BREMELO PRESS & LYNDA SHERMAN

Bremelo Press is a letterpress design and print studio based in Seattle owned and operated by Lynda Sherman with a lot of help from her friends.

Starting her own press in 2000 was a chance for Lynda to tell pieces of her own story and carry the art of moveable type into the new century. When searching for a press name, Lynda reflected upon her childhood in Bremerton, WA. She remembered the word Bremelo because it was the first derogatory word flug at her from a car window at the ripe old age of 11. Bremelo being a combination of Bremertonian and buffalo, meaning big-boned. Lynda adopted this name which she reclaimed as the voice of empowerment. Having just become an aunt to two little girls she wanted her nieces to know that they could still be anything regardless of what anyone else said. They are now 16 and 20 years old and achieving things beyond Lynda’s wildest dreams. 

Bremelo Press is an archive and working museum. It contains the history and legacy of analog printing that could be easily erased in our present hyper-digital world. Bremelo is home to two antique print presses including Adele, a one-hundred-eleven-year-old Chandler & Price clamshell press and Vi, a forty-five-year-old Vandercook fllatbed newspaper proofing press. Adele was named by fellow printer Kevin Cain after Fred Astaire’s first dance partner (his sister), because he felt printing was a dance. Vi was named by 10 year-old returning student printer Maggie because she heard it whispered as she pulled the ink drum down the press bed. The feel of ink on paper and the indelible stamp of typefaces keeps this art breathing, but it’s the folks who dance with the presses that keeps the magic flowing. 

Lynda likes to read obituaries and sees them as a sort of map to living a full life. She once wallpapered an entire bathroom with obituaries clipped from the New York Times. One of her favorite quotes comes from the obit of phone phreak Joybubbles. Phreaks were the precursors of today’s computer hackers. Joybubbles was a blind genius with perfect pitch who chose to remain age five forever.  When he was asked why Mr. Rogers mattered, Joybubbles said, 

“When you’re playing and you’re just you, powerful things happen.”

Read more about Lynda's inspiration from this interview with Prairie Underground. 

photo by Rafael Soldi


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