For almost 100 years

Extraordinary designs, creative collaborations, a touch of humanity in every detail. From conception to finished product, each custom Arzberger project is rooted in a valued partnership between client and craftsman. It's an old-fashioned, people-first approach built on trust and communication, and it means as much to us today as it did in 1922.

Custom Design


We believe in celebrating each customer as an individual, and in letting his or her unique traits and expressions drive the creative process. Whether you are designing a suite of personal stationery, invitations to your daughter’s wedding, or business cards for a new venture, the end result should be a reflection of YOU and of the message you want to communicate to the world.


Which is why we approach each project with the same pair of passion-fueled goals that sent our founders into the stationery business all those years ago: to create lasting and tangible products that honor the art of putting pen to paper and to commemorate life’s many occasions in the most special way possible.

Paper


We mill our own Arzberger-watermarked paper in white and ecru. It is a cotton composite, and decidedly thicker than standard social cards and envelopes in the marketplace. We also use and have access to hundreds of beautiful papers and envelope linings from all over the world.

Environmental Impact


At Arzberger, we are good stewards of our resources. We recycle all paper trim and scrap as well as the metal from our engraving plates. Our inks are water-based, and the mill that makes our paper is FSC certified.

The art of printing

Arzberger was founded on the beauty and intricacy of engraving. Over the years, as the company—and our customers’ needs—have grown, we have embraced complementary processes, such as offset printing, thermography, foil stamping, letterpress, and die cutting.

Processses

Engraving
Embossing
Offset Printing
Thermography
Foil Stamping
Die Cutting
Letterpress
Digital Printing

Engraving

The art of engraving has endured for centuries because of the singular appearance and lasting impression it renders.  Each unique design—whether lettering, artwork or a combination of the two—is etched into metal plates with extreme precision, then carefully stamped onto hand-fed pieces of Arzberger’s specially milled paper, using traditional die-stamping presses built decades ago. The resulting image is raised and highly detailed, with a visible impression on the back of the paper. This “bruise” is considered a mark of quality, and differentiates engraving from other processes. Engraving ink, in comparison to printing ink, is dense and opaque, yielding crispness in even the tiniest details. (When paired with dark paper, these opaque inks deliver exceptionally dramatic results.) 

Embossing

Embossing is engraving without ink. A metal plate is etched and positioned in the engraving press, then used to pressure-stamp each piece of paper to render a raised design in vivid detail and texture. Embossing plates can be multi-level to create a true 3-D effect, such as in family crests, or single-level to produce an even depth throughout. Sometimes the subtlest things are the most powerful.

Offset Printing

Arzberger employs traditional offset presses for printing. Copy and artwork are transferred onto a plate, which is affixed to a cylinder on the press. Rollers dispense color onto the plate, and the paper passes through the cylinders, where the inked copy and artwork offset onto the paper. Printing ink is somewhat translucent and is affected by the color of the paper.

Thermography

Thermography simulates the raised appearance of engraving without the use of metal engraving plates. A thermographed piece is initially offset printed; then, while the ink is still wet, a fine powder is distributed over it. The paper then passes under a heating element, where the ink dries and hardens. This heating process creates a raised effect, with no visible bruising on the paper. In larger printed areas, a dimpling effect may be seen. Printing/thermography inks are translucent and therefore can be affected by the color of the stock on which they are used. Pale inks are not suited for thermography, and the best results are achieved by pairing darker inks with lighter paper.

Foil Stamping

Unlike engraving or thermography, in which the ink sits on top of the paper, foil stamping creates a slightly debossed effect, the result of a heated metal plate pressing against film and then transferring the design onto paper. Foil is most commonly used when a reflective finish is desired, particularly with metallics, and works well in areas of large coverage. Foils are available in many colors, and finishes include shiny, matte and mirrored.

Die Cutting

Die cutting is used to cut paper into special shapes, such as circles and custom edges that can not be produced by straight-edge cutters. Thin metal blades are bent into a custom shape, or “die,” then mounted onto a sturdy base, placed onto a press and forcibly applied to the paper in the manner of a cookie cutter.

Letterpress

With letterpress, a plate is made, and the typography or artwork is debossed into the paper, creating an indented image, as opposed to engraving, which produces a raised image. Rollers dispense ink onto the raised artwork on the plate, and the plate is then pressed into a sheet of paper. The debossed appearance of letterpress is best captured on soft papers, like Arturo. Letterpress ink is somewhat translucent and is affected by the color of the stock on which it is used.

Digital Printing

We use digital print technology to offer multi-color, printed artwork as an accent on stationery and invitations. Custom artwork, from watercolors to acrylics, can be digitized and incorporated as motifs, envelope linings, and illustrations. We do not recommend digital print as the primary process for reproducing typography.