I'd love to make you some beautiful letterpressed items! Whether it's for yourself, your business, a special event, a gift, an art project - read on to discover what I can (and can't) do for you. Do keep in mind that many of the guidelines here can be stretched. Even if your project is a little outside the boundaries described, tell me about your ideas and I'll do my best to find a solution!
What looks the best in letterpress are words and line drawings or blocky artwork. Think of it like a rubber stamp. Photos or grayscale images don't work, since the printing process only allows for solid colors, but they can be printed as halftones, which approximate photos using bigger and smaller black dots. Very fine "hairlines" won't show up, and large solid-color areas can have a slightly uneven look (which can be lovely!) where some of the paper shows through.
If you're designing your own artwork, please read over these guidelines to learn exactly how to prepare the file. If you're unsure if your artwork meets the requirements, send me a copy, and I'll look it over and let you know. If you have a vision, but need help designing it, I can help you! Just be sure to factor in the extra time and cost of the design work.
If specific colors are important to your project, I can match any of the 1600 colors in the pantone mixing guide. Metallic and fluorescent colors require special inks (which I am happy to order for a small fee) and may show up better on coated papers than on the uncoated paper I normally use. Letterpress inks are translucent, so printing light colors on dark paper is possible, but won't be opaque. Overlapping colors will also show through, which can be used to very nice effect!
My press is made for light to medium impressions. If you absolutely require a super-deep impression, I can make a special trip to print it on a nearby Vandercook. If you think a medium impression might work but you aren't sure, I can use my squishiest paper and send you a sample.
Letterpress printing is best suited to large batches. While I could technically print one copy of your project, it would take me about the same amount of time and effort as printing 50 or 100, and would cost you almost the same amount of money. Normal order sizes are between 50 and 500 copies, but if you want a larger or smaller quantity let me know and I’ll see what I can do.
My press is a 5x8, which means it can print on a 5x8 piece of paper (or a little larger), but the maximum printed image area is 4x7. If your project is larger than this, I can print it on a larger press a couple of towns over, or in multiple runs through my smaller press. Let's talk about it!
If your project is something that is being mailed out to a list of people, I can mail them for you, with any level of fanciness from computer-printed labels to calligraphy to collage-style decoration or even handmade envelopes! Just let me know and we'll figure out the details. I can also letterpress print your return address or logo on the front or back of envelopes.
Since I am the only one running this business and my tools and resources are limited, timing really depends on the size of your project. I appreciate as much notice as possible, especially on big or multi-faceted orders. The average project takes about two months to complete from start to finish. Rush orders are possible, but involve additional costs.