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Bespoke Letterpress

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Our Story

Meet the owners, our dog and our presses!

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Welcome! Glad you found the trail that leads to CabinPress Studio. We are a small letterpress print shop rooted in the heart of the Colorado Rocky Mountains, where our stunning natural surroundings inspire our rustic elegant style. Founded in 2008, our brand specializes in bespoke letterpress printing. Unlike traditional letterpress studios, we do not ask you to browse a catalogue for ideas. Instead we offer a completely custom experience, whereby we will both exclusively design and letterpress your printed products — your wedding invitations, note cards and other finely printed handmade paper pieces — to create something that is truly, uniquely yours.

Meet Denise

dreamer & designer & letterpress printer

After a 30 year career working as a teacher and in natural resource management for the National Park Service & the Colorado Division of Wildlife, Denise had a chance to follow her heart, and began restoring vintage printing presses. Her passion with paper, people, the environment, and perfecting letterpress printing skills helped her join the resurgence of letterpress, with the official launch of CabinPress Studio in 2008. She is dedicated to bespoke designing and the printing of beautiful stationery.

Meet Doug

chief press{man} mover & product photographer & wood product producer

Doug never imagined that when Denise explained how she purchased an old vintage printing press, that he would end up moving it, building it a home, learning about letterpress printing, and loving it too. Doug comes from a long career as a paramedic & firefighter who recently retired. When he is not moving heavy cast iron, tending to the maintenance of our presses or building wood products for CabinPress Studio, he is behind his camera as a professional photographer. From his 4×5 vintage field camera to the digital SLR’s he is thoroughly enjoying life & is always looking for the next great adventure.

Meet The Mooseboy

studio greeter & therapy dog extraordinaire

Moose is an adopted Golden Retriever who excels in his position as “greeter”. He is very proud of his trademark paws. When not volunteering for the children’s reading program at the library, he patiently awaits being petted or having a workshop participant throw one of his many tennis balls for him. He has been known to nibble on scraps of our 100% cotton paper!

Mouse Over The Photos To See What We Like!

We utilize the modern wizardry of computers to create our designs, but our true passion and mission is creating these finely handmade paper products for exquisite, interesting people. Every single CabinPress Studio product that makes its way to you has been hand-fed into our vintage, some century old in age, platen printing presses. Every ink color has been mixed by hand. And each card that you receive has been manually cut down to size with an antique guillotine cutter.

We welcome you to traverse our site, where you will find evidence of our romance with both words and letters, of our understanding and love for paper and ink, and of our odes to fonts and design. We are especially devoted to developing ideas that help tell your story, since seeing your ideas translated by the press is so rewarding — for us as well as for our customers! So if you have something in mind, we would love to hear all about it. Thank you for visiting us at CabinPress Studio . . . happy trails!

Meet the presses

SEQUOIA circa 1884 CHANDLER & PRICE OLDSTYLE PLATEN

Sequoia was born in Cleveland, Ohio. Mr. Chandler & Mr. Price joined forces during the 1880’s and decided to enter the growing market and build a platen press. It was estimated that nearly every print shop in nearly every town in the entire United States at one time had at least one printer operating a Chandler & Price Platen Press. Somehow she ended up in California, maybe during the goldrush! She then may have worked hard in a high school classroom introducing boys to the art of printing.

She was found on Craigslist and before I knew it she was personally transported with loving care to the doorstep of CabinPress Studio! Her previous owner gave her new feed tables and a smooth motor. She never tires and is our production press. As her “clam shell” opens a single piece of paper is hand fed into the press and the press then closes and forces the impression into the paper. Quickly she opens again, and you even more quickly remove the printed sheet of paper and insert a new sheet. It is a rhythmic and repeated process for each and every color to produce the final piece.

We love Sequoia and know she will live another century or two.

COLUMBINE
circa 1913 GOLDING MAP PRESS

Columbine is a rarity and is dear to our hearts, our very first printing press, originally used to print large maps because the platen is stationary. She has been salvaged, restored and lives again in the Studio. The first job she printed was a full wedding invitation suite while living in a neighbors garage. She has many important jobs such as workshop teacher, die cutting, and a great conversation piece. Workshop students love her — she does not bite! Columbine is extremely precise and is used for a lot of multi-color jobs with exact registration. She is a hard worker, but only goes as quickly as you can pull down her stirrup handle, you see … you are the motor! She is 100% manually operated – the good old fashioned way.

PIKA
1950 model Kelsey

Pika, named after the tiny mammal, with short limbs and rounded ears that is a fixture in the Colorado high country, is just a baby in letterpress terms and in size. Originally manufactured in Boston in the 1950’s and sold in Boys Life Magazine he is simply a cute treasure. We are fortunate to have acquired Pika from his original owner who had purchased him as a young boy. Pika has a chase size of 3×5 and loves to travel for educational school workshops and open houses to show off what he can do. Weighing in at 40 pounds he is a petite machine. He has a full, fun, printing life ahead of him!

ROCKY
1950’s model Kelsey

Just when we thought we were done refurbishing printing presses another one comes into our lives by chance. A man called our home one day, said he read about our little printing business in the local paper and asked if we could stop by and meet, so he could give me a printing press …. Go figure! Rocky is special and was rescued from a garage where he had been sitting unused gathering dust and rust over many years. He is the big brother to Pika, with a chase size of 6×10 and is oh so fabulous in many ways. Well, now Rocky has taken on a new purpose in life, been cleaned up and is printing once more. His sound is stunning when the rollers ink the disk. The man that gave this special gift to CabinPress Studio stops by on occasion to see his Dad’s printing press in action, his eyes light up when I let him print, his Dad’s name was Rocky.