Little Otsu is an independent publisher based in Portland, Oregon. We focus on publishing illustrated books & paper goods printed in the USA on 100% post-consumer recycled paper.


Little Otsu started as the publishing division of the San Francisco store Otsu, founded by Jeremy and Yvonne in 2002. We had already been working with artists through hosting art shows, carrying their handmade goods, and making our exclusive artist t-shirt series. LO began in 2004 as an extension of that, serving as a way to collaborate with like-minded artists to make unique and useful print products using alternative materials like soy-based inks, recycled, and tree-free papers.

When we’re not working on LO, we’re most likely… tending to our cats, watching movies, searching for new vegan taste sensations, bird watching, trying to catch up on magazines, listening to Bob Dylan records, and ultimately still talking about work!

If you’re wondering what “otsu” means, it’s an antiquated Japanese word meaning… strange; quaint; stylish; chic; spicy; witty; tasty; romantic (it depends on the context). We found it in Yvonne’s dad’s old Japanese-to-English dictionary. It’s also the name of a city in Japan, the capital of Shiga (we didn’t know that before we named our store--there is supposed to be a very nice lake there). Little Otsu came from a pet name our first intern Kate used to call the store.