Handset Type and Bookbinder Finds

Last month in our newsletter we announced a new product line debuting this summer, hand set letterpressed personalized notecards and prints. Hand set type is how the masters of old did it, one letter at a time and in our endeavor to keep moving towards ever more handmade from scratch products, we wanted to begin working with hand set type.  It’s a time intensive process but allows us to create completely personalized and near 100% handcrafted products. Why not all 100%?  Well, we still need to acquire the hand set type fonts which are individual symbols, letters, and typefaces cast in metal…and wow did we find a goldmine of hand set type a few weeks ago!

We’re not big fans of social media generally but sometimes it pays off as we found a 99 year old book binder in Portland who was getting rid of some old inventory. Grossenbacher Brothers, Inc. (GBI) posted some classic Hamilton Printers Type Cabinets for sale on Facebook marketplace and once we found them we couldn’t believe our fortune. We acquired two full cases with about 40 separate type faces, and got them for near a steal (see gallery below for images of our type cabinets and the GBI shop)! Terry and Marcie at GBI were very friendly and helpful in letting us poke around their warehouse which is a museum of old book binding and printing equipment as well.  Certainly if you’re in need of traditional book binding done with a lifetime of experience and attention to detail GBI is worth a call.  We’ll be doing inventory and trying to identify the type faces for the next few months but this really opens up the options for us and gives us a lot of flexibility in the style of fonts we can use.  We feel very lucky to have found GBI, are thankful for them being so helpful, and we were all glad these classic type faces are going to a good home.

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