Collecting: Book covers

The drive to collect. Big things, small things, old things, things – often objects – that give pleasure and sometimes have monetary value too.We have small collections of objects that fire our imagination – vintage toys, found photographs, mid-century textiles, 20th century architecture and design books. Our collecting is almost under control and I think that is the best one can hope for, that it doesn’t become an obsession that takes over life and living.Ipcress File Bookcover Art001Whilst searching for a recipe I came across these four books bought for pennies because we liked the covers rather than the contents. As it happens I then read them and they are rather good. All the book covers are from the mid 1960’s and they push our creative buttons in different ways although it has to be said that Michael Caine’s glasses are ‘best in class’ on the cover of the Ipcress File! Winter in England Bookcover Art002

So this post is the start of an occassional series of blog posts where we share our, and other peoples collections. Tales  from Shakespear Bookcover Art003Castles national Benzole Bookcover Art004

Do you collect something – we would love to know what, and why…


About TheBigForest

TheBigForest. A silly artist maker creating in felt and paper construction. Like us on Facebook: TheBigForest. Find us at Twitter : twitter/TheBigForestuk


  1. sam

    I’m a book collector too, I mainly have a thing for Gerald Durrell books, any copy of any edition, even if I have it several times I just cant leave it, I feel I need to give it a loving home. also Bird books, and knitting patterns. there are a few budgie things and bird things too πŸ™‚

    • Yes we have lots of knitting patterns too. Mostly vintage and lovely stuff to knit. Funny how you can get hooked on one thing. We collected vintage ladybird books for a while!

  2. lundygirl

    I collect cookery books – not just up to date, hot off the press ones but old, out of print ones too. I just sort of ended up collecting them. I think it’s the social history side of old recipes. It isn’t an out of control obsession but i enjoy it and I will always make room for books πŸ™‚
    looking forward to more posts about your collections.

  3. Books,Books,Books,Boooooookkkkkssss!!!!!
    It is a borderline obsession, I cannot walk past a second hand book shop without going in.
    If the large stack of books I received for christmas on my bedside table had toppled over it would have killed me instantly!
    I have a real fondness for the same style of covers you have selected, but also childrens books from the 50’s,60’s and 70’s.


    • Plenty of covers from 50’s, 60’s and 70’s childrens books coming up in future posts. Ive actually only just removed the toppling pile from the bedside table in the belief that it must be bad feng shui or whatever. I noticed that we had an 80’s copy of Portland Bill from the FilmFair kids series next to a Patrick Keiller book on urbanism which is a fairly heady mix for bedtime reading.

  4. I, too, have a bunch of books that I have only because I loved the covers–very different from yours! I guess my other main collection is vintage linens. And rustic sports gear.

  5. I think it’s wonderful how all art tends to tell you when it was made, be it on a cover of a book, or on a canvas or even a knitted jumper. What a great way to tell time.
    I don’t think I can say I collect anything, rather than hoard wool and yarn. It’s a healthy hoarding though (I think) and I do have future uses for my stash, but I can definitely see lots of fluff coming out of my shelves!

    Going back to books, have you even seen women’s purses made from book covers? It does make me cringe, the notion of tearing a book apart, but the end result can be beautiful, and let’s face it, it’s not something that can be done with used Kindles or Kobos… or can it? πŸ™‚

    • Yes Ive seen them. I also have a book on how to re-use books (!) to make craft. The results are beautiful but Im unsure I could destroy a book to make the objects.

  6. You’ve just got to adore Michael Caine don’t you? I’m afraid I collect too many things. It’s gotten better since we moved. I’m trying to not accumulate bundles again. Yet I wouldn’t pass up a box of mercury glass christmas ornaments in pink, aqua or silver. I just add them to the ‘Christmas’ closet πŸ˜€

    • I nearly did a post on vintage Christmas ornaments a couple of months back but didn’t get round to it. The colours are so subtle and beautiful. Ah the drive to collect tempered by the wish to unclutter. I totally empathise!

  7. I collect a German magazine called “dogs” which has fantastic high class photographs and very interesting articles concerning dogs – for me, the makers have found the perfect balance between valuable information, lifestylishness and down-to-earth-mentality. The magazine makes up (a bit) for my not having a dog of my own yet.
    P.S. By the way – I really love my Sea Captain Bear πŸ™‚

    • I understand that. I bought campervan magazines until we had our own campervan and that made up for the lack, as you say, a bit! So glad you like your sea captain bear. Its lovely making things for people you know – if only from BlogLand.

      • Hello my dear Brighton Bears, now itΒ΄s my turn to start getting a bit worried if you two are doing ok? ItΒ΄s been a bit quiet in this space for some time…hope you enjoyed your pre-spring break and are well.

  8. I have a small collection of pink Depression glass. I think it’s absolutely lovely, but haven’t bought any for a couple of years because I’m trying to de-clutter. I love your 60’s dust jackets. I think they’d look amazing framed as art if you could bear to take them off the books. (It just seems so wrong to take books apart for any reason!)

    • Yes I always think that when I see old record covers framed. They look wonderful but I want to play the music (or read the book in this case). I just prop them up at the front of the book shelf so I can appreciate the cover for a bit.

  9. uhm, yeah,I collect…old books, especially with nice covers ;0)

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