EBL Letterpress, named for me (Elizabeth Brandon Lehman), was founded in the fall of 2011 in my dining room. I have been working in the paper world since 2008 when I started helping my friend, Emily O.Holmes, in her invitation design business. I fell in love with letterpress as a print method almost as soon as I knew what it was. As I learned more about the way it works, I realized letterpressing is a learned skill that presents consistent challenges to create a new piece of art with each run of the press. I was and still am drawn to the entire process of letterpressing as an expression of my own creative process.
My press is a Craftsmen 6x10 table top, which is to say it's a manual, clamshell press. No electricity required. I set each piece of paper, pull the lever, check it, and repeat. All is done by hand.In the method I use for printing, the inked impression on the paper is created by a plate, which is a design, wording, or name customized for each order. Specifically, the plates I use are pieces of plastic with adhesive on the back. These plates are in the form of the designs and/or wording chosen for the order. Traditional press methods require the printer to collect fonts in each size and style and place each letter and space one at a time, which is quite limiting to the printer and designer. With all one can do in any number of design programs, the ability to create these plates for the design is a wonderful new way of infusing technology into an old print method. For each order, I upload the design to a letterpress supply company, and they create the plate for me and send it to me in the mail.
In addition to design choice, there are many other options to make your printed piece unique to you. From paper thickness and texture to ink color, the client can customize his or her order to convey who he or she is in this traditional method of printing infused with modern advancements.