At RPS, we’re all about celebrating everything – so it should come as no surprise that we enjoy getting into the spirit of St. Patrick’s Day. Whether it’s hosting a party, making an awesome Irish meal or just grabbing a pint of green beer, there’s plenty of great ways to celebrate. As luck would have it, we’ve had our eyes on a few items inspired by the season. Check out our round up below, and have an awesome St. Patrick’s Day! 1) A little luck can go a long way! This letterpress card from 1Canoe2 features a beaaaaauuutiful hand-drawn illustration of a horseshoe and 4-leaf clovers, perfect for sending good vibes and well wishes! 2) Go for the gold with this good luck card from Rifle Paper Co. Card features a large four-leafed clover printed swoon-worthy gold metallic foil. 3) I can’t quite get on board with a St. Patrick’s Day celebration without a ‘lil booze. This adorable “Good O’ Whiskey Drink” is a perfect small glass for mixing it up. 4) Hosting a St. Patrick’s Day party? Customizable invitations from Boatman Geller are the perfect way to spread the word. Take it to another level with matching plates and platters! Did someone just say hostess with the most-est? 5) Speaking of parties… I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: a party ain’t a party without stripey straws. Grab a set in green and white to get your party started! (Green straws are available in a chevron pattern as well!) 6) Another perfect party item, the Coton Colors Leprechaun Hat attachment is an easy way to decorate your table for holiday fun! Choose a platter size (I’m partial to the tan and white dot pattern myself) and collect attachments to swap in and out for any number of holidays and occasions. 7) Speaking of table settings, the green dot pattern from Coton Colors is a great way to tie in your festive food table – including cute napkins and a small spreader for dip.
In the hustle and bustle that is the holiday season, it’s hard to get everything checked off your to-do list. If you didn’t get your Christmas cards out the door this holiday, it’s not too late to share well wishes and holiday cheer – send New Year cards instead! We are firm believers that New Years cards can be sent well into January. You still have eleven and a half months of happiness and good fortune you're wishing, right? New Year’s is personally one of my favorite holidays – not so much for the parties and the ball drop (although those are fun as well), but more for the excitement of a new year, new beginnings and great things to come. What’s more, the start of a new year is something everyone can look forward to, no matter what holiday you celebrate! As 2014 begins, I know I’ll be sending at least a few lovely pieces of mail out into the world. Here’s a few of our faves here at RPS, available at our Ann Arbor and Tecumseh locations! Holy Crap It’s 2014 Our sentiments exactly! This year absolutely flew by. This Emily McDowell card is perfect to send to friends you meant to see more of this past year. Send this out in the mail and get a date on the books for 2014 already, why don’t you? Pop Clink Fizz I absolutely love the festive feel of this champagne inspired letterpress card from Anemone Press! Since it doesn’t specifically say anything about New Year’s, if you happen to struggle with procrastination or follow through like me (I SWEAR I have the best intentions!) you can always use the card for a later celebratory occasion down the road. The End is Near! This letterpress card has an awesome playful take on doomsday signs. “The end [of the year] is near! [Happy New Year]” is the full message on the cover of the card. Happy New Year A fun card from Ladyfingers Letterpress, this fireworks display is the perfect way to tell friends you are thinking of them this year! New Year’s Resolution When it comes to resolutions for the new year, this simple, funny letterpress card from Sapling Press tells it like it is. Happy New Year It wouldn’t be a New Year card roundup without gold foil fun! This beauty from Rifle Paper Co. has 2014 displayed through fun illustrated sign language, festive gold foil cufflinks and a lovely gold envelope. Classy, unique perfection.
Today is a holiday I can get behind; it's National Hot Cocoa Day! As the temperatures in Michigan climb to a balmy 15 degrees, I can only hope that people are cuddled up on their comfy couches in front of a fire and either Home Alone, Love Actually, Serendipity, or The Holiday on TV as they sip the most amazing hot cocoa. Today, and all days, for that matter, my hot cocoa has a bit of peppermint schnapps, tons of whipped cream (homemade of course) and a fun peppermint crunch garnish of some sort. [caption id="attachment_462" align="aligncenter" width="344"] This jolly mug is the perfect size for your Candy Crunch or Double Chocolate Hammonds cocoa AND whipped cream or marshmallows![/caption] As you decide which cup of cocoa you're going to create, we'll leave you with a few fun facts!
- There IS a difference between Hot Cocoa and Hot Chocolate! Hot chocolate is made directly from bar chocolate, which already contains cocoa, sugar and cocoa butter. Hot cocoa is made from powder made by extracting most of the rich cocoa butter from the ground cacao beans.
- Aztec Emperor Montezuma drank 50 golden goblets of hot cocoa, dyed red and flavored with chili peppers, every day. How's that for a diet?
- Hot Cocoa was known in the 15th century as "the inflamer of passions." Whoo woooo!
- January 31st is National Hot Chocolate Day. You can celebrate both, even though we're on "Team Hot Cocoa."
- In France, Hot Cocoa was used to cure fits of anger & bad moods. I'll report back and let you know if it works in 2013 in Michigan.
- Swiss Miss Hot Cocoa was first served by airlines in 1955.
- Hot Cocoa has fewer calories than Hot Chocolate.
The Team Tries Calligraphy [caption id="attachment_446" align="alignnone" width="900"] R is for Rock Paper Scissors[/caption] Whether it’s envelopes for wedding invitations or other special projects, Team Rock Paper Scissors routinely swoons over the gorgeous calligraphy that comes in and out of the store. No longer content to just admire the handscripted loveliness, we decided to learn some tricks of the trade from some majorly talented artists. The time had come to try our hand(s) at calligraphy. DUM DUM DUM. Lisa and Tori took the plunge first, with Michigan talent (and nationwide phenomenon) Molly Jacques. Perhaps you’ve seen Molly’s work for Martha Stewart Weddings, Anthology, Sugar Paper LA, Macaroni Grill, and Rachael Ray magazine – although our personal favorite is the signage that’s sittin’ pretty at our Main Street location in Ann Arbor. The workshop at Pot & Box was a total hit, and you can read about Lisa’s experience here. [caption id="attachment_445" align="alignnone" width="900"] Practice makes perfect-- practicing the alphabet at Molly Jacques workshop![/caption] Inspired by their experience and unwilling to let the Michiganders have all the fun, my first order of business upon arriving in San Francisco was to sign up for a class. (Seriously though. I simultaneously was researching calligraphy classes while hunting for a place to live. #Priorities?) I found just what I was looking for in Maybelle Imasa-Stukuls’ two session workshop at Makeshift Society, an awesome co-working spot in adorable Hayes Valley. [caption id="attachment_447" align="alignnone" width="900"] Materials and goodies from Maybelle’s “Calligraphy in the 21st Century” class.[/caption] My main takeaways from the class (besides “calligraphy is hard” and “I do not have a natural talent for this whatsoever”) was that practice makes perfect, and to not be defeated if my work starting out, well, sucks. Maybelle (who, by the way, was super modest about her mad calligraphy skills) began her class by showing us a binder that contained samples of her work. While the contents were both beautiful and impressive, what struck with me most was the binder cover – a piece of paper with her first attempts at calligraphy – which looked nothing like her amazing work today. In the weeks since the class, it’s been nice to remember that if I practice I will (hopefully?!?!) improve, and that great things can come from humble beginnings. [caption id="attachment_448" align="alignnone" width="900"] 21 students hard at work during Maybelle’s “Calligraphy in the 21st Century” class. (Photo courtesy of Maybelle Imasa-Stukuls)[/caption] Have questions for us about our experiences, or have a favorite calligraphy story to share? We’d love to hear from you in the comments section. ___________________________________________________________ Interested in learning more about calligraphy? Well, have we got some goods and inspiration for you! Mastering the Art of Calligraphy is the definitive new guide for serious calligraphers and budding enthusiasts! 700+ photos, instructions, artist profiles and an awesome resource section. Need materials? Look no further than The Calligraphy Starter Kit! Ink, wooden dip pen, nib, lettering chart and tricks and tips, all tied up in an adorable muslin bag. Swoon. Molly Jacques shares lettering and calligraphy skillz that just won’t quit via her blog and Instagram posts. Check out Maybelle Imasa-Stukuls' killer calligraphy on her blog and Instagram. For more inspiration, check out the RPS Pinterest board “Handwritten & Letter Love.” Yeah. We’re kinda obsessed.