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First Florida Wayzgoose

Mar 19, 2013   //   by Melissa Coon   //   Letterpress  //  No Comments

Speak Little Type

I had the pleasure of attending my first Wayzgoose. A Wayzgoose by definition is an annual feast of the persons employed in a printing office.  The event was held on campus at the University of Tampa in the impressive Tampa Book Arts Studio (TBAS). It was a day filled with demonstrations, special guests and a chance to meet others who shared the same love of letterpress and talk shop.

I had a chance to cast my name in type using a Ludlow machine with the help from Carl Nudi, Tampa Book Arts Studio Coordinator.   The Ludlow casts bars of type out of metal primarily consisting of lead. The Ludlow system uses molds, known as matrices or mats, which are hand-set into a special composing stick shown here.

Ludlow Die

Once a line is completed, the composing stick is inserted into the Ludlow machine, which clamps it firmly in place, and hot metal is injected through the mold.

Me on the Ludlow

Name from Ludlow

Gary Johanson demoed the C&P Platen Press.

 C&P Demo

Gary printed a beautiful mini-broadside on the C&P.

C&P  Print

Donna and Peter Thomas, The Wandering Book Artists brought their Gypsy Wagon Bookmobile. Together they have been making artists books for over 30 years. They demonstrated how to make paper by hand with their miniature Hollander beater.  For more demo pictures, hop on over to Gary’s website here.

Book Artist Sign

Loved all the painted details on and inside the trailer.

Trailer Door

Book Trailer

Bridget Elmer from flatbedsplendor.com conducted two demonstrations: booking binding and Vandercook press printing.

Book Binding Demo


Bridget did a fantastic job answering all our questions during her demo on the 1947 Vandercook.  Here is the lovely Broadside we got to keep.

VanderCook Demo

Wayzgoose Poster

Kendra Frorup, book artist, papermaker and sculptor from UT’s Art Department gave a demonstration on how to make decorative paste papers.  Here’s a step-by-step tutorial I created of her demo.

 Paste Paper

I got a one-on-one lesson on how to set and cast type on the Intertype machine with retired printer Henry Wehle.  It is hard to make out the picture, but I typeset, “Printed by Melissa Coon”.


Sean Donnelly and J.B. Dobkin gave a brief exhibit of Peter Pauper Press editions from TBAS special collections. They debut the University of Tampa Press: The Peter Pauper Press of Peter and Edna Beilenson.

Peter Pauper Press

There were several other demos and presentations: Handpress printing on the 1848 J.J. Lankes Washington with TBAS Director Richard Mathews, Monotype typecasting sorts and ornaments with author Rich Hopkins and many more.  For a blow-by-blow of the whole day be sure to check out Gary’s website here. There is a great video you will not want to miss.

Thanks for reading.



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