Cheer Up Letterpress & Design: Columbus Wedding Vendor Spotlight
Cheer Up Letterpress & Design
My heart behind doing these vendor spotlights was to educated and introduce Columbus brides to some of the very best vendors in the wedding industry in hopes that they could connect and utilize their amazing services for their big day! What I didn’t anticipate is the beautiful friendships that would develop along the way. I am so thankful Alaina so graciously invited me into her industrial studio space at 400 West Rich for an afternoon of creativity and fun! She is such a kind, hilarious, and insanely talented person who I look forward to collaborating with in the future.
Go ahead and grab a cup of coffee then sit back and enjoying getting to know all about Alaina Cherup of Cheer Up Letterpress and feast your eyes on her gorgeous design work!
Tell me a little about yourself and your business!
Hello! I'm Alaina Cherup and I am the founder and lead designer at Cheer Up Press; a boutique wedding invitation and fine printing studio located in the Franklinton Arts District of Columbus, Ohio. I started Cheer Up Press in 2008 and just recently celebrated my eleventh business-versary!
How did you get started in this business?
I have Etsy to thank for my initial success. It allowed me to have a creative outlet and hobby business for a few years until I was ready to quit my day job to pursue this passion of mine full-time. Right out of college though, I knew I had a talent for stationery design and my dream job was to work for Hallmark! While that dream never came to fruition, another much better one eventually did.
Tell me more about letterpress printing and how it stands apart from other invitation options!
Letterpress printing is one of things you just have to see in person to really understand why it's so beautiful. The sought after quality of letterpress is that the printing plate itself is pushed INTO the paper, leaving behind the ink but also a lovely, pillowy, shadowy impression. This is the opposite of embossing, called a deboss. The other part of the allure, is that most printing presses are very, very old. Mine was manufactured in the 1930s, while some of the newer models were manufactured in the 80s. The presses themselves are amazing pieces of machinery and are so thrilling to watch in action.
Tell me a little about the actual printing press you use!
The printing press I use is a circa 1930 Chandler and Price which happened to be based in Cleveland, Ohio. It is called a 'platen' press and it uses a clamshell mechanism to produce the immense pressure needed to create the beautiful, tactile impression that letterpress so well known for.
What keeps you coming back day after day?
Owning a small business is hard, but what keeps me coming back day after day is the infinite freedom it gives me to set my own schedule, to create to my heart's delight, and make important decisions about the direction my business is going. Not to mention, I truly enjoy getting to work with couples on their wedding invitations and create something entirely unique to them and their big day.
How would you describe yourself in 3 words?
Silly, Creative, Compassionate
Where do you do your best work?
I do my best work when I'm at my studio, soaking in the natural light and surrounded by my work!
How would you describe clients who are a great fit for you?
That's a tough question because my clients have such a wide range of budgets and tastes. I think what does ring true for most couples I work with, is that they fully trust the creative process and know they're in good hands, even though they can't always perfectly envision the final printed piece.
What was one of your favorite weddings you worked on, and why?
One of my favorite weddings was in September 2017 at Strongwater in Columbus. The couple was so open-minded about their wedding stationery. When couples fully trust my creative direction, that's usually when the magic happens. My favorite element from that day was a 5-panel seating chart suspended from the ceiling which included some of my hand-painted artwork and Evergreen Flower Co's. Greenery hanging from it!
What has surprised you the most about your business?
How down to earth brides can be! My clients are so gracious, patient, and easy to work with.
What is the one thing you'd like a prospective bride to know about you?
It's my job to make your invitations the easiest and most fun part of the wedding process for you (other than the wedding itself!) You get to see your wedding style come to life on paper, and your invitations are your guests' first glimpse into what your wedding day will be like.
Where are you from, and how did you end up in Columbus?
I am originally from LaCrosse, Wisconsin, and moved to Northwest Ohio when I was 5. After meeting my husband at my sister's wedding (we were both in the wedding party!), I moved down to Columbus to be with him.
What is your favorite Columbus restaurant?
My old standby is The Pearl in the Short North. Their menu has a southern flair and my favorite dishes are the jalapeno corn spoon bread, beet salad, and crack pie!
What is your favorite thing to do in Columbus?
My favorite thing to do in Columbus is eat. This would include eating out at one of the million great restaurants we have here; visiting the Worthington Farmer's market on a Saturday; or going to the Ohio state fair in August, which my husband's family does every year religiously.
What do you love to do when you're not working?
I love to garden, paint, and decorate my home. Not necessarily in that order.