“It is a book meant for holding and reading, curled up in your favourite chair”

11 Jan

I finally received my copy of Marian Bantjes’ new book, I Wonder, in the mail yesterday. The author writes “it is a book meant for holding and reading, curled up in your favourite chair.” I like that it is smaller and more manageable than most self-indulgent modern design tomes. Not that this one isn’t self-indulgent anyway: how many books these days have gilt-edged pages? Or a purple satin bookmark? Not many.

Bantjes, who lives on an island off the coast of British Columbia, has been one of my favorite designers to watch over the last few years. I think she’s at her best when she’s creating fanciful, ornate typography. Check out her ornament font, Restraint.

My students know that I’m usually a fan of keeping it simple and clean. In critique, I often suggest the removal of clutter: a.k.a. decorations that seem to serve no purpose. Furniture. But if you must have your ornament, take note!

I haven’t finished the book in its entirety. But here are a few of my favorite spreads so far, starting with the endpapers, half-title, and title pages:

I studied the title page above for some time. Well, it is map-like . . . .

Dedications, below:

Made of shredded wheat and granola:

And my favorite section: a diagram describing the actions surrounding the assembly of two Ikea bookcases.

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