Thursday, November 8, 2012


With so many textures and tones in each Bella Notte line, it can be difficult to know where to begin building the perfect bed. The yearly inspiration books are created to demonstrate an infinite array of possibilities through beautiful imagery.

Our photographs, edited and compiled into 8x8” booklets, are an invaluable tool in organizing our couture fabrications into real options for everyday living. Flipping through the pages helps to connect the viewer with the product—a gravitation towards certain color combinations and an appreciation for the layering can spark inspiration and provide a foundation for a customer’s own unique vision.

These inspiration books are the culmination of many creative processes, starting in the studio where designer Kathleen McCoy transforms ideas, sketches and fabric samples into tangible collections and pallets. A desired direction and overall mood is shared with our stylist, Juliet White, who begins set design—expertly weaving colors, fabrics and prints in unlikely combinations. Photographer Jay Graham captures each scene with his expert eye as Juliet’s vision is fully realized from sketch to set to print.

Once collected, cropped and compiled into the desired layout, our images are entrusted to local print house ColorGraphics. Located in the historic Potrero Hill neighborhood of San Francisco, ColorGraphics along with their team of technicians and printers, have transformed our digital images into tactile brochures to share with our stores and followers. They take deliberate steps to ensure quality and perfection with each printing, beginning with assembly of the files digitally to create two proofs—high end flat color proofs (to use on press to match color in photos) and an iris paper “blueline” (trimmed and stitched, showing pages as they would fall in the real brochure). Once each is approved, the printing process can begin. 

In our case, all text pages are printed on one form, beginning with the front 12 pages, then turning the sheet over to print the back 12 pages, followed by the cover and translucent flysheet. The cover is then adorned with our logo—a brass die is made and embossed into the cover stock using heat and pressure and applying foil at the same time. A score is added to the spine so that it doesn’t crack when thumbed through again and again.

Next, the text form is folded so all 24 pages are in position. On a saddle stitcher the cover and fly sheet are dropped onto the text on an assembly line, stitched, and then 3 knife trimmed so the final books are perfectly cut. Both the cover and text paper have at least 10% post consumer waste in the fiber, a fact that we truly appreciate. From paper sourcing to color matching and even down to the delicate spiral detailing of our logo on the front cover, they ensure we are satisfied with every detail. 

The completed product is a source of pride for the entire Bella Notte team and allows us to artfully archive each line. We hope you enjoy the 2012 Inspiration Book!

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