Anna A

Coolstuff Team
June 7, 2024

Meet Anna, the one-woman show behind Sunday Gelato: a love letter to Italian food, childhood recipes, and dinner parties with friends and family. Sunday Gelato is a hand block-printed stationery shop that features custom one-of-a-kind event stationery design work. We caught up with Anna to hear how she bridges the two worlds of digital and hand-drawn design work.

What sparked your interest into the world of printmaking?

I had been doing primarily digital design for a couple years but never felt like I found my niche — I was always on the hunt for something that felt more “me.” I knew my next creative project would be centered around food & intimate events but couldn’t quite identify the missing piece; however, when I learned about block printing and stamp carving it all seemed to fall into place.  The hobby is a tad on the pricier side since there are multiple tools involved, so one year for our anniversary my partner got me the supplies to get started.

The slow, therapeutic process of block carving and lino printing is also what drew me in.  It’s very satisfying to make something with your hands and the sensory experience really brings you back to yourself.  In a world full of screens (I’m definitely a three-screen gal some nights), finding this new hobby made me feel calmer and more connected to myself. 

Tell us about the story behind your paper goods brand, Sunday Gelato!

My favorite quote is “the most personal is the most creative” — so while creating this brand I went back to the basics.  Sunday Gelato is an ode to my Italian upbringing where food was always the main focus.  My grandparents immigrated with their children to the US from Naples, Italy in the 1950s and instilled in us so many traditions large and small — from the Christmas Eve feast of the seven fishes to canning tomatoes in our backyard.  The throughline always seemed to be sharing special moments over food with the ones you love the most.  (And intense debates over post-dinner espressos :)) 

I launched SG last summer with a product line of childhood recipe block prints and dinner party stationery including name cards, menus, thank you cards, and blank notecards.  This has since expanded to custom event stationery designed both by hand and digitally to accommodate so many fun events this past year.  I’ve created invitations, save the dates, seating charts, cocktail menus, and more.

But more importantly, I finally feel like I’ve found my niche and have married all my special interests: dinner parties, playful design, and satisfying paper products.

What’s the best part about the New York creative community?

The people!  I’ve met so many amazing folks this past year.  I am constantly inspired by the grit and hustle that New Yorkers put into their creative endeavors.  So many people (including myself) have a full-time job and somehow still find the time to pursue these side projects that make their lives fuller and more meaningful. 

I’ve met so many young creatives who are in the beginning stages of building out their brand just like me, and we’re constantly referring each other to clients.  The small community I’ve become a part of has been so supportive and inclusive.

This past month I held a block printing workshop in east williamsburg with 20 students and met so many incredible people. This experience really affirmed that pursuing your passions is the most fulfilling thing you can do.

Do you have any new works in the making for Sunday Gelato?

Of course!  This summer I plan to release more prints and stationery sets.  As painstaking as it is, I’m going to expand upon my cherry red aesthetic and offer more color palettes and options :) One note of feedback I've received on my "GRAZIE" card set is that folks are looking for a version to just say hello instead of thanks, so I'm working on a "CIAO" set for more casual penpalling.

We also have some exciting collaborations in the books coming up for some wearable merch that I think are perfect for summer — another tote bag, t-shirts, hats, and more. Squiggles and pasta illustrations 4ever.

Along with that, I definitely have a couple print ideas in the old noggin that I want to create next! Earlier this year I had the flu and it reminded me of how my mom used to say I had “occhi di pesce” when I was sick — aka “fish eyes” in Italian.  From this, I want to create a small print of a fish face that I think accurately captures this mood.  I also have been working on a larger print for over a year now of an after dinner table scene that I really want to complete.

We’re always cooking up some fun ideas so be on the lookout for more to come!  I just revamped my newsletter which you can subscribe to here for the latest updates, design inspo, product recs, and upcoming event info.

Are there any printmakers that inspire your work?

Absolutely!  I’m a huge fan of @inciardi, @allison.mckeen, @georginadocherty_, @patternedstudio, @ofeliabotella, @gabriellemonceaux, @gatheringsbyemily, @eastrosestudio, and so many more.  I’m drawn to any creatives whose work feels unique and nontraditional.

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