Personalized Profile: Stationery for the Very Very Fine House

To suggest to us that personalized stationery makes a lovely gift would be preaching to the choir. Be it for a hostess, a new baby or a new graduate, we have never met a recipient who did not express genuine glee upon opening our signature blue box (baby excluded, of course). However, when we heard that personalized stationery was the gift of choice for one New York City real estate broker to his clients, even the choir’s ears perked up.

Of course, such a gift makes perfect sense. What better way to celebrate the purchase of a new home than with its address printed on an envelope flap? Below, Kyle Haas shares some advice on how to pinpoint someone else’s personal style and the importance of leaving a lasting impression—one handwritten note at a time.

realtor-gifts

What do you love most about giving personalized stationery as a gift to your clients?
When a client purchases a new home, there is no more perfect gift than personalized stationery with their new return address on the envelope. The clients are always appreciative and I, from a business standpoint, know that they’ll think of me each time they use it. That’s so much better than sending a generic postcard or email to keep in touch.

How do you go about choosing a design that best fits your clients’ style?
One of the other great things about giving personalized stationery is that it’s, well, personalized. I can take cues from my clients’ décor or personalities to help me decide which fonts, colors and styles to choose. If I’m not sure of design choices, the Crane Concierge has been very helpful.

What is normally the reaction from clients to this gift?
My clients are always very appreciative. They all remark about how perfect the gift is and seem taken by the thoughtfulness. I really can think of no better way to leave a lasting impression after my clients close on their new home.

Should you care for more advice on how to give personalized stationery as a gift, please don’t hesitate to contact our Crane Concierge at concierge@crane.com.

Personalized Profile: A Mother of the Groom Takes Note

fresh-ink-personalized-stationeryThese exquisite gold engraved cards and notes were created for a recent client by Fresh Ink, located in Jackson, Mississippi. The client, a “mother of the groom,” wanted distinguished stationery for correspondence regarding parties, notes of appreciation and general letter writing during such a special family time.

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After admiring the sea glass note for many months, she settled on gold engraving and a fleur de lis motif.

fresh-ink-monogram-detail
An elegant ivory correspondence card with a unique monogram, engraved in gold also, gave her a different option in her wardrobe.

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Personalized Profile: A Savvy Scribe Shows Her Stripes

Personalized stationery should always reflect the personality of the sender—or, in the case of one savvy scribe, her stripes. For etiquette expert Lisa Grotts’ personalized stationery, her monogram was nestled into a vibrantly red zebra on a crisp, white correspondence card and paired with a matching red envelope lining. Linda Burns of Burns and Associates Fine Printing in San Francisco helped turn her vision into a reality. Below, they talk about why stationery is like shoes and why people seem to be returning to paper and pen.

zebra-monogram

The Customer: Lisa

Tell me about your design and how did you reach your decision to go with it?
My company logo used to have an icon of the Golden Gate Bridge, as in “bridging” the gap of communities etc. The zebra icon has the same effect for me: It shows the many lines of communication and cleverly done. I used to have it in navy blue but switched over to lucky red in 2015. I also have them as calling cards.

Did you know what you wanted going into your first appointment and did that change at all?
Decisive is my middle name. I told Linda Burns ahead of time to pull out the stops on the zebra cards as well as the color, but I’m a softie when it comes to stationery (I have more styles than jeans), so I generally end up buying double or sometimes triple the amount as I like choice. Some people require formal thank you notes, others do not—that’s when the zebra comes in handy.

For you, what is the value of personalized stationery?
As a certified etiquette expert, I teach the value of why one needs to have the perfect stationery wardrobe. I have written a piece on my Huffington Post blog on this subject, and business and social stationery components are part of most of my etiquette seminars. More is more when it comes to stationery, just like shoes and handbags—paper is the “It” accessory. Thank you for asking.

The Stationer: Linda

Tell me about working with Lisa and how you helped guide her through the design process.
I work often with Lisa and she loves stationery as I do. She is very clear and decisive and she’s wonderful to work with. I take what she likes and then mock it up into various uses—business cards, note cards, fold-overs, stationery, etc.

What are the questions you usually ask every customer who comes in wanting to order personalized stationery?
I always spend the time to make sure I know what a customer likes and how they intend to use their stationery before I offer suggestions. I show them examples and give them alternatives and options. Stationery decisions are visual ones, and it’s helpful to have a customer see the choices.


In today’s digital age, what is the importance of personalized stationery? 
Invitations set the tone for an event and personal notes, thank yous, remembrances—handwritten and personal—are important enough to be done on paper rather than digitally sent. I find that more and more people are returning to printed forms rather than digital when they want to distinguish it from the e-formats. I hear often, “I enjoy receiving something in the mail rather than on the screen—I like to hold it in my hand and have it around when I’m not online to refer to. I also like to write a personal note so it doesn’t look like a group message.”

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Personalized Profile: A New York Lettra Love Story

We love receiving pictures of our customers’ personalized stationery—it’s the reason we created the Personalized Profile feature—and so it was a visual delight to open Steve Ono’s email recently. Steve works for family-owned print shop Japan Printing and Graphics in New York City, and, like many print shops, they love our Lettra paper.

If you’re not familiar with Lettra, it’s our signature letterpress stock. We like to say Lettra and letterpress printing go together like Fred and Ginger. It’s 100% cotton, and the soft-yet-sturdy, textured composition is positively divine to the touch. When the letterpress machine makes its impression, we’re pretty sure fireworks explode.

Below are a few of the lovely business card designs Steve shared with us as well as his thoughts on Lettra and the importance of one’s business card choice.

olivia-business-cardsPearl White Lettra letterpress printed in black ink.

“The delicate texture and feel of the Lettra stock is incredibly unique and unmistakable. People absolutely love the paper because it feels so soft and textured, almost as if it were textile. Secondly, the Lettra stock allows for deep indentations when the using letterpress printing. The softness of the paper allows the indentations from the letterpress to be considerably deeper than any other paper that we use. This amplifies the effect of letterpress printing and also adds a more visible dimension to the business cards. This paper is indispensable for the type of work that we do.”
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Personalized Profile: A Soon-to-Be Miami Mr. & Mrs.

A couple years ago, Kelle McCarter—talented illustrator and founder of the lovely Paperswell magazine—sent me a thank you note for profiling her in our Post Script series. It was written on her couples’ stationery (pictured below), which, instead of the traditional printed names or monogram, featured a fantastic illustration of Mr. and Mrs.—drawn, of course, by Kelle. I immediately pinned it to my bulletin board and vowed (no pun intended) to re-create the look for the next couple I knew to become engaged.

kelle-engagement-note-cards-blogFast forward to a few months ago, when family friends Juanita and Joe, who live in Miami, finally decided they would be making it official. Personalized stationery should reflect an individual’s or couple’s unique style, and I knew that Kelle’s illustration would fit theirs perfectly.

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