For stationery with a dash of Parisian panache, Armorial is the name to know. Since this “papeterie de luxe” was founded in Paris in 1890, it has supplied personalised writing materials to famous names from the worlds of fashion, art and politics, and while its service continues today instore on Boulevard Haussmann, it also has a recently opened London location at Harvey Nichols.
The bespoke service (from £500) offers customers the full array of traditional printing techniques, from die stamping and engraving to thermography, plate sinking and foil blocking. There is, of course, a choice of fine and rare papers – from Japanese brand Takeo’s Pachica to Brasilia by Gmund in Germany – which all come with a hands-on design consultation. “What sets Armorial apart is the time we spend with clients and our determination to help them,” says a company director Adrian Braimer Jones. “One recent client came in with an extremely detailed design for his letterhead. He knew what he wanted down to the last millimetre, and we were able to discuss different papers with him to complete the effect. Another customer was having a wedding comprising six events with different themes over six nights, and we were able to interpret each one into a distinctive invitation for her guests.”
The stationery is all made in Paris and Scotland. “Our engraver is in Scotland; he’s the only one in the country. It’s a dying art,” continues Braimer Jones. “How does it compare to digital printing? You can’t compare what we do to digital; it’s like comparing a Mini to a Bentley.”