Doyenne Howard Shares ‘Paper Tales’
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Doyenne Howard Shares ‘Paper Tales’

Atlanta native Jackie Howard shares her sought-after ideas about paper on quality, etiquette, and making the most out of special occasions.

After 37 years with the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and now with the AJT, , Jaffe’s focus is lifestyle, art, dining, fashion, and community events with emphasis on Jewish movers and shakers.

Bat mitzvah invitation printed on red acrylic with added rhinestones, a Jackie Howard touch.
Bat mitzvah invitation printed on red acrylic with added rhinestones, a Jackie Howard touch.

After 50-plus years in the fine paper business, Jackie Howard is known for expert advice and depth in understanding the role of fine paper in life’s celebrations and day-to-day use.

At 13, Jackie’s mother, Joy, took her to J.P. Stevens downtown for her birthday gift where she chose monogrammed dye and engraved “thank you” notes. She recalled, “From that time on, I was aware of fine stationery and paper. At 18, our family went to Europe, where mom and I carried our engraving dyes. In Switzerland, I ordered engraved stationery again using my old dye.”

Jackie Howard uses decades of experience in fine paper and etiquette to advise clients.

Howard was later off to NYC for New York’s Stationery Show to set up accounts with engravers and printers. She then designed a line of stationery produced in Germany. From there, she designed a line of stationery for Crane, sold nationwide to fine stores.

On her kitchen table, she learned about advertising, graphic design, pressing type and committed to her “forever love of stationery.”

In 1986, she opened her first store in Buckhead: Paces Papers by Jackie. During the 1996 Summer Olympics, she moved to her current location at 110 East Andrews. This past February, she celebrated 50 years in the biz.

She stated, “The bulk of our business is designing and printing wedding invitations. We often design and print the bride and groom’s entire portfolio – save the date, wedding invitation, rehearsal dinner invitation, program, menu, place cards, thank you notes. We create one-of-a-kind, custom-printed invitations for life’s milestones, from birth to passing. We are currently working on an 85th birthday celebration for a long-time client where we created his 70th, 75th and 80th invitations.”

Howard thinks outside-the-box with exceptional creativity: elegant menus with mouth-watering wording for at-home entertaining, custom design powder room guest towels, personal “life crests” to commemorate special occasions, place card holders making the table memorable. “Save the Date” cards remain popular.

Jackie Howard designed this rehearsal dinner invitation: two-color printing on silver metallic paper with silver handmade linings.

Howard created a snow globe with a picture of the honoree. Another “Save the Date” was embedded in a world globe that rotated using solar power.

Howard sells a huge gift collection with curated items and an extensive collection of greeting cards for every occasion, including an “inappropriate” section. Clients often come to Jackie for etiquette advice. Howard replied to “good manners” questions here as a self-professed “Southern, old-fashioned, reformed Jew.”

Paces Papers, Inc., by Jackie Howard is located at 110 East Andrews. Store hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Saturday, closed Sunday. 404-231-1111.

Jackie’s Pearls of Wisdom

Determining quality: “I believe in hand feel and paper stock thickness. Some European-made papers, either handmade or machine-made, have a deckle edge which is a mark of finely made paper. In 2019, I traveled to Prague to visit the factory of my favorite companies, Bohemia Paper, which carries the most gorgeous handmade, cotton fiber paper with a beautiful texture and weave. It is exquisite visually and in your hand.”

VIP Save the Date (Daniel) printed on metal. Acrylic invitation with white printing.

Modern technology: “During COVID, we faced challenges due to the supply chain slow down. We purchased a high-tech, high-end digital printer which was a game changer to now print in-house, allowing faster turn-around time.”

Blended families (with parents having several marriages on both sides): Include the names of the parents with their newer spouses, resulting in less hurt feelings with the peoples’ names on the invitation. Also, Howard’s not opposed to the bride and groom issuing their own invitations, doing the reply envelope back to the bride’s mother and spouse.

Interfaith couples and geography: Howard determines if both sets of parents are Jewish and if the bride and groom are both Southern or if the bride is Southern and the groom is from the Northeast. In a traditional Southern invitation, the invitation is issued by the bride’s parents mentioning the daughter’s and groom’s name, with no mention of the groom’s parents. In a wedding where the groom’s parents are from the Northeast, she advises the bride that if they leave off the groom’s parents, they will take it as a slight. In their tradition, the invitation includes “son of.”

Observant Jews: Howard offers a blessing on the page in the upper right-hand corner…Hebrew characters Bet Hay. Jackie added, “If it is more important to one of the families to have a Bet Hey, it should be included. As a visual person, I feel it’s a beautiful, decorative touch.”

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