Shipwright & Co.

Shipwright & Co. was born in January of 2013 when a Chandler and Price letterpress circa 1911 entered the lives of two old friends, Jen Kruch and Jessie Alberts. The result, in my honest opinion, is one of the most exciting letterpress and design companies in the nation. Jen and Jessie have a distinct style, sense of humor, and impeccable craftsmanship that sets them apart from the pack.

Photo by Matt Morris

Photo by Matt Morris

Tucked away in a small garage atop a mountain, their printshop is located in an especially lovely part of the Napa Valley. Being surrounded by such beauty helps inspire these gals to be especially mindful and environmentally conscious in their work. They print with low-VOC rubber-based inks, use vegetable oil and other natural products to clean their press, and use 100% cotton, tree-free paper. Talk about an environmentally friendly small business!

Watch their process as they create a business card from (almost) start to finish in this short film by Matt Morris.

Before we go any further, some full disclosure: my sister is one-half of this company and my husband made the above film. That said, I'm not just writing about it because I'm biased — I'm sharing it because Shipwright & Co. deserves insane recognition for their unique design aesthetic, not to mention the painstaking skill and time it takes to pull and trim each and every piece they produce by hand.

With any piece of technology becoming obsolete after five years, it's astounding to think that something built more than 100 years ago is still relevant and does exactly what it was designed to do. With this type of approach, many tend to take themselves too seriously because they feel they're preserving this piece of history. What Shipwright does is bring levity to this labor-intensive art form — they have fun while producing beautiful things (check out their nautical series, which includes a merman version of Steve Guttenberg). They are the real deal, folks!

 

For more information about Shipwright & Co., get connected...

web: shipwrightandco.com » shop: etsy » email:  info@shipwrightandco.com 

facebook: @shipwrightandcompany » instagram: shipwrightandco

 

Triumphant Return

A lot has happened in the past nine months. A few milestones: after an incredible six-year stint, I left my full-time gig in the nonprofit arts realm, got married to the love of my life, became creative director of an up & coming hub for food and culture, and finally, moved across the country to the Napa Valley. The point is, I've been busy but starting today I'm back to regular blogging. It's been far too long! A few weeks ago, Matt and I traveled to Telluride, CO to attend our favorite film festival, Mountainfilm. Some of you may remember the in-depth post I did about this environmentally-focused festival after attending for the first time a few years back. Matt's latest short film, American Tintype, was screening at Mountainfilm, but we made sure to treat this as a vacation and truly enjoy drool-worthy views and delicious food. Now that our home base is California, we had two full days of travel by car each way and let me tell you: driving is the way to go. I'd never seen Utah or Nevada and only bits and pieces of Colorado – the landscapes in each state morph quickly but fluidly. The vast and mysterious desert, the vibrant red sandstone arches, the magical Bonneville Salt Flats, and the stunning mountain ranges...obviously, much adventuring and Instagram spamming ensued! Here's my abbreviated "best of" collection from the week.

Arches National Park in Moab, UT

Arches National Park in Moab, UT

Somewhere in the desert, Eastern Utah

Somewhere in the desert, Eastern Utah

Helper, Utah.

Helper, Utah.

Bonneville Salt Flats in Tooele County, UT   [by  Matt Morris .]

Bonneville Salt Flats in Tooele County, UT  [by Matt Morris.]

Bonneville Salt Flats, Tooele County, UT

Bonneville Salt Flats, Tooele County, UT

Colorado Countryside Horses

Colorado Countryside Horses

Telluride magic hour.

Telluride magic hour.

88 Bikes  mobile art gallery at Mountainfilm in Telluride, CO

88 Bikes mobile art gallery at Mountainfilm in Telluride, CO

W. Colorado Ave., Telluride, CO

W. Colorado Ave., Telluride, CO

Thunder Mountain Monument, Imlay NV.

Thunder Mountain Monument, Imlay NV.

Thunder Mountain Monument, Imlay NV.    

Thunder Mountain Monument, Imlay NV.

 

Free Smiles

Today I realized that I never shared some big news. I sometimes forget that I have a wider audience here than just my personal friends and family. SO - a few months ago, my fiancé Matt got nominated for an Emmy® Award for his first documentary short film, Pickin' & Trimmin'. It's been airing on dozens of PBS stations across the nation for the past year, so this is such exciting news! In order to get this inspiring story out to a broader audience, the film is now available to view in its entirety online. I've talked about the film so many times on my blog in the past that I won't get into the subject matter - but if you enjoy bluegrass music, documentary film, small-town culture...or have a soul, take 20 minutes out of your day and watch it if you haven't already! 

Matt recently made a case that short films should be truly free to the public - you can read the article on IndieWire here. After the success of posting Pickin' & Trimmin', he decided to release his most recent film, Mr. Happy Man on Valentine's Day. It's currently at 158K views and has been picked up by NPR, Oprah.com, The Daily What, Laughing Squid, Devour, Time.com, etc...I guarantee this film will make you smile, no matter how shitty your day has been! Johnny Barnes is a true role model.

For more info about Matt's films or to purchase a DVD (with extended scenes and extra footage), check out his website here.