What is letterpress?
Letterpress is a good name for this printing process because it's exactly how it sounds. Ink is applied to a raised surface and pressed into a sheet of (ideally) thick and soft paper. In the “old days” of printing (starting with Gutenberg in the 1400's up to the 1970's or so) the mark of excellence for a printer was just a light “kiss” where the impression was barely distinguishable. But since then faster and cheaper ways of flat printing have been developed so now we love that deep impression. Today the mark of excellence for a letterpress printer is a deep impression on paper that provides a “pillowy” effect with little or no ink climbing the “walls.”
How much does it cost?
The price depends on the design you choose, quantity and paper quality. De Milo has online price calculators for each invitation package and a custom estimator for custom jobs. For both package and custom designs the prices can be determined for any number of printed pieces. No increments of 25, 50 or 100 are required as with many stationery providers. Purchase only what you need and no more!
Can I order free samples?
Can I alter existing designs?
Click here to go to our sample store and order them online. We must charge a bit to cover time and cost of materials. Up to $25 of sample orders can be applied to your final order. If you want a free random sample, send a self-addressed and stamped envelope (with at least 2 ounce's worth of postage) to:
De Milo Design Studio & Letterpress
1401 Mission Street
South Pasadena, CA 91030
Be sure to include a note telling us that you’re requesting samples.
Yes. Some packages are easier than others to alter. And we’ve also mixed and matched packages like Astor envelopes with the Walden design. A few can be changed with no additional cost. The easiest to tweak is the traditional Ornament design where you can supply your own art at the top or in the background of the piece. Others may require an extra fee for the extra time they take to produce.
What are my payment options?
Mastercard, Visa, Discover or American Express are the easiest methods for remote, and sometimes even local, customers. Check is OK if it is received before the package has been shipped or picked up.
What papers do you use?
Over the ten years that De Milo has been in business a lot of favorites have accumulated. Click here to read about them in the paper section.
What is your return policy?
Because of the customized nature of most of our work refunds are not permitted. Press deposits may be held if printing must be delayed (please give at least two weeks notice) but cannot be refunded. Stock items such as thank you cards or blank envelopes may be returned for 80% refund with a 20% restocking charge.
What ink colors do you have?
Click here to view our stock ink colors or you can order any Pantone© color for a small custom mixing fee.
Can you give wording advice?
to the experts for wording. Check out weddingchannel.com for expert advice from Peggy Post.
Can you do a rush order?
Sometimes we can squeeze something into the schedule. Basically it means a couple of people stay up all night. But sometimes letterpress is really important (we get that!) so if possible we'll make it work. A rush charge may apply.
How long does it take?
If you check in with Annika about getting a press date in advance (even before you know your wording, design choice, etc) it can usually get it done in two to three weeks. Without a press date scheduled it could take three weeks if we’re lucky or a couple months if it’s really busy. Call 626 403 0317 if you don’t have a press date and we’ll figure it out.
How do I order?
Email or call Annika at 626 403 0317. Together you can figure out a good target date to go on press with your order. She can help you create a pre-press checklist/schedule for what needs to get done by that date.
What does my proof look like?
Actual letterpress proofs are very costly because they require the making of plates and setting up the press. Usually we rely on mailed samples (of previously printed projects) and pdf proofs via email, mail or fax. Click here to download a sample pdf proof.
Do you spellcheck?
Adobe Illustrator is our software of choice for proofing and it has a reliable spellcheck tool that is run on each proof before it’s sent out. But this doesn't catch names or other proper nouns. Please review your proof carefully! Your final approval is what we print.
Do I pick it up or do you ship?
Usually we ship by UPS. Or pickup can be arranged at our studio in South Pasadena, California.
Can you finish with rounded corners or gilted edges?
Most deckle edge papers need no finishing. But if you would like rounded corners or bordering let us know and we'll call our experts.
Why don’t my envelopes have glue on the flaps?
Some of our envelopes are custom die-cut and the cost of applying remoistenable glue is excessive. In these cases we supply glue sticks to ease the assembly process.
Do you provide calligraphy?
De Milo does provide digital printing for most envelope styles for $1.50 per address. We do not do calligraphy in house, but try the following excellent resources. We will ship letterpressed envelopes to any calligrapher you desire.
Eli Evertson (Santa Monica, CA) 310 828 3865
great copperplate script. Very prompt and reliable.
Joyce Teta at the Calligraphycentre 336 724 5475
Many style choices. Excellent quality if you can get her!
(Fontana, CA)909 803 2972
A lovely modern alternative to traditional calligraphy.
Will you mail my invitations for me?
Not usually, but occasionally we have international customers who need mail service. Let's talk!
What about hand canceling?
Hand canceling is a good idea for all wedding invitations because it reduces the “wear and tear” during the mailing process. Many urban area post offices do not hand cancel. But it’s a good idea to check. If the answer is no, click here to find out about a service offered by the post office in Loveville, Maryland.
Where do I get my ceremony program templates?
Usually we letterpress the cover or the "belly band" for programs and leave the inner page laser or ink-jet printing to you, but talk to us about letterpress printing the inner content if that’s your desire. If you plan to create your own content, download the MS Word "booklet" style program or the MS Word "tri-fold" program.