Interview with Zeichen Press

Image from Zeichen Press

This is Jen and Fran Shea. Not only are they awesome ladies, but they also run Zeichen Press, an awesome, local letterpress company. What exactly is letterpress? Letterpress is a relief printing process using raised inked letters and images pressed on paper. It is also making its way into a myriad of fashion decor. Zeichen Press’s portfolio is full of prints, business cards, stationary and invitations. They also offer custom creations, so you can add a touch of letterpress to your next business card or event. I recently interviewed Fran over e-mail. We discussed typography, letterpress, and the story behind their funky little logo!

Read on after the jump!

How did you get into the Typography business?

I got my first press and wood type about five years ago. The first line I ever set was, “PINCH ME!” and that pretty much says it all.

Fran demonstrates demonstrates letterpress printing on her vintage Chandler & Price printing press


What fascinates you about letterpress?
It’s amazing to use technology that is hundreds of years old to create something that is relevant and even buyable today. It’s a simple and satisfying process – set the type, ink the type, print. Pulling the first proof is always the most fun.


Tell me more about your logo.  What’s with the lady performing CPR?
Her name is Sheila. I don’t want to go into the whole story here but you can read all about it on the blog.

We like being a part of the revival of letterpress – bringing it back to life. Letterpress has only lurked in the shadows since the advancement of printing technology – offset and digital printing made letterpress seem cumbersome and obsolete. It IS slow and not practical but no other method produces the look and feel of letterpress.

What are some of your favorite fonts and why?

I like any font that gets the job done but I tend to lean toward fonts that are san-serif.

What are your thoughts on the typography trend in home furnishings? Is it a fad, or is it here to stay?

I know that people like a visual break from digital communication and seeing type in print triggers an emotional response. Typography as a design element will always work – people like that reminder.

Do you do custom work? If so, what sort of projects do you do?

Identities, cards, invites, cd sleeves, posters… http://zeichenpress.com/portfolio

You seem like really happy people.  What part about your business makes you the most happy?

We do? It’s all marketing.

I love all of it.

Jen loves the money.


Zeichen Press’ prints for Room & Board

Tell us about some of your products.  What do you offer and where can you find them locally?
We have a line that includes cards, cd sleeves & coasters for the crowd that appreciates offbeat humor and interesting design. http://zeichenpress.com/product/category/greeting-cards

They are sold in these places: http://zeichenpress.com/where-to-buy/location/1133

We also have a line of prints that we make exclusively for Room & Board: http://search.roomandboard.com/?search=zeichen

Don’t forget to check out the photo gallery below to see Fran hard at work on her prints! Much thanks to Fran and Jen Shea!

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