Last night, I went over to Pyramid Atlantic to letterpress our invites. It was so, SO much fun. Seriously, I don’t know why I didn’t start letterpressing earlier.

{Unless otherwise noted, all photos from the author’s collection}

Oh, funny side note: after some initial skepticism, T is now a letterpress convert (don’t tell him I told you…it’s probably not “manly” or something). Last night, after I finished the invites, we were talking and he was like “Oh, and we could letterpress this, and this, and this, and…” Seriously. He practically wanted to letterpress the marriage license! It was hilarious. I’m glad he’s excited about the invites, though.

Speaking of which, I am absolutely giddy that our invites are almost done! As I mentioned in yesterday’s post, we’re just waiting for the custom stamp to finish them.

I did take photos, but I don’t want to give away too much about the invites before the guests see them, so I’ve carefully edited these, and will share more in a letterpress recap at the end of the process. However, if you’re well versed in backwards, upside down plate-reading, you’ll at least get a preview. We’re planning to send the invites next week, so I’ll be giving sneak peaks throughout the week, and sharing the whole thing once everyone has theirs! So for today’s preview, more about the process last night…

For the invites, I used a photopolymer plate for the first time, which means I got to learn a slightly different process for setting up to print. Photopolymer plates are basically a pretty flimsy piece of translucent yellow plastic with a sticky backing. To be able to print, you have to stick it to a base, and then lock that base onto the bed of the printer. Here’s the plate, all locked up and ready to print:


I printed on Crane’s Lettra paper, which was specially formulated for letterpress, and is quite lovely. We went with the 110lb, which has a nice weight to it, but isn’t too thick. Rolling the first sheet across the plate was pretty nerve wracking, but after a could of deep breaths, I took the plunge, and from there out, I was way too busy to be nervous about messing up!


I’ve always loved my paper cutter at home, but let me tell you what: Pyramid Atlantic has a serious paper cutter. Forget dinner…that thing could eat mine for an appetizer!!! I forgot to take a picture, but I was able to find an example of a similar one:

papercutter1  papercutter2
{Deep Wood Press}

See what I mean about serious? You put a whole stack of papers in, crank the wheel on top to lock them down, and then use the huge handle to press the only slightly smaller blade through the stack. I had a moment of panic when Moira and I discovered the limits of the blade the hard way (apparently, if you put too big of a stack of paper in, it starts cutting crooked!!) but luckily, I only lost a favor tag or two.

I think Moira definitely would have been able to do it faster, but even with my newbie slowness, I was surprised at how fast the job went; in just over three hours, I had everything printed, dried, and trimmed down ready to go, and had the press cleaned up (and let me tell you, cleaning that press is no joke!).

So now it’s on to assembly…

Published in: on April 10, 2009 at 1:28 pm  Leave a Comment  
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