Thursday, 1 December 2011

Penguin Classics Embroidered Covers

{sigh}   When I was studying textile design at Uni - I specialised in embroidered textiles - this is the kind of project I dreamed of... I love literature books, I love colour and I love threads. Imagine working on a project that enabled you to pick your favourite literary classic and interpret it, using fabric and thread into a beautiful book cover...    {sigh again}

This became reality for embroideress Jillian Tamaki when she was approached by Penguin Threads creator Paul Buckley to hand embroider the designs for the latest re-prints of three of their timeless classics: The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett, Black Beauty by Anna Sewell and Emma by Jane Austen. What a dream job... and what a mammoth undertaking! Aren't they stunning?!

The books themselves - released this October - have deliciously embossed covers to accentuate the embroidery detail and make it look as 'real' as possible, I've not yet actually handled one of these beauties but The Secret Garden is so going on my Christmas wishlist {yeah, that's a hint!}

Here are the full covers, I just love how the back includes a small snippet of a quote from the book - a real book lovers treat!

The inside flap shows the back of Jillian's handiwork, which I think is a lovely nod to the tactile quality of hand produced work - they say the mark of a quality embroideress is that the reverse side is as neat as the front!

Be sure to check out Paul Buckley Design's full range of shots on Flickr to see the whole collection. Work is already underway for the next three books; The Wizard of Oz by L Frank Baum, Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame and Little Women by Louisa May Alcott. This time stitched by the expert hand of Rachell Sumpter and due for release next year

I am besotted with this collaborative project. Which books would you select? I would love to see Great Expectations by Charles Dickens, Jungle Book by Rudyard Kipling, Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carrol and, of course, my all time favourite, Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen!


Lisa x

{images by Jillian Tamaki}

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