Papeterie Saint-Armand

This guest post by Josh Dannin, a talented print artist, who has been traveling around the continent visiting printshops and paper mills.

Living in Canada for a few months has given me the opportunity to visit some print-related places I would otherwise miss. One I could not pass up was Papeterie Saint-Armand. Located along the Lachine Canal in Montreal, the Saint-Armand paper mill was established in 1979 by David Carruthers. Here at the mill, David and his partner Denise Lapointe produce a brilliant selection of all-rag handmade and machine-made papers for all uses. Many colors, shapes, and sizes are stocked, as well as pads, books and other paper stationery products.

Many, many more pictures after the jump.

Saint-Armand is not only a paper mill, but also a pulp mill. Here is their pulping machine (below) – a thousand pound Hollander beater. The pulp is either used wet or is dried in sheets for later use, and is completely free of chemicals and bleaching agents – just cotton rags and water. Blue is made from blue denim, yellow from yellow t-shirt cutoffs, etc.

This machine chops up cotton cut-offs into small pieces before they go into the Hollander beater. Large bales and bags of rags in all colors are kept in-house.

This massive Fourdrinier paper machine is used to manufacture Saint-Armand’s Canal Paper. This photo only shows a small portion of it.

Giant hydraulic press !

Speed-drying a bit of fresh paper in the microwave for color testing.

They mix all kinds of things into their pulp, from coffee beans and seeds (which will sprout when the paper is soaked) to Canadian currency, as pictured here. Canal machine-made paper is stocked in varieties made with linen, jute, flax, and sisal.

There is also a fine letterpress setup housed in one corner of the mill, with multiple Vandercooks, platen presses, a Ludlow, and a fantastic collection of type.

Hot lead!

A very cool small etching press with a beautiful book made completely in-house by Saint-Armand’s Denise Lapointe.

That’s a watermark!

Some print history, printed way back in 1822.

Saint-Armand paper is available through various retailers in the United States and Canada, or directly at their site, here.

A big thanks to David and Denise for the warm welcome and in-depth tour of their mill!

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Categories: Print-related, Printshop Tour

6 Responses to “Papeterie Saint-Armand”

  1. Faith says:

    Neat tour! I love the idea of recycling clothing into paper…


  2. What a GREAT insider look at this papermill. Thanks for sharing your time and shooting the images. I’m living over on Prince Edward Island and delighted to know of the mill

  3. john says:

    I found this link through tumblr, I went out and bought some of the gray paper this weekend, I’m super excited to print on it. This is easily some of the the most beautiful paper I’ve come across since Italy. Keep up the good work.

  4. Salama says:

    This is really amazing – great pics as well! Thanks for the virtual tour and keep up the good work. Thanks for sharing.

  5. Darren Brant says:

    I saw their booth at the Grimsby Wayzgoose a few years back. Lovely paper.

    I didn’t realize they pulped their own rags or had a letterpress setup.

    Thanks for the tour.

  6. EFT Studios says:

    This paper is absolutel some of the best I have worked on…from painting to drawing…and soon printmaking. The owners are kind and talented and took the time to return a phone call! Can’t say enough about their product and them! The pics are like looking at a love letter. Thank you for posting them!