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Making the Most of Magazine Spine Design

Posted on Sunday, August 30, 2015 at 10:36 PM

In the news: How one magazine turned to creative printing solutions to revamp its spine.

Most discussions about magazine design focus on the front cover, which is a publisher's first and best chance to snag would-be readers at the newsstand. This month, Cable Neuhaus of Foliomag.com reminds readers of another important component of a magazine cover: the spine. "The spine presents endless opportunities," he writes. "It is a vitally important, if underappreciated, space; it can make a real difference in how a book is perceived by readers and advertisers."

He discusses a recent issue of ShowBoats International, whose experiment with the texture of its spine (i.e., using uncoated paper stock to give the appearance of adhesive, giving the magazine a more luxurious feel) paid off. Read the full article here.

Also Notable

Also Important: Magazine Covers

Spines are often forgotten in magazine design discussions, but the emphasis is typically on covers with good reason. As Erik Sass discusses in a recent MediaPost.com piece, a well-designed print magazine cover can still drum up media buzz. "Print magazines may be struggling on the advertising side," he says, "but over the last few weeks, the response to a series of magazine covers has made it pretty clear that, despite the rise of all sorts of digital rivals, the print incumbents still occupy a substantial chunk of our attention." Read more here.

More on Magazine Cover Design

Steven Heller of Wired.com also discussed magazine design recently, in a piece entitled "Magazines Can Compete with the Web -- with the Right Design." He writes: "Unorthodox cover designs are even more important to the survival of traditional print magazines now that digital platforms and products are pushing them into the margins." His article focuses on the work of iconic Esquire designer George Lois to emphasize just how important effective cover design is in keeping a print title relevant on today's newsstand. Read more here.

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