Letterpress Printing

Letterpress printing is a form of relief printing in which the raised surface of a material such as a plate is inked and then pressed into paper or other receptive material to obtain a positive image.   First used in China a millennium ago, with both print blocks and movable type, this printing method is very popular with artists.   Its ability to produce a deep impressed print, made possible by high pressure machines and fine photopolymer plates, are attracting the sophisticates who want to make a distinct gesture to friends, relatives and guests in the form of wedding cards, note cards, name cards, invitation cards or reminders for memorable occasions.   Our select cotton-based papers such as Crane and Strathmore are a perfect match for our letterpress printing.   Together, they harmoniously create a graceful and elegant print product that will leave a lasting impression.   For a more modern look, we also offer a variety of metallic colored, textured and recycled papers.

How Letterpress Printing Works

Letterpress printing consists of four basic components:   the Letterpress Machine, the Plate, the Ink, and the Paper Stock.   Ink is applied onto the machine and is picked up by the rollers, which slowly even out the ink's flow through adjustments in pressure and speed. The ink ends up on two final rollers that transfer the ink onto a strong polymer plate, which adheres to a flat metal block.   The inked image impresses itself into the receiving paper stock through the strong clamping movement of both the metal block and the paper block.   Below are more details on each component.

The Letterpress Machine

Our letterpress machine is the classic Heide lberg Windmill.

The Plate

The Plate is made of strong and durable polymer.

The Ink

We use Toyo's eco-friendly, soy-based ink.

The Paper Stock

We have a wide selection of paper stocks ranging in thickness from 70 lb text up to 268 lb Cover.   Our select cotton-based papers such as Crane and Strathmore are a perfect match for letterpress printing.   We understand the importance of beautiful prints to reflect the special occasion — such as a wedding — and the choice of paper stock is an essential aesthetic component.   If you have a specific paper stock in mind, we can order it.