No, not the Waitresses’ song of the same name. Every year AIGA New York asks a few designers to create holiday wrapping paper. Afterwards, they throw a big holiday bash and sell the wrapping paper. Proceeds from the event benefit the AIGA NY Mentoring Program and First Book, an organization dedicated to giving children from low-income families the opportunity to read and own their first new books. As you can probably imagine, I jumped at the chance to participate when they came knocking.
After blazing through about six alternate ideas (and even mocking a few of those up), I eventually landed on the concept of a multi-purpose wrapping paper comprised entirely of type. I tried to stay away from typical holiday conventions for color and symbolism, and instead decided to portray a bit of what the holidays mean to me. I come from a large Italian family, and we often meet around, or because of, food. The holidays bring out some of the best and rarely seen recipes of the year, so what better way to bring that to others than to share some recipes. Your gift receiver can now ditch the crummy gift you got them, and instead use the wrapping paper to create some festive treats! Hot mulled wine, pumpkin bread, and more! I even slipped in a personal Italian favorite, pizzelles. Mmmm. Check out the final wrapping paper here.
It was great to get back to some print design for a little bit (as it always is), but I really have to admit, this was rough. The project hit just as many other projects were in full swing, and I had to use every last day before getting this out to the printer. I also had a blast finally using the new Garamond Premier Pro I grabbed from Adobe as a gift for registering Creative Suite 2. It’s a gorgeous Open Type face by Robert Slimbach that contains numerous optical weights, ligatures, fractions, and so much more. It truly is a thing to behold. This combined with some good old Trade Gothic make for a simple and elegant solution. And it’s not coincidental that it also hints a little at a newspaper feel, that being another classic DIY wrap. Thanks very much to my new (and old) friends at AIGA NY for the opportunity!
If you are in or around New York this Sunday, the party is free to attend, is at Pentagram (!), and promises to attract some design luminaries we web people rarely see. Among those luminaries are 22 “virtuoso couples” whose creative collaborations will be silently auctioned off. You can join me in invading their personal space and making awkward introductions. If you do happen to drop by, please come and say hello!
On an unrelated note, I will be away the tail-end of next week as we make a quick trip back to Ireland. The Comhaltas site we are working on is designed and approaching completion, and we elected to head back over for some training. Realistically, only a few of us need to go, but the airfares were low enough that we all decided to go… including significant others. While there, we will be bopping around Dublin again, and taking in the Comhaltas Christmas party. There will surely be many pictures, as we tend to document everything like crazed paparazzi. Some friends will be taking care of the Daily Photos while I’m away.