AUTUMN//WINTER 2018 33 32 AUTUMN//WINTER 2018 choice of six different foil colours. Clients can order their products online and in selected stores. The kikki.K website has a video showing exactly how they emboss initials on their stationery. It’s essential viewing for stationery addicts as it reveals the mechanics behind the process. Nor does it hurt the brand to identify with the traditional skills associated with top-end luxury stationers. The price is right While traditional printers and stationers continue to offer beautiful bespoke products for the discerning client with money to spare, online is where we see some of the most exciting – and affordable – developments in customised stationery. Businesses are springing up or adapting existing models to offer increasing levels of personalisation. A growing appetite for bespoke stationery in the UK was the reason Chroma Stationery came into being. Founder Gabi Cox says: “Before I started Chroma, I was aware that more high-end brands were offering personalisation, but it always seemed so expensive, with them charging £1 a letter or more, or it was very limited. For example, you could have your name but it would be in a set font or in a set place. I wanted to build a business that allowed people to create their ideal piece of stationery with limitless embossing at an affordable price point. At Chroma we allow each individual to build their dream piece, whatever they’d like customised, placed anywhere on the notebook.” The key to Chroma’s success could lie in the combination of producing the right product at the right time, and for the right person. Cox continues: “Since I started Chroma four years ago, the personalisation trend has only grown in popularity, but many companies still offer quite a limited service. My target audience is female, aged between 18 and 35, so bang on Millennials. They care about the product they’re buying, but also the brand behind it.” More than a name Personalisation isn’t exclusively about stamping initials on a notebook. Lime Stationery & Art has just launched a new range of light-up letters from Legami that takes personalisation away from paper goods and onto desks, into bedrooms and even the garden. Or personalisation can extend to customising a paper product to a client’s exact needs. The idea is the customer creates a bespoke product by cherry- picking the features or designs that suit their tastes or their lifestyle. Take TOAD Diaries, for example, which started out offering its clients the ability to choose the start and finish date, size and format of its diaries. TOAD (TodayOrAnyDay) has since expanded its online business to provide exactly what its customers were asking for – namely more control over the designs and formats. Tim Grinsdale, the company founder, said: “In our first couple of years trading we could only provide a wiro-bound option, and many of our early customers were requesting different finishes, in particular a hardback and a soft-touch option. After recently acquiring some more equipment, and additional staff with specific book-making skills, we were able to finally deliver these new additions to our customers. This, in essence, has completed our offering, allowing people to choose everything about their diary content and have it in their preferred finish.” For online retailer NOTHS – – personalisation lies at the very heart of its business. Rosemary Platt, curator of Stationery, Seasonal, Toys & Books and Garden at the company, comments: “Stationery is used so much in our everyday lives nowadays that people want to have items that feel special and are personal to them. However, over time, we’ve seen this evolve to much more than just a notebook with a name on. Customers want to be able to personalise their stationery with everything from their favourite literary quotes, to their hobbies and even their children’s drawings. Over the past 10 years, we’ve seen our Partners respond to this trend by developing personalised CUSTOMERS WANTTO BE ABLETO PERSONALISETHEIR STATIONERY WITH EVERYTHING FROMTHEIR FAVOURITE LITERARY QUOTES,TO THEIR HOBBIES AND EVENTHEIR CHILDREN’S DRAWINGS. products that make stationery totally unique to an individual, so that it becomes a truly thoughtful gift and reflection of both themselves and their loved ones.” There is an unstoppable tide of companies and individuals offering personalisation, aimed at people who value stationery personalised to them, or even for someone else. As one high- end traditional stationer declared in its newsletter earlier this year: “Every gift is more magnificent with added initials.” Leather essentials range in Mint by kikki.K TOAD Diaries IN A WORLD WHERE EVERYONE CAN END UP HAVING THE SAME THING, BEING ABLETO PUT YOUR UNIQUE MARK ON SOMETHING IS AN APPEALING FACTOR FOR ANY MODERN SHOPPER. Chroma Stationery PoshTotty Designs Creates from & SoThey Made set of five personalised notebooks from Legami light-up letters from Lime Stationery &Art