don’t know where to start

i have had an interest for years in letterpress. i see all the work out there and get inspired but i just don’t know where to start. i have no space for a printer nor do i have the money. im a graphic designer and work in nyc where there are shops and classes to take but im not sure where to start out. i would love to work or be apart of a press community and take my print ideas to the press.

any ideas or advice?
thank you!


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Check out the Arm. I don’t know their address but here is their flickr page

Good luck,

The Center for Book Arts is fabulous. Not only do they offer classes that range from Intro to Letterpress to more advance topics and projects (not even mentioning all the Bookbinding classes), but once you know what you’re doing, you can rent a press to do your own work.

There are always lots of other printers and book artists floating around, who you can learn from and work with.

That’s my plug for the CBA.

If you wanted to ride the horse bad enough, would you shovel out the stable? The Center for Book Arts is a great place to start, and appropriately, they have to charge for classes and equipment. You may try another approach.
Someplace either in or within train commute distance of NYC, there is an old print shop that still does some letterpress work. You just have to find it. Convince the old man that runs the place that you want to learn; that you are not afraid to get dirty; and that you will only ask questions when invited to do so, or you ask if you may ask the question.
I am near San Francisco, unfortunately for you, and I would be receptive to someone like you.
Just keep looking, you will find a way.

Alison - I am in the same boat as you and I am going to do it. I have NO space for a table top in my chelsea apartment, and I don’t care. In fact - I don’t even know how it will make it self up to my 4th floor walk up. But I will figure it out.

I am an art director + designer and sell my soul daily to corporate design/branding - it must stop. So I have decided to get a table top press and I will figure out how to make it work. I must confess, I don’t even know how the press works, the classes I took used much larger proofing presses. I don’t even know where to buy anything… except Ebay.

Keep in touch! ~Susan

Hi Alison (and Susan!), I am also new to letterpress. I have a large 10x15 C&P in my garage. But I am getting a treadle for it this week, I have to buy 3 new rollers and ink! Then I’m set haha. If either of you will be looking to purchase ink soon, please email me and perhaps we could go in on ink together and split the 1lb cans. Since a 1lb can would last forever and around $20 per can it could at least save each of us some money :)

jen at (<—email)

ok- I did it - I bought a press. I have NO clue how to use it - I hope my street smarts and common sense come through for me.

Anyone know where to buy roller covers and ink? I understand the PMS system - is it hard to mix?

Thanks! Super excited!!!!!!!