Credit for moveable type and the development of letterpress printing is given to Johannes Gutenberg in approximately 1440.
Print Shoppe Club has letterpresses, affectionately named Sally, Bertha, and Scarlett dating back to the late 1800's which are still used today.
Quality letterpress involves two critical items, impression and ink
When evaluating modern letterpress, you will see an impression where the plate or type has been pressed into the paper.
For fine letterpress, the inking and impression will match where the ink will sit in the bottom of the impressed letter or image, not over-inking where the image will look smeared, or under-inked where the letter or image will not be seen
Commonly called engraved printing, intaglio printing originally began in Europe around the 1430's. The earliest of which is an undated design for playing cards.
Most are familiar with engraved printing through currency, passports, stock certificates and diplomas
Engraved printing starts with an etched metallic die. Ink is placed on the die, then a "die wipe" is used to remove all excess ink except what is remaining in the etching.
The paper is then pressed against the die, pulling the remaining ink from the etching.
The test for true engraving is looking at the back of the paper. Since the paper is pressed against the die, you will always have a bruise on the back of the paper.
Hot Stamping began as an arduous method of decorating book covers with gold leaf. It has since evolved to be available to the general public as atomized foil.
Foil Printing became popular in the late 1800's, with the first patent in 1892.
Similar to letterpress, foil printing involves impacting the paper with a die, creating a cavity for foil to adhere.
Key elements for a quality foil impression include heat, foil quality and pressure. We place a piece of foil over a heated die, press the die against the paper and when heated correctly, the remaining foil will leave a perfect impression of your type or image.