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The design of this special, limited edition of ‘Stardust’ has been heavily influenced by the books of the ‘Golden Age of Illustration’ from the early part of the 20th century. These were the days of book illustration giants such as Arthur Rackham, Kay Nielsen and Edmund Dulac who were illustrating the Brothers Grimm, Aesops Fables and other fairytale classics.
The page layout is very similar to those ‘Golden Age’ books, with extra-large margins and a compact text block. The illustrations in this edition are tipped on plates with tissue guards, just as was so often the case with Rackham et al.
There are nine wonderful, full colour illustrations by Charles in this illustrated edition of ‘Stardust’ plus the title page. Three of these illustrations are new, the other six are older but did not appear in the original DC edition. Charles has also written a new foreword for this edition.
The book is a bradel binding with a dark blue calf leather spine and vellum front and back boards. All page edges are gilded in gold. The endpapers are handmarbled by Freya Scott of Paperwilds (UK) especially commisioned for this edition.
The solander box for this book is half bound in dark blue, gold dusted calf with handmade marbled sides. The spine is rounded and has five raised bands which have been hand tooled with gold. Between these bands are two black leather labels with the title and author/illustrator names. Internally, the trays are covered with a dark blue suede and cream coloured cloth. The book itself sits in a well and can be lifted out with a wide ribbon.
This book will come with a portfolio containing three A4 giclee prints signed and numbered by Charles Vess.
The text is printed letterpress from polymer plates by Phil Abel of Hand and Eye Letterpress (London) using his Heidelberg SB cylinder press.
The hand crafted vellum comes from William Cowley in the U.K. They are the only remaining vellum and parchment maker in the UK and one of only a handful in the world. They supply the Royal Household and the British government with materials for legal documents. Here’s an article about his craft and here is his website
Most pictures provided by the courtesy of Yegor Malinovskii @ artofcollectiblebooks