A Maker's Field Guide to Envelopes
An envelope is a simple and familiar form. It requires no power source or special reader to be held, read and understood. Equal parts function and first impression, an envelope has all the right elements to make any project exceptional.
Introducing A Maker’s Field Guide to Envelopes, the latest in a series of comprehensive, printed guides designed to inspire and educate designers, their clients and printers on the importance of choosing the right materials for print.
“The new Maker’s Field Guide to Envelopes is the latest expression of Mohawk’s ongoing commitment to helping demonstrate the pivotal role materials play in the success of every print job,” said Chris Harrold, Vice President, Creative Director, Mohawk. “Envelopes are equal part function and first impression. An envelope is like a handshake that simultaneously says ‘hello’ and ‘open me first!”
A Maker’s Field Guide to Envelopes was created by Aurora Design to complement Mohawk’s Maker Field Guide to Texture and Color and the Mohawk Maker Quarterly, an award-winning publication which highlights the beauty and tactility of fine paper. Both publications have become go-to resources for makers and creatives worldwide as print is rediscovered as a powerful alternative to digital communication.
“We wanted the customer to think about envelopes in a new way,” said Jennifer Wilkerson, Aurora Design. “Essentially envelopes are the original form of interaction. Like packaging, they are the wrapper that elevates the contents.”
A Maker’s Field Guide to Envelopes is organized around five defining, structural attributes of an envelope: Texture, Color, Style, Flap and Size. Like the Maker’s Field Guide to Texture and Color, this guide opens with a high level introduction stating the case for materials with a blend of behavioral insight and hands-on demonstration, intended to prove that careful attention to your envelope selection helps elevate any project from good to great.
The 26 page book is organized in to six short, high-impact sections:
Introduction – This includes background on the impact of materials as well as a hands-on, interactive introduction to the five defining envelope attributes to consider in design.
Texture – How to use textured envelopes to capture your audience through touch. An A2 Curious Collection Metallic Ionized envelope along with an A7 Curious Collection Matter Adiron Blue envelope are bound in to show unique textured envelopes.
Color – Using color can transform a simple, common form like a business envelope to something extra special. To demonstrate this, a #10 Commercial Mohawk Via Vellum Safety Yellow envelope alongside a #10 Policy Mohawk Carnival Vellum New Black envelope are bound in the book.
Style – Carefully considering the anatomy of your envelope is crucial to any project that requires an envelope enclosure. In this section, this is demonstrated with a 5.5” Square/Euroflap envelope in Strathmore Wove Chino contrasted with a 9×12 Catalog envelope pre-printed on Mohawk Via Linen Natural.
Flap Shape – Unique to envelopes, flaps offer a clue to what’s inside. From formal invite to business stationery, a flap style can send a message before it’s even opened. Bound in to demonstrate are a 5.5 Baronial Flap envelope in Mohawk Loop Antique Vellum Urban Gray, an A2 deckle edge flap envelope in Strathmore Pastelle Natural White and an A2 euro flap envelope in Mohawk Superfine Eggshell Ultrawhite.
Size – From the smallest, attention-getting envelope to the largest unique forms, the size of an envelope is an obvious, but powerful choice. Two contrasting envelopes are bound in to demonstrate this; a 3.125 x 5.5 Coin envelope in Mohawk Loop Antique Vellum Husk contrasted with a large C6D Policy flap envelope in Mohawk Superfine Eggshell Ultrawhite.
Throughout the book, including the dust jacket, patterns inspired by envelope security tints are used as a visual, unifying element, and printed on a total of 25 different combinations of Mohawk colored and textured papers & envelopes.
A commonly used printing technique in which the inked image is transferred from a plate to a rubber blanket, then to the printing surface. When used in combination with the lithographic process, which is based on the repulsion of oil and water, the offset technique employs a flat (planographic) image carrier on which the image to be printed obtains ink from ink rollers, while the non-printing area attracts a water-based film (called "fountain solution"), keeping the non-printing areas ink-free.
Metallic powders in a varnish base create images with metallic luster. Leafing inks which have metal flakes that rise to the top of the ink mixture have more shine, but increased rub off. The metal flakes in non-leafing metallic inks sink down with less rub off and a little less shine. Non-leafing inks with a dull varnish or aqueous coating perform most reliably on uncoated paper.