Letterpressed Kiwi indie duo's debut stands out from the crowd

Each colour in the design is made from a separate polymer plate. The black layer awaits its final silver layer. The final result, printed on grey paper stock. The final result, printed on grey paper stock. The final result, printed on grey paper stock.

When designer Aimee Carruthers was commissioned to create something special for melancholic indie-rock duo, Luckless, her thoughts turned immediately to letterpress.

A meticulously crafted and considered album required a package to match, she says.

"It's a wonderfully tactile way to print – the type and image are literally pressed into the paper making a beautiful three dimensional print. The crafted nature of this printing process mirrors what the band are doing in the studio."

Designed to reflect the band's contrasts, the resulting package is both beautiful and bleak. Carruthers (who's currently working on the next issue of Idealog) is a long-time friend of the band's songwriter, Ivy Rossiter, and the motifs emerged from her knowledge of Rossiter's aesthetics and influences.

"Ivy is a voracious reader and has Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Haruki Murakami and Sylvia Plath on her bookshelf, so I've drawn inspiration from bookplates. I chose the moth because they straddle the line between ugly and beautiful, which I think is actually the most beautiful. When discussing my ideas with Ivy, she exclaimed 'I love moths, they're so unfortunate'."

Most of the letterpress process is done by hand and is, understandably, time consuming – from making the photo-polymer plates for printing to mixing ink, printing and cleaning the press.

Carruthers had never seen a letterpress album before, and consulted with Shona Gow of Magpie Press to pick her brain at the beginning of the process on making something both sturdy and affordable without compromising on looks.

"It was absolutely thrilling to see the artwork come to life on the press. Making something with letterpress is on every designer's bucket list, I'm sure."

Luckless' self-titled debut limited edition run of 500 will be released at The Wine Cellar on May 24 and available in stores from May 25.

Watch the making of below:

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