Chapbooks, Publishing

Delights from Stamped Books

About a year ago, I contributed to a Kickstarter campaign by Stamped Books. They were looking to raise funds to buy a tabletop letterpress. By me, that’s a damn worthy endeavor. Their campaign was successful, and as a thank-you, I received an envelope full of their publications this past spring. Finally, this summer, I got around to reading and inspecting them. I am a big fan of the D.I.Y. and the handmade, and I love the way Stamped Books has hand-stamping on all of their projects. I appreciate anything that makes individual copies in a limited press run more unique.

I look forward to continuing to follow the work of Stamped Books and other such fun & inventive presses.

Here are some of the goodies they sent me:

Big Women Big Girls by Cate Stevens-Davis, a memorable collection of short-shorts, bound with a beautiful excess of embroidery floss.


Spare Scrap by Claire Barbetti, part of which is a great little essay in which Barbetti explores the historical notion(s) of ekphrasis as well as her own: “Again, ekphrasis is not only a literary genre as it has been commonly understood, but a practice that engages the nuts and bolts of representation: what it means to translate an image — or more precisely, the experience of viewing an image — into words and text.” The way this thing is put together — so many fun folds, two little booklets hand sewn in — lovely. I think a couple of folds/pages may have gotten out of order, but I was able to suss it out.


How to Ride a Bike in Pittsburgh by Robert Isenberg
This is some pretty awesome design. Fun to read, too — although I’m biased-in-advance because I’ve got serious Pittsburgh nostalgia. I think bikers and ‘burghers alike would really enjoy this trip. The hand-stamping of the bicycle and the bicycle “trail” is just perfect.


The Hospital Papers by Lacy Cunningham, formatted vertically like a hospital chart (at least, that’s what it made me think of), and hand-stamped with hearts (like, internal organ, not Valentine) throughout.

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