From left: Hildur Sigurdardottir and Olof Birna Gardarsdottir. Photography by Aaron Hicklin.
Many Icelanders proudly jump from one career to the next, and the same goes for the vivacious blondes who founded Reykjavik Letterpress. Graphic designers Hildur Sigurdardottir and Olof Birna Gardarsdottir were working together in an ad agency when the financial crisis hit. So they founded their own studio in 2010, buying the vintage hardware from an octogenarian printer who had been operating the machinery out of his garage.
"We wanted to do beautiful things," Gardarsdottir says, referring to their invitations, greeting cards, and notebooks. A commission may take a week from design to completion, but the custom printing is worth it. Their whimsical designs are in many of the shops around the city, and the friendly creatives also invite folks to visit their quirky workspace, not far from Laugavegur. Just be sure you make an appointment first: These ladies have work to do.