A Sonop Guide for the Modern South African Gentleman

Updated: Aug 20, 2019

Sonop guide custom book

Sonop Christelike Tehuis is a renowned university student residence based in Pretoria.

In recent years they've received some backlash for their policies on diversity and inclusivity. In response to that they initiated a transformation project, called "Sonop 2055". As a branch of this project, Sonop approached us in November of 2017 to produce a guide that would be handed out to new and current residents.

The booklet covers guides for daily scenarios, wide-ranging self-improvement and character building articles, and introductions to essential life skills. We were responsible for editing, copywriting, editorial design, and the final production of the guides.


Design & Production

Sonop custom guide

A key consideration for the guides was that they will ideally be kept for many years after Sonop residents graduate and leave the residence. This notion of longevity and robustness helped us select the content and informed both the design and the production of the guides.

The design aesthetic was kept as simple as possible so that it wouldn't feel dated in a few years. With this in mind, we knew that we also had to keep it interesting, otherwise nobody would read the guides anyway. We didn't want the guide to feel like just another textbook that needed to be studied (begrudgingly).

The layouts were designed to be engaging (or at least amusing), imagining that the student would be flipping through them at 2 A.M. because they're cramming for an exam the next day and the guide could be a reprieve from their pile of dense textbooks (hopefully not just another way to procrastinate).

Sonop custom guide

The sequence of spreads was given as much rhythm and variety as one could fit into an A5 page, and we avoided density — except where the sensitivity of a topic justified it.

We commissioned a local illustrator whose style feels unique to South Africa, without being a cliched "African" style.

Sustainability, local upliftment, and product quality are primary concerns for us. It follows that the guides were compiled, designed, printed, and produced in Pretoria — using only high-quality, sustainable materials.

The covers were printed on 216gsm Enviro Wove Desert Storm (FSC 100% recycled post consumer waste), and the inners were printed on 100gsm Sun Cartridge.


Like what you see? Get in touch and let's see what we can do for you.


Project Credits

Compiled by: Willem van der Schyf (willemvanderschyf@gmail.com)

Edited by: Tyler Yeo & Ashleigh Naidoo (hello@orangethread.co.za)

Editorial Design: Satori Notebook Co. (www.orangethread.co.za)

Illustration: Stian van Wyk (stianvanwyk1996@gmail.com)

Printed by: Wet Ink Pretoria (www.wetink.co.za)

Produced by: Satori Notebook Co. (www.orangethread.co.za)

Copyright © 2018 Sonop Christelike Tehuis