Eccentric Italian Printing Jewels
Printer’s fleurons, ornaments, borders, dingbats and jewels are among the vestiges of the past that were cashiered when orthodox Modernism or New Typography altered the way design was practiced in the West. Though eradication of ornament was certainly not across the board. Many hot metal type foundries (and eventually phototypesetters) retained their respective supplies of lead and wood material.
One of the many great sources for such material was designed and produced by the great Italian foundry Società Nebiolo in Turin. This 1928 “Campionario Caratteri e Fregi Typographici” (collection of character and decoration samples) contains a small inventory of the Stile Liberty (Art Nouveau) and Novecentro designs for sale back in the day.