Meet The Maker: Mariko Iwata of Miks Letterpress

Hello and welcome to our Meet the Maker blog series! Twice a week we will be profiling one of our talented vendors who will be participating in our Holiday Art Star Craft Bazaar on November 19th and 20th at the Simeone Foundation Automotive Museum. This is a great way to get to know each of our artists better. Learn more about their process, get a glimpse into their studio, and meet the person behind the beautiful products they create! We will be posting these every Tuesday and Thursday until the show. Join our Facebook Event so you are notified as soon as a new post is up. Enjoy!

Hi I’m Mariko and I design and print modern and funny letterpress greeting cards as well as minimal wedding invitations.

I am all about the hand written note. Nothing says “you’re worth it” than someone who gets out a pen, thinks of something to write, licks the envelope and rifles through their drawer for stamps. Oh, yeah and then remembers to send the letter.

The sentiments printed on my cards are modern and funny as well as gushingly sentimental. I try to think of something unique that people today want to say like “i wait to watch tv shows with you” to express love. Most cards also have a blind impression that you can only see if you’re up close, like a secret message.

I love printing. I have a heidelberg windmill letterpress machine in my studio in Mt. Rainier, MD. It’s heavy and large and quite awesome when it comes to letterpress printing. I got it two years ago when I decided I’d pour my heart into designing and printing stationery and wedding invitations.

There are a number of steps involved in printing, starting from the design and concept, getting plates made, inking up your machine, setting up a design on the machine to then finally print. Here is a video that I did with Below the Park that shows the multiple steps.

Miks Letterpress – Clones from Below The Park on Vimeo.

This year I’ve been focusing more on my modern wedding invitation line. The wedding line is minimal, simple and great for the couple who wants their wedding invitation suite to be unique and different. I use gold foil, letterpress and watercolor in my work.

I’m so excited to be at the Art Star Craft Bazaar this year. I’ll have a number of new items that I don’t have yet online and will be debuting at the show. I’m super excited to be in Philly this year with other super talented makers.

Mariko Iwata is the creative force behind Miks Letterpress +. When she is not printing and being a boss lady she is hanging out with her husband (the inspiration for many of her cards) and 8 month old son (who frequents craft fairs with her and will be at Art Star). Follow Miks Letterpress + on instagram (@mikspress) and check out her site

Photos by Jon Moses Photography & Rachel Lynn Photography
Video by Below the Park

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