Wednesday 1 June 2011

Notting Hill Editions


Anyone launching a new publishing company focusing on physical books gets a big hug from me these days. When the publisher is someone like Notting Hill Editions, that hug becomes so suffocating and bear-like that  everyone feels awkward and then has trouble making eye-contact afterwards. But enough of this over-extended metaphor: look to the books!

Notting Hill have dedicated themselves to producing slimmish but book-length pieces of non-fiction, both new works and forgotten classics. The production values on their books are superb--stamped jacketless linen covers, sewn bindings, and two-colour internal printing with red ink used for chapter-opening drop capitals, page numbers and flourishes on the running headers.

Several of the many, MANY, MANY future-of-the-book-in-the-face-of-ebooks pieces that have been cropping up in newspapers and online recently have mentioned that the way for physical books to survive in the future may be for them to be beautifully made objects. Notting Hill Editions are doing this just right--the look and feel of their books remind me of the precepts set out by master printer/typographer Daniel Berkeley Updike in his lovely The Well-Made Book.

As you can see, most of the books make use of text-only covers...

..although the John Berger essay, Cataract, is illustrated inside and out by Selçuk Demirel.

So, fascinating books in lovely bodies. What more could you ask for, really?


Fo said...

Hello there, I'm the MD of Notting Hill Editions and would like to thank you so much for your lovely comments about our books. We totally believe in the book as an object and worked with Garvin Hirt of FLOK designs in Germany to produce a really lovely artifact that people will enjoy owning and giving. You can imagine the pleasure we had in the office opening the cartons of books after months of planning. Our next group of books will be coming out this November using this look and feel and I hope you enjoy them as much as this list. If you'd ike to learn more, visit or write to us at many thanks again.


Ian Koviak said...


JRSM said...

Ian, aren't they just?

Fiona, thanks for stopping by, and best of luck with the books.

Levi Stahl said...

I'll definitely be looking out for these when I'm in London this weekend. They look lovely; the Table Talk volume seems right up my alley.

Fo, if you're still here: would I be likely to find some of your books in Foyles? If not, are there stores that are stocking them that I should investigate?

JRSM said...

Levi: I can't imagine the number of extra suitcases I'd need to take for a book-buying expedition to London. It sounds like bliss!