Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Letterpress Class Ends

I've enjoyed getting to know the world of letterpress through my August class at the Armory Center for the Arts in Pasadena. Now used primarily for art printing, the letterpress method was once the primary way to print newspapers and commercial matter. Setting individual type pieces into lines, paragraphs, and pages was a career.

Since letterpresses, type pieces, and type cabinets are not routinely produced these days, the remains of that era are all the more valuable now. At the Armory, there are rows of cabinets holding vintage type and steel imagery. Beautiful small sculptural artifacts in steel and wood.

Today's post is a survey of some of them:


  1. I've enjoyed reading about this. My boss (who is younger than I am) did typesetting early in her working life and has maintained an interest in fonts and related subjects.

    And now as I look at your pictures, I am remembering the "charge card" presses, presses for announcements ("at home" and baby), and signature stamps I found at my parents' house. I brought back a stamp that has my father's cursive signature for stamping on business letters.

  2. How wonderful to have your father's signature stamp! What a treasure.