Based in Washington, DC, Haute Papier has taken the letterpress world by storm. You can see them on the pages of Martha Stewart Living, Brides, Southern Living and on the 2015 list of Oprah’s Favorite Things. We recently checked in with the Haute Papier team to talk about about design inspirations, trends in paper goods and their first printing press (named Pearl).
BE: What inspired the launch of Haute Papier?
HP: Lovers of all things paper, owners Sarah Meyer Walsh and Erin Miller have been sharing their passion for letterpress printing and fine paper goods for nearly a decade. It took just one lesson to seal their fate as life-long printers. The dear friends adopted their first press, dubbed “Pearl,” just hours after their first lesson and haven’t stopped acquiring antique presses since. Sarah and Erin still love delighting customers with beautiful, hand-made letterpress products and the Haute Papier team continues to grow and share their passion for providing beautiful stationery.
BE: What makes the Haute Papier collection unique?
HP: Beyond the wide variety of customization options we offer (hundreds of envelope liners, fonts, monograms, motifs, and dozens of inks and paper colors), we’re proud to say that we still do just about everything in-house. From receiving custom orders, to proofing and designing, the letterpressing, finishing, and shipping all happen right here! Our staff of nearly 20 is talented and hard working – it’s amazing to see a project come to life from start to finish in our studio.
BE: What trends are you seeing in paper goods and how does your collection align with those trends?
HP: Metallic and rose gold colored everything have been wildly popular and don’t seem to be going anywhere any time soon! We’re so excited to start offering our best-selling gold scissors in a rose gold tone to incorporate this trend.
While we certainly have an eye on what’s popular within the industry, we are also influenced by our love of paper and where that takes us as paper goods consumers. A lot of our best-selling products were the result of our own fruitless online shopping. We have the ability to create the things we want for ourselves and can’t find anywhere else on the market. For example, we just finished designing and printing a dozen new envelope liners in colors and patterns we love and couldn’t find anywhere else. We can’t wait for our customers to see these and hopefully love them as much as we do!
Year after year, the process of coming up with an idea for a new product, making it available for our customers, and having them share in the excitement… well, it never gets old.
BE: What are some of Haute Papier’s biggest design inspirations?
HP: We really find inspiration everywhere. We’ve been inspired by new paper samples, colors in a flower arrangement, a photograph, a doodle of a new monogram – we’re constantly working on new things. Even after a decade, we still love paper and all the products we make. If our staff is getting excited about a new idea, we know we’re on the right track!
BE: How important are small boutiques to Haute Papier’s success?
HP: Small boutiques are the reason Haute Papier exists and continues to thrive – “important” doesn’t even begin to describe it. We’re lucky to work with amazing retailers around the world and we treasure the relationships we have with them; we aim to make products they’re excited to have in their stores and we always feel extremely honored when someone devotes real estate in their boutique to Haute Papier. We make it a priority to stay closely connected with all of our retailers and could not continue to do what we love without their support!