We think of each of our products as a collectible art piece - one-of-a-kind, thoughtfully designed and crafted, and truly something you can’t get anywhere else. To achieve that, we always look to bring a fresh perspective to our selections. Our Design Team loves to revisit products from time to time and imbue them with new life by retiring the old jackets and coming up with something exciting and different.
This year, it was time to do just that with one of our bestselling and most loved products - The Lord of the Rings Set! Our lead designer, a life-long fan of Tolkien, was eager to delve into the challenge to creating a new book set and Jackets Only design.
The concept was to design something modern and bold, to match the richness and strength of the story and characters within, and to be more evocative overall of the mid-century era in which it grew to popularity (and forever changed the world of fantasy!).
"I was initially inspired by the memories of my father reading aloud from his childhood copies of the trilogy, and the starker and more minimalistic aesthetic of those editions. In particular, I latched onto the color scheme - a creamy white, red, and black, with a few golden touches.
Next up, I had to develop the imagery and typography that would make up the bulk of the design. Most anyone, familiar with the series or not, could tell you that the One Ring is just about the most iconic and important object and emblem in the tale. That translated elegantly into a simple circle, but the design needed more depth. Less often represented are the other Rings of Power that were created and bestowed upon the different kingdoms of Middle Earth, and their connection to the One Ring. In this design, they appear, neatly arranged around the One Ring, in varying metal tones." - Kaitlin G., Lead Designer
A few renditions of this motif are seen here, showing how the concept was developed. The first concept featured a dark background with text centered within the rings. Kaitlin felt this looked a bit too tame for the bold look we wanted to achieve, so she tried an asymmetrical approach. A few concepts later, Kaitlin landed on an antiqued paper background, which we also felt tied in nicely as a texture relevant to the books. The imagery was completed with a representation of the Eye of Sauron nestled within it all.
After some experimentation with typefaces, and shopping the designs around to the several LotR fans in the office, we arrived at the final design and ultimately decided to offer the set in both colorways. We think these perfectly illustrate our goal of a bold, modern design that speaks to the story and imagery contained within. We hope fans of the series feel the same!
Shop Jackets Only