Friday, November 19, 2010

How To Make Paper Look Old and Create Direct Mail Guaranteed to Get Opened


Marketing and advertising has been increasingly over produced for many years. The mass production of media means that consumers give less time and attention to advertisements. The supply of marketing is greater than the demand given to it and the bubble is bursting on ineffective forms of communication. Total customization or the ability to create a unique experience for each and every consumer is the marketers new goal.

Today, only hand-crafted, highly-customizable printed materials consistently get noticed. The new art of printing begins with a creative idea, is achieved through a unique process and shipped with a personal touch that connects to people on a human to human level.

The creation of an aged mailer offers a perfect opportunity to create a real connection to the past and revisit a time in printing when the artisan was more powerful than the machine. An aged mailer offers you the ability to touch people's senses and send them back in time.

Just think about all the times we hear stories in the media of letters delivering decades later? People emotionally connect with the past and the dated look of an aged mailer immediately makes one think of the old and forgotten times.

As a fellow print chef, you can begin aging paper right away and rekindle the past with uniquely, hand-crafted printed materials.  To create this highly-customizable printed item right in your own kitchen, here are a few quick and easy to follow steps:


  1. Print your message on the paper before beginning the process
  2. Pre-heat an oven to 200 degrees
  3. Soak paper in tea, coffee or vinegar and plan on your mailer still smelling like your ingredient of choice (If aging an envelope, while soaking, carefully open flat at the sealed areas as glue will now be ineffective)
  4. Remove from liquid and sprinkle coffee or tea grinds on paper
  5. Rub in grinds to create an assortment of random stains
  6. With a dry towel or cloth, carefully pat the wet paper to remove any excess liquid and brush off remaining grinds
  7. Place the paper on an oven proof pan 
  8. Put pan in oven and frequently check paper every minute to test for dryness and ensure the paper does not stick to the pan
  9. Remove as soon as dry and let cool (once cool, if aging an envelope, re-seal with a glue stick)
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