Destined to be peripatetic, Idlewild Press was established in 1999. The name was settled upon in a cabin on Cape Cod, first utilised in a work published in the magical Round Valley, California, then made brick and mortar in a former typewriter ribbon factory in Cleveland, Ohio. It’s current incarnation exists on the sixth floor of the Nicholas Building, Melbourne, Australia. 

The press has published two titles under the Idlewild imprint: Seventeen Reasons and The Extinguishing of Stars. Seventeen Reasons was the recipient of a Rounce & Coffin Club Award for Book Design in 2000. A collaboration with Holly Morrison, The Extinguishing of Stars has been shown in numerous exhibitions in the US and Australia. These two titles are held in both private and public collections in Australia, Europe and the United States. 

After the upheavals of moving hemispheres, it is projected that the press will return to a regular publishing schedule in 2009, with a show scheduled for September at Mailbox 141 in Flinders Lane. In the meantime, the press continues to produce custom stationery and other ephemera for discerning clients. Weekend workshops are held bi-monthly, open studios every now and then. The business is small, and run rather badly by someone slow to quote and invoice, and reluctant to use terms such as “price point”, “cash flow” or “profitability.” This is a business run purely for the love of fine printed materials, for the pleasure of good design, for the continuance of craft. It is my hope that the joy the press’ work brings will far outweigh the frustrations of reaching the proprietor on the phone.


For more about the press:

A short essay for Craft Victoria
A radio interview on Melbourne’s 3-RRR
An interview in The Age’s A2 
An article about the Nicholas Building in the Melbourne City Weekly
Mention on The Design Files blog