Hand Proofed Type Specimens

A letterpress shop needs type specimens. First of all, they’ll be useful for me to see all of the options when I’m making typeface decisions. Secondly, it will really help communicate the “flavor” of various typefaces to customers when we’re trying to make some preliminary decisions around their designs.

Ink slab, brayer, metal type, specimen
[Tools for inking and printing type by hand]

For now, I’m focused on setting these lines of type and putting them aside for a real specimen sheet that I can send out to potential customers. I’m not trying to get perfect prints. Yet.

Some of my fonts are smaller than the word Liberty on a dime.
[Tiny type next to a dime]

Some of this type is unimaginably tiny. It’s easy to understand why there are so many “rules” around how to pick up and handle type. It’s just too small to actually see what I’m doing while I’m doing it. Once I’ve picked up the letters from the spaces in the case where they’re supposed to be and faced them correctly in the composing stick, I can put on my reading glasses and check how I’ve done.

Below are the results of this round of specimen typesetting. They’re spotty, but it gives a bit of an idea of the range of styles and sizes that I have available. These specimens make up about half of the collection. Next week I’ll set specimens for the larger sizes.

[6 and 8 Point Type]
[8 and 10 point type]
[Some 12 point type]
[More 12 point type]
[Some 14 Point Type]
[14 and 16 point type]