Flywheel is a small letterpress and stationery store that can be found along New Norfolk’s main shopping strip, High Street. However, it is so much more than this. The business first opened in 2012, but the building to which it resides is far older. Locals will tell you that it was previously a bakery store, which is evidenced by the original baking oven out the back. It was then a florist, followed by a Kodak shop.
Today, stepping into this carefully curated shop is an experience in itself. A pre-digital haven of inks, rubber stamps, lead type, as well as gorgeous hand-printed paper products. Peer through the windows and you’ll probably see Flywheel owner Rachel James at work in her studio.
Originally from New Norfolk, Rachel moved interstate for a few years. She later returned and begun working at her family’s antique store the Drill Hall Emporium. After dabbling in a bit of label making, this is when Rachel’s passion for printing became apparent. Rachel continued to evolve her skills through studying Graphic Design at the Tasmanian College of the Arts. Later, with her family’s support, she opened Flywheel.
What Rachel prides herself on is her ability to take traditional printing techniques and create something unique for her clients. She houses several different presses, but her favourite would have to be the 1926 American Chandler and Price platen press. She also makes her own digital printing plates – taking inspiration from illustrations in old encyclopaedias.
Rachel loves her job, saying her only wish would be the addition of a studio dog. An a-typical day for Rachel would be split between communicating with clients and getting hands on in her printing studio.
Like much of the Derwent Valley, there is nothing quite like this shop anywhere else in the world. A place that can only be found here – and this we know to be Derwent Valley true.
Flywheel is located at 42 High St. New Norfolk.
Phone: (03) 6261 1641
On your next visit to the Derwent Valley, be sure to share your unique experiences by tagging @Derwent Valley Tasmania on Facebook and Instagram, or by using #DerwentValleyTasmania and #UnquestionablyDerwentValley.