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A Gathering of Stitches

Added on by Janine.

A Gathering of Stitches is a communal making space for textile and fibre artists located in Portland, Maine. Members can rent equipment and studio space and benefit from a community of fellow makers. You can even rent a "Fairy Godmother", most likely to be proprietor Samantha Hoyt Lindgren, to consult on your project and help you learn new equipment.

Their doors open mid August this past summer, so they're still new and growing. But with a great roster of classes and equipment, it looks like A Gathering of Stitches is stitching up a firm foundation in this creative community.

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UPPERCASE would like to thank A Gathering of Stitches for their ongoing support of UPPERCASE. As we transition away from ads in our print magazine, we are very pleased to have A Gathering of Stitches' ad on our blog sidebar. If you are a creative business owner and would like to advertise with us, we would be happy to hear from you.

"A woman at her printing press"

Added on by Janine.

Kseniya Thomas of Thomas-Printers on why she loves the business of letterpress:

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We're commercial letterpress printers at Thomas-Printerswhich means we primarily print others' designs. This provides us with a great variety of work: we've printed on sheet copper for napkin rings, printed corporate invitations for functions we're not allowed to talk about, and even printed a birth announcement for the son of a German princess. Germany still has princesses! So every day brings a new challenge, but that keeps me looking forward to work every day and to making whatever it is I'm printing look great. One of the best parts of my job is the printer-client interaction: talking to customers about letterpress, educating them about what we do and how letterpress works best, and working together to make a beautiful finished piece.

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That's what draws me to printing: the communal nature of what looks like a solitary thing, a woman at her printing press. I love making things every day, interacting with my customers, and problem solving each new job's challenges. The fact that I get to work with antique machines, beautiful paper, and killer designs doesn't hurt either. I really believe in making things by hand, and keeping people involved with processes, and am thankful every time someone chooses a handmade invitation over one made by a machine in a huge plant. That choice not only supports me and the business, but also a whole ecosystem of other humans, from papermakers to plate makers to the postal worker who delivers the finished invitation. Choosing print is an increasingly important choice, and I'm hopeful that the relationships we've established will help keep printed things vital far into the future. 

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The (other, so many!) great thing about letterpress printing is the community of printers. While we all have our unique methods and ways of getting ink onto paper, and getting that printed thing out into the world, we all share a love of the craft and a commitment to its continuance. A friend and I started Ladies of Letterpress about six years ago to help encourage the community of printers out there to come together and share knowledge—we now have almost 2000 members all over the world. 

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UPPERCASE would like to thank Thomas-Printers for their ongoing support of UPPERCASE. As we transition away from ads in our print magazine, we are very pleased to have Thomas-Printers' ad on our blog sidebar. If you are a creative business owner and would like to advertise with us, we would be happy to hear from you.

type tuesday: sketchnotes

Added on by Janine.
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You might have noticed the top sidebar ad for "The Sketchnote Typeface". It's an extensive and useful font made from designer Mike Rohde's own lettering. The sketchnote is a process that Mike uses while taking live notes at events or otherwise getting ideas down on paper. Using handlettering and simple drawings, he jots down the experience of listening and learning while creating engaging and memorable pages in his journal.

The Sketchnote Handbook is a guide for this technique, teaching readers how to balance the act of visual note-taking while still remaining engaged in the live content. For the design of the book, which emulates his own sketchnote visual style, Mike worked with Delve Withrington to digitize Mike's lettering. "I saved literally hundreds of hours by using this typeface," Mike says. You can read about their process here.

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A few years ago, Carolyn Sewell was our correspondent at Typecon. Carolyn employs a similar technique for her live notes. I'm inspired to try my hand and sketchnotes during next week's Nearly Impossible conference.