Friday Interview: Headcase Press! June 08, 2012 09:32

Happy Friday, everyone! This week I'd like to introduce you to Nicole, from Headcase Press. Working her magic in nearby New Bedford, Massachusetts, Nicole's popular type jewelry is available here at Craftland. Read on, and have a great weekend!


Please introduce yourself and tell us about your handmade business.
My name is Nicole Monforti, I'm the owner, printer and jeweler at Headcase Press, a small letterpress printing shop. I also make jewelry from my "orphan" letterpress type.


Describe your studio for us.
My studio is on the third floor of an old textile mill where the third and fourth floors are all artist studios. The floors there are sturdy enough to hold the presses and the freight elevator makes moving the heavy equipment and things for craft shows in and out possible. I share the space with a classical figure sculptor.

What's the creative scene like in New Bedford, MA?
It's pretty great around here. There are a lot of artist studio buildings, galleries and a pretty thriving artistic community. Since Umass Dartmouth moved their College of Visual and Performing Arts to downtown New Bedford, things have really started to improve.


What was the inspiration behind your collection of type jewelry?
The type jewelry was a product of circumstance. When I bought my first press I was given a lot of type and most of it was pied type (often referred to as the "hell box" in a print shop where all of the type that is mis matched or a non identifiable font is thrown.) I felt like it was a part of history and I couldn't just get rid of it, so I decided to turn it into something else.

Where do you find all the type you use in your jewelry?
The jewelry was far more successful than I had thought so once I had used up all of the pied type I had, I started buying the "hell boxes" from other letterpress shops.


What does handmade mean to you?
For me, handmade is the joy of creating something with your hands that someone else will buy and love. It's also the satisfaction of taking something that would otherwise be discarded and turning it into something useful.

How did you first become involved with Craftland?
I participated in their holiday 2011 show and afterward they kindly asked me if I'd be interested in continuing to sell at the shop.

Little known, fun fact about you?
I have a love of the turn of the century castle like architecture of Kirkbride state mental hospitals.