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Computerized Calligraphy Chicago - Guest Blogger: Letter Perfect Designs


Guest blogger Sandy Podborny took time out of her busy printing schedule to stop by with a little Q&A for our readers!  Enjoy! --ct

Computerized Calligraphy Chicago - Guest Blogger: Letter Perfect Designs
I am so excited to have been invited by Christy to guest blog on my favorite topic – Digital Calligraphy! Let me give you a little background: my name is Sandy Podborny and I’m the owner of, a Digital Calligraphy and Print company that’s been in business since 1991.
Now, I know what you’re thinking….”regular folk didn’t own computers back then”….and you’d almost be right. Personal computers were still a “luxury” in the early ‘90’s, but I had an ace up my sleeve….my father worked for IBM, so we had a computer in our house long before they became “must have’s” for people. I teamed up with my SIL, who was a techie, and we started marketing “computer calligraphy” to anyone and everyone.
It was slow, but our little business soon took off and we were on our way. Today, with 20 years of experience under our belts, we have seen plenty of what does and doesn’t work regarding wedding and social event envelope printing!
 We are often asked many questions regarding digital calligraphy and thought this just might be a great forum for a Q & A session! So here we go…

 Q: I have an ink jet printer at home – can I print the envelopes myself?
A: Many home printers were not designed to print on the heavy weight, thick or lined envelopes so prevalent in today’s wedding invitation ensembles, so spoilage and frustration is going to be the biggest threat using a home printer. What’s the old saying….”Don’t walk over dollars to save pennies.”

We use heavy-duty, commercial grade printers, which prevent paper jams and keeps waste to a minimum. They can handle some of the thickest envelopes available and, our wide-format printer can fit envelopes up to 12” wide. While we understand the budget game, we believe time is a much more valuable commodity in planning a wedding. 

Since most addressing jobs only take us a few days to print, you are able to use the time to assemble your invitations or stamp the response cards. Now that is what we call multi-tasking!

Q: I have dark colored envelopes – can you print on these?
A: This is a “yes” and “no” answer. Yes, we can print on dark colored envelopes. The better question would be “is it practical?” and the answer is probably “no”. The ink we use is translucent (meaning you can see light through it). So, the darker the envelope, the less likely it is the ink will be visible enough to see, even printing in black. 
In addition, the Post Office also dislikes the darker envelopes since the addresses are hard for the scanners and mail carrier to read. So, if you’re heart is set on dark colored envelopes, it is best to use either hand-calligraphy (calling the amazing and talented Christy!) or a wrap around label, which have become all the rage these days.

Q: Can you print on metallic/pearlescent envelopes?
A: This is a “Yes, but” answer. Envelopes such as Stardream and Curious have a non-porous finish on the paper, so the ink sits on the top of the envelope. Although the addresses are very readable, the color tends not to be as vibrant. In addition smudging is a possibility should they be exposed to moisture. These little caveats however have not stopped many couples from pursuing this particular type of envelope and it is one of the most popular types we print on today. So as long as you are aware of the possible drawbacks, digital printing is acceptable for these envelopes.

Q: What are the best kinds of envelopes to print on?
A: We print using ink, not laser, so some of the same rules apply that hand calligraphers go by – digital ink LOVES cotton! If your budget can handle 100% cotton envelopes, you will not be disappointed with the results you see on the outside of your envelopes – they are gorgeous! Other than that, pretty much any smooth surfaced or slightly textured envelope will look great with digital calligraphy.

Q: Can you match the color of my invitation?
A: Yes, we are able to match or get extremely close to most colors available on the market today. If you know the color name or PMS number, we can create the color. The only colors we can’t “match” are anything metallic (gold, silver, etc.). Those colors are mimicked in flat color and do not have any shiny properties.

Q: Can you match the font I have on my invitation?
A: Most likely yes. We have hundreds of fonts in our catalog so more than likely we have the font you need. In addition we can do combo fonts and different layouts of the addresses to give your envelopes even more personality! 

Christy, thank you for letting me guest blog for you! It was fun to share our story and hopefully it will be helpful to your readers!

Computerized Calligraphy Chicago - Guest Blogger: Letter Perfect Designs

Computerized Calligraphy Chicago - Guest Blogger: Letter Perfect Designs

Sandy Podborny
Letter Perfect Designs
888.623.0093 (toll free outside Chicagoland Area)
224.622.2289 (within Chicagoland Area)

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