I haven’t done a ‘Cover Love’ post for a short while now, but today I felt compelled to, and for this one it’s a bit of a first, because my interest wasn’t initially piqued by a book cover, but rather by a publisher’s catalogue, and not as you may think, by the contents of the catalogue, but by the catalogue itself. The catalogue in question is by publisher Capuchin Classics (their first printed one as it happens), and I don’t think I’ve ever held in my hand a marketing publication as exquisite and beautiful as this one. Lavishly illustrated throughout and bound and published as that of a small novella (with quality paper to boot), if the production standard of Capuchin Classic’s catalogue is anything to go by, then their published works are a must-buy.
For those who have never heard of Capuchin Classics (and as they have only just celebrated their first birthday there’s a chance some of you may not have), they’re a small (for now) UK independent publisher with a main mission as suggested in their tagline – ‘…Books to Keep Alive’, of “bringing back into print and circulation outstanding works of fiction which have been unjustly forgotten or neglected.” A noble mission indeed, and they’ve started well with a nice inventory so far of 24 titles, with the next batch of five coming next month (May 2009).
Of course this post is primarily concerned with cover design (I’ll talk more about the content when I get around to buying some of these and reviewing them), and it’s the stylistic simplicity of the Capuchin Classic series that really gets my cover loving ‘thermometer’ rising. As you can see from the six cover shots I’ve chosen to include above, all of the titles (the glorious catalogue [pictured right] included), follow exactly the same design – ‘top and tailed’ with a combination of two hues of a minty green and accentuated by a band of black for the book’s title, with each cover prominently displaying a custom illustration from artist Angela Landels (the catalogue cleverly displays a ‘Capuchin monkey reading a book’ illustration from Landels – nice touch). Undeniably simple I’m sure you’ll agree, but also exquisitely effective.
So there we have it, a bit of ‘cover love’ uniquely inspired in the first place by the design of a catalogue, and I applaud Capuchin Classics for addressing the ‘small’ details like this. They piqued my interest for their products even before opening their catalogue, and that’s a powerful result to achieve. I hope Capuchin Classics stick with such a high principle in the quality of their marketing material (‘credit crunch’ permitting), and continue to add the quality of titles to their range which they already have done so far. If they do then I’ve a feeling there are going to be a lot of bookshelves around the world gently radiating with the soft glow of ‘Capuchin Classics Green’
Oh and should you wish one yourself, here’s the link for ordering your own copy of the Capuchin Classics catalogue, although I’m not sure about mailing outside of the UK.