The craft of engraving dates back to the 16th century. The printing style, with its distinctive raised surfaces and sharp defnition, is synonymous with high style. How does the process work? When working with the renowned stationery and invitation company Mrs John L Strong, you get to choose from one of their 400 house motifs or work with their design team to create a custom monogram or motif for their bespoke stationery. Next, the design is sent to an engraver, where text is typeset by computer in the lettering style selected by the customer, reproduced as a flm negative, then placed on a metal plate. The plate is dipped in acid and the exposed surface is chemically etched. The next step is “die-stamping,” the process of transferring ink to paper from an engraved die, with each color of ink selected requiring a separate engraving plate and a separate pass through the press. If it sounds like a highly skilled, arduous process, it is: And that is why engraved invitations communicate the air of distinction they are known for.
By Alexandra Fairweather
Photos courtesy of Mrs John L Strong