Since Utley Brothers Printing and Atlantic Press joined forces—a year ago today, in fact—it's been our desire to use our studio space to build relationships and good old fashioned community. Along the way we've hosted a couple of private stationery parties as well as a retirement party honoring UB's former presidents earlier this year, and you can bet we invite as many clients and friends to check it out as possible.
Last week we cranked it up a notch with our first, large scale private letterpress event, inviting old friends and new—existing business associates and many we'd never met—into the studio to mix, mingle, and create their own custom stationery. Our invitation billed the event as a way to "experience something real, authentic and physical" in a day dominated "by the virtual, digital and intangible."
And you know what? Our guests GOT IT. And more than that—they loved it. Using decades-old wood type that has been in the collections of Utley Brothers and Atlantic Press for nearly as long, people loved putting their own unique design together, choosing a color and then watching John Sanders load it up and crank the press. It was pretty cool. In addition to some good eats, we offered fresh-brewed, fair-trade organic coffee provided by a local independent group called Small Things and live music by Scott Loudon.
We received such great feedback that we're already planning to do this again. If you'd like to attend—give us a buzz!
Our love of letterpress dates back to the early days of Utley Brothers Printing, when, in 1945, it was a common method of printing. As the years passed and new presses and processes found their way in the world, letterpress declined and eventually nearly disappeared.
Today, the very thing that nearly drove letterpress printing to extinction is what has brought it back to the mainstream—the hands’ on, custom, classic nature that is craved by stationery lovers and all those looking to make a true impression. Letterpress takes that humanity and drives it into a superior quality, cottony-thick letterpress sheet of paper for an incredibly unique and artistic piece. Whether a bride looking for a one-of-a-kind wedding invitation or an executive wanting to hand out a business card that will turn heads, letterpress printing will set any project apart.