Sophie May’s Dotty Dimple Stories box set is subtly decorated, from the title page all the way out to the exterior of the box. All 6 books are bound in fairly plain brown cloth, however they feature a gold gilded impression of Dotty Dimple (presumably). The cover is divided into 4 parts, with Dotty in the bottom right corner. In addition to this golden child, we see black impressions in the other 4 corners; the top left corner features the title of the series, while the remaining two corners depict a growing branch of flowers. In the center of these 4 squares is a circular emblem, with the words “Sophie May’s Books” encircling a sun. This front cover is enticing to younger readers, the intended audience of the series as explained in my prior post (PUT LINK IN HERE DON’T FORGET). The brown cloth cover is durable and tough, but the eye catching gold depiction of Dotty, paired with the detailed flower illustration, is enticing and makes the book quietly visually charming. This appealing black and gold combination continues around the cover and onto the spine of the book, with another flower illustration rising from the bottom up towards a sun, similar to the one on the front cover. The top of the spine is capped with Dotty Dimple Stories in gold writing, and just below is a gold band with the specific story name in brown letters. This band is visually appealing when all 6 books are in the box together; the gold bands and gold lettered series titles line up not unlike a full encyclopedia, and make the set look clean.
The illustrations in the Dotty Dimple Stories are minimal; they are features sparsely throughout the book, and typically depict simple scenes that are easy to illustrate. The title page is the most intricate illustration between the front and back cover: It depicts two women playing with a dog in a field of some sort. They are sitting under and archway, in a clearing that appears to be borders by trees. Above the arch way the word “illustrated” is displayed in capitalized letters, and under the scene is the title. Instead of maintaining consistency with the letters and their intricacy, this depiction opts to put the title “Dotty at Play” in plain white letters on a black background on a straight line. This is the exact opposite of the large title across the top of the illustration, featuring Dotty Dimple Stories in shaded, 3 dimensional letters. On top of the shading and 3D aspects, the letters seem to have a circus style font on only the top half of “Dotty Dimple” while the bottom half is simply shaded and 3D. At the very bottom of the page is a call out to the publisher, Lee & Shepard Boston, in similarly embellished font as the top title.
As individual books the Dotty Dimple Stories are fairly average in terms of decoration and illustration. However the true decorative qualities of these books are better appreciated when they are in their box set. The box set is a red, square, and made of cardboard. Originally the box was a dark red, almost maroon color, but with too much exposure to sunlight the set has faded to a paler color, similar to a red clay you might find in arid climates. The red is broken up by an ornamental circular pattern with flowers in the center. This design is featured on all sides of the box, with the front and top being the only notable sides. The front has a large white section with information on the contents of the box. This includes the author, Sophie May, the title, Dotty Dimple Stories, and the six illustrated volumes housed inside. It also names Lee & Shepard Publishers Boston. In addition to the front, the top of the box is also notably decorated. The entire side is white, with red lettering naming the title and author, as well as the 6 volumes again. This time however, we get an illustration of Dotty leaning on a window sill, staring out into space, presumably day dreaming. Again we see a callout to the publishers Lee & Shepard Boston.