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|||||Lead type in type case featuring decorative patterns

Museum of Printing Field Trip

Thank you so much to EFI for inviting me to an afternoon at the Museum of Print in Haverhill, Massachusetts. Spending the afternoon with a fun group of print lovers and gawking over machines was such a treat. I have been to the museum a few times before (I’m lucky to live close by) and always learn something new about printing every time I visit.

This time was no different. Frank Romano, President of The Friends of the Museum of Printing, is a wealth of knowledge who never fails to educate and entertain. If you visit, be sure to ask him about the time Steve Jobs consulted him for the original fonts for the Mac. You can even see Jobs’ Lisa and Next computers at the museum. The museum truly is a treasure trove of equipment and interesting stories.

Fun Facts about the Museum of Printing

The museum is a resource for production designers for both movies and television shows. For example, they loaned equipment such as copy machines for the filming of Mad Men. But you don’t have to be a huge production team to access their collection. In 2021, we borrowed an old typewriter for the photoshoot for The Cryptology Collection.

Though a museum, they also have a lot of equipment for sale, such as old presses. Periodically they host garage sales to sell excess equipment donated to the museum, but which they cannot accommodate.

The museum offers printing workshops, lectures, and special exhibits throughout the year. Many of the workshops are open for children as well as adults.

In addition to the history of printing more broadly, the museum also has many pieces of local interest. Personally, I loved seeing the original press that ran the Hingham Journal, my hometown’s local paper.

Seeing this exhibit inspired me to dig through a box of old things and find an article from the Hingham Journal written in my senior year of high school about one of my first business ventures, a tailor shop for teachers out of the home economics room! (Clearly, I had entrepreneurial ambitions right from the start!)

As a lover of modern digital printing, I find it endlessly fascinating to learn about the evolution of printing. In fact, I was so inspired after my first visit I designed a collection of patterns, Moveable Type, and donate a portion of the royalties from these designs to the museum. If you’re looking for the perfect pattern for a library, graphic design studio, or print shop, check out the full collection.

If you’re a print lover who wants to help support the museum’s mission, consider becoming a member or just visiting often and bringing your friends.

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Kristen Dettoni

Kristen is a visionary textile designer based in Southern New Hampshire with a track record of industry-defining contributions dating back to 1993. She is the Founder of Design Pool and Domanda Design and is an occasional blogger. Her creative influence is reflected in her work across multiple sectors, including automotive, office, hospitality, healthcare and home furnishings. Kristen is an accomplished designer with over thirty years of experience in design with a BFA from Kansas City Art Institute and an MFA from Cranbrook Academy of Art. She maintains an art practice and exhibits her artwork in juried and group shows throughout the United States. Her artwork has received numerous awards and honorable mentions. Whatever her creative pursuit, Dettoni approaches it with a strong belief in the power of good design to transform our environments and ultimately, our lives.


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