The Federation of Soft, a collective of two Hungarian creatives, Zsuzsi Linka and Áron Markó, had been working on their passion project – a blacklight book full of surprises named Soft Opening – for almost two years before publishing it last year with the help of a successful Kickstarter campaign. Now, following the success and rave reviews of its predecessor, a new Hungarian Edition is in the works.
An unconventional and truly original children’s book, filled with tons of tiny details, hidden references, and interesting backstories to engage and entertain kids and grown-ups alike
The unconventional children’s book tells the tale of Walter, a cuddly wombat, and his friendly ensemble. The protagonist wakes up with a rumbling tummy in a strange world where it seems absolutely ordinary that animals wear fancy designer clothes and drive Italian mopeds, and no one raises an eyebrow if a goat runs his off-the-grid veggie business from a camper trailer. After recovering from his first shock, Walter sets out on an adventure, in search of a decent burger, his journey is full of surprises, strange encounters, and important life lessons (for wombats and humans alike).
We laid extra emphasis on courage, honesty, and critical thinking, and the key to Walter’s success is cooperation and open-mindedness, all crucial values when it comes to preparing someone for the challenges that lie ahead, the authors explain.
Soft Opening is a good fit for early readers, but thanks to the complexity of the narrative, and the hidden stories printed in invisible ink which can only be discovered with the help of a small UV-flashlight that comes attached, the book engages it’s older demographic as well. Wanting to create a long-lasting, high-quality experience not only for kids but for the whole family, the authors spiced the story and illustrations with tons of references to arts and pop culture, adding nuance to the main narrative. And if all this wasn’t enough, you can access the soundtrack of the book at Spotify and Apple Music.
Soft Opening is a good fit for early readers, but thanks to the complexity of the narrative, and the hidden stories printed in invisible ink which can only be discovered with the help of a small UV-flashlight that comes attached, the book engages it’s older demographic as well.
New, unique properties of PERGRAPHICA® paper were discovered while making the book, making it the perfect choice for the project
60-pages long, Soft Opening includes 26 fully illustrated pages, and several smaller ones, and comes with a hardcover and a clothbound. Áron and Zsuzsi chose to print the book on PERGRAPHICA® Natural Rough 150 g/m2 for its high quality and unique characteristic that was discovered in the process.
While testing various types of paper (coated, uncoated, creative papers) in their search for one that suits the book’s special needs, new properties of PERGRAPHICA® were discovered. A paper that enables to reveal the secret text with a UV lamp – only illuminating the hidden text, not lighting up the whole page, proved to be difficult, till the creators found PERGRAPHICA® which perfectly met these requirements. This peculiar characteristic just adds to the high-quality papers list of interesting features. PERGRAPHICA® is exclusively available at Europapier.
Soft Opening is currently available at several design, concept and bookstores throughout Budapest (see list), or you can order it online at The Federation of Soft Etsy Shop. Also, follow the journey of The Federation of Soft on Instagram, and enjoy the videos below in which the authors of Soft Opening talk about the book and it’s characters.