What’s in a Name?

We’ve heard it hundreds of times from our clients: “What’s the significance of the name ‘Lettered Olive?'” This month’s Charleston Magazine has the inside scoop. The article So Charleston: Lettered Olive by Suzannah Smith Miles, describes a lettered olive as a “desirable beachcomber’s find” and as South Carolina’s state shell. It’s shiny surface and intricate markings are a beauty on the beach. If you haven’t found a lettered olive shell lying on the shore of Sullivan’s Island or Folly Beach, it could be because the shell holds a small snail that spends its life 150 feet deep on our beaches here in Charleston.

“The name “lettered” was inspired by the brown hieroglyphic-like markings on the shell’s tan to gray surface, which come from dye the animal secretes throughout its life, creating a pattern unique to each specimen. Over time, waves and sun bleaching can erase these markings from vacated shells.” – CharlestonMag.com*

This piece of Charleston beauty is rumored to have ties to Edgar Allen Poe and suits as the name of our creative letterpress studio. We may not be using shiny hieroglyphics, but we like to think our mix of calligraphy, delicate designs and font choices is a beauty in itself!

*See the entire article at http://charlestonmag.com/letteredolive

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