The Soybean Press will be holding a Valentine's Day Workshop on February the 11th from 12pm to 4pm. We will be making heart-shaped paper and printing letterpress valentines. Please contact if you are interested in attending.

The Soybean Press hosts many of the courses offered through the Midwest Book & Manuscript Studies Program (MBMS). Here is a list of the summer courses taught at the Soybean Press (available summer 2012 through MBMS):

590LP - History and Techniques of Letterpress Printing

Instructor: Steve Kostell

June 20 – July 1

Time: 1 - 4pm

Credit: 2 GR hours

This course explores the history and techniques of fine printing (letterpress), looks at classics of typography and printing in examples from the Rare Book and Manuscript Library and provides technical instruction in typesetting and press operation at the Soybean Press. Students will have exposure to the conceptual, intellectual, and aesthetic considerations of printing and printmaking.

590BB - Bookbinding: History, Principles and Practices

Instructor: Andrew Huot

July 11 – 15

(all day)

Credit: 2 GR hours

A hands-on exploration of multiple styles of bookbinding. Students will acquire fundamental technical knowledge by creating a variety of book structures using traditional tools and materials. An appreciation of the history of bindings will be gained through readings, visits to the Rare Book and Manuscript Library, the Conservation Lab and other field trips.

There are other MBMS courses that are not taught at the press, but still might be of interest to aspiring book artists and printers alike:

LIS 590SU Suave Mechanicals: Studying Historical Bindings

Instructor: Julia Miller

July 9 – 20

(half day, time TBD)

Credit: 2 GR hours

The course will focus on the study of historical bindings in terms of structure, materials, and style beginning with an introduction to the early codex but concentrating on the bindings on printed texts from the fifteenth through the nineteenth century. Readings, lecture, and hands-on examination of original historical bindings from the Rare Book and Manuscript collection will focus on identifying and describing binding elements. Collection materials will be supplemented with historical models, and students will create several models/samplers for their own use.

LIS 490BA Book Arts

Instructor: Bea Nettles

July 23 – 27

(all day)

Credit: 2 GR hours

The course covers the history of artist books in the 20th century as well as current trends.

The Soybean Press is the core institution of the Illinois Book Arts Collaborative. See our About.

Check out the University of Illinois sustainable paper makers at the Fresh Press.

The Soybean Press has partnered with the undergraduate students arts journal Montage to award one student annually with a fine press edition of their work.

Spineless Books will be working on projects with the Soybean Press as of Spring 2012.

Robert Chapman is a local papermaker and letterpress artist.

Illini Union Bookstore

The publications of the Soybean Press will soon be available through the website of the Illini Union Bookstore.

The Soybean Press is a collaborative endeavor of the School of Art & Design, the Graduate School of Library and Information Science, and the Rare Book & Manuscript Library.

For more information please email