. And, one that would properly showcase my amazing wife's talents. 

On Thursday, July 19, 2012, Francesca and I nervously became the stars of our own video. It now adorns the home page of our website, and can also be seen at the top of this very blog! We hope you enjoy it as much as we enjoyed making it! 

Let us know what you think by leaving a comment below!​

Special thanks to Genevieve Scoleri from Glamour Me Fabulous Make-up for providing Francesca's hair and make-up services, and Laura Eaton of Soiree Philadelphia for allowing us to film in the space. Most importantly, thank you to BG Productions! You guys rock, and we can't thank you enough:)​



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