Six for Sunday- Cover Design Elements

#SixforSunday is hosted by Steph at A Little But A Lot. Every week there is a bookish-themed prompt to inspire 6 choices

This month focuses on Share the Love and this week the prompt is favourite covers/types of cover, I’m interpreting that as design features of the books rather than themes or tropes used in the illustrations.

Sprayed edges

Ok I may be a bit of a sprayed edges floozy. If I see a version with sprayed edges I get a bit wobbly at the knees. I mean come on it inspired my banner for Six for Sundays it had to be here of all places!

Sprayed edges joy
Can you guess the books?

I don’t know what it is but maybe it’s like the legitimised version of what I used to do with felt tips and highlighters to my school books until I got told off for defacing my exercise books! 

French flaps ooo-er 

The paperback’s answer to the joy of the dustjacket.

French flaps of Dark Whispers by Vashti Hardy
French flaps of Dark Whispers by Vashti Hardy, illustrations by George Ermos

By extending an extra bit of card there’s a secret world under the back of the covers and more space for extra informations. The Little Gems series by Barrington Stoke is another source of French Flap loveliness with activities, facts or extra musings under the cover.

Foiling and Metallic finishes 

Metallic joy
Metallic joy clockwise from top left: A Sky Painted Gold by Laura Wood cover by Yehrin Tong, The Golden Butterfly by Sharon Gosling cover by Pip Johnson, Amelia Fang & the Naughty Caticorns by Laura Ellen Anderson, Circe by Madeleine Miller cover by David Mann

It sparkles!!! What can I say it’s pretty, it’s shiny and my inner magpie says yes please. Especially if it’s in a Rococo style intricate design – like Melissa Castrillon covers make me sigh with happiness.

Whether it’s picked out in speckles of glitter, full on glorious foil or shimmering hints it just adds a little joy to the experience.

Raised/textured finish 

I like the textural experience of books, raised details, a special finish to the cover embossing, or recessed details! The tactile nature as you read add another experience.

Textured delights
From Top Left clockwise Twister by Juliette Forrest art by Alexis Snell, A sprinkle of Sorcery by Michelle Harrison art by Melissa Castrillon, Frostheart written & illustrated by Jamie Littler

Take the metallic details and then raise it to textural finish and oh my. 

Hidden Hardback delights 

Hidden hardback delights
From Top Left clockwise. Great Brain Robbery by PG Bell, art by Flavia Sorrentino, Bloom by Nicola Skinner art by Flavia Sorrentino, Starfell by Dominique Valente art by Sarah Warburton, The Deathless Girls by Kiran Millwood Hargrave artwork by Olga Baumert

Underneath a lovely or even a simple dustjacket it’s an absolute JOY to find if love has been given to the physical hardback cover instead of just a plain black or standard colour cover. 

Illustrations, prints that evoke special clothbound editions or even just an unexpected colour choice just adds a little extra joy to owning the hardback version. 

White hardback
The Extremely Inconvenient Adventures of Bronte Mettlestone by Jaclyn Moriarty under the dust jacket

I particularly love this simple yet stunningly beautiful choice by Guppy Books to print the hardback of Bronte Mettlestone in a pure white hardback with the title picked out in red metallic foil (not shown but gorgeous) underneath the absolutely stunning cover by Karl J Mountford.


Is there anything more secretly delicious in a book than when love has been lavished on the end papers? Whether a simple but perfect colour choice or intricate design, just that added bit of love and attention makes a book feel extra special.

Endpapers joy
Endpapers top left clockwise The Deathless Girls by Kiran Millwood Hargrave, Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie, endpapers by Neil Gower, Bloom by Nicola Skinner art by Flavia Sorrentino, Magical Misfits 2 by Neil Patrick Harris,

Admittedly this tends to be more so in hardback books than paperbacks sadly but it is special when you get them. Simple but bold colour choices make an impact too from the turquoise of Starfell to the matte blood red of Bronte Mettlestone.

What are your favourite kinds of book covers?

Do we share any favourites?

18 thoughts on “Six for Sunday- Cover Design Elements

  1. Aaaaah, yes to all of these!! I’m such a book magpie too!
    I’m trying to work out the sprayed edges. I’m saying, with some trepidation…
    Maybe Top Marks for Murder and Cogheart, then a few I don’t know, Frostheart, then possibly a Goth Girl book and an Amelia Fang??

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Frostheart is the obvious one! Yes to Goth Girl (again the metallic helps) and yes to Amelia Fang (pink) one.
      Top Marks for Murder no, and Cogheart (warm but not close enough hint hint)

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Oh, I’ll never guess! One of us is lying?! I don’t know that it’s award winning but it does have red edges I think! Nope, I’m stumped now I think – you’ll have to tell me the others (but if course I will wait incase anyone else wants to take a guess!)

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Oh my, I love everything you’ve shown! Sparkly shiny covers, raised texture, hidden hardbacks, and everything else. There’s something so special about something extra being added to a book’s cover or inside covers other than just the pages. It feels like you are getting some extra special treat, something that makes that book worth so much more than just a standard paperback. And I’m not ashamed to admit I spend a lot of time just staring at covers sometimes and how beautiful they are!

    Even though it wasn’t my favourite right now, I still can’t help but fawn over the cover of Evernight with those sparkling parts, lol.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. This is true. I think the added love and thought to books gives them an extra value & despite the added cost I think they are a huge draw for making it seem more ‘worth’ the cost to people who may not usually buy books and an added thank you hug to those who do.

      Liked by 1 person

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