Tuesday, 18 December 2012

Books, wonderful books: literary-inspired designs


Aside from family, booze and tinsel, a huge part of the delight of Christmas for me is getting the time to curl up and have a proper read. As I'm debating which and how many stories I can carry in my luggage this year and deciding which titles should go on my Christmas list, perhaps it's not too surprising that I've been tempted by bookish delights on a wider scale as well.

This Literary London map has been encouraging my mind to wander even further. Look closely and the design is crammed full of book characters who call the capital their home. If your childhood was anything like my bookwormish existence, it's these people that helped form your first impressions of that there London. There are kids favourites, such as Mr Benn nestling down in Putney or Paddington Bear up in ... (you don't need me to fill in that blank). There are classics including Sweeney Todd, Sherlock Holmes and hundreds of Dickens's oddly named creations. And it's got more recent favourites too, such as Will from About A Boy or the wonderful Bridget Jones. The print is a limited edition available at prices starting at £90 from Culturelabel and virtually guarantees some new literary adventures.


Les Livres offers more book-inspired artwork but at less than half the price (£38.95 to be precise). This print is made up of illustrated covers of classic twentieth-century books. Sometimes the jackets replicate the real first edition - as is the case with The Great Gatsby cover; sometimes they're ones the illustrator Anais Woolf has just made up. Including gems like The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie, Catch 22 and 1984, there's plenty to mull over here. You can buy it from Bouf.


If you're really after the classics, you'll like these nifty iPad and Kindle cases bearing the first edition covers of some of very famous books, as spotted over on Retro To Go last week. The cover of The Great Gatsby comes up again, as does Lolita, Alice in Wonderland and On the Road. An iPad cover costs £39.99 and a Kindle cover £34.99 from Firebox. Is it wrong to be celebrating the beauty of the printed book on something designed especially to be an alternative to the printed book? Oh, don't ask me, I've had too much mulled wine already. I can, however, confirm that they are nicer than your average computer case. Happy Christmas reading everyone!

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