Design Book Case Study


My family and I met Lisa Alward and her family in 2012 when we were all residing in temporary apartments waiting to settle into our new homes in Canberra.


We have all remained friends over the years of travel and through career changes. Lisa is a very driven person, and we often spoke about her work and her vision, so when she called one day to appoint me with her debut book, I was delighted to support her along her journey.


To establish Lisa Alward’s name as an expert in the Australian interior design industry, and to offer a high-quality product for companies to gift clients, as well as an affordable option for people to buy and to be inspired.


Planning a book is the most daunting part for many people. I created a flexible timeline, along with a proposal of key elements for us to discuss for this specific project.


  • Establish the audience: The focus was couples, families and empty nesters.
  • Templates: I created chapter templates which I sent to Lisa for completing as the first draft. This was an important part of the process because it helped with time management during a busy period for the author. I edited these as they came in, which then created a second draft.
  • Full third draft: Once the chapters were finished, this provided a second draft state; and an introduction and final chapter were added. This third draft was a pivotable point in creating a complete cohesive product.
  • Proofing: Ben, Lisa’s husband proofed this version, as did Lisa. Having other people read the book is paramount to the process. A fourth draft was edited by myself and changes from the proofing were integrated. This refined draft was then given to an external proofer, who read for errors and readability. More proofing continued from this point of the process.
  • Images: As an interior book, images not only had to be high-quality and inspiring, they had to create a look of an overall product. The colour scheme had to match the company branding (which changed part way through the time line), and the images had to complement the instructions and tips in the book.
  • Book matter: An index and contents page were included and an informative glossary.
  • Communication Consultation: I consulted on initial PR and communications.
  • Published: Beautiful Life (at the time of writing this case study) is published in a beautiful hardback book, and ready for pre-order, retail and the launch in Brisbane, Australia.

Lisa suffered a shocking loss during this book creating process, and her first book not only marks a significant point in her professional path, and a helpful guide for homemakers, but it is also dedicated to her beautiful son, Jesse – may his soul rest in peace.