Designs to Color by Betty Schaffner

March 20, 2018
Designs to Color Book Cover Designs to Color
Betty Schaffner
Tallfellow Press
February 17, 2016


In 1959, Betty Schaffner knew she was on to something when she heaped single page drawings of her designs in a box to sell for 25 cents each at her local Community Art Bazaar and sold out in less than an hour. Mother of four - Betty would doodle when on the phone and her children would take the doodles away and color them. Soon neighborhood kids were asking for the doodles. Inspired, Betty colored in kid’s white tennis shoes, the front door of the house, the fence, the shed, garbage cans, the fridge , and even a car!

She put her designs in a book, loaded up her car, and drove them around to bookstores in eastern Texas. Then, publisher Price Stern Sloan joined the fun with a first printing of 500 copies, which sold out quickly. The six-volume series went on to run from 1965 to 1987, selling over a million copies.

Price Stern Sloan published what was probably the first coloring book for adults as well as kids. Designs to Color was created by Betty Schaffner who believed that people of all ages had an innate imagination and artistic talent that conventional coloring books failed to spark and nurture. Her varied line drawings, sometimes abstract and sometimes recognizable - flowers, faces and animals - lead any "color-er" into winding paths and jungles of form and into their own worlds of imagination. And she was right. People from all over the word mailed their completed artwork to Betty. Larry Sloan’s daughter, publisher Claudia Sloan, is bringing the designs back into wide circulation.

Betty Schaffner’s children have gone through the collection, and discovered never-before-seen designs for the new compilation. And new to this edition are “Finish Your Own” designs, allowing imaginations to run wild. All the designs are sure to be appreciated by coloring aficionados old and new.

Designs to Color by Betty Schaffner
Review by Dawn Thomas
Rating: 3 stars

Pages 23
Publisher: Tallfellow Press
Release Date: February 17, 2016

Nonfiction, Arts, Crafts, Hobbies, Teens & YA

This book is a combination of a coloring book with Zentangle images. Some of the pages use thick lines with large coloring areas while others are more detailed with thin lines. Most of the images are are abstract geometric shapes. Many of the images have blank spaces within for the reader/artist to finish.

The images in the book are single sided so the reader/artist does not need to worry about ink bleeding through the page. This is a small book that would be handy for on-the-go coloring projects.

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