Margaret Armstrong(1867-1944), designed over 270 book covers during her career. I am drawn to her swirling designs, detailed flowers, and love of gold and silver imprinting, and deep rich binding colors. She and a group of female friends traveled around the western states from 1911-1914, and took a trip to the bottom of the Grand Canyon(the first white women to do so), and went on to write and illustrate Field Book to Western Wildflowers. (Printed Flower Gardens)
I was interested to discover, since Stratoz makes stained glass, that Armstrong’s father was a well-known stained glass artist who worked with Tiffany, Maitland Armstrong, along with Margaret’s sister Helen Armstrong, using a technique of “plating” where glass is stacked in order to modulate the light. I also covet her monogram, since it is the same letters of my own, and I love the interlocking type.
According to her brother Hamilton Fish Armstrong, in his book Those Days:
“She started a vogue for making the book covers themselves artistic and distinctive, and her covers became a sort of identity tag for the author. Whenever I see the dark blue and gold design on the spine of some book on a library shelf I have recognized it as Henry van Dyke’s even before Margaret’s distinctive lettering tells me so.”