Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Vintage Matchbooks

I don’t think it’s my imagination that matchbooks aren’t as prolific as they used to be. Smoking is banned from most establishments, so the need for matchbooks isn’t what it once was. While I’ve never really used matchbooks much, I do think the idea of them is pretty genius: portable fire…with advertising.

From a design standpoint, I think matchbooks are interesting because there’s a very limited amount of space to work with. Some matchbook design is super simple with just a logo, while others try to cram as much information as possible on the outside and inside of the matchbook. And then there are some matchbooks that go the extra mile by printing with special metallic inks or embossing.

I couldn’t help but get a bag of matchbooks when I went to a vintage store. There were some repeats and some are definitely more appealing (and more “vintage") than others, but I think they’re interesting pieces of design. And maybe I can use them in some way (that I haven’t quite figured out yet).

So here are some fronts and backs of some matchbooks:

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