Serendipity led me to Top Drawer over the weekend. I went to see one person*, and fell into a rabbit hole of fun finds in the stationery section. It felt like NYC in May for a moment as I wandered the aisles.
It was a delight to stumble across 42 Pressed at the show. They were sharing space in what appeared to be a “Best of Charleston” booth** and I fell in love with their new foil-accented city posters. The typeface and colors were perfect, with a range of favorite cities to choose from, including London, Paris, Chicago, and yes, Charleston.
If you want to grab my attention, framing letters in the typeface Didot will usually do the trick. Big Jon’s booth featured simple, graphic designs which made it easy to connect the dots to designer Jon Harvey’s roots as a graphic designer/art director. The “251216” cards — yes, for next Christmas, and I’m not really ready to talk about that just yet — were brilliant, too.
It’s hard to find fault with a company whose tagline is “Handmade by nice people in England”, and über-talented calligrapher Imogen Owen charmed me with her simple boxed notecard sets, greeting cards, and the prettiest calligraphed ribbons and wrapping paper. (If you’re a fan of her style, you might like to enroll in one of her calligraphy workshops at Quill London.)
Founded in 2015 (and launching at Top Drawer) À L’aise is focused on minimalist luxury stationery. I thought the greeting cards, with their muted color palette and simple labels for each message were undeniably sweet and immensely appealing — I wished I could take a few home with me. Can’t wait to see where designer Suzie Dicker is headed with this brand, which also boasts custom calligraphy and leather goods, given the strong début.
Other Friends It was also nice to see old friends like Meticulous Ink (with their beautifully luxe letterpress options) and new to the London shows, Egg Press (featuring their classic, clever + cheery range of paper goods). All in all, a very happy outing.
* which I CAN NOT WAIT to tell you more about but you’ll have to wait until February.
** there were candles on display from Rewined and Produce (also Charleston companies that feature package design by my friends at Stitch). Curious, I asked the rep if all the artists were from Charleston, and I got a very British non-answer. If I had more time, I would have dug deeper to figure out the connection.
all photos by jane potrykus