If you had to distill the essence of your company into artwork that could fit on a single dollar bill, what would it look like? More importantly, what paper and printing techniques would you use? This was the challenge Legion Paper set 32 designers and exhibitors at this year’s National Stationery Show, with the goal of using the resulting “cash” to drive traffic to the companies’ booths. The result is a fascinating mix of printing methods, design styles and papers that not only gives you a real feel for the people who created them, but also fits nicely into a wallet no paper lover should be without.
First, the moola. The 32 dollars were printed on sheets chosen by the designers from Legion’s robust catalog of 3,000 different papers (from 16 countries), including:
- Mirri Pak Rainbow 16 pt. & Plike Black 330 gsm
- Stardream Crystal 285 gsm
- Legion Art Coated Cover 300 gsm
- Curious Metallics Galvanized 250 gsm
- Strathmore Impress Ultimate White
- Curious Skin Dark Blue 270 gsm
- Sirio Ultra Black 680 gsm
- Gmund Brillanca Gold 110 gsm.
The range of printing and finishing techniques used was just as dizzying – everything from laser die cutting, holographic foil and blind embossing to foil stamping and letterpress. As if that wasn’t enough, the dollars varied in design from humorous (Porkchopstick Studios’ “Squealy Bucks”) to the political (Big Wheel Press’ $5 note with Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s portrait above the slogan “Persist”).
But the star of this already stellar exercise in currency creation has got to be the striking wallet designed by Reyn Paper Co. and printed by Henry & Co. on Neenah’s Plike Orange 122 lb. Cover. On its surface printed pizza slices, pigeons and food carts share space with blind embossed design elements. Removing the elastic closure opens the wallet to reveal several pockets made of Neenah Stardream Amethyst 105 lb. Cover just perfect for stashing your creative bucks inside.
This cash may not be legal tender for all goods and services, but as a reminder of how creative our industry can be, and the sheer range of papers available to us, it’s right on the money.
Design: Ash + Chess, Little Lovelies Studio, Porkchopstick Studios, Alexis Mattox Design, Hester & Cook, Lovebird Paper, PaperAcorn Co., Underwood Letterpress, There will be Cake, Good Juju Ink, Heartell Press, Bonnie Marcus Collection, Inklings Paperie, At Some Point Press, 417 Press, Smart Pants Paper Co., Ilootpaperie, Violet Clair, Sparkvites, The Witty Gritty Paper Co., Miks Letterpress, Ferme à Papier, Warren Tales, Colleen Attara Studio, The Little Red House, Flair & Paper, Paper Pop Cards, Ginametrical, Stationery Trends, Big Wheel Press, Up With Paper, and Carlson Craft/The Occasions Group.
Print: Henry & Co. (Wallet); dollars were printed by companies the individual exhibitors typically work with