The National Trust Teatime Baking Book

A book form that is becoming more and more popular is the Illustrated Cook Book. My favourite recipe book I own is The National Trust Teatime Baking Book (Good Old Fashioned Recipes) by Jane Pettigrew. Although I love the yummy puddings and cakes within, what really appeals to me is the book design.

Examples of 1950's cookbooks.
Examples of 1950’s cookbooks.

The cover instantly attracted me with retro aesthetic and illustrated design. The layout and font is quite traditional and along with the use of 4 pastel colours, these features give the book the book a 1950’s feel.

A salmon pink, muted teal and two shades of muted blue are used. I like the selected colours and find this limited palette for the covers very effective as the simple, retro appearance would stand out from other cookbooks which so often use photographs.

Front and Back Covers

The Illustrations on the cover have strong lines, clean shapes and block colours. Each drawing has been reduced down to the simplest form needed to portray the utensils, cakes and ingredients. There is also a clever use of negative shapes which can be seen in the bread illustration.

The endpapers


The end papers use the same illustrations on the cover but change the black for white lines and use a lighter shade than the teal paper it is printed on. There is no repeating pattern seen, instead the images are randomly repeated and put together. I think the 3 tone colours on the endpapers are really sophisticated and aesthetically pleasing.



chapter montage
Chapter headings

The inside contents on the book features photographs of the baked goods, but each chapter heading is a soft coloured page with white writing and a small decorative leaf underneath. The pages with the recipes throughout vary in colour, all keeping to the muted palette. If the paper is a colour the writing is white and/or black, and if the paper is white the writing is black and/or a colour. The continuity of the colour throughout the book makes it appear as a high quality book that has a very considered design. The physical weight and book- cloth feel of the book also add to its quality.

I think the design is very attractive and can see it appealing to bakers of all ages, as retro aesthetics are back in fashion. However I do think this book may be more focused towards woman as the pastel colours are very feminine. This would significantly reduce sales, however maybe the assumption that predominantly women like to bake, ensures this books success.

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