Crane In Action: Day of the Dead and Adorable Bunnies

Day of the Dead Party Invitation Closeup

Here at the Crane & Co. factory (think Santa’s Workshop meets the Newspaper Printing Room), the letterpress machines whir and hum, our oh-so skilled engravers work meticulously on intricate designs and our borderers artfully paint the edges of stationery in brilliant hues all by hand.

Which is all just a fancy way of saying we are hard at work crafting our customers’ orders all day. So it isn’t surprising that we often come across some truly innovative designs, which we’d love to share with you here…

A Bunny Thing Happened…

Thalia Et Bubu

We love this design because it could be a baby shower invitation, a children’s book cover or even a save-the-date. It is, however, a design for an adorable children’s boutique in Switzerland, Thalia Et Bubu.

The design was sent to us by Marianne Domec, owner of Un Petit Mot in Switzerland. Printed digitally on custom cut fluorescent white 100lb cover stock for 500 pieces, the customer-furnished artwork was designed by Haydé, author of the “Milton” books edited by Joie de Lire and illustrator of the posters of Petit Théâtre in Lausanne, Switzerland.

Tres bon, don’t you think?

The Grateful Dead…

Day of the Dead Party Invitation

We can just picture the vibrant music, colorful decorations and mouth-watering food at this soiree celebrating one of Mexico’s most treasured holidays, Day of the Dead (Dia de los Muertos). Printed digitally in raspberry ink, pewter grey ink and black ink from supplied art, this invitation came to us from Camilla Brink Stationer in San Antonio, Texas.

Que brillante!


Think Pink For the Holidays

Breast Cancer Awareness Holiday Card
It’s October, which means we’ve been thinking pink. The NFL does it. Avon does it. And yes, we do it, too. Crane & Co. is celebrating Breast Cancer Awareness Month by donating a portion of the proceeds from our Peace, Hope, Joy Holiday Card to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation.

It’s a lovely card, if we do say so ourselves. The color is Hibiscus — quite festive, don’t you think? The printing process is engraving, which is oh-so very elegant. And the card itself is 100 percent cotton paper, which means it’s super sturdy and rich in texture. Not to mention environmentally friendly. Oh, and it’s completely customizable.

The number of cards we sell will determine the portion of proceeds we can donate, so get a leg up on your holiday to-dos and get shopping!

Our Shiny New Personalized Stationery Promotion

Neapolitan ice cream. Larry, Moe and Curly. Good things come in threes. It’s a sentiment we here at Crane & Co. certainly believe, which is why we’re very excited to announce our latest personalized stationery promotion.

We’re calling it – drum roll, please – Three Steps to Style, and it’s all about offering our customers the bespoke luxury they expect from Crane & Co. while making the ordering process wonderfully easy and cost-savvy. How great is that?

Crane Enthusiasts have two options, both starting with three simple steps and ending in 50 notes or correspondence cards for $99. That’s about a 40 percent savings, which means you’ll have money left over for those charming thank-you notes you’ve been eyeing.

But back to the promotion.

Step one:Choose from either 12 template design styles or create your own using a design from the Crane & Co. albums. Step two: Choose from seven ink colors. Step three: Choose from seven envelope liner colors.

“Our customers love our personalized product, but they also entertain full social calendars, so we wanted to offer a promotion that was both customizable and simple,” said Crane & Co. Business Manager Extraordinaire Antoinette Hajdas. “We’re excited about our Three Steps to Style promotion because it truly is the perfect way to get the best of both worlds.”

How do we love thee, Three Steps to Style? Let us count the ways: You are the perfect gift for, oh, everyone on our list this holiday season. You are so in my budget I can add an order all for myself to my shopping cart. You are so simple I can spend less time online and more time writing letters.

With those wonderful reasons in mind, we’d say it’s time to shop.

Oh, one more thing: Three Steps to Style continues until December 24.

The Picture Perfect Holiday Photo Contest

Everyone’s eyes were open, no one thought bunny ears would be funny and the sun hung at the perfect height in the sky. All the (metaphorical) stars aligned for the perfect family photo, and you’ve been anxious to send it to all of your friends and family ever since – in the form of a holiday photo card, of course.

Crane & Co. knows that feeling – when everything, you know, clicks. Which is why we launched a new collection of digital holiday photo cards that inspires the same bespoke luxury Crane & Co. is known for. The designs will make you feel warmer than a slice of just-out-of-the-oven pecan pie, and, they’re all on a thick, matte-finish private label paper that’s simply stunning.

It’s all very exciting. So exciting that we’re hosting the Picture Perfect Holiday Photo Contest. Entering is oh-so easy: Just email your perfect photo – the one you would love to see on your holiday photo cards this year – to and our panel of esteemed judges will choose their favorite.

One lucky winner will receive 100 complimentary digital holiday photo cards (your design choice, of course). No need to say cheese, we think you’re smiling already.

What’s the criteria, you ask?

Your photo has to be appropriate for a holiday photo card. We thought it was a beautiful sunset, too, but we think grandma would rather see her granddaughter.

Your photo should be 1275 X 1785 pixels and in .jpg form.

You must be 18 years of age to enter.

One photo per person, please.

Please include a short (2-4 sentences) background story about your photo. Yes, your family is beautiful, but we want to know why you’re all wearing wet suits.

There’s more, which is all below in our Terms & Conditions. Pour a cup of tea and dive in.

Terms & Conditions

By submitting a photo, the contestant grants Crane & Co. permission to publish the submitted photo, as well as names, city and captions submitted to Crane & Co., for marketing purposes. Slight photo alterations may be made by staff in order to fit size restrictions on our digital marketing platforms. If children under the age of 18 are in the contestant’s photo, a parent or legal guardian must approve submission of said photo.

The contest ends at 11:59 p.m., New York time on November 7, 2011. Entries must be received before the end of the contest to be eligible. Any received after November 7, 2011, will be disqualified.

Only one photo per contestant is permitted, and it must be submitted via email and in .jpg form.

All submitted photos have an equal opportunity of being scored by our industry judges. Photos are judged on quality, composition and ability to capture the spirit of the holidays. Photos will be judged with no discrimination toward sex, race or age. All decisions are final. Crane & Co. reserves the right to refuse any photograph they deem unacceptable for any reason.

To encourage the joy that is a spontaneous photo, professional photos are not encouraged. If a professional photo is submitted to our contest, however, Crane & Co. will not be held responsible. Contestants will be responsible for obtaining any and all consents, approvals and licenses required in connection with their participation in the contest.

Crane & Co. expects to select a winner on or around November 14, 2011. The winner will be announced 10-14 days after the winning photo has been selected. The Winner will be informed via email and the prize will be release within two weeks of the announcement. If the winner does not respond within 48 hours of being contacted, a new winner will be chosen.

By entering the contest, contestants are automatically signed up for the weekly Crane & Co. e-newsletter.

The winner will receive a promotional code via email that he/she will be able to apply to the selection of 100 cards of his/her choice from our digital holiday photo card collection. The estimated value of this prize is $200.00. The 100 cards must be of the same design and must use the same photo as submitted for the contest. Crane & Co. reserves the right to substitute a prize of equal or greater value. The winner may not exchange the prize for cash or any other merchandize or service. The winner will be solely responsible for all applicable taxes related to accepting the prize.

Contestants are granting Crane & Co. an irrevocable, royalty-free, worldwide right and license to use your entry in connection with the contest and feature your entry and all its content in connection with the contest in all media (now known or hereafter developed). Contestants agree to sign any necessary documentation that may be required for us and our designees to make use of the rights contestants grant above. Contestants will not receive any compensation or credit for use of their entry, other than as described in these terms and conditions.

The potential winner will be required sign an affidavit of eligibility, a liability/publicity release and other documentation. If the potential winner does not and return these required forms within the time period stated on the winner notification message, Crane & Co. may disqualify that person and select an alternate winner.

Crane & Co. is not responsible for any unauthorized use of contestants.

By entry this contest, each contestant is, to the extent allowed by law, releasing and holding harmless Crane & Co., Inc and its subsidiaries, affiliates, employees and agents from any and all liability arising from or in connection with the contest or any prize won.

You are not eligible to participate in the contest if you are an employee or an immediate family (parent, sibling, spouse, child) or household member of Crane & Co. or any of its subsidiaries, or a person involved in any part of the administration or execution of the contest.

Crane & Co.ters related to this Contest. The contest is void in Puerto Rico and wherever else prohibited by law.

Crane & Co. + Mother Nature = BFFs


paper cottonAs a famous frog once said, “It isn’t easy being green.”

But we like to think Kermit has since changed his mind. After all, one doesn’t have to stray far from his lily pad to find 7th generation cleansers, recycled paper towels and organic produce.

But enough about what’s under your sink and in your fridge, what about the little luxuries in life you look forward to so much? Being eco-friendly is something Crane & Co. has always prided itself on, and – not to toot our own environmental horn, but, okay, sure — we kind of did it without even knowing it.

Back when breeches and mutton chops were a la mode – 1801 to be exact — Zenus Crane began making paper using recovered cotton and linen fibers.

Allow us to provide you with a brief explanation of the two ways we make 100 percent cotton paper. Don’t worry, there won’t be a quiz at the end, though you might want to tuck this away for future cocktail party fodder:

During the cotton ginning process, the highest quality fibers are chosen to make textiles, but a lot of fiber doesn’t ‘make the cut,’ and that’s where Crane & Co. comes in. We take those leftover fibers, called linters – a name given to the tiny fibers that stick to the cottonseed – and turn them into some mighty fine paper.

The other way we make our paper is by collecting the excess trimmings from cotton broadcloth used for textiles.

During the actual paper-making process, a few details that should inspire sweet dreams in which you’re writing beautiful thank-you notes by the boxful:

* Our wastewater treatment plant makes sure the only thing going in the Housatonic River is the occasional canoe.
* We purchase more than 70 percent of our energy needs from a facility – which we helped create — that burns our papermaking residuals.
* We mix some of our residuals with municipal leaf and lawn waste to make topsoil.
* We’re in the process of developing alternative energy resources, such as a biodiesel facility, biomass energy facility and hydroelectric power plant.

As far as trees, well, they do have their purpose: hanging hammocks, providing picnic shade and accommodating squirrels.

Crane & Co.’s New Personalized Stationery Collection: Sneak a Peek

  Christmas in July, at least for paper-philes (and you probably wouldn’t be reading this blog if you weren’t), has arrived. Well, almost. Think of it as New Stationery Eve, as the paper elves have been very busy at Crane & Co. recently, and tomorrow we’ll unveil our new personalized stationery collection.  Yes, like proud expecting parents, we’re a little biased, but we must say, we’re smitten. Ah, there is so much we want to share with you about our new collection, but you’ll just have to block out some quality time to browse it in its entirety yourself. In the meantime, we got a sneak peek (it’s amazing what a box of chocolates and notes gushing with praise can do) of some of our delicious new offerings, and, well, we’re terrible at keeping secrets.

What we can tell you without getting our paper privileges revoked, is that this collection has taken Crane & Co.’s classic hand craftsmanship – which is what we like to think our admirers adore about us the most – and given it a fresh new twist. Not like a laser beams and holograms kind of twist, but rather design offerings that get more personal than ever before – without making you blush, of course.

But enough of being abstract, a few new features you can look forward to in the new stationery collection are:

  • New monograms (hand drawn, of course) that even the most fashion-forward scribe will fall for.
  • Bright, bold new hues for not only the paper itself but the edges as well. Dandelion, Persian blue, hibiscus – we suggest playing ‘She’s a Rainbow’ by the Rolling Stones at full blast when crafting such colorful correspondence.
  • Personal cards (i.e. calling cards) for new moms, singles, artists and anyone else whose networking style is more whimsical than Windsor Knot.

It’s all very exciting, in fact, we’re pretty sure visions of lettering styles and envelope linings will be dancing in our heads tonight. If we can even fall asleep, that is.

Crane & Co.’s New Personalized Stationery Collection: A Few of Our Favorite Things

Selecting our favorite pieces from Crane & Co.’s personalized stationery collection is like a parent selecting the favorite child. They’re all so creative… charming… genius in their own way.

But also like proud parents, we simply can’t resist the opportunity to gratuitously gush. We’re lucky paper can’t blush.

Why can’t all paper have swirly edges? The ones on these delicate note cards make us want to take scissors to everything square shaped. Though our handiwork wouldn’t look nearly as striking, so we’ll just leave it to the professionals and dote from afar.

How could you not smile when you see this hibiscus-hued note card with matching envelope in your mailbox? We imagine it would go something like this: Bill… junk mail… bill… wrong address… oooh, what’s this?

Okay, we confess we’re a bit obsessed at the moment with everything hibiscus-colored, but we’re also obsessed with Crane & Co.’s new hand-engraved monograms, like the one on this calling card. (Don’t you love calling cards? They make us want to attend an elegant soiree just to pass them out.) The detail is simply stunning, we like to think it was made with expert precision and care just for us. Come to think of it, it was.

Crane & Co. In Action

Every day Crane & Co. comes across the work of talented designers doing amazingly creative things on paper. It makes us want to have a wedding every year just to send out these postal-sized works of art. Or we could just throw fabulous invitation-only party after fabulous invitation-only party.

Instead, we simply remain insanely jealous of the recipients of these beautifully designed invitations. Below are some of our recent favorites, all printed on Crane & Co. paper, in no particular order:

Mama's Sauce yellow shoes invitation on Crane & Co. paper

Designed by Mama’s Sauce, the bride- and groom-to-be wanted a mix of playful & classic, with one very important detail — the shoes! The result was a tri-fold wrap using 110# Pearl White Crane & Co. Lettra. We think the wax seal is a most fantastic touch.

Moxie Press science invitation on Crane & Co paper

Yellow must be the color du jour, and we’re not complaining one bit. Invitations to celebrate earning a Masters in Forensic Science, so clever! From the desinger, Moxie Press: “Here is a lovely two color let­ter­press grad­u­a­tion party invi­ta­tion printed on 100% cot­ton Crane’s Let­tra paper in a bright and sum­mery sun­flower yel­low and dusty gray.  The theme for this grad­u­a­tion invi­ta­tion was sci­ence.  I was inspired by the fun shapes and pat­terns you find in sci­ence like the ellipses of an atom or spi­ral of a dou­ble helix.”Moxie Press science invitation on Crane & Co. paper

For anyone who thinks simplicity doesn’t capture personality, we present this delightful design by J Fletcher Design. The main invitation (below) was letterpressed cherry veneer duplexed with Crane Lettra off-white. In the words of the groom/designer: “So rad.” We tend to agree.

J Fletcher wedding invitation on Crane & Co. paper

Crane & Co. Goes Back To School

Picking out the perfect lunch box, the perfect backpack, the perfect first-day outfit. It’s a lot of pressure being a kid, especially when it’s time to go back to school. For us adults, it’s a time with little significance other than the reminder that you’re only going to get colder and busier.

But when you’re a kid — go ahead, close your eyes and reminisce — the first day of school is simultaneously the most frightening and exciting experience of the year (unless of course you’re getting braces put on/taken off). It’s a day that takes, for some, weeks — sometimes months — of preparation.

With pint-sized best interests in mind, Crane & Co. has selected a handful of our favorite back-to-school items. Even better, they’re all 10 percent off until August 31. Pens, journals, desk accessories: Here are the items we think definitely make the grade.

Back in the old days, we used to research our science projects by dragging out gigantic, dusty encyclopedias and sitting in the library for hours (no checking out those puppies). Kids these days — as our grandfather would say — are lucky enough to have information at their fingertips. We love this simple, sturdy iPad cover, which can be personalized with her initials — and as many stickers as she likes, of course.

Everyone knew that girl in school — she always wore the cutest shoes, had the most perfect handwriting and packed the best lunches (Hummus! Mango! Toblerone chocolate!). The kicker: she was also really, really nice. We like to think that girl carries this Kate Spade pencil case, which is equal parts simple, sophisticated and whimsical.

We won’t promise these brightly designed pens will make spelling drills more fun, but they certainly are fun to look at, and use. Just make sure to bring a less exciting writing instrument to lend out to your neighbor — leopard print is for your hands only.

Taking notes, day-dreamy doodling, top secret information for your best friend’s eyes only. Just because members of the younger generation covet their cellphones, iPads and Facebook doesn’t mean they don’t enjoy using good old fashioned pen and paper. We love these personalized journals — so bright, so colorful, so just like the kids in your life.

Pen Pals Wanted


This contest is now closed (but do feel free to read on!).

This morning we woke up feeling nostalgic for a pen pal.

But first, a flashback: Fifth grade, Ms. Lily’s class. She is holding a stack of white envelopes, each containing one of our names awkwardly scribbled on the front. Through big cursive script inked in green on wide-lined notebook paper, we learn our pen pal’s name is Michelle. She is from Maryland and has a Golden Retriever named Bluto (after the ‘Popeye’ character). Some students write to their pen pals for the obligatory three months. We write to Michelle, and she to us, for the next three years.

It was then that we first became enamored with the art of letter writing. Though we have embraced the immediacy of email, there is nothing quite like ink gliding over paper, recording the events, feelings and nuances from the week. Or day. Or year. Likewise, no Inbox subject line comes close to the feeling one gets when sifting through the day’s mail to find a personalized envelope. (We’re smitten just thinking about it.)

To celebrate the art of letter writing — and indulge our own nostalgia — we’re inviting fellow enthusiasts of classic correspondence to become our pen pals. Write us a letter, and we’ll write you one back. It’s that simple.

To sweeten the experience, every pen pal will be entered in a contest to win an assortment of Crane & Co. paper goodies.

If you love the idea as much as we do, please feel free to spread the word and, of course, write us a letter. Our pens our ready to go.

Please send letters to:

Crane & Co. Pen Pals

44 West 28th Street, 8th Floor

NY, NY 10001