Tag Archives: Pomegranate Press

40 More to Go

Before the summer season officially comes to an end this Sunday evening, (to be precise, the Fall Equinox begins at 10:29 P.M), I felt it might be a good time to file away my 40th Birthday cards which have been displayed on my desk for almost a month now (birthdays are a big deal in this household and we tend to hold on to cards for a long time, no surprise there).

Maybe it was because I was turning the big 4-0 this year, but I was dizzy with the awesomeness of the variety of birthday cards I received. I thought, why not share my favorites with the rest of you all? So, here goes my first (and potentially annual) “Best Birthday Card” on-line award ceremony. Drum roll please…

The Award for “Best Advice Card”, we had a three-way tie…

sayings

Kelly with Interesting over 40Bernard Baruch quote from Cynthia & Tim, and Alecia’s hinting it’s good to Make Mistakes in life. Way to make me feel young, friends!

The award for “Most Thinking-Outside-the-Box Card” goes to a few as well…

nellie Nellie for enjoying the youthful card, even including a ’73 Charlie’s Angels trading card,

katie

Aunt Wendy with my favorite children’s illustrator, Lois Lenski Fireside Poems, and “Portland” Katie with her daughter Ruby’s, handmade card titled Animals. High on originality, folks.

For the “Most Beautifully Written Card” the award goes to….

banquet

..Michelle for her appreciation of the gorgeous Banquet art!! (she sells large prints at her store).

For the “Most Appropriate Card” drum roll for…

taco

 …both Ron & Mekea, since we consumed a few tacos that evening! (both with fab print, btw)

For simply the “Most Beautiful Card” it’s yet another three-way tie…

beauty

between Alison’s Flowering Tree card, Mary’s artsy scene from screech owl design, and Cindy’s circus card from Beatrice Coron’s beautiful cut art. Difficult to select one as you can see.

And for the “Most Lovely Handmade Card”…

art

 …applause to Ms. Lervick, the James’s kiddos, Italian Amy, Nicole and Ollie. These are my favs!

Before finishing my award ceremony, I need to give a few bonus points for the following categories, starting with wrapping paper, a three-way tie…

wrapping

Alecia for crafty re-use of our bedroom wallpaper sample, Jill who hand wrote the entire paper, and Mark & Jean for using their architectural scraps. Oh-so-wonderfully green, my friends!

Big smiles to my dear Jean who created beautifully, personalized letterpress stationery for me.(..which you can also find for yourself at her new Pomegranate Press Etsy store!)

jeani

Adored my illustrated 40…

40

from Ms. Jenni, commissioned from the artist Emily Synder, aka Queen Quills.

And lastly, to the most thoughtful, homemade gift…

vicki

…a hand sewn 40th book from Vicki, for friends to write wishes for the Birthday Girl. Just lovely.

So, I hope to have not come across as boastful! Truly, it’s all about the love and excitement around the presentation of one’s writing and my hope to inspire others in finding the enjoyment of not only giving but writing!! Here’s to 40 more years of my handwriting.

A Letterpress High

(Poor timing but iPhoto decided not to be my friend today. Thus, no planned pics are included of my personal experience with a certain letterpress. iPhone gladly stepped in.)

I’ve been a fan of letterpress ever since I can remember.  Maybe since I’ve always been a bit old fashioned but there’s something so refreshing yet tactile about the lettering embossed into the thick paper. To be straight, there is such a thing as a letterpress high. I’ve felt it!

So it was no surprise when I came in contact with Jean from Pomegranate Press that I fell head-0ver-heels for her work (she is also one of the most pleasant and creative people I know). Her situation is a unique one.

Jean is naturally talented in the arts for starters. When Jean landed here in Minneapolis in 2002 she found herself a Chandler & Price Platen Press in St.Paul. She had seen a letterpress once before but had never used or printed with the machine and wasn’t sure if she would even enjoy the process. But she soon taught herself to print and, as she states, “my work is my education.” As time went on, her basement was transformed into the current Pomegranate Press. Here you’ll find stacks of paper with letterpress samples of her work over the years, cans of colored ink and many wooden boxes filled with metal fonts in a variety of sizes and fonts along with icons, borders and more.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I’ve had the pleasure of working with Jean on personal stationery, baby announcements, business cards, and the annual holiday card which is most likely my favorite. Every November we meet to decide the design including color, the type style and selecting from the fantastic holiday icons she has on hand. Then she’s on her own working her magic.

 

I caught her last week in the midst of a holiday card for my good friend, Therese.  I was amazed at the patience and accuracy needed with each card. This is far from the electric letterpress machines you hear about these days. This is the real McQueen.

 

 

 

 

Jean first establishes the placement of the type so it lands where she wants it to be on the paper. She also needs to set pins in the tympan paper which will hold the cards to be printed. Next, without ink, she prints samples to make sure the design is nice and placed correctly. If she’s not satisfied with the design, she will re-typeset. She’ll then play with spacing to typeset letters, words, and lines until just right. And will also make sure the printing is not crooked. Next, Jean will ink up the press and print samples to establish a strong ink consistency. Finally, printing time! And lastly, she cleans the press & type and re-sorts the type back into their cases.

 

Honestly, after watching the process of creating Therese’s families card from beginning to end I held a clearer understanding and appreciation for the art of letterpress. Not only does it take an incredible amount of patience but it’s Jean’s keen eye which catches any flaws in the printing, not an employee who oversees the electric machine in action. The art of letterpress is still true to its original form and you can’t say that about much these days.

 

On a different note, this is a perfect chance for me to mention another gift idea!! My friend Therese happens to co-own with her big sis the uber yummy Alora Ambiance line of diffusers, soaps, sprays and candles. The Brown family is gaga over the products especially the festa line during the holiday season. Treat a loved one to an Alora product for the holidays!  Locally you can find them at Ampersand, Victory, Brian Graham Salon, Lusseria lini, La Petite Parfumerie and Grand Frames on Excelsior. But you are forewarned, they are addictive.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lastly, the word on the street is the Walker Art Center Shop is selling their holiday paper and cards at 50% off this week. Run not walk!