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Smudge Ink | Artisan Profile

Smudge Ink | Artisan Profile
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Deb Bastien and Kate Saliba
Photo/Art by Michael Piazza
Deb Bastien and Kate Saliba

Deb Bastien and Kate Saliba have been teammates for decades, first as varsity field-hockey players at Bates College, and now in their Boston-based stationery company, where they produce offset-printed and lette­rpress notes, invitations, calendars, gift wrap, and holiday cards. The business originally started on Cape Cod, where Deb had relocated to be closer to family. (“Translation,” she jokes: “We needed free rent while we got this thing going.”) But they found the perfect headquarters in a renovated textile factory in Charlestown.

The pair have a particular fondness for letterpress. “It creates a three-dimensional impression, which we think is beautiful,” Deb says. So they print about 60 percent of their products in house on antique cast-iron letter­press machines. The remainder are produced by a press in Maine, which also handles offset printing.

Bastien and Saliba continue to be team players: They proudly note that their staff includes a talented violinist, a portrait artist, and a mathematician. And in recent years, Smudge Ink has also created two lines of vibrantly designed cards whose proceeds benefit local charities: WE CAN, a Cape Cod group offering mentoring, legal counsel, and education to women in transition; and Circle of Women, a Cambridge-based organization that funds schools for girls in developing countries. $8–$13. Smudge Ink, Charlestown, MA. 617-242-8228; smudgeink.com

Amy Traverso

Author:

Amy Traverso

Biography:

Senior lifestyle editor Amy Traverso oversees Yankee's Food and Home & Garden departments and contributes articles to the magazine. Amy book, The Apple Lover's Cookbook (W.W. Norton), won an International Association of Culinary Professionals (IACP) cookbook award for the category American. Follow !

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