Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Puffin Designer Classics: THE SECRET GARDEN

I'm very excited to share this one with you: to celebrate Puffin's 70th anniversary, six designers were asked to re-imagine a Puffin Classic and design a limited edition book for their title. Just like Penguin's Designer Classics from 5 years ago, these are limited to only 1000 copies worldwide and each are housed in a plexi slipcase.

Those of you who followed the Penguin Designer Classics when they were on the market know how fast they sold out and how much their value has increased. Paul Smith's Lady Chatterly's Lover was the most popular, with copies now listing at around $1000.00. Fortunately, the Puffin line was announced far enough in advance for collectors to jump on the opportunity to put orders in early. Amazon had a bunch at one point, and I was able to grab a few.

What's interesting about this series is how modest most of the designs are. In my opinion there's only one standout/must-have for collectors, and the rest are really more for fans of the artist or the story. That one standout, however, is astonishing:
Francis Hodgeson Burnett's The Secret Garden was designed by children's book author and illustrator Lauren Child of "Clarice Bean" fame. The book is printed in blank ink on green paper, and is bound in an incredible layered cut-out cardstock. The front cover of the book has three different illustrated layers, which can fan open and create a wonderful effect:

Instead of writing the book's title on the spine, the information is written on a yellow ribbon with a small key tied to the end. The key and ribbon are held lightly in place by a small (and hardly noticeable) dab of adhesive that is stuck to the base of the book and a tree-less portion of the front cover.


Lauren Child's edition of The Secret Garden is limited to 1000 numbered copies; this is #724. Unfortunately the book is officially sold out, but you might be able to track a few leftovers down on online vendors.
Currently reading:
The Instructions, Adam Levin

Currently listening to:
Dreamend, "Maybe We Are Making God Sad & Lonely (side B)"

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