Loujon & Linweave Spectra Paper (1 Viewer)


The Webbs used Linweave Spectra paper for both bukowski books. Anyone that has seen one, knows that the first 10 or 10 pages are on different colors of beautiful deckle edged paper.

I found an original swatch book from Linweave. They have since closed their doors (sadly the paper cannot be found.)

The phone number on the back is ALgonquin 5-4200. This numbering scheme was fazed out in the early 60's, so this would have been the swatch book that they would have seen and ordered their paper from (they used all but one color in "it Catches My Heart In Its Hands.")

It looks to me like they got their idea of naming the pages uneven from the look of this in the swatch book.

Discovering Loujon's methods is always fascinating.




I used to print on some Linweave papers, so they had to be active up through the late 70s, early 80s. I'll bet there are some dusty stashes of that stock around. Finding them is another matter.

The Spectra line was popular for personal stationery, as I recall. I remember the deckled edge because it was a bitch on an offset machine that used an ink/water mix on the plate, like a Multi or an AB Dick. You had to stop the run every 100 sheets to clean paper off the blanket.
Great pics and info, Bill!

The Linweave deckle edge paper used for Loujon's Buk books, is that what you call 'handmade paper', which is supposed to be the best paper quality you can buy?
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Linweave went out of business in 1989. I'm not sure when they stopped making the Spectra colors. I cannot find anything comparable to this paper. if anyone knows of any, I'd love to hear about it. it is not too hard to find lighterweight machine made deckle edge paper, but finding it in anything other than pastel colors is tough.

Anyone that has Henry miller's "Order & Chaos, Chez Hans Reichel" will notice that for that book, which came out in 1966, they used white paper and colored the deckles different colors, so maybe the Spectra colors were discontinued by 1966.

No matter how beautiful the product, let's not forget where it came from:



And the mill itself:


Holyoke, MA is an old mill town about 80 miles or so west of Boston; one of many towns that made their way through the 1800s that way. In those last pictures, that's the Connecticut River in the foreground.

In the late 90s, I spent a fair bit of time for work cleaning chemicals and hazardous materials out abandoned warehouses such as that, across western and northern MA mostly.
Great detective work, Bill. Not sure what you meant by "... naming the pages uneven ..." Maybe the way the page edges are overlapped? I always assumed they saw that in some earlier fine press books, but maybe they got it from the sample book.
You are right. French Paper ROCKS! I have used it many, many times. They are also one of the very few mills that sell to the public directly, online, and in small quantities. With many of the colors from the other mills, like Neenah, you have to buy 1000 or 2000 parent sheets at a minimum. that can cost a couple hundred dollars, which is a lot of money if you only need a litle and will have to sit on 90% of your purchase.

But, yeah, I am really interested in finding a beautiful deckle paper.
I have a friend who was in the paper business and I asked him about Linweave Spectra paper and he wrote this:
Boy, you really test my memory. We used to sell Linweave Deckle edged text and cover when I was with Nationwide and, I think, Zellerbach. As some have noted, Linweave has closed. The only mill now making text and cover papers in the U.S. with deckle edges is Mohawk. These papers were specialty and usually were printed on letterpress equipment for invitations and books. The market was very small and most mills got out of the business by the late 80's or 90's due to low sales and increased federal water requirements. Mohawk does make a couple of lines of deckle edge papers, today, that are acid free that make good long term paper use,..................the paper doesn't yellow or deteriorate with age.

By the way, most of these papers were made on slow and small costly machines that were phased out or replaced due to economical reasons as well as environmental standards. Papers can be, and often were made with deckle edge. Then in the final sheeting, the deckle is often sliced off unless it is meant to remain as a specialty paper. The newer fast machines are made wire to wire and thus have no deckle.

These old text papers could not be run on todays' copiers as they would continually jam. With the deckle, they tend to create dust and cause problems with the modern offset presses. Thus the use of the old letterpresses which are usually found in long established businesses way back in some corner and cranked up only when a special customer is willing the pay the high price for paper and printing.
and then the P.S.:
P.S. Almost all American paper mills got out of this business or shut down by the early 90's as these type of papers were very slow sellers and the advent of corporate mergers and purchasing was upon us. The largest text and cover mill in the 80's and early 90's was Simpson Paper..................and they no longer make paper with the one exception for a corrugated brown paper mill in Washington. The other facilities have been closed and sold off. You may remember that they had a mill facility in Pomona which was sold and is now making kraft paper and board I think. If you are interested in any papers that may still be sold, you can go to one of the self help paper stores in our area that specialize in all kinds of papers and announcements. They are Kelly Paper and Xpedx Paper stores.

A knowledgeable friend is a very good friend.
Thanks! I will pick up a sample swatch of Mohawk Ultrafelt #80 text with Deckle edge tomorrow at XpedX. It is expensive, but for just the right project, it is workable.


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