Friday 24 July 2015

New Blog Stationery

Ever since I was young enough to have a pencil case to take to school I've been ever so slightly obsessed with stationery. I used to collect erasers (or rubbers, as we knew them), and always had enough pens and pencils to supply the entire class, should they need them. I even got into my first fight with a boy over my felt pens. He wouldn't give them back and they were my favourites, of course, I was going to try and take them. Even though I'm well passed those days, my love for notebooks, fancy pens and anything personalised hasn't wavered so I was delighted when FastPrint* contacted me and asked if I'd like to try anything from their website.

FastPrint Review

Before they contacted me, I had only just received some new blog business cards and I wasn't entirely happy with them. They didn't turn out how I designed and I ended up having them reprinted, so I was really happy to have a chance to get some from another company and correct any mistakes I may have made the first time around.

Business Cards

Blog Business Cards

Blog Business Cards

I chose to order 500 matte business cards with designs on both sides, which was £54, one for my blog header and social media profile, and one for all of my contact details. Although FastPrint offers Gloss and Spot UV options I wanted matte cards because, in my opinion, they look nicer and they're easy to write on. I know when I collect business cards I often need to take notes, maybe a phone number that the giver hasn't included, or a recommendation for a product, whatever it may be I wanted to make sure that there was an easy way to write on them. The cards come in a gsm of 350, which feels sturdy and thick, however when I compared it to the cards I previously ordered there is an obvious difference. FastPrint is slightly thinner so is more flexible, but if you were only holding the one card you'd never be able to tell that they're not as thick.

That's the only negative taken care of, now on to the positives; The card from FastPrint is brighter than my old cards, meaning that the white looks whiter, which is important to me because I wanted them to be a real reflection of my blog, and the majority of that is white. Next to my newer cards, my previous ones seem to have a subtle hint of pink/peach to them. Unfortunately, I wasn't able to pick up the slight differences on camera because it's so subtle. It also means that the colours in my image are more vibrant, it looks exactly the same as it does on my screen, whereas the older cards are slightly muted in comparison. One thing I wasn't expecting to see a difference in but did is the text. I thought it was fine on my old cards, but looking at them next to my new ones I can see that it's a bit blurry. The new text is very sharp.

I think with everything being said I prefer my business cards from FastPrint. Though they may not feel quite as luxurious, the quality of the colours and printing is so much better than the ones I compared them to, and I'd take that any day over heavier card and lesser quality printing. I know you're probably wondering where I got my old cards from, but I'm not here to bash another company so they'll remain nameless. Sorry!


Blog Stationery

Blog Stationery

I've wanted personalised letterheads for as long as I can remember, way before I even thought about starting a blog, so when I saw these were an option I knew I had to have them. The prices for these baffled me, it was £22 for 50 or 250! Of course, being the same price you'd be daft not to order the highest amount possible so I got 250. There's a selection of papers to choose from; Deluxe, Recycled and Standard. Once you've chosen your type of paper you can choose the weight. I decided on 120gsm recycled paper and only required printing on one side though the option is there for double sided should you need it. 

I'm really impressed with these, for recycled paper the colour (white, obviously) is pure and bright and it feels like regular printing paper. The images and text are all bright and clear and there's no blurriness in sight.

For information, I chose to include my address, which I've deleted from the photo for obvious reasons, blog header and profile picture, and as a footer I've added my web address, email and social media handles. I'm really happy with how these turned out and have nothing negative to say at all, which is pretty uncommon when it comes to something I've designed myself.

Adhesive Stickers

Although there were other things on the site that I could have chosen, I decided to complete my order with 350 2"x1" stickers, which were £20. At the time of ordering I was planning a few giveaways, as well as beauty swaps with some friends around the country, so knew I'd be sending a few parcels over the coming months. I thought that having some address labels would be really handy, so I designed them in the same way as my other stationery. Again, for obvious reasons, I had to block out my address, which doesn't leave a heck of a lot to show you I'm afraid. The only thing I was able to show in the photo was my name, so I decided not to post it as it looked a bit strange. I wanted to keep these simple, so chose to include my name, address and small profile picture in the bottom right corner.

I'm really happy with how these turned out too and don't think I'd change a thing about them. The writing and image are really clear and sharp, and the stickers feel like good quality, they certainly don't feel as if they'll tear if you remove them too quickly, which is a necessity for me as I'm so clumsy. They come on a few large sheets of backing paper, all rolled up. I prefer that they've divided them into sheets rather than one large roll because they're easier to store.

Considering I chose three different items from the site, I think it's great that I could only point out one negative thing, as I said before, I'm usually really critical of things I've designed myself. I used Canva to create all of my artwork though FastPrint does offer a design service too. If you decide to design your own it's easy enough to upload your work directly to the site and see a preview before it's printed, so there shouldn't be any surprises when your order arrives. 

I now have enough business cards to last me years, but should I need any more I think FastPrint is the first place I'd look. For the prices I'm really impressed, and wouldn't hesitate to recommend them to you either.

If you blog, do you have personalised stationery or blog business cards? Where did you get them from?

*PR sample, you can read my full disclosure policy here
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