Bespoke Letterpress Type & Printing for the Discerning - Artists, Film Stars, Pop Groups, Sports Personalities, the Clergy, melancholy Waitresses etc. No Hipsters.
Story of the WInklebag
In the good old days they used to sell jellied eels, cockles, whelks and winkles from barrows outside many London boozers. This lovely grub was usually dressed with vinegar and served in paper bags.
The clever winkle sellers understood the value of promotion and used local printers to produce their bags, often decorated with poems, hymns or Music Hall songs to help them stand out from their rivals.
The big boys – bulk-stationery, book and newspaper printers – looked down on these small printers and ‘winklebag printer’ became an insult. But jobbing printers provided a valuable service, producing quality material in short runs at a reasonable cost.
Just like us. Except we’re a bit more cheerful than the bloke in the picture.
STATE OF THE ART
Most print work is done on our royal blue Arab, manufactured by Josiah Wade of Halifax at the turn of the century - that's the 19th century.
We use a 1950s Farley for initial proofing and corrections, a posh folding-creasing machine, a Turner 'Multigrip' paper crimper and a couple of Adanas standing by in case of emergency.
We hold a nice selection of woodletter, metal type, decorative rules, fleurons, manicules, borders and ornaments.
The Arab . . .
. . . 'the finest hand-fed platen press in the World.'
The atelier. Or ‘shed’, as some people call it.
Adana, just in case.
The Turner ‘Multgrip’ paper crimper.
A printer’s fist
Monotype decorative borders, cast by Mr Andy Taylor.
Some more. Never used.
Leads, furniture, from 4pt-48pt.
This might need a lick of paint.
Merchandise commissioned by The Lettering Arts Centre in Snape for their wonderful exhibition ‘The Total Man - Bethold Wolpe’, celebrating his life and work.
Type set by hand in 48pt Monotype Albertus. Obvs.
And that ampersand though. Caption in 10/11pt Univers 45, a much under-used typeface, inho.
And dig those crazy ligatures in the lower-case.
Useful bookmark, both stylish and practical.
Display at The Lettering Arts Centre, Snape.
Cut to the chase.
Never designed a tea-towel before . . .
. . . let alone a pair of tea-towels.
A range of greetings cards for all occasions. Except birthdays.
A handy card after a lively lunch . . .
. . . or an eventful evening.
A Big Thank You card
One for the dads
Series of five cards using Thomas Bewick wood engravings
The Spanish Pointer (Picasso was a Spanish painter)
A cheeky Striated Monkey
Bewick's Bee Skep
Tyger, tyger, burning bright
The Greengrocer's Apostrophe
Do Not Despair, for fans of Latin and the ampersand.
Be My Valentine
We have a range a individual and sets of bookmarks - perfect for gifts. We also print commemorative bookmarks, and special commissions.
Miss Austen's first draft before she saw sense (and sensibility)
Philip Larkin decided to change the first line after visiting Hull
Franz Kafka overcame his morbid fear of kittens but remained terrified of cockroaches
FIRST DRAFTS - set of three bookmarks for the discerning reader
Set of three bookmarks with quotations ruthlessly taken out of context
Shakespeare at his bawdiest
Baudelaire coined the term modernity - 'the fleeting, ephemeral experience of life in an urban metropolis.' Hence Get Drunk.
Larkin again - probably on his first day as librarian at Hull University
Set in Gill Sans - seemed appropriate
Celebrating 50th anniversary of the Museum of East Anglian Life
Aldeburgh-related for Reed Books. The owner, Liz, drew the sulky penguin.
Commemorative bookmark for Sweffling Bygones Museum open day
Work in progress - 72pt Gill Sans Bold Condensed
More Gill - 24pt Sans Shadowed
For weddings, celebrations, drinks, parties, events, more drinks - we design and print invitations for all occasions. And sometimes get invited . . .
Wedding invitation designed by Hey Gus
Magnesium blocks made overnight from Gus's artwork
Invitation for 80th birthday celebrations. We've shamelessly used the "Very Good Year for" line on a few different invitations tbh.
Ali & Emma. 48pt Perpetua Titling ligature for the 'AE' and the happy couple took care of the red string. They literally tied the knot.
The lovely Bride printed her own invitations, designed by her BFF Becky.
Save The Date - mailed out to guests in a folding pillow box . . .
. . . an actual date wrapped in greaseproof paper. LOL.
Birth announcement for George with debossed 'G' on card and envelope.
Wedding invitations on Somerset Velvet cotton rag paper . . .
and morning-after party, both with wax seal of family coat-of-arms. There's posh.
Distinctive A4 invitation for Suffolk Arts Club printed on sturdy 380gsm greyboard.
Wedding quote, Sir Hugh Walpole
Posh Stationery - Letterheads, Business Cards & Comp Slips, Correspondence Cards, Thank You Cards.
24pt Engravers Shaded makes a heavy impression for a London design company
Posh correspondence cards for the Gentry
Letterhead for exclusive tennis club
Debossing - printing without ink
Lock-up for business card
A very Big Thank You
Children's clothing company, letterhead and envelope . . .
. . . tags with washing instructions - recycled card and vegetable-based printing ink.
POSTERS & LARGE FORMAT
One-off posters or short runs. Max format A2.
Thomas Bewick exhibition at the Museum of East Anglian Life
Snarky Wittgenstein quote for 'Got Something To Say?' exhibition of new letterpress work at the British Printing Society,
A really Big Thank You, printed on A3 sugar paper
Limited edition of woodcuts, printed on Farley proofing press for our favourite artists, Stevie Dix and Thom Trojanowski Hobson.
Typo. Just kidding.
Wise words from Virginia Woolf
Traditional British stiff upper-lip poster.
The Word of God
Adventures with wood and metal type
A1 poster printed on Museum of East Anglian LIfe's Ransome's press.
Support local businesses - more fun with woodletter.
Our busiest time of year. Individual cards, or sets of hand-printed and folded cards available. Or commission your own design.
HO! . . .
. . . actually it's HO HO HO! A jolly two-fold card.
Commission for a client from New Zealand.
Final page of Dickens' A Christmas Carol.
Blizzard at the North Pole . . .
Commission - multi-colours printed on luggage tags.
Recipe for a delicious Festive Terrapin.
Erithacus Rubecula. Natural habitat - the Christmas card
No 'L'. LOL.
Another 'L' gone missing in action. Hand-set in lovely 48pt Festival.
Calligraphy of the Chinese ideogram for 'Christmas Tree.' Probably.
It's a rebus - get it?
Another commission - debossing, woodletter, metallic ink. Glad it's only once a year.
We love doing workshops, either one- or two-days, and for a maximum of two people, so no use for corporate away-days or team building. (Try paintballing.)
It’s best to have an idea in mind before committing ink to paper so send a pdf or sketch a few days beforehand and we can plan how best to produce your design. It can be anything – a favourite poem or song, a card for a special event or even a poster. We’ll show you how to hand-set metal type or woodletter, how to lock up a forme ready for printing and of course, help with printing on the press itself.
It’ll be a long day - letterpress printing is a very labour-intensive process. One happy participant, after setting the type, making up with a line block of her chosen image, and finally pulling a first proof five hours later said, ‘You can see why letterpress has died out.’ But she was absolutely thrilled with the results of her labours – if you want quick, use a laser printer.