To dispel any romantic images, we are not standing there pumping your printing by foot. And though we have some pedal-powered models around the joint, our main production letterpresses are motorized.
However, your printing is still carefully crafted and requires the pressman’s constant attention and adjustments throughout the run. Subtle variations from piece to piece are inevitable and indeed part of the visual appeal of letterpress.
Actually the hardest work is done by the designer. Developing outstanding concepts, graphics, illustrations, typography and artwork for letterpress production is a job in itself. Designer and printer working together ultimately produces the best results.
Cranky Pressman is a commercial jobbing printer offering a full range of letterpress tools and services for creative professionals.
Cranky Custom Letterpress
Cranky Pressman is set up to do just about anything possible with a letterpress. We provide a very personalized service for a bunch of old coots.
Phone 330-337-3341 for a quote or to discuss your project. If you prefer to reduce the time enduring our annoying voices at the other end of the horn you may want to do the business by e-mail which suits us fine too.
Paper choice is crucial in letterpress print design and we will help you source the ideal stock for the job. We should point out however that our House Paper Selections are available and will save money on most projects should they suit your design.
New online ordering coming soon
We are currently completely rebuilding the online ordering section of this site. It will be called the C.P. Letterpress Shop. When finished you’ll find basic pre-priced and pre-formatted lines ready for for letterpress printing from your original graphic designs. All with convenient ordering from the comfort of your oak desk.
Until the new online ordering is ready and indeed until we take that big final ride off into the sunset, all your letterpress needs will be faithfully served with our normal custom service. It is just a phone call or e-mail away.
Long in the tooth but not stuck in the past
All these whizbang computers and digital artwork work well with letterpress. E-mail us your artwork files and they are sent back in time where metal printing plates are made. Cranky Pressman prefers metal for the quality of impression. Polymer plates just don’t cut it with us.
Nice paper selected by old sourpuss himself
Printers have always kept house papers in stock for use on all-purpose projects, rush jobs and the like. Cranky Pressman carries a fetching range of house paper, card and board stocks chosen for their creative possibilities and environmental responsibility. Special order papers can also be sourced.
Matching the rainbows in your head
We know young designers are all juiced up on color these days. To remedy this condition Cranky Pressman can of course mix up any color you can imagine. These actual hues though, will need to be communicated to us in some replicable manner. This is done is by matching a Pantone Uncoated Solid Color reference number which you provide us.
If for some reason you cannot furnish a Pantone number, say for example, your dog ate your swatch book, there are other options. In lieu of the number, you can mail us a physical sample of some sort to which we will match the ink. The sample can be almost anything actually, a magazine clipping, swath of fabric or bubble gum wrapper (with the color of your fantasies clearly indicated).
Should your taste be less flamboyant and the only color you require is plain old black, you will save a bit of dough by only using black ink. See much more fascinating info on printing ink here.
Letterpress for show-offs
Cranky Pressman will accommodate some of your more way-out ideas. Custom services include techniques such as foil stamping, blind impressions, split fountains, color washing and other letterpress trickery along with many interesting bindery capabilities.
Remember though, it’s just plain old relief printing applying ink on paper. The medium (as all media) has its limitations. Some slick modern whims such as full-color halftones, don’t fly with letterpress.
Plus keep in mind, the fancier the production the more it will cost and the longer it will take to complete. Every extra specification adds to the work.
Learn Letterpress in our trade school
Picking your favorite color is the easy part of working with letterpress. For more nuggets to keep in mind when designing, check into our Letterpress Trade School. It’s a free service with some harsh advice from old taskmaster and a way to help the uninitiated use this specialist old craft.
We plan to expand the trade school soon and will likely combine it with our Xx!#*! blog so do stop back for updates.