Wild Ink Press opens a brick-and-mortar shop in Chico.

I first met Rebekah Tennis about three years ago, awkwardly proclaiming my utter adoration of her within the first few seconds of shaking of her hand at a Christmas party. I had stumbled upon Tennis’ blog through a friend’s social media posting months before meeting her in person, and had stalked the site almost daily to find pictures of a life lived well beyond my reach. Tennis wrote about crafts she would whip up during her children’s naps, gorgeous pies with handmade crusts that she baked, and intricate designs for the latest greeting cards she was creating for her emerging letterpress design and printing business, Wild Ink Press.

Since the only skill I have in the area of arts and crafts is being able to identify the smells of the Mr. Sketch scented markers, I was instantly enamored with Tennis’ talent for making all things beautiful and I just had to tell her in person. I probably should have waited more than seven seconds.

Since our first exchange, Wild Ink Press—which Tennis runs alongside her husband, Matt, who also farms rice—has steadily expanded, with their hand-designed and letter-pressed greeting cards available in 200 retail outlets nationwide, including Papyrus and PaperSource stores. The business also features customized letterpress wedding invitations, personalized stationery, and thank you cards, among other fine paper products. As business has blossomed, growing to four employees, the second garage at the Tennis home has been pushed beyond capacity, necessitating a move.

Just in time for the holidays, Wild Ink Press has opened its doors at 186 E. Sixth St., with the 3,200-square-foot building becoming home to a design studio, as well as a retail space for customers to purchase Wild Ink Press merchandise as well as greeting cards from other like-minded designers Tennis admires. The building, which was a former bottling plant and once occupied by Mid Valley Title, will also prominently display the historic presses that define Wild Ink Press: a Golding Jobber No. 7 (1912), Chandler & Price Old Style (1908), and two Heidelberg Windmills (1967 and 1973).

The Tennises have remodeled the building to parallel the allure and elegance of their printed designs, with black subway tiles lining the outside facade, a tile entryway with the word “hello” greeting guests, and steel signage welded by local Earthen Iron studio. Though the majority of their work is shipped to stores outside Chico, Tennis said the new space is a way to interact locally.

“We want to be community-friendly,” she said. “We are mainly a wholesale business, but we want to be open to the public to connect with the community. It’s a fun chance to get to know people, to build relationships and extend our reach here.”

Drop by and pick up a card to build a better relationship with someone in your life. The cute and thoughtful designs will elevate any personal message you may write and Wild Ink Press even has boxed holiday cards and gift tags perfect for the season.