[Alyson Kuhn] We just spied this invitation on the new DataGraphic website and thought: How great would it be to receive this in the mail? How thick, how elegant, how deceptively simple! How’d they do all that? So, we called Glenn Schuster at DataGraphic for details — and a sample, to have and to heft.
Evocative simplicity: a single color of ink, on a single color of paper, with a minimal illustration
This invitation — to the grand opening of Restoration Hardware’s store à la design gallery in San Francisco — graciously previewed both the venue and the specialness of the occasion.
Paper: For a printer, the stock is often the starting point. For this project, both color and weight came into play. Schuster wanted to use an existing gray stock, rather than flood-coating a white sheet. The time constraint (to print and to dry) was his primary concern. In addition, a flood-coated sheet would have white edges — which on this invitation would have been very noticeable. Schuster suggested Mohawk Loop Antique Vellum Urban Gray 80# Cover as a great match to the freshly replastered exterior of the Palladianate building, formerly an antiques showroom.
Inside: The enticement continues on a trio of very thick cards.
Weighty business: The gatefolded invitation jacket is two layers of Urban Gray 80# Cover laminated together (simple duplex). The host card and the committee card are each three layers (a rather robust triplex). And the card with the key is five layers thick (a full-blown quintuplex!).
Printing: The entire invitation is letterpress printed with a double hit of metallic silver ink.
Finishing touches: DataGraphic drilled two 1/8-in. holes through which Restoration Hardware’s resourceful assemblers knotted the cotton thread holding the cast iron key. The Resto team also applied the faux-wax RH seal and inserted each invitation in its custom corrugated mailer (fabricated at DataGraphic). How many times did they do this? Close to 3000! Yes, the party was a smash — and the key was a keeper.
Schuster and his creative team appreciate the delight-factor in real mail — and like to “practice what they print.” I still have the first piece I ever received from DataGraphic, the company’s 2008 holiday card, below.
Spirographic fantastic: a flash, a flurry, a flourish of shimmery foils — in the finest of line weights
And below is DataGraphic’s most recent mailer, which inspired this article. The front half of the little book is a teaser of projects featured on the new website.
An engraved, embossed eye invites you to peruse DataGraphic’s “wide world of print.”
And then you flip the book over … to find a nifty “sketchy book.”
You can invite DataGraphic to send you your very own Little Book of Looks by e-mailing [email protected] or dialing 516.485.9069. You might also enjoy re-looking at our feature on another DataGraphic project, the 2010 Feltron annual report. To read more about the strategy behind the new Restoration Hardware design gallery, click here.