Focus on Letterpress Wedding Invitations

April 7, 2016

letterpress invitation morristown nj

letterpress copper plate morristown nj invitation
I am probably one of the biggest letterpress fans you will ever meet. There is such a simple elegant, timeless feel that comes with letterpress. When I was in Munich last year, I saw the Gutenberg Press. Like a complete design nerd, I was insistent on taking pictures of myself with the press. Before I get ahead of myself let me introduce you to letterpress.

What is Letterpress?

In simple terms, you "feel" letterpress when you press your fingers across the paper and feel the indentations. The effect is created by pressing an ink covered plate into a thick piece of paper. Letterpress is typically one of the more expensive invitation designs to print because of this process. Each color used also requires a separate plate. Printing in letterpress gives you the rich, unique feeling of depth. There are a limited number of printing presses in the country that still do letterpress in its original form utilizing copper plates.

When I designed my wedding invitation and, as you can guess, I had to do letterpress. I chose the option of having a copper plate made instead of the now typical plastic. Many letterpress companies currently prefer plastic to copper as a less costly alternative. Aside from keeping with tradition, the metal plate makes a nice keepsake. The photo on the left shows the rustic beauty of this handcrafted artform.

A Brief History of Letterpress

Letterpress was invented by Johannes Gutenberg in the mid-15th century. This type of printing was originally used widely for book printing up until the second half of the 20th century. With the creation of offset printing and computers, letterpress became a less used technique. Today letterpress is mainly used in artisan form for business cards, stationery and wedding invitations to name a few.

I am sure I will be talking about letterpress often since it is my personal favorite, but I hope this served as a great introduction to this beautiful stationery technique!

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