Then the internet came along and fucked a bunch of shit up…”

I remain unsure exactly how to describe House Industries (which I think is kind of the point of House Industries), but I enjoyed the Cool Tools interview with co-founder Rich Roat, and especially his recommendation of French Paper Co.:

In the old days of graphic design, premium printing paper was a B to B thing and you had to buy the stuff through a print shop who had to buy it through their local distributor. When Andy and I first started House Industries, we were in Delaware and no Delaware distributors carried French, we posed as a print shop so we could order their paper direct from a Baltimore distributor and have it shipped to another printer, sort of like the CIA set up a shell corporation to buy titanium that they needed to build the SR71 blackbird from the Russians during the cold war. We were friends with fourth-generation owner Jerry French, but, at the time, it was verboten for paper mills to sell direct to designers. Still, Jerry would see that some “fell off a truck” every once in a while to fuel early House Industries font catalogs. Then the internet came along and fucked a bunch of shit up, but also eventually made it okay for French to sell direct to consumers. Anyway, about the paper itself: unbeatable color palette and delicious textures, mostly attributed to hero graphic designer Charles S. Anderson. Their swatch books are more valuable than a PMS chart and if you have a pernickety printer who doesn’t feel like doing a little sourcing, you just get out your credit card and order it yourself. French is also a really cool company, surviving as an independent mill in a time when most other such businesses are long gone. And they were generating their own hydroelectric power, recycling and being environmentally-friendly before those kind of things were cool, like almost 100 years ago.”


Fran's picture
Fran on August 4, 2017 - 10:12 Permalink

I liked the S&S and Son Dynamo Hub recommendations.