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More Glorious Fun with Handmade Paper from Nepal!


More Glorious Fun with Handmade Paper from Nepal!

Hello Friends, and a very Happy Independence Weekend to you all!

I'm having a ridiculously good time working with this luxurious handmade paper from Nepal, and wanted to share with you how it looks on the new line of journals just out this week:

You haven't even seen the front covers yet, and I know your eyes are already drinking in the gorgeous, saturated colors of this paper.

Made from the lokta plant (a kind of laurel, for you gardeners out there), this paper has been a vital sustainable industry for folks in the Himalayan region, particularly the Kathmandu Valley, since the 12th century. The artisans there have perfected the creation of this beautiful and strong paper, and we are honored to work with it here at the Press.

Introducing, the Kathmandu Journals:

The quick specs:

  • 7" tall by 5" wide, and a half-inch thick
  • 100 interior pages (bamboo)
  • hand-sewn with linen thread
  • $22 each
  • 10% of proceeds goes directly to earthquake relief in Nepal
  • purchase direct from us here

After selecting the large sheets of Nepalese paper, we cut them to size and then affix them to rugged Italian-made cover stock. The result is a cover that is not only beautiful, but durable. The warm-white interior pages, made of sustainably-sourced bamboo paper, are then hand-sewn with linen thread in a multi-section figure-8 binding style that is very strong and allows the book to open flat. 

In honor of the long-standing tradition of beautiful paper-making in Nepal, we are currently donating 10% of the proceeds from each of our journals featuring Nepalese paper to the relief effort in the wake of the recent earthquakes in that region. Each Kathmandu Journal you purchase helps us help the men and women of Nepal. For more information on the disaster and the relief work, click here.

May each of you enjoy a safe and celebratory holiday weekend!

With thanks and peace to all,

St Brigid Press



Handmade Bulfinch Journals

Bulfinch Header Greetings All!

We have the First Fire of the season burning brightly in the wood stove today. Autumn's damp chill at bay, we're excited to unveil the newest member of the St Brigid Press family of blank books: the Bulfinch Journal.

Bulfinch Array

Midway in size between the larger Commonplace Books and the smaller PocketNotes, these 5" X 3.5" journals fit comfortably in the hand and in the handbag. About 90 interior pages are Mohawk Superfine text-weight paper, in warm cream and acid-free. The sturdy covers are Fabriano's wonderful Murillo paper (also acid-free), with a tactile wove surface and rich color (available in mustard and in deep green). The journals are hand sewn with linen thread of various earth-tones, in a lovely stitch pattern that decorates the spine.

Sewing the blank books with linen thread.

Bulfinch Stitch

Each cover is blind-stamped with a beautiful "open-book" ornament called Bulfinch. This ornament was originally part of a typeface of the same name designed in 1903 by William Johnson for the Ladies Home Journal. The back cover features our Press signature, letterpress printed in forest-green ink.

The Bulfinch Ornament, designed in 1903 by William Johnson.

Back cover, letterpress printed with our Press signature.

To order, please see our online Store, here. For more information, contact us at Those of you in the Waynesboro, Virginia, area can purchase these from Stone Soup Books. The journals are $12.95 each.

Thanks so much, and all best to all,

St Brigid Press

Letterpress printing the covers on the 1909 Golding Pearl treadle press.

The Bulfinch Journals, in mustard or deep green.



Letterpress PocketNotes

PocketNotes 1

Now available from St Brigid Press -- Letterpress PocketNotes!

We are glad to introduce a sweet little line of letterpress printed journals, in five dandy designs and one handy size. At about 4.5" tall and 3.25" wide (closed; 6.5" wide open), these blank booklets are perfect to slip into a pocket or satchel and go wherever you do. Printed on our 1909 Golding Pearl treadle-powered press, the sturdy cream-colored covers brightly display five themes: "Fly Fishing," "Piper Airplane," Golden Sun," "Sailing Ship," and "Notes." Inside, 40 pages of warm-white paper await your thoughts, lists, ideas, and art. All are hand-bound with linen thread.

Offered only through our website, please see our SBP Online Store for ordering information.

Thanks, friends, and all the best from St Brigid Press.

PocketNotes binding

Golden Sun journal whole

PocketNotes interior


Five PocketNotes Designs



"A Commonplace Book" journals now available

Spring at Arbora Warm Spring Greetings from St Brigid Press!

Hope this post finds you all well and enjoying the Beauty of the Season. In honor of April's designation as National Poetry Month, St Brigid Press has collaborated with Blue Ridge Mountain artist Nancy Maxson in the creation of "A Commonplace Book" journals. These lovely blank books are part of the tradition of personal notebooks that date back to the Renaissance -- providing a place to write down and remember the quotes, poems, recipes, insights, and inklings that we come across in our reading life. It's like creating a portable treasury of favorite literary pieces, something folks have done for centuries.

"A Commonplace Book" (gold cover with blue thread)

"A Commonplace Book" (green cover with gold thread)

The St Brigid Press editions of "A Commonplace Book" are hand-bound with fine papers and linen thread. Each book includes a hand-set, letterpressed cover and an introduction to the history and usage of commonplace books, 4 reproductions of Maxson's exquisite original watercolors, a colophon signed by the printer and the artist, and approximately 84 open pages. Book size: about 7 inches by 5 inches. Book colors: choice of gold cover with blue thread, or green cover with gold thread (interior pages are light cream). (Cover artwork may vary; all pieces will be watercolors by Maxson.) Available now in the St Brigid Press Store!

Setting the type for the Introduction in "A Commonplace Book"

Detail of the Introduction.

Below is an excerpt from the lovely introduction in "A Commonplace Book" --

From John Locke to Virginia Woolf to Lemony Snicket, folks have collected favored sayings, sonnets, recipes, and whatnot in handy companion books. Emerson encouraged people to "make their own Bible" of words that mattered to them, and Thomas Jefferson began his first Commonplace Book when he was fifteen years old. A Commonplace Book celebrates the lasting effect a piece of writing has on us, and is a way to remember and curate the wisdom, humor, and beauty we find in the world. May this little book help you honor the threads of your own life, show you what is important to you, and keep it all in one place!
~Nancy Maxson
   along the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia
   April 2013

Hand-sewing the books with linen thread.

The hand-set text of the Introduction, printed on the 1909 Golding Pearl No. 3 treadle printing press.