Thursday, August 7, 2008

Catching Up...

© 2008 Sunlit Letterpress's been a long time since my last post! About two weeks to be exact. It's been so busy at the studio lately that it's been hard to keep up with blogging. However, I vow to try harder.

Above are some photos of some recent projects – a wedding invitation set that we designed and printed for a wonderful bride, Melanie. It was a pleasure to work with Melanie to come up with an invitation that was simple, modern, and elegant. For her Fall wedding, we chose a maroon-ish shade to match the turning leaves.

The next photos are of some small (6" x 11") posters we printed for local designer Kris Charlton. This is our first official gig poster, and I enjoyed printing something that was so different from our usual stationery orders. Kris worked with the musicians to come up with the overall design and illustration, which was quite intricate (especially the deer illustration).

This week we have been working on a number of custom projects that will be printed over the next few days. I will be sure to post more photos when they are complete.

If you are interested in having Sunlit Letterpress design and print stationery for you, please note that our August print schedule is nearly full. We will be closed for holidays from the beginning to mid-September.

I recently received a note from Boxcar Press about their "Craziest Press Moving Experience" contest. Oh boy, do I ever have a story (i.e. moving my 1200 lb. press into a basement). This will be fun - how often do you get to read about the truly bass ackwards things us crazy letterpress printers do to move thousands of pounds of cast iron?

Oh, and by the way, did you know that Boxcar now recycles old photopolymer plates?

And now on to reader questions...

In the past few weeks I've received a number of emails from readers asking about Kelsey presses, and whether they are good to start with, how much impression one can get with them, can you start a business printing with one, etc. Here are my thoughts:

A Kelsey or other tabletop press is a great starting point. They are great to learn on. I highly recommend starting with a small press before even thinking about buying a floor model press, especially if you are a beginner. Any problems you have with a tabletop (and yes, you will encounter some - small presses have just as many issues as large ones) will only be more challenging to deal with on a large press.

No, I don't think it is truly feasible to run a printing business with a small tabletop press. Some people have started small stationery businesses this way (including me), but a tabletop can only take you so far. You are limited in printable area and impression, and in general these presses weren't meant for more than hobby or small printing use.

Can you get a deep impression with a Kelsey or tabletop? There are ways to do it with effort, but it's tedious. You won't get the results you could with a floor model press.

Bottom line - learn on a tabletop, but don't expect the world from your first little press. There is plenty of time to move up and develop a press addiction over time. Mr. Jim Rimmer, who gave me my first press and taught me to print, told me "this little press won't be your last" and he was right. In fact, if we eventually move to a larger space, I will be keeping my eye out for a Windmill. All in good time though...

Happy letterpressing!


  1. Well this post was definitely for me! :) Thanks for taking the time to answer these questions, you are such a great resource for those of us just starting out. I think you could write your own little book fairly soon! I know I'd buy it!

  2. Well, I'd hate to disagree but if one has the opportunity to start on a large press I'd argue why not?! I started on a Kluge 12x18 automatic feed.
    I'd like a windmill too.
    Dream large!


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...