Author: Erin Sarpa

I'm Erin, Co-Founder of EandI Design, a creative agency. I have a passion for finding adventure and bringing a little sunshine wherever I can.

In a Designer’s Head: Cutting Through the White Noise to Get to the White Space

I’m pretty certain that I speak for many of us in the creative profession when I say that we have A LOT going on inside our heads. We are the rare breed who engage our right and left brains concurrently, which means we are dreaming up things that have never been seen at the same we are creating a a perfect grid with which to align every single element on a page. We are constantly distracted by unexpected colors and textures at the same time we are noticing a pattern of lines in a busy intersection. We’re wishing the menu had better typography while we’re debating whether we need more protein or more dark leafy greens for lunch.

I will never have enough notebooks/sketchbooks to record all of my big ideas. These are just the books I can see without getting up from my desk.

To be honest, it’s exhausting. That’s why all designers worth their salt are totally addicted to coffee. Like if the Zombie Apocalypse happens and we have to quickly gather survival supplies, it goes 1. COFFEE 2. Everything Else.

But I digress. The upside of all of this activity in our noggins is that we are energized by it just as much as we are exhausted by it. We fall into the “Easily Amused” category because we are surprised and delighted by creativity, in all its glorious forms. It makes life more fun. It means we can often find the upside or the solution when it appears that there are only obstacles.

I have to manage the funhouse that is my head. When it’s time to say, write a blog post without going off topic, I very deliberately set the stage. It looks like this:

  • Write “Blog Post” at the top of my left aligned list
  • Take care of any easy To Dos (answer the quick email, unload the dishwasher)
  • Reheat my coffee (for the 3rd time)
  • Turn the ringer off
  • Close extraneous windows on my computer

After all that, there’s like a 70% chance that I won’t get distracted. I started this post yesterday, btw. But I had to take a break to play with the dog. And then I got thirsty. And then I saw a funny tweet and couldn’t stop laughing and forgot all about this post.

I don’t think the rest of the world understands how special a person has to be to have this much going on in their head and still figure out what the client really wants, be original, communicate clearly, meet every deadline, run a business and be a decent human. I’m not saying we’re unicorns. But have you ever seen a designer and a Unicorn in the room at the same time? Ok, I’m totally saying we’re unicorns.


Blush and Gold Wedding Papers


Waste Not Luxe Blush Envelope lined with engagement photo

We were lucky enough to have two of our kids get married in the last year and a half and this time the bride had a vision of a romantic blush wedding with a dash of sparkle and a ton of fun.

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The invitation was double thick with matte gold foil. This is a custom order since I included two different processes. Because I am high maintenance.

I used our Art Print option for the signs. The easel sign is 18 x 24 mounted on foamcore. The Guest Book and Unplugged Ceremony signs are 11 x 14 to fit in standard frames.

The wedding day was hot as Hades and we didn’t want our guests’ flyness to melt so we did last minute misters (with lavender, cuz we are cool like that) and since I’m a designer I really needed the little bottles to look cute and not… last minute. So I printed 3″ round labels (because rectangles are way harder to line up on 180 bottles) and we made fans out of  Flat A9 Cards.


There was no printing involved in this photo, but isn’t my son so handsome? The bride is pretty cute too.

Our flat foil variable data place cards were perfect for this look. We included a menu which was silly because the guests didn’t have a choice. I created 10 original menus (and printed 20 of each) that included a joke and fortune in case the peeps at the table needed an icebreaker. #10 Flat Cards with rounded corners were perfect to insert in the blush linens. This was a huge hit with our guests.


That’s me and Mr. StationeryHQ smooching on the right. Wish I could do my own wedding all over again, good thing I have one more kid to go… see more of our guest book options and wedding supplies here.


Just for you Early Adopters…

Hm_SHQPlease read this carefully if you’re interested in ordering new books from our new site.

1.    Create a new login on This is a very simple process.
2.    Select the buttons which will assign you an automatic 30% discount.
3.    We need to turn on your 50% discounts. which will take us between 15 and 30 minutes. We will let you know when your account is enabled.
4.    Log out and log back in after 30 minutes to see the pricing.

Some things on the website will work much different. We will no longer store credit cards on our website. This was a serious IT challenge and while we have never been hacked, there is always a risk. We will eventually switch over to this site entirely. Rest assured, even when we do a full launch of the new website with all products, we will leave the old site up for a while. We want to help you grow your business, not frustrate you.

The main thing here is that as early adopters we realize you will have some frustration because change is hard. However, in the long term, the new site will be a big improvement with the following:

– new products like print + foil guestbooks!


Custom Book Heaven

– no barcodes
– library feature is back
– faster ordering speeds

White Ink on Colored Envelopes, yea baby!

We are pretty sure you are going to love this option as long as you know how to set up your files for print. For now we are only printing addresses on the front of the envelope, stay tuned for addressing + back flap – we are working on it!

For variable data with white ink:

1.    Create a multi-page, 7.25″ x 5.25″ document with each name and address on a single page for the A7 envelope.

2. Create a new swatch called SpotColor_White. This example is in InDesign.


3. All artwork, including each name and address should be assigned SpotColor_White.



4. Save the file as a high resolution, multi page pdf file.

5. Upload the file.

6. Proof your artwork (you can view as many pages as you’d like).

7. Complete your order.

Order your White Ink Variable Data Envelopes today!


The Craft Paper Look for Less


The bride loved the sweet look of craft paper for an outdoor winery wedding but only needed 60 invitations and really wanted to keep a tight budget for invitations. We used Natural Savoy Cotton for a nice textured finish, very similar to craft. Most of our flat cards come on Natural Savoy and the envelopes are a perfect match. To create the small hang tags, I used a 4Bar card and set up the files with two cards that I could cut down after printing 30 originals. Tags_Front

I ran a DIY test print with various craft paper photos to make sure that the color was right and it really looked like craft (to non-designers who wouldn’t inspect the edge of the card to see if it was legit).

This solution is not for the purist, but it’s perfect for a quick turnaround, very affordable white-ink-on-craft-paper-look wedding suite.


storybook wedding

When the daughter of a printer and a designer gets married, there’s gonna be some cool paper involved. As a designer, I’ve created lots of lovely wedding suites over the years but never felt the kind of pressure I put on myself for my daughter’s invitation. She wanted it to be happy and bright and incorporate sunflowers.


Test printed on a DIY single sheet, ran a few shades of yellow and navy to make sure I had it right.


A7 Navy Envelope with liner, Custom Gatefold wrap


Used the inside of Gatefold for reception info, website, etc. 

At the end of the day, all that really matters is that the Bride and Groom are in love and their guests’ happiness showered them with sunshine.

Do you need custom sizes in small quantities? We got you.

We know how designers like to create original everything so now we have an option for that. If you want a non-standard size in a flat, one-sided format in small quantities, our new DIY Sheet with Cutting is for you. DIY

Here’s how to set up files in Illustrator:

  1. Create a 12″ x 18″ document, either landscape or vertical.
  2. Add guides for the print area: 11.5″ x 17″
  3. Create artwork in desired sizes and fit into print area, place all pieces at 90 degree angles, we cannot cut odd angles.
  4. Make a square or rectangle in the size you want, select it, then go to Objects > Create Trim Marks.
  5. If you have color or images that bleed off the edge, expand them to go at least .125″ beyond the trim marks.

Tip: Leave at least a 3/4″ between pieces for best results.

Minimum: 25 sheets, $1.77 per sheet (if you have a wholesale account)DIY_after

DIY Sheets with Cutting is a great option for a set of odd sized cards, wedding place cards, custom sized postcards, disposable coasters and whatever else you creative types can come up with.

can’t. get. enough. shine.

RoseGoldYep, we added more foil options on because we know you’re obsessed. And so are we. You can already order foil with digital printing through our website. Now you can order foil on A7, A2 and 4Bar size without digital printing on:

  • 130#/21pt Environment Wrought Iron Raw Cover
  • 130# Classic Crest Smooth Cover – Epic Black
  • 130# Classic Crest Smooth Cover – Patriot Blue

And since Rose Gold is a smokin’ hot trend, we added that too. It’s perfect for wedding invitations, save the dates, small art prints and party invites. Turnaround time is 5 business days, find pricing here and don’t forget to log in so you see wholesale prices!

Shout out to Brit Tucker for generously sharing her totally fabulous typographic genius with us – thank you!

Price Increase Update

We hope you got some rest after a fun-filled and hard-working holiday season! We have been crunching numbers since orders tapered off and wanted to give you some insight into what, why and when changes will happen.


Everything could change a least a little. Our data shows us what you order most often. High order volume = minimal price changes. So we hope that we are affecting the least amount of customers by doing smaller price increases on most frequently ordered papers and products. When you order your next set of cards, you’ll see that different papers will vary much more than previously. This doesn’t necessarily mean that higher quality papers will cost a lot more. Savoy cotton is favored by many of you so we can sustain better pricing on that stock than we can on say, Kraft or Cream, which is rarely ordered.

Another significant change is the cost on a quantity of 10 cards. We know this is an important option for you so it’s still available but you’ll see that there is a big price break between 10 and 25 quantity. If all of our customers order 25 instead of 10 cards, our efficiencies go way up so we are able to offer a better price. 250 is another magic number for us so you’ll see another significant price break in cost per card when you get to that quantity. And if you order 2,500 of a flat card on 120lb. Accent Opaque, the pricing won’t change at all.

We are still reviewing data, if a current product is already priced to match volume and costs it will not go up.


After years of studying our customers’ buying habits and working hard to perfect efficiencies, we have figured out that we can’t invest in new equipment and top people with our current pricing. We want to continue to offer low quantities on beautiful papers so instead of discontinuing them, we need to charge enough to cover future investments. Our mission is to enable creative peeps to make their business dreams come true. We ask ourselves how our decisions support our mission any time we make a change or introduce a new idea. An increase allows us to improve our processes and equipment while maintaining wholesale pricing for those creative peeps we like so much 🙂


Today. Each change requires a ton of data entry (think about how many sizes, how many papers, how many additional options, how many quantity breaks and you’ll get an idea of how many numbers need to change– this kind of math is my worse nightmare) so we can’t do everything on the site at the same time. Hopefully you received our email about a month ago that was sent to give some advanced notice.

We will start with cards. Flat A7 cards to be specific. Then we’ll move on to A2, 4bar, 3.5″ x 5″ and Business Cards. Once those are done, we’ll move onto double thick. Then folded cards. After aaaallllll those cards are updated, we will start on gifts. The proposed schedule is as follows:

1/4 Belly Bands

1/4 Flat Cards

1/4 Double Thick Cards

1/5 Folded Cards

1/5 Die Cut Cards

1/6 Envelopes

1/6 Labels and Stickers

1/7 We will do the math on foil, art prints and DIY sheets, not sure if these will change but will let you know ASAP

Are you still with me? Bored to tears? Sorry, if all this logic and arithmetic is torturous. I know I’d rather be sketching right now… Just want to keep you as up to date as possible. We offer too many variables to give you an easy snapshot of what’s changing but hopefully this explanation helps (if it hasn’t put you to sleep).

As always, we thank you for being such amazing designers, good business people and awesome supporters. We hope 2016 is your best year yet.


Price Increase

It’s never fun to see prices go up. It’s not even fun to be the people behind the increase. We have been operating with the current price structure for over five years now and the current pricing doesn’t allow us to give you our best. We also moved to a less expensive location and did as much cost cutting as we could in order to keep investing in people, machines and technology but there is still so much we want to do to keep pushing forward.

So starting in January you will see prices going up. Some will be small because we have the volume we need to sustain really low pricing. For example, a 10% increase on a set of 25 cards might only be about $1 more. Some will be up to 30% because we are losing money on a particular product.

We’ll continue to find the best values on the best materials and develop efficient processes to keep prices in check. We will send announcements with specific numbers as soon as we have them available so you can price your products accordingly. Sorry for the inconvenience and please check back for updates. And thanks for being such great customers.