Did You Know: Letterpress

Thu, 2020-07-02


If you've ever gone to have any sort of bespoke stationery done, we're sure you've heard of Letterpress. Its undoubted popularity in the printing world means its name is often thrown around many print enthusiasts who simply adore this printing method. You're probably wondering, what's so special about it? What is its appeal? We're here to tell you!

What is Letterpress? Letterpress is a form of relief printing in which raised surfaces covered with ink are pressed onto paper. In simple terms, it’s essentially a stamp that creates an impression on the paper.

Let's go through a quick history lesson for Letterpress. When it was first invented in the 1500s, it was quite common due to the fact that it was one of the only printing methods around at the time that was relatively low-cost. It remained widely-used until the beginning of the Digital Age, resulting in Letterpress becoming “outdated” towards the end of the 20th century.

However, in recent years, Letterpress has made a fantastic comeback. Instead of being called 'old-fashioned', it is now referred to as 'vintage' or 'bespoke'. This return of popularity could be attributed to the general public's consumer preferences changing to something less manufactured and generic, and more towards a customised approach for different types of stationery. Fortunately, Letterpress ticked all the right boxes and is now in the spotlight again.

So, what is its appeal? Letterpress is often associated with terms such as 'elegant' or 'high quality', and its no wonder why. This perception can be attributed to the fact that the impression gives a two dimensional card dynamism and depth. One of Letterpress' biggest charms is the tactile and visual impression it leaves on the paper. The haptic feedback given is subtle yet unmistakable, subconsciously appealing to the human's need for tactile perception. You can’t help but to want to run your fingers over it.

Despite its numerous aesthetic benefits, Letterpress does have its limitations. Namely, the paper thickness. The paper needs to be thick enough for the printing method's full potential to shine. The best papers to use to accentuate the letterpress in paper are papers that have both bulk (thickness) and a natural texture.

Interested in using Letterpress in your future printed works? Contact us through our website for any enquiries! For additional Letterpress love and inspiration, follow our Instagram page (instagram.com/pyprstudio).

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