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It was a tough one, our first full catalogue without David's input. But hopefully you won't see any
difference in terms of the quality of writing, or see a sudden decline in our design sensibilities..!
It's all about Cardigan's twin town of Trevelin – a small town in the foothills of the Andes in
Patagonia and the Welsh colonies that settled there in the 1800s.
Last November four people from howies went out to Patagonia to follow in the footsteps of those settlers and find out more about Trevelin, while a group of us stayed here in Wales and learned more about our home town, Cardigan. From those stories we've made both a regular-sized catalogue and a larger newsprint version.
Nick Hand got back on board helping design this one with us aswell. He missed the last two Sweden Super Nice catalogues, as he was out on his Slowcoast bike ride. Was good to have his experienced mind and calming influence back in the building.
So, probably the first thing you'll notice the regular-sized Twin Towns catalogue is that we've changed paper stock. We've gone from using an uncoated paper to a mix of both coated and gloss instead. We did this so that the colours would pop and you could see more detail in our products.
It really does make this one feel a bit special... more like a book. We love the look and feel of uncoated paper, but even with retouching we still found the flatshots did lose quite a bit of colour and detail. So it made sense to change.
The next thing you'll notice is that great gatefold cover. It kicks the catalogue off with a nice soulful photo of Jack skating. The inside cover has a sweet panoramic shot of the Preseli mountains, then straight into the story.
You may also notice that we've switched typefaces, discarding trusty old Helvetica Neue in favour of Sentinel for the headlines – a hefty slab serif from font designers Hoefler & Frere-Jones. And for body copy we used Akkurat, which is easy on the eye and not too much of a giant leap from Helvetica... baby steps.
And finally, we introduced a new triangular colour key for our different trouser fits. This matches up with what our product design team have done on the waistbands of the products themselves, so now you can tell your loose from your regular a bit quicker.
Well like i said, a copy of the full catalogue or a copy of the newsprint version should be with you anyday now, hope you like it. Let us know what you think.
Good old Mr Bowlegs the illustrator is down at our Carnaby Street shop
right now installing a new window display. It's going to be a good 'un.
(He'll be doing the Bristol shop window tomorrow by the way).
I'll give you a clue... it's monster-related. But that's it for now.
I'll blog his progress throughout the day. Stay tuned to see the final piece.
Alas, it's goodbye to little Claire Margetts today.
She is leaving us to go off and help out on a polar expedition.
Claire has had a busy year arranging the Do Lectures and stuff.
But no matter how much pressure was on, that smile never faded.
And anyone who went to Do this year will tell you what a top girl she is.
(She's a mean race car driver too apparently).
We wish her well. She will be missed.
Wrap up warm dear.