Sarah Wilkinson and Karis Van Noord are two beautiful California girls living their dream with Tabletop Made. With a garage turned studio and music at full blast, their stationery line proves that with a little you can get a lot. Each one of their cards are hand printed on a tabletop Kelsey Excelsior and the response has been nothing but positive. They have been featured on well-known blogs such as Design*Sponge, Sycamore Street Press, and more as of late. Read on about these ladies to hear what everyone is talking about.
How did each of you first get into letterpress?
We dreamed of starting a letterpress card company, and for fun, we took two workshops at Irvine Fine Arts Center with Madeleine Zygarewicz of Panorama Press. We were hooked! We immediately started searching for a press of our own.
What was your very first press?
Our first press (that we still use to this day) is a Kelsey Excelsior 6×10. We nicknamed him Sven, and he’s a hard-working man. He complains sometimes, but he’s had a good life so far.
What medium do you usually print?
Most of our designs are on photopolymer plates, but we do have a couple of steel plates. We also have a few collections of metal type, which we use for our own personal designs, say stationery with a friend’s name. However, photopolymer is our medium of choice.
What’s your process from sketch to press?
Taking inspiration from just about anything, we sketch, scan and trace the image to Illustrator, play around with colors, send each other ideas, rework the design a couple of times, prepare the file for plate-making, jump for joy when the plate arrives, and slap it on our Boxcar Base!
What other print shops do you admire?
Who or what inspires you the most?
Living in Santa Barbara is a huge inspiration to us. We love looking at local textiles, architecture, natural landscapes, Mexican pottery, paper cuts – basically everything around us!
What’s your favorite item from Boxcar Press?
We love our base!
Any neat tricks you can share?
We have one trick that we swear by. We use paper corners to hold our paper in place. This allows us more room for the design since we don’t have to worry about mashing clips up on the base.
How was your experience showing at LA Renegade Craft Fair?
LA Renegade was an insightful experience. It was our first fair ever! Since we weren’t sure what to expect, we over-prepared. We basically brought our whole print shop. Now we know better! Our favorite parts included meeting fantastic artists who were so friendly and helpful to us and seeing our customers in person! We want to try out the SF Fair next.