If You Are Into Leather. . .

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If you are into leather and letterpress, then you might enjoy owning the leather bound, letterpress-printed Purgatory Pie datebook for 2011.

Esther Smith, PPP’s co-proprietor, told me the backstory: “We started making datebooks in 1980 for 1981. I couldn’t find one that I liked and thought [Smith’s husband and partner] Dikko Faust could print one for me–I made a few sketches. Thinking the lines would be a problem, I decided he should print it on archival graph paper. Dikko said J‘s would be a problem, so I decided he should make sort of type collages that he called TYPOGLYPHS. Of course, my idea was very different from what Dikko made, so we began bouncing things back and forth, collaborating.

“One of our reasons to make the first one was for gifts–we’d gotten married in October and needed to give xmas gifts to our families. Of course they did not appreciate them–but we had made a few extras, and sold those to people who loved them. We realized we were better off selling the books and buying things for our families.

“The second one was similar to the first, a refinement–I learned to case-bind books to make the datebooks–and the third year, we had graph paper custom-made by a man with a strange old paper-lining machine. After that, I began experimenting with bindings. There were girdle books–the iPods of pre-printing-middle ages–which were books with a belt so people could read as they walked and then let book drop if they needed to use their hands or make way for a fast horse. I started making soft leather girdle book datebooks, and over the years, have tried various bindings for our time pieces.”

The price is $111, but, says Smith, for Daily Heller readers, PPP will offer a special of 3 datebooks for $201. Orders can be sent to PURGATORY PIE PRESS, 19 Hudson St #403, New York, NY 10013 or email esther@purgatorypiepress.com for paypal.

Or, you can visit the PURGATORY PIE PRESS open studio/holiday sale, which is this Sunday, Dec 19, from 3-6pm.It’s a fourth-floor walk-up on weekends, just north of Chambers between Duane and Reade Streets, Tribeca.