Paper Specs

One of our weekly activities is to see what new videos turn up about printing, and hopefully not a video showing die cutting on a 3x5 Kelsey. We loosely call this the “Printing Video of the Day” and the more interesting ones I often share on Briar. Today’s is a continuing series from “Paper Specs” that is sponsored by Neenah paper and comes out of Palo Alto. The woman who puts these on is a crack up in her presentation, but she is a firm supporter of letterpress and other specialty processes. You can subscribe to her series and be entertained weekly. See:

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For the fun of it, I followed the link on Paper Specs to the printer who produced this particular wine label. I had images of a Kluge or Heidelberg doing the foiling and embossing but no, the label industry has moved several light years beyond us and uses some pretty sophisticated equipment:

and it must be fairly expensive as well. But packaging and label work is one of the few growth areas in printing today.

Nice video and beautiful label.

I remember when Neenah Paper was actually in Neenah (WI). Don’t know if it is any more or not. I used to pass it every day on my way to and from work in the mid ’70s.

Neenah says all their paper production is done in Wisconsin although corporate headquarters is in Georgia. Their web site says their original mill is still in production. I went through the Neenah mill back in 1959 and it was quite fascinating. We also visited a couple of Kimberly-Clark mills nearby the same day. The other mill I have been through is the Hammermill Paper mill in Erie, PA now owned by International Paper.

International Paper closed the Erie, Pennsylvania Hammermill plant in 2002. It’s gone. A few years earlier they closed the Hammermill plant in Lock Haven, PA.

The Neenah-Menasha area of Wisconsin was a hotbed of papermaking in the 70’s-80’s. Neenah Paper (owned by KC), and Bergstrom Paper (which became P. H. Glatfelter), were basically in downtown Neenah. As I recall, KC had another mill in Neenah as well. Then going toward Menasha there was Whiting Paper, Gilbert Paper (bought by Mead), John Strange Paper, and Riverside Paper. All this was in a distance of less than 10 miles. They were along the Fox River, which provided the water necessary for the papermaking process.