Back in May, while exhibiting at Surtex, a lovely woman stopped by my booth on her way out of the show and decided to take a peek at my portfolios. We chatted for a few minutes, and she told me she was doing research for a new product she was thinking of developing, and we discovered that, suurprisingly, we both live in Portland. Serendipity!
She took my card and said she'd get in touch when we were both back in town, and that was that. I didn't know anything about what she was up to or what her new product was all about, but I liked her, and I remember thinking that I'd probably hear from her again.
Well, not only did I hear from her again (that's her above, Sue, on the left), I started working with she and Lynnette (on the right, above) shortly after Surtex, on their brand new wrapping paper concept.
I immediately loved the idea -- pads of wrapping paper that hang on the back of a door, to make storage easier and to eliminate those rolls of gift wrap that get all wrecked in the back of a closet and are then unusable (I have 2 of those rolls in the back of our coat closet right now!).
What makes the product even cooler is that on the back of the pad is a perforated sheet of bands and tags, which coordinate with the wrapping paper sheets within the pad, to create a full gift-wrapping solution.
We had fun meeting and choosing designs, and Sue and Lynnette loved printing them out and wrapping boxes of cereal and pasta, and then we'd all stand back to see which ones worked best together. There were color changes and design changes, and once everything was said and done, 3 different Christmas pads came to life, 2 of them filled with my designs. Dream come true!
Sue and Lynnette didn't want to wait for the Stationery Show to roll around again before they could launch the pads, so they came up with a creative temporary solution, to get the pads in front of customers, to get their feedback, and to start getting the product out in the world asap: A mall kiosk!
All the photos above are from the kiosk, which is at the lovely Washington Square Mall
in Tigard, OR (just outside of Portland). Doesn't it look amazing?? Ryan and I went to check it out over the weekend and were blown away by how great the kiosk looks.
If you're in Portland, please go check it out (and buy some wrapping paper, obviously!). They'll be at the kiosk through December.
Sue and Lynnette have big plans, and the 3 of us will be meeting soon about Spring prints and beyond. They'll be launching at the Stationery Show in 2014, and I have a feeling HokeyPokey Press is going to be a smash success in a short amount of time! I love being part of this new company from the ground up. Sue and Lynnette are the greatest to work with, and I love that it all began with a chance meeting at Surtex.
One of the coolest parts of the process so far was going on the press checks at the printer and learning all about offset printing.
We got to see the paper being printed, and we asked the press guys a million questions. (They secretly loved it, I think!) Here are the plates for one of the sheets of bands/tags after printing:
And the ink on the rollers:
Above is one of the cover sheets, coming out of the press. And here we are, checking the colors on one of the cover sheets:
Each one of those green lights at the bottom controls a 1 inch band of color, and they can adjust the amount of each color ink that's printed, to get exactly the colors you want. It was fascinating!
We even got a tour of their giant press, which was in the middle of printing millions of newspaper inserts for Black Friday -- that press can print 50,000 pages in an hour. Whoa!
Here I am after we'd finalized the cover sheet and the sheet of bands/tags for one of the pads:
It was a real thrill to see the finished product after the printing! I honestly couldn't be happier about being part of HokeyPokey.
It's exciting to see something that was just an idea Sue and Lynnette told me about over coffee 6 months ago actually come to life, and in such a short amount of time. I couldn't be more grateful to work with them and to see my designs burst into the world in such a fun and festive way.
Check out the HokeyPokey website
to see all the designs in more detail and to learn more about the Wrap Packs.
The paper is gorgeous, glossy, and thick, all printed right here in Oregon. Oh, and there's a really cool infographic that I created on the back of each sheet, full of gift-giving facts. It's super fun. Here's a (slightly blurry) peek, on the red and white wrapped gift:
I hope you like it!
(Also: can you even believe it's already time to start thinking about the holidays? Crazy.)