Whether this is the first time you’ve heard of us, or you bought one of those terribly screen-printed tees back in 2011 we feel like we own you an explanation of late.
When Sam and I started this business back in 2011, we had no inclination that six years later we’d still be able to pay Fox Island Electric Coop to keep on our lights on. But to put it simply (because I've probably already lost your attention... *damn millennials*) we are ready to move onto new adventures.
So for one final summer we’re taking it back to the basics. We’re sorry to our wholesalers and custom printing clients of yonder years, we’re no longer taking orders.
But I’ll be hanging out at 11 Iron Point Road on North Haven Island. Doing what I do best. Listening to pop-hits, screen printing a few tees, taking random swim breaks and holding down the fort. So please stop in and save me from my embarrassing taste in music.
Even though Sam claims to be a fortune teller, we’ve never seen definitive proof. And thus, it’s hard for us to say what the future will hold. However, if you or anyone you know wants to run a rad screen printing and letterpress shop drop us a line! We’re definitely interested in passing the torch, handing over the reins, or any other metaphor that implies changing ownership.
Thank you for your support over the years, and your continued support while we figure our shit out.
"North Haven Island, our home, is everything. We love the unsophisticated rocky shores, the insanity of the fleeting summer, and the raw thick freezing slog of winter. We are obsessed with where we live, and hope that we inspire our customers to appreciate the true spirit of Maine."
Fox Island Printworks is a screen printing and letterpress studio located 12 miles off the coast of Maine, on North Haven Island. Claire, Angela, and Sam have worked to sustain a year-round printing studio on an island with a community of 350 permanent residents.
The cozy downtown studio and shop is located in the old island grocery market. The building abuts Brown’s Boatyard, a family run business since 1888. The back door looks across the boatyard, and out to the Fox Island Thorofare, the waterway from which the business takes it's name.
Sam and Claire, Fox Island Printworks, co-founders and born and raised Mainers, had the idea to print t-shirts as a side business, during the summer tourist season. They started printing in May 2011 with a well-used 4-color press. They sold their shirts at the Farmer's Market to the summer residents and tourists and soon began to receive requests for custom printing jobs from small business and local events. It was after that first summer that they saw potential to turn this experiment into a self-sustaining business.
In the winter of 2013, Angela, a transplant from Seattle, Washington, inherited an old Chandler and Price letterpress.
Claire, Sam and Angela embarked on a cross-country journey with the goal of brining the letterpress from the West Coast to its new home on North Haven. The press was in need of repairs and maintenance, but the crew was anxious to embark on their first letterpress project, so they turned to Kickstarter to help finance this new venture. With the support of their amazing community, the Kickstarter campaign was a huge success and the letterpress has become a major part of the studio and the shop.
This past holiday season, Fox Island Printworks hosted a Pop-Up shop on the mainland, with the goal of reaching a larger audience.They rented a vacant storefront on Main street, Rockland for two months. The space was transformed it into a Maine-Made holiday shopping experience. In addition to featuring their own goods, they stocked the work of other Maine makers. The shop proved to be both fun and rewarding, and they are now always on the lookout for their next adventure on the mainland.
Fox Island Printworks is constantly striving to create high quality and well designed products that are inspired by the environment and community in which the business has thrived. The crew hopes their business will continue to build the economy of a small island in Maine, or at the very least make the Community Days parade a little more energetic and colorful.
"Being able to do something we love in a place that has become so dear to us feels incredibly special. And it is all due to the amazing community (on and off the island) that has surrounded and supported us over the years. So, THANK YOU!"