We print all of our papers at our Benicia, California factory.
Printing Tables are 90 feet long and each holds 6 rolls of wallpaper. Metal rails along the side of the table have adjustable knobs which are set to the particular repeat of the pattern to be printed. A complex pattern for an average size Victorian room can require over 1,000 individual impressions.
Artwork: Many of our patterns have been created by hand in the traditional manner by painting on acetate or cutting a stencil. For every pattern we create, a separate stencil must be prepared for each different color, and all must align perfectly.
Screen Making is done by coating a silk screen with a photo-sensitive emulsion, essentially creating a large piece of film. The screen and artwork are sandwiched in a large vacuum frame and exposed to light. Areas exposed to the light become impervious; the other areas can be washed out. In the early days we used silk on a wooden frame; today it's monofilament polyester on a titanium frame.
Paint is forced through the stencil using a plastic-bladed squeegee. The printer must skip every other repeat to prevent the silk screen frame from falling in wet ink. Each screen lays down one color - if a pattern has eight colors it must be printed eight times with eight different screens.
Research is the foundation of our design collection. Museums, libraries, factory records, old wallpaper books, private homes, period literature... we are always searching for the best historic patterns from the Americas, Europe and Australia. Do you have a personal discovery that you'd like to share? Contact us at: firstname.lastname@example.org.