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New Zealand book scores major international design award

September 29, 2014

New Zealand book scores major international design award

A book passed over by the judges of the New Zealand book design awards has won a major international design award.

Flatmate’s Handbook, produced by Massey University graphic design student Lauren Earl under the supervision of senior lecturer Annette O’Sullivan, was awarded a prestigious Red Dot Design Concept Award at a glittering ceremony in Singapore on Friday.

The book, a highly original combination of witty photographs and drawings with sage advice for flatters, was published by Awa Press last November under the title Flatter’s Survival Guide, with Whitcoulls snapping up the entire first print run.

The Booksellers Association blog described the book as ‘a gorgeous object – a luxurious hardback, printed on heavy card and exquisitely designed ... with the information being presented in a hilarious and informative way that is easy to read and a pleasure to the eye’.

Mary De Ruyter in North & South called Lauren Earl ‘the Gen-Y voice of house-sharing and dishes-avoiding experience ... and she knows her audience – the swish hardback can also be followed on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter’.

Kia Ora magazine said, ‘Forget giving them your old china as a going-away gift: this book is what they need. It’s funny, useful and handsome to boot – just like the very best flatmates.’

Despite the plaudits the book failed to make the shortlist of the 2014 Publishers Association book design awards.

Awa Press publisher Mary Varnham said, ‘We are thrilled that Lauren’s stunning book has caught the eye of one of the world’s top judging panels – we have had huge faith in this book from the beginning.’

The international Red Dot awards are given annually for products that show exceptional design qualities and innovation. This year’s award was judged by a 22-person panel.

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