Category Archives: Book Design


First Things cover redesign

There is something to be said for restraint in design. Pentragram’s re-design of the periodical, First Things, is eye-catching for its bold use of color; but the imperfect illustrations featured on each cover are equally engaging.

Further, the attention to detail is evident in the elegant curves of the “R” and “N” of the publication title, and the structured layout of interior pages (click the link above for images).

I would imagine that seeing these covers on the shelves in 2010 made more than a few passersby stop and have a look.



PRINT | Pentragram Revamps Better Homes and Gardens

A better Better Homes magazine

A few of the changes, as described by Pentagram:

The new design touches the whole magazine from cover to cover and improvements include pure and simple full bleed photography, minimal typography around images, a selective quantity of stories per page, elegant new arrows, and pull quotes energized by shifting lines, just to name a few.

*Click the link above to see more photos


Coralie Bickford-Smith: Book Cover Design UPDATE

Penguin Classics
Photo courtesy of Design*Sponge

A few months ago, I posted an excerpt from a story about Coralie Bickford-Smith – the designer responsible for many wonderful book covers at Penguin Classics.

Well, just today, Design*Sponge (if you don’t know this site, you should!!) posted a more extended interview with Ms. Bickford-Smith.  So, I thought I would share it with you here.  Click on the link below to see the full post in its natural habitat…

An brief excerpt from the Design*Sponge interview:

…That’s the nature of cover design really – the designs are there to serve the writing, and there’s such a range of material that we design for that a personal style isn’t necessarily what you want the customer to see.

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Book Cover Design: Alex Camlin of Da Capo Press

Da Capo book cover

Quick Post: Book Cover Design

Alex Camlin of Da Capo Press chats about his experience, his inspiration, and his work…

An excerpt from The Casual Optimist:

I really enjoy working on books that are a bit off-beat or quirky. Recently, I’ve worked covers for a Karaoke memoir, a history of jetpacks, and a fake autobiography of Steve Jobs. I find that the books with moderate-to-low sales expectations (usually due to their niche subject matter) are the best to work on. Very few people bother to deconstruct what I’ve done, and the off-beat content usually leads to some interesting visuals.

A shout out to @designrelated on Twitter for posting this informative Q+A!

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Penguin Books: Designer Interview

Designed by Coralie Bickford-Smith

A quick post about book design:  What a challenge to have to catch a consumer’s eye with the spine of a book on a shelf or a small cover…

The intro from an interview with Coralie Bickford-Smith of Penguin Books (UK) at Design Related:

Coralie is an award winning book cover designer and has created several acclaimed series designs forPenguin Books. Art director Jim Stoddart first spotted her latent talent six years ago in the page layouts for a supermarket pet club magazine. At which point Coralie breathed a huge sigh of relief, as on the whole she prefers designing book covers. Recently she has been working on projects with students at London College of Communication, passing on the principle that underpins her own work: ‘stop designing, start playing’.

**Shoutout to @DesignObserver on Twitter for the heads up – if you don’t follow them, you should!**

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